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International Migration Studies

  • About Us

    The minor in International Migration Studies aims to build an appreciation of international migration and its dilemmas as it draws on the insights generated from a broad array of disciplines and methodological approaches needed for grappling with a vast social and intellectual phenomenon.

    International migration is a global phenomenon—comprising broad and deep linkages within and between the developed and developing worlds. Issues surrounding global migration processes cross manifold intellectual boundaries, understanding demands insights and methods from a broad array of disciplines.

    Standard models in economics or demography offer powerful explanations of why people migrate and how migration might have an effect on wages and employment in both sending and receiving societies. However, migration is ultimately about the lived experience of people—those moving and those they encounter. Understanding migrants’ emergent identities and the problems of belonging and acceptance that migration generates requires attention, both to the micro level, as well as to the specific historical and cultural contexts surrounding both migration flows and societal responses.

    Please note that interested students must apply to the minor no later than the Spring Quarter of their Junior Year, and International Migration Studies minor are expected to complete a thesis (I M Std 199) during their Senior Year.

  • Faculty & Staff


    Roger Waldinger, Chair, International Migration Studies

    Leisy Abrego Ph.D., Chicana/o Studies
    Ruben Hernandez-Leon, Ph.D., Sociology
    Hiroshi Motomura, J.D., Law
    Marjorie Orellana, Ph.D., Education
    Roger Waldinger, Ph.D., Sociology

    The above faculty have agreed to teach applicable courses for the International Migration Studies minor and/or serve as faculty advisors for the required thesis.


    The UCLA Center for the Study of International Migration maintains a list of affiliated faculty. International Migration Studies minors are encouraged to consider these faculty as potential advisors for the thesis, as well.


    Gaby Solomon-Dorian, Director of Student Affairs
    UCLA International Institute Academic Programs
    10389B Bunche Hall*
    Los Angeles, CA 90095-1487

    Have a question about the International Migration Studies minor?  Send your inquiry to, and please be sure to include your UID# in all correspondence.

    *Want to get in person advising?  Note that in person advising is available by appointment only! To make an appointment, simply send an email to Please include your UID#, as well as your schedule of availability for the next few days. You will receive an email confirmation as to your appointment day/time.

    ***Academic Counseling is available for UCLA students only. Non-UCLA students may refer to the Admissions & Transfer Student Information link for information on UCLA requirements.***

    Want to be on the Mailing List for the minor? UCLA students can receive up-to-date information regarding application deadlines, upcoming workshops, course information, enrollment updates, and other announcements pertaining to the International Migration Studies minor. To be added to the mailing list, please email your request (be sure to include your UID#) to

  • Program Requirements & Courses


    Please review the International Migration Studies Minor Worksheet for all requirements for the minor, as well as the Course Descriptions to get a good sense of the scope of the coursework:

    International Migration Studies Minor Worksheet
    International Migration Studies Course Descriptions

    For a list of approved courses not listed on the minor worksheet, please review the Additional Courses list, updated quarterly:

    **Additional Courses**

    To see if a course not already approved for the International Migration Studies minor can apply towards requirements, you must submit a Petition for Chair Review:

    Petition for Chair Review


    Application: Students are expected to apply to the International Migration Studies minor no later than the Spring Quarter of their Junior Year. 

    Core Course: Students are highly encouraged to take either core course (Sociology 151 or Sociology 152) prior to or concurrent with applying to the International Migration Studies minor.  Students who take both Sociology 151 and Sociology 152 may apply one toward the elective requirement.

    Elective Courses: Students may take elective courses either prior to or after acceptance to the International Migration Studies minor.  Note that most upper division courses have enrollment restrictions (generally limiting enrollment for that department’s own majors) on first pass, but check on second pass if enrollment restrictions have been lifted!  Note that a maximum of two courses from any single department is allowed.

    I M Std 155: Student accepted to the International Migration Studies minor are expected to enroll in I M Std 155 (Theory, Research, and Methods in the Study of International Migration) during the Fall Quarter of their Senior Year.  The course is limited to declared International Migration Studies minors only.

    I M Std 199: International Migration Studies minors are expected to enroll in I M Std 199 (Directed Individual Research in International Migration Studies) at the end of their undergraduate academic career.  The goal of the course is to write a thesis on a particular topic related to international migration of your interest of approximately 30 pages in length.  Be sure to review the I M Std 199 - Thesis Guidelines!



    All courses used towards the International Migration Studies minor must be taken for a letter grade. The minimum letter grade for each course is a C.

    A minimum of 20 units applied toward the minor requirements must be in addition to units applied toward major requirements or another minor.

    Students must apply for the International Migration Studies minor. Once accepted, students must request that the minor be added to their academic records.

    Students are encouraged to enroll in I M Std 193 (Colloquia and Speaker Series), when offered. The 2 unit course may be repeated for credit. This course provides an introduction to current scholarship in the field of international migration through attendance at events sponsored by the UCLA Center for the Study of International Migration.  Please note, however, that I M Std 193 does not go towards any requirements for the minor. It does, however, go towards your overall and upper division unit requirements, as well as give you great exposure to migration issues!


  • Applying to the International Migration Studies Minor

    The International Migration Studies minor is designed for students who are seeking advanced work in the subject matter, and culminates in a research thesis of approximately 30 pages in length.

    Admission to the International Migration Studies minor is by application and will be competitive, using courses, grades, grade‐point averages, and a personal statement as minimum standards for consideration.  The personal statement, which will be capped at 300 words, should address your interest in the International Migration Studies minor, including how it might relate to your personal background, your present studies, and your future research interests. Students will also be asked to submit a writing sample, a 10-15 page research paper from any course in the humanities or social sciences (page count refers to text only and excludes title page, appendices, bibliography, etc.).

    Applicants must be in good academic standing with an overall grade‐point average of 2.0 or better and demonstrate a genuine interest in the subject matter. Applicants are not automatically accepted into the minor and only a limited number of students are admitted each year. Applications must be submitted no later than Spring Quarter of the junior year.

    The application period for the 2019-2020 International Migration Studies Cohort will be open during the following dates: 

    ****June 1 through June 30, 2019****
    To access the application, please click HERE during those dates.

    **Students who are on the International Migration Studies Minor mailing list will be notified about the application period. To be added to the mailing list, please email your request (be sure to include your UID#) to**

    Note that students will be selected for the International Migration Studies minor during the Summer, and those who are admitted and have the minor declared on their records will be invited to enroll in I M Std 155, which will be offered in Fall Quarter, at that time. **All students who apply should, however, have a full study list for Fall term, and those who are admitted can then make necessary modifications to their schedule upon declaration of the minor.**


    College of Letters & Science students: If you will have completed 150 units by the end of the Spring Quarter of your Junior Year, you must meet with your counseling unit (College Academic Counseling/College Honors/AAP/Athletics...check My.UCLA<Academics<Advising and Academic Services for your specific unit) to receive clearance to add the minor, should you be admitted. You are encouraged to do so **prior** to applying to the minor so that there is no delay in you being declared.

    Students outside of the College of Letters & Science (SOAA, TFT, HSSEAS, HASOM, SON): Please be sure to discuss your desire to pursue the minor with your school advisor prior to submitting your application. Students who are accepted into the minor will also need to have an Undergraduate Program Change Petition form, available at, signed by the International Migration Studies advisor. Students must then submit the signed petition to their school, and once approved by the school, the minor will be declared on their records.

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