Modern Middle East Studies, Certificate

Given today’s interconnected, geopolitical environment, an in-depth understanding of the cultures, history, and politics of the contemporary Middle East has never been more important. Through interdisciplinary study across fields such as history, gender studies, religious studies, politics, and economics, this 4-course, 4 course unit certificate is designed to enhance your understanding of the Middle East as a complex, diverse region. You examine how history helped shape the contemporary Middle East and develop skills necessary to interpret primary texts and academic research to explore key issues in areas such as politics, policy, economic development, and international relations.

Penn LPS Online courses in the Certificate in Modern Middle Eastern Studies are offered on an accelerated (8-week) schedule. Courses in the certificate program are largely asynchronous with some optional synchronous sessions to be scheduled by the instructors. For more information about specific course dates, please visit the Course Schedule page.

You also have the option to enroll in individual courses within this certificate without committing to the entire certificate, enjoying the flexibility and expertise offered by Penn LPS Online to suit your schedule and interests.

The Certificate in Modern Middle Eastern Studies prepares you to:

  • Understand key themes and issues in Middle Eastern history from the medieval era to the present, with an emphasis on encounters and exchanges between the Middle East and the West
  • Interpret key texts in Middle Eastern history, from the perspectives of gender, religion, politics, and economics
  • Study the complex issues surrounding oil and politics in the Middle East, incorporating the perspectives from multiple disciplines, including history, economics, and politics
  • Explore the diverse history of religion in the Middle East, from ancient societies to the present, and how this history informs contemporary Middle Eastern cultures, politics, and societies


Students must complete all four courses from the list below to earn a Certificate in Modern Middle Eastern Studies.

Modern Middle East Certificate
MODM 100The Middle East and the West1
MODM 200Women and Gender in the Middle East1
MODM 260 Oil and Politics in the Middle East1
MODM 300 Religious Traditions of the Middle East1
Total Course Units4

Courses are subject to change.

The degree and major requirements displayed are intended as a guide for students entering in the Fall of 2020 and later. Students should consult with their academic program regarding final certifications and requirements for graduation.