University Academic Programs and Resources
- University Libraries
- Professional Faculty
- Administrative Faculty
- Resources and Services
- Fenwick Library
- Johnson Center Library
- Arlington Campus Library
- Mercer Library (Prince William Campus)
- School of Law Library (Arlington Campus)
- University Scholars Community
- University Courses
- International Programs and Resources
- Office of Continuing Professional Education
- New Professional Studies, MA/MS
- Reserve Officer Training Corps
- Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU)
- Center for Global Studies
- Krasnow Institute for Advanced Study
John G. Zenelis, University Librarian and Associate Vice President, Information Technology
Fenwick Library, Room A227
Craig Gibson, Associate University Librarian for Research, Instructional, and Outreach Services
Clyde W. Grotophorst, Associate University Librarian for Digital Programs and Systems
John C. Walsh, Associate University Librarian for Resources and Collection Management Services
Ascencio, Bowdoin, Brooks, Burke, Bushallow, Chandhoke, Coniglio, Cowan, Euliano, Fleming, Gerber, Hannan, Holland, Johnson, Jordan, Kerr, Khater, Killian, LaFleur, Lee, Lockaby, Miller, Nalen, Oberle, Palmer, Patton, Putnam, Sheehan, Shelton, A. Stevens, J. Stevens, Stone, Suh
Chase, Ercolano, Matthews, Perry, Stockwell, Vay
Resources and Services
Resources and services of the George Mason University Libraries are housed on the Fairfax Campus at the Charles Rogers Fenwick Library and the George W. Johnson Center Library; on the Arlington Campus at the Arlington Campus Library; and on the Prince William Campus at the Mercer Library. The School of Law Library, on the Arlington Campus, is administered separately. Combined holdings, including the law library, total 1.1 million books and bound journal volumes; more than 10,500 current print serial subscriptions; 3 million microform units; more than 340,000 in-house government documents; 213,000 maps; 38,000 multimedia materials; 540 electronic databases, including access to 28,000 electronic journals and proceedings as well as 79,000 electronic books; and significant holdings of manuscripts, special collections, and archives.
Mason's integrated library information system provides an online, public-access catalog; circulation; electronic reserves; and library-processing services. The information system can be used in any of the libraries from campus locations on the network or via the web. The web site library.gmu.edu offers access to a variety of networked digital resources and electronically mediated services, including a virtual reference service.
The library liaison program supports a variety of cooperative and collaborative activities. Liaison librarians work with academic departments and programs to develop print collections and electronic resources. They also offer introductory and advanced information literacy instruction sessions, as well as advanced reference and research consultation services to students and faculty. Each of the four libraries has its own dedicated instruction room for information literacy classes.
Through membership and active participation in local, regional, and national library consortia, the libraries are able to better respond and meet the needs of the university's growing and diverse academic and research programs. Current affiliations include the following:
- The Virtual Library of Virginia (VIVA) Program, a Virginia-funded electronic and resource-sharing program for public higher-education institutions
- Washington Research Library Consortium (WRLC), whose membership also includes American, Catholic, Georgetown, and George Washington universities
- Association of Southeastern Research Libraries, which includes the 36 largest university libraries in a 10-state region
- Center for Research Libraries, a Chicago-based research library for research libraries whose multimillion volume holdings comprise specialized and uniquely held materials in North America
- The international Online Computer Library Center, whose extensive computerized system and network facilitate national and international library resource-sharing activities
An intercampus delivery service is available for students and faculty requesting materials held at any Mason campus library. Materials not held by Mason can be obtained by direct borrowing from WRLC institution libraries via the Consortium Loan Service, interlibrary loan, or commercial delivery services when required.
Expanded academic support services also include the following:
This service enables users to ask reference questions via an instant messenger.
Mason Archival Repository Service
The Mason Archival Repository Service (MARS) provides a stable digital archive for scholarly and research materials of lasting value held notably by Special Collections and Archives or produced by Mason faculty, students, and staff. MARS is managed by the Library Systems Office. The MARS librarian offers expert advice on archiving these materials, considering file formats, copyright issues, long-term management of archived materials, and issues pertaining to scholarly communication.
University Copyright Assistance Office
Johnson Center, Rooms 120, 121
Phone: 703-993-2562, 3158, or 2427
This office provides guidance and assistance on copyright and fair use issues, including copyright use in classroom teaching and technology, online courses, distance education, university publications, university web sites, networked library collections and related services, electronic course reserves, and course readers. Workshops are offered on a regular basis.
University Dissertation and Thesis Services
The University Dissertation and Thesis Service (UDTS) assists students and academic units in the dissertation, thesis, and graduate-level project process by helping students meet all university requirements and deadlines for submission of work. The UDTS web site provides useful tools such as the university's Thesis, Dissertation, or Project Guide, which contains downloadable templates of necessary elements, forms required for the submission process, and links to related web sites. UDTS also assists graduate students through individual consultation and informational workshops.
A part of the Special Collections and Archives, this service assists university academic and administrative departments with the retention and disposition of temporary records by providing a number of online resources to members of those departments. The records manager works with members of university departments to ensure that records are retained, retrieved, managed, and disposed of appropriately, in accordance with Virginia state laws, policies, and guidelines.
Statistical Research Services
Fenwick Library Government Documents
This office provides expert consultation services for students and faculty who need assistance with statistics-based research projects, including quantitative and qualitative research design analysis, and help with the myriad statistical-analysis software.
Fenwick is the main library in the university's library system. It holds most of the book collections across disciplines, as well as current and bound journals, microforms, special collections and archives materials, federal and Virginia government documents, and maps. Instruction and reference classes are available in search strategies, information sources, and information technology. In addition, publicly accessible computer workstations and data ports for laptop use enable access to the entire system's electronic resources and associated services.
Johnson Center Library
This library is part of the George W. Johnson Center integrated learning environment. Electronic access to scholarly information is complemented by a print-reference collection, multimedia collections, and a growing circulating book collection comprising core texts and readings supporting the university's undergraduate curriculum. This library, in particular, supports interdisciplinary programs such as the Honors Program and New Century College through its collections and outreach services. The library also holds designated discipline-based circulating book collections. It is the center for multimedia collections and services for the university library system. This library also provides course support through reserve materials (electronic, print, and media) for students and faculty on the Fairfax Campus and manages the entire electronic reserves service. A collection of international newspapers rounds out the collections and services. The Johnson Center has a wireless network that students may use anywhere in the building. Assistive technologies include screen-reading software, text-enlargement software, and special hardware for individuals with disabilities.
Arlington Campus Library
This library is a full-service research facility supporting the teaching and research needs of Mason faculty, students, and staff on the Arlington Campus. Consistent with this campus' distinct areas of academic specialization at the graduate level, the library's collection emphasizes public policy, international commerce, economics, education, management of nonprofit organizations, and conflict resolution. The library holds a core of reference materials and is a depository of European Union documents. Intercampus delivery of circulating materials from other library sites is also available. Library staff can provide reference assistance and instruction for students, faculty, and staff in identifying and using resources. Physical library holdings continue to grow, and a critical component of the library emphasizes providing many of its resources and services online. This library supports a wireless network, and assistive technologies are available for people with disabilities.
Mercer Library (Prince William Campus)
This library supports faculty and students in the programs and courses offered at the Prince William Campus, including education; biotechnology, bioinformatics, and biodefense; computer science; health, fitness, and recreation resources; and administration of justice. The library provides access to university-wide electronic resources, with an emphasis on instruction and assistance with information resources and research. Notable holdings include scientific journals in bioscience and biomedicine. The library is fostering partnerships to provide information services to the rapidly expanding corporate and technology presence in Prince William County. This library has a wireless network, as well as assistive technologies for people with disabilities.
School of Law Library (Arlington Campus)
Deborah M. Keene, Associate Dean, Library and Technology
This library supports the School of Law and has holdings in law and economics, including specialized academic tracks in intellectual property, litigation, corporate and securities law, international business, regulatory law, and technology and law. The library also provides access to electronic law resources including Lexis, Westlaw, and LegalTrac. This library is open to all members of the university community, and its collections are available for checkout by all faculty, students, and staff.
University Scholars Community
Student Academic Affairs
Johnson Center, Room 245
Erek Perry, MEd
University Scholars Program
The university awards four-year scholarships annually to top high school graduates who have demonstrated superior academic achievement, outstanding leadership, and exemplary school and community service. Applications must be submitted by December 1 to receive priority consideration for the scholarship.
The University Scholars reside in a common residence hall their first year and share the Dr. Noreen McGuire Prettyman University Scholars Lounge. Students enrolled in the University Scholars Program participate in a dynamic learning community that provides opportunities for intellectual, cultural, and social engagements.
The program draws to Mason a special caliber of student, one who is actively involved in all facets of academic and student life. In addition to excelling in their respective academic areas, the scholars have historically emerged in a variety of student leadership positions and service-related activities.
Intellectual dialogue is fostered among scholars, professors, and administrators through stimulating seminars, discussion groups, cultural activities, service projects, internships, campus events, and participation in organizations that complement the scholars' academic experiences. The peer interaction, faculty guidance, and academic focus of the University Scholars community reflect the university's commitment to providing a stimulating and supportive environment that encourages academic excellence and personal growth.
University (UNIV) courses are special undergraduate academic seminars that appeal to a wide range of majors. They are designated as transitional, interdisciplinary honors, and special topics courses. They are limited in size to encourage interaction between students and specialized faculty. Because of their interdisciplinary nature, the courses sometimes can satisfy general education requirements.
University Transitions Courses
This series of courses focuses on transition through the various stages of college. UNIV 100 helps freshmen adjust academically, develop decision-making skills, and learn about the services and opportunities for involvement on campus. UNIV 200 topics focus on choosing a major or career. UNIV 300 has three tracks: the first is for new transfer students making the transition to a new university, the second focuses on career readiness for internships and research assistantships, and the third is designed for specific groups of student leaders. UNIV 400 emphasizes preparation for the workplace, graduate school, and life responsibilities.
University Interdisciplinary Honors Seminars
These seminars are offered exclusively to students who have demonstrated strong academic performance. They are developed to give high-ability freshmen and advanced-standing students the opportunity to study with a senior professor in a small classroom setting. The Freshman Seminars (UNIV 190) are open to eligible first-year students and are taught exclusively by the Robinson professors. Qualified students with 30 or more credits are invited to participate in the UNIV 390 seminars, which are taught by Robinson professors and other distinguished faculty scholars.
University Special Topics Courses
Upper-level university courses are open to all students unless specific prerequisites are indicated. They are usually repeated offerings. Two regularly offered university courses, each worth 3 credits, are UNIV 301 Great Ideas in Science and UNIV 441 AIDS: Its Impact in Our Society.
UNIV 101: Freshman Academic Transition (1:2:0)
This seminar focuses on academic transition and development issues for second semester freshmen. A special emphasis is placed on resources and techniques to assist students with assessing and improving their academic performance. Students will work closely with their instructor to track their academic progress over the course of the semester. Restricted to undeclared students.
International Programs and Resources
Global Connections (International Degrees)
Academic programs focused specifically on international and global issues include the following:
- BA and MA in anthropology (Department of Sociology and Anthropology)
- BA in communication, with a concentration in international and intercultural communication (Department of Communication)
- BA, BS, MA, PhD in conflict analysis and resolution (Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution)
- BA, BS in geography (Department of Geography)
- BA in global affairs
- BA in government and international politics, with a concentration in international and comparative politics (Department of Public and International Affairs)
- BA in Latin American studies (Department of History and Art History)
- BA in Russian studies (Modern and Classical Languages)
- BA in foreign languages, with concentrations in French and Spanish (Department of Modern and Classical Languages)
- MEd in curriculum and instruction, with concentrations in multilingual and multicultural education, foreign language education, and teaching of English as a second language
- MA in foreign languages, with concentrations in French or Spanish, or in Spanish and bilingual-multicultural education (Department of Modern and Classical Languages)
- MS in health science, concentration in international health (College of Health and Human Services)
- MA in history, with concentrations in comparative world history and modern European history (Department of History and Art History)
- MA in international commerce and policy (School of Public Policy)
- MA in political science, with specialization in international politics and comparative government
- MS in professional studies: peace operations
- MPA in public administration, concentration in international management
- MA in telecommunications with a concentration in international telecommunications
- Interdisciplinary minors in ancient Mediterranean art and archaeology, Asia-Pacific studies, global systems, Islamic studies, Judaic studies, Latin American studies, linguistics, the New Europe
- Minors in Chinese, conflict analysis and resolution, French, German, global affairs, international and comparative studies, Latin, Russian, and Spanish
- Undergraduate certificate in Islamic studies and teaching of English as a second language
- Graduate certificates in global trade management; international business planning; international e-commerce and telecommunications policy; international governance and institutions; international health; international health care; international market analysis; managing international commerce; science, technology, and the global economy; teaching of English as a second language; world religions, diplomacy, and conflict resolution
For new developments, go to the Global Connections web site: www.gmu.edu/global.
Center for Global Education: Study-Abroad Office
Johnson Center, Room 235
Dr. Yehuda Lukacs, Director
Tanith Fowler Corsi, Associate Director
The Center for Global Education (CGE) offers students the opportunity to challenge their assumptions about themselves and other cultures in an educational environment by offering study-abroad programs of varying lengths, academic emphasis, and locations. Students can discover new cultures, sharpen language skills, create unforgettable memories, and travel while earning credit. Whatever a student's academic goals, CGE has a corresponding program. Study options include faculty-led, short-term study tours and intensive language programs; semester and year-long Mason-sponsored programs; direct exchange programs and international internship programs. Most programs are open to all Mason undergraduate and graduate students and short-term programs are also open to faculty, staff, and the general public.
CGE offers a wealth of resources to help create a personalized international experience, including information sessions about study-abroad and internship options; one-on-one student advising; transfer of approved international program credits; a resource library of travel books; international and diplomatic community programming; advising to international students from partner schools; and International Student Identity Cards.
English Language Institute
Krug Hall, Room 202
John Pope, MA, Director
Baotran Nguyen, MA, Assistant Director
The English Language Institute (ELI) provides quality instruction in English as a second language to develop students' language and academic skills, as well as cultural awareness necessary for academic, personal, and professional success. ELI offers two programs: the Intensive English Program, which serves international students who have come to the United States to study English in preparation for academic study at an American college or university, and the Support Services Program, which provides programs for nonnative, English-speaking students newly admitted to Mason and other international members of the campus community. ELI also provides contract services to private corporations, embassies, and government agencies.
Office of International Programs and Services
The Office of International Programs and Services (OIPS) provides assistance and services to international students, visiting scholars, faculty, staff, and families. OIPS advises on all matters pertaining to immigration status and provides assistance with practical information to ease transitions. At the start of each semester, OIPS conducts a comprehensive orientation program for new international students. During the year, OIPS organizes intercultural programs such as receptions and outings, coffee hours, holiday celebrations, spouse networks, workshop series, and most notably, Mason's annual International Week in April.
International Student Umbrella
The International Student Umbrella consists of a variety of international student organizations that coordinate educational and social activities to promote cross-cultural understanding and international awareness.
Office of Continuing Professional Education
Krug Hall, Room 211
Prince William Campus Professional Development Office
Herndon Office and Training Center
Center for Innovative Technology
2214 Rock Hill Road
Herndon, VA 22070
Janet Niblock, Executive Director
The Office of Continuing Professional Education (OCPE) serves as Mason's initial point of contact and referral for the business and professional community, and responds to all professional development and continuing education inquiries, requests, and needs. Supported program activities include contracted academic credit programs, noncredit public programs and seminars, professional certificate programs, continuing education units (CEUs), onsite contract training programs, special professional development events and programs, special workforce development programs, and training center facilities. Courses are typically delivered through classroom settings but are increasingly delivered through electronic modes such as video conferencing and the Internet.
OCPE offices are strategically located at the Fairfax Campus in Krug Hall, Prince William Campus, and the Center for Innovative Technology (CIT) in Herndon. Current continuing education program information, offerings, and capabilities can be reviewed at ocpe.gmu.edu.
The Krug Hall office serves as the primary point of inquiry and referral. It facilitates, promotes, and administers the delivery of contract credit courses and other specialized professional programs. This office also administers the award of CEUs, which are nationally recognized standard units of measurement earned for satisfactory completion of qualified programs of continuing education. OCPE provides this service to all Mason academic groups that deliver noncredit professional development programs.
The Prince William Campus office facilitates a variety of open enrollment and contract programs (both noncredit and credit) that support the strengths of the programs on that campus. Programs are targeted to meet the professional development needs of the business community of the Prince William area, as well as Northern Virginia local and state government communities.
The CIT in Northern Virginia's high-tech corridor, facilitates a variety of professional development programs targeted to the area's business and federal government organizations. This office reaches out to the business community by designing, marketing, and delivering noncredit training courses and in-depth certificate programs. Public seminars and customized, contract training programs are targeted to respond to the needs and interests of managerial, technical, and professional employees in private, nonprofit, and public organizations located in Northern Virginia and Washington, D.C.
New Professional Studies, MA/MS
The master of new professional studies program was established in 1996 to provide graduate education for working professionals. The highlights of this innovative, interdisciplinary degree are as follows:
- Course activities are designed to adapt to the demands of working professionals with a variety of obligations. Through innovative use of information technologies and flexible course scheduling, participants are able to balance the demands of work with an intensive learning experience.
- The degree incorporates action-oriented group learning as a way to integrate theory and practice. Grouped into teams, candidates are immersed in the practical problems of organizations and, at the same time, engage each other through collaborative technologies. By dealing with practical organizational issues, participants gain deeper insight into how complex organizations work.
- The program produces a tightly integrated learning experience and focuses on building a learning community. Participants work on projects as teams and gain an understanding of how to develop team-based organizations.
- Collaborative technology skills developed early on are used throughout the degree program. They enable a high degree of collaboration and interaction between students.
New Professional Studies is an umbrella degree program with four tracks: knowledge management, organization development and knowledge management, peace operations, and teaching. Four core courses (12 credits) are common to all tracks: MNPS 700 The New Professionalism: Theory and Practice; MNPS 702 The New Professional as Reflective Practitioner; MNPS 703 Technology and Learning in the New Professions; and MNPS 704 Research Methodologies in the New Professions. The remaining elective courses (21 credits) are selected from participating disciplines. For information about the tracks on knowledge management, organization development and knowledge management, and peace operations, see the School of Public Policy chapter of this catalog. For information about the teaching track, see the Graduate School of Education section in the College of Education and Human Development chapter.
Reserve Officer Training Corps
James S. Overbye
Director, Military Science Department
South PE Module, Room F27
The U.S. Army Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC) is an elective program that offers qualified students the opportunity to earn a commission as an officer in the active U.S. Army, Army National Guard, or U.S. Army Reserve while pursuing a baccalaureate degree as a full-time student. The program emphasizes student learning and participation in applied leadership, leadership theory and assessment, decision making, management skills, time management, ethics and military law, logistics, military roles and national objectives, strategic and tactical planning and principles, and basic military knowledge and skills.
Enrollment in military science (MLSC) courses is open to all students. Freshmen (MLSC 100 and 101), sophomore (MLSC 200 and 201), and junior (MLSC 300 and 301) classes are awarded 1 credit each. Senior classes (MLSC 400 and 401) are 3 credits each. Credit earned in military science courses may count toward degree completion as elective credit. No service obligation is incurred by enrolling in Army ROTC. Courses can be dropped or added, just as with any elective course at Mason.
The four-year program is organized into two successive phases: the basic course and the advanced course. For students seeking the opportunity to earn a commission as an officer, several entry methods and participation strategies can be used. A minimum of four semesters must remain in the student's academic curriculum to complete commissioning requirements; these semesters may be part of either an undergraduate or graduate degree. Course descriptions appear under Military Science (MLSC) in the Course Descriptions chapter of this catalog.
Basic Course Curriculum
The basic course curriculum is a four-course series (MLSC 100, 101, 200, 201), usually taken in the freshman and sophomore years. Each class awards 1 academic credit. The basic course trains students in the topics listed above, as well as in applied topics, including map reading, land navigation, first aid, physical fitness, leadership, ethics and communication skills. Each lecture class meets once a week for 75 minutes. Textbooks are provided free of charge to all enrolled students. Uniforms and equipment are also issued to students at no cost, but students must return them at the end of each semester. While only one section is listed for most MLSC classes, small sections or individual tutorials are offered when scheduling conflicts exist.
Mason's Army ROTC program has numerous experiential aspects. MLSC LAB 201 Leadership Laboratory encompasses several different activities. Students enrolling in any ROTC lecture class must enroll in the required, nongraded lab section. Only the ROTC director can dismiss LAB 201 enrollment in certain circumstances, such as scheduling conflicts.
All LAB 201 sections meet as a combined unit on Tuesdays from 1:30 to 4 p.m. During this time, the unit trains in a variety of hands-on, practical leadership skills and military tasks, ranging from drills and ceremonies to squad and platoon tactics. Other experiential aspects of LAB 201 include field training exercises and physical training (PT). PT classes are conducted every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 7 to 8 a.m. at the Field House, but they are voluntary for noncontracted students. During the four-year program, there are progressive requirements for meeting physical fitness standards, weight limits, and leadership positions. Much emphasis is placed on cadets to meet established academic standards. A student must maintain an overall GPA of at least 2.00 to earn commissioning credit for ROTC.
Army ROTC also organizes numerous optional events, including rappelling, orienteering, and helicopter orientations. A battlefield visit is offered every year, and a formal military ball is held during the spring semester. The unit has an organized color guard and a Ranger Challenge Club. Airborne and air assault training, among other Army formal schools, is available to enrolled cadets. Enrolled students typically become progressively more involved to enhance their training, develop esprit de corps, and take part in social aspects of the program.
Advanced Course Curriculum
The advanced course consists of a four-course series (MLSC 300, 301, 400, 401) taken during the junior and senior years. MLSC 300 and 301 are each 1 credit, while MLSC 400 and 401 are 3 credits each. Normally, advanced-course cadets contract to become commissioned officers and thus incur a service obligation upon graduation and commissioning. An active duty tour is not guaranteed, although many cadets request and receive active duty tours upon graduation. ROTC also offers guarantees of entering either the Army Reserve or Army National Guard to students so inclined.
The 300-level courses emphasize squad and platoon leadership, tactics, and preparation for the Leadership Development Assessment Course (LDAC). LDAC is a five-week training and evaluation activity required of contracted students. Cadets typically attend LDAC in the summer between their junior and senior years; however, they may attend after their senior year if necessary. Salary, travel expenses, and room and board are all provided during the course. LDAC is a critical part of the ROTC program that students must pass to receive a commission.
There is also a professional military education requirement. Contracted cadets must take and pass a military history course: American Military History (HIST 389) or an alternative course approved by the program director. This course may simultaneously fulfill the student's general education or academic major requirements.
Because all students may enroll in ROTC classes, students who want to take an upper-level course must declare their intentions when seeking enrollment approval from the ROTC director or instructor. Prerequisites exist for upper-level courses. For more information, see the Course Descriptions chapter of this catalog.
Noncontract students who want to take MLSC 300- and 400-level courses must have junior or senior standing in their majors and meet the appropriate prerequisites. Course requirements will be established between the ROTC director and students to tailor the class to the students' interests and needs.
The 400-level courses are considered to be the transition to officer phase. These courses focus on leadership, staff operations, logistics, military law, and ethics. Seniors are expected to organize and attend an additional one-hour staff and training meeting per week as part of their leadership experience and duties. Planning and implementation of training becomes the primary focus for seniors in LAB 201.
Earning a Commission
There are several methods by which students may enter Army ROTC to earn a commission as a second lieutenant upon graduation:
- Students may complete the four-year program.
- Freshman and sophomore classes may be compressed into the sophomore year.
- Veterans may enter directly into the junior year (when academically aligned as a junior).
- Sophomores may attend a five-week Leaders Training Camp (LTC) between the sophomore and junior years to gain experience equivalent to the basic course.
- A special four-semester program is available to nursing majors in which LTC is not required.
Students who complete the ROTC program may take up to two years to complete their baccalaureate studies; education delays for graduate study also may be approved for graduating cadets before commissioning. Graduate students and resident aliens who become U.S. citizens by a certain time may become commissioned officers.
Two- and three-year ROTC scholarships are available to freshmen and sophomores in all majors on a competitive basis. Students are required to have a minimum 2.50 GPA to apply and be under age 31 when commissioned. Scholarships pay 100 percent of tuition, an annual book allowance of $900, and a stipend of at least $300 per month during the school year, all tax free. Students do not have to be enrolled to apply, and there is no service obligation incurred when applying.
A two-year Reserve Forces Duty scholarship is available that guarantees reserve duty upon graduation and commissioning (no active duty tour). Students should contact the ROTC director to determine eligibility. Four-year scholarships are available, but students should apply by December 15 of their senior year in high school for a scholarship that would start in the fall semester of their freshman year at Mason. Contact the ROTC director for details.
Many students participate in ROTC as nonscholarship cadets. A nonscholarship cadet cannot contract to receive a commission until the sophomore year. For the sophomore, junior, and senior years, nonscholarship contracted students receive the monthly stipend for the school year.
The George Mason Army ROTC Patriot Battalion began in 1981, achieved independent status in 2000, and frequently conducts training with Georgetown University and the University of Maryland Army ROTC.
Air Force ROTC
Two programs are available for college men and women to earn a commission as a second lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force while completing their university degree requirements. To enter, students should call 301-314-3242 or go to www.afrotc.umd.edu. Mason students can register for the appropriate courses through the Consortium Office, but mandatory courses are held at the University of Maryland. Car pools among Mason students are usually available.
Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU)
Matthew J. Kluger
Vice President for Research and Economic DevelopmentORAU Councilor for George Mason University
Monnie E. Champion, ORAU Corporate Secretary
Since 1993, the students and faculty of George Mason University have benefited from its membership in Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU). ORAU is a consortium of 96 colleges and universities and a contractor for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) located in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. ORAU works with member institutions to help their students and faculty gain access to federal research facilities throughout the country; keep its members informed about opportunities for fellowship, scholarship, and research appointments; and organize research alliances among its members.
Through the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE), the DOE facility operated by ORAU, undergraduates, graduates, postgraduates, and faculty members enjoy access to a multitude of opportunities for study and research. Students can participate in programs covering a wide variety of disciplines, including business, earth sciences, epidemiology, engineering, physics, geological sciences, pharmacology, ocean sciences, biomedical sciences, nuclear chemistry, and mathematics. Appointment and program length range from one month to four years. Many of these programs are especially designed to increase the number of underrepresented minority students pursing degrees in science- and engineering-related disciplines. A comprehensive listing of these programs and other opportunities, their disciplines, and details on locations and benefits can be found at see.orau.org or by calling either of the contacts below.
ORAU's Office of Partnership Development seeks opportunities for partnerships and alliances among ORAU's members, private industry, and major federal facilities. Activities include faculty development programs, such as the Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Awards, the Visiting Industrial Scholars Program, consortium research funding initiatives, faculty research, and support programs, as well as services to chief research officers.
Center for Global Studies
Peter Mandaville, Co-Director and Associate Professor, Government and Politics
Terrence Lyons, Co-Director and Associate Professor, Conflict Analysis and Resolution
Andrea Zizack, Coordinator
Dedicated to the promotion of multidisciplinary research on globalization, the Center for Global Studies coordinates outreach efforts in global affairs, facilitating access for external communities to the university's full range of global expertise. Ongoing activities include hosting guest speakers and visiting scholars, an annual conference, electronic and paper publications, and periodic small grants to support faculty. The center also manages multiacademic unit research projects on an ad-hoc basis and a number of regional and thematic working groups.
Krasnow Institute for Advanced Study
Jim Olds, Director
Ken De Jong, Associate Director
Giorgio Ascoli, Rob Axtell, Ernest Barreto, Avrama (Kim) Blackwell, Ann B. Butler, Juan Cebral, Claudio Cioffi, John Cressman, Ken De Jong, Barbara Given, Layne Kalbfleisch, Kevin McCabe, Harold Morowitz, Jim Olds, Ann Palkovich, Dawn Parker, Nathalia Peixoto, Paul So, Jim Thompson, Maksim Tsevetostat
The Krasnow Institute for Advanced Study seeks to expand the understanding of mind, brain, and intelligence by conducting research at the intersection of the separate fields of cognitive psychology, neurobiology, and the computer-driven study of artificial intelligence and complex adaptive systems including social systems. These separate disciplines increasingly overlap and promise progressively deeper insight into human thought processes. The institute also examines how new insights from cognitive science research can be applied for human benefit in the areas of mental health, neurological disease, education, computer design, and social system analysis.
Krasnow was chartered in 1990 as a private nonprofit Virginia corporation and merged with Mason in 2002, becoming a chartered institute under the Office of the Provost. The Center for Social Complexity joined the Institute in 2005. In 2007 the Institute became an academic unit along with faculty lines. With an annual budget of $3.1 million, the institute is home to a scientific staff of 60. Cognitive research at the institute spans from molecules to the mind to social systems. Krasnow scientists have published extensively in the most prestigious scholarly journals and collectively have brought in more than $22 million in sponsored research from federal agencies such as the National Institutes of Health and private sources such as the Sir John Templeton Foundation.
The Krasnow Institute, together with the COS and CHSS, oversees the campus-wide Neuroscience Council in developing the Neuroscience PhD curriculum.
Neuroscience PhD courses are listed under NEUR in the Course Descriptions section of this catalog. Neuroscience PhD admissions and program requirements are listed under Neuroscience in the College of Science section of this catalog.
Center for Social Complexity
Claudio Cioffi-Revilla, Director
Christina Bishop, Administrative Assistant
Axtell, Bainbridge, Beach, Cioffi-Revilla, De Jong, Gentle, Grefenstette, Guillory, Luke, McCabe, Palkovich, Parker, Schintler, Snead, Tsvetovat, Wagner, Wong
Computational Social Science (CSS) is an interdisciplinary field that combines the application of computer simulation and other computational methods to the analysis of social systems and processes at all levels or scales of complexity: cognitive, individual, group, societal, national, and world systems. Examples of social complexity include the evolution of civilization and technology, economic market and firm dynamics, human organizations, warfare and terrorism, and the emergence of language and symbol systems. Every social science field includes a computational subfield: anthropology, economics, geography, history, linguistics, political science, and sociology. CSS also includes the interaction between human and natural systems, including environmental and ecological systems.
The Krasnow Institute's Center for Social Complexity offers all course work designated CSS in the Course Descriptions chapter of this catalog. CSS courses are intended for students who are interested in taking individual CSS courses, seeking a concentration in CSS, or pursuing a graduate degree in CSS.
Students must maintain a minimum GPA in the program of 3.00. The Center for Social Complexity offers a graduate certificate in computational social science and a PhD in computational social sciences.
Computational Social Science, PhD
The core objective of the computational social science (CSS) PhD program is to train graduate students to be professional computational social scientists in academia, government, or business. The program offers a unique and innovative interdisciplinary academic environment for systematically exploring, discovering, and developing skills to successfully follow careers in one of the areas of computational social science.
Applicants should have as background a bachelor's degree in one of the social sciences; computer science, engineering, or a relevant discipline; and undergraduate courses in these and related areas. Bachelor's degrees in the physical or biological sciences are also eligible, but applicants may be advised to take additional courses in social science or computer science as prerequisites to admission. Minimal requirements also include one undergraduate course in calculus and knowledge of a computer programming language, preferably object-based. Applicants should have an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution, with a GPA of at least 3.25. To apply, prospective students should send to the COS Fairfax Campus Graduate Admissions Processing Center a completed Mason graduate application, two copies of official transcripts from each college and graduate institution attended, a current resume, an expanded goals statement not to exceed 2,000 words, and the names of two Mason faculty members who may be suitable advisors. Applicants should also include three letters of recommendation from faculty members or individuals with direct knowledge of the student's academic or professional capabilities. The letters must arrive directly from the senders. Applicants should also submit an official report of scores obtained on the GRE-GEN. TOEFL scores are required for all international applicants.
The program requires 72 credits beyond the baccalaureate degree, with a minimum of 48 credits in course work, and 24 credits of dissertation research. For those holding a master's degree, the 72 required credits may be reduced by up to 30 credits, depending on graduate courses. A maximum of 24 credits of prior graduate course work may be transferred, provided such credits have not been used for another degree. The 48 credits of courses have the functional distribution and learning objectives indicated below.
- 12 credits of required core CSS courses:
- CSS 600 Introduction to Computational Social Science
- CSS 605 Object-Oriented Modeling for Social Science
- CSS 610 Computational Analysis of Social Complexity
- CSS 620 Origins of Social Complexity
- 6 credits of extended core CSS courses taken from the following:
- CSS 625 Complexity Theory in the Social Sciences
- CSS 645 Spatial Agent-Based Models
- CSS 692 Social Network Analysis
- 15 credits of discipline-based social science courses in a specific area such as anthropology, economics, geography, history, linguistics, political science, or sociology, as approved by the student's advisor, to provide domain-specific knowledge
- 15 credits of elective courses or independent research, as approved by the student's advisor, to provide further substantive or methodological specialization as needed (Students with a strong background in computing, for example, a prior MS in computer science, but weaker social science training will be required to use all or most of these electives in a substantive social science. Conversely, students with a strong background in social science, for example, a BS in economics, will be required to use most or all of these electives in computing courses.)
- 24 credits of dissertation research to demonstrate doctoral-level originality and research excellence
- Areas for dissertation research include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Agent-based computational economics: trade, finance, decision making under risk
- Computational political economy: voting, institutions, norms, inequality
- Computational linguistics: generative grammars, parsing, classifiers, inference
- Social network analysis: connectivity, structure, evolution of the Internet, cyberwarfare
- Computational anthropology: emergence of hierarchy, settlement patterns
- Computational political science: systems of government, conflict and war, cooperation
- Computational sociology: segregation, collective action, leadership, trust
- Complexity theory: power laws, potential theory, criticality, bifurcation
- Computational methodology: multiagent systems, evolutionary computation
During the first year, each student will form a graduate studies committee, called the First-Year Committee, consisting of the student's advisor plus two or three appropriately qualified individuals. The committee assists the student in designing a specific plan of study and evaluating the student's progress by the end of the first year. During the second year, the student forms a doctoral committee, with membership approved by the CSS Program director. The committee will advise the student on preparing for the doctoral candidacy exams and preparing, developing, and defending the doctoral dissertation.
The candidacy exam is taken after students have completed all core requirements and a majority of additional course work (18 plus 15 credits), which typically corresponds to the fifth semester in the program. The purpose of the candidacy exam is to assess the student's substantive and methodological knowledge in CSS as a whole and in the chosen area of concentration; the ability to integrate materials from different courses; and the potential for a successful dissertation.
The exam will consist of written and oral parts. Upon passing the candidacy exam and submitting an acceptable dissertation proposal, students are advanced to doctoral candidacy. The degree is awarded on the successful defense of a PhD dissertation that represents a detailed written report of an original and significant research contribution to the CSS field.
Graduate Certificate in Computational Social Science
This 15-credit program is designed for students who seek training in computer simulation and related computational methods for analyzing social systems and processes. The program is open to all students with graduate standing at Mason and all students who hold a bachelor's degree from an accredited university. The CSS certificate allows students with social science or computational backgrounds to acquire new knowledge and modeling skills to improve their qualifications and attractiveness to employers in government, academia, or industry. The core courses provide a common foundation; additional elective courses allow for a variety of student interests across diverse social domains.
Students in the CSS certificate program must take both CSS 600 Introduction to Computational Social Science and CSS 610 Computational Analysis of Social Complexity. Students are also required to take a minimum of 9 credits in elective courses (for example, CSS 605, 620, 692). Students may include a maximum of 3 credits of programming courses to meet the requirements. Such programming courses as procedural, object-oriented languages, or other approved programming approaches (such as CSI 603 or 604 Introduction to Scientific Programming I and II) may be used with approval of the director. Some courses on computational techniques, modeling, or statistics, such as visualization, graphics, and statistical and database packages (such as CSI 606 and 607) may also be used to meet the requirements with prior approval of the director. Students intending to obtain the CSS certificate must contact the director no later than two semesters prior to the completion of the required credits.
Applicants should have an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution with a GPA of at least 3.00. To apply, prospective students should send to the College of Science Fairfax Campus Graduate Admissions Processing Center a completed Mason graduate application, two copies of official transcripts from each college and graduate institution attended, and a current resume. TOEFL scores are required for all international applicants.