The Catholic University of America

Undergraduate Minor in Medieval and Byzantine Studies

The interdisciplinary minor in Medieval and Byzantine Studies offers an introduction to a variety of fields and methodologies of the study of the Middle Ages. It was designed for students with a special interest in Medieval Studies who wish to explore medieval culture and history beyond the narrow confines of a traditional major. It allows students to take classes and work with faculty in a number of different schools and departments and to create a meaningful cluster of courses on medieval topics to further their interests in the field.

Are you considering becoming an MBS minor?

You may already have completed many of the courses required! Up to two of your medieval courses in another major (e.g. History, English) and any number of your distribution requirement courses with a medieval focus (e.g. in theology, philosophy, literature, history) may be counted towards the MBS degree. Please check this list of all approved undergraduate courses and contact the MBS Undergraduate Advisor or the Director (see under Contact Us) to find out what you need to do next.


Requirements for the Minor:

A total of 6 courses (18 credits) in the area of Medieval and Byzantines Studies. Courses subject to approval by the Director/Undergraduate Advisor.

Course distribution:


1 gateway course (3 credits)MDST 201: Medieval Pathways.

A team-taught, interdisciplinary course designed to explore different modes of inquiry, or pathways to the Middle Ages. Co-taught by members of the MBS faculty and offers a series of field trips to museums, collections, exhibits, and sites in DC relevant for the study of the Middle Ages. Offered every spring.

Note: Students of the University Honors Program are allowed to substitute HSHU 102: From Charlemagne to Chaucer for MDST 201 as a gateway course with the Director's approval.


A total of 3 courses (9 credits) in the following distribution:

1 course (3 credits) in any aspect of western or non-western medieval history (e.g., social, political, institutional, economic, legal, cultural, gender studies, etc.).

1 course (3 credits) in medieval religions, theology, philosophy, or liturgy (also including non-Christian traditions).

1 course (3 credits) in medieval literatures, languages, art, architecture, music, or material culture.


2 courses (6 credits) from the list of Specialized Courses (above). May include relevant language courses (Latin, Greek, Arabic, Syriac, Coptic, Old English, or other medieval vernaculars) above and beyond the School's foreign language distribution requirement if approved by the advisor.

For a list of approved MBS courses each semester, please see Only courses approved by the MBS Director or Undergraduate Advisor may be counted towards the MBS minor.