Development Studies In USA

Kelly Brooke 04-Jul-2015

Development in 2015 is so many intersections of so many facets of the human condition that you cannot gain a full understanding of how it occurs unless you tackle that understanding in an interdisciplinary manner. Hence, as our understanding of how development occurs grew, the subject matter also turned from being a matter of economics into one that encompasses economics, history, politics, international relations, sociology, anthropology, and the entire gamut of social sciences, along with the study of communication and related technologies, and more.

Moreover, the study of Development in today’s world generally deals with the dynamism of emerging economies. Development Studies has an ever expanding repertoire of career choices, in NGOs, think tanks, consultancies and other organizations. While these might be the most obvious opportunities, some element of career counseling will reveal that a degree in this arena can lead you through some very unexpected avenues.

Development Studies is offered worldwide mainly as a Master’s program, and occasionally as a Bachelor’s Degree. The course content, while different from country to country and college to college, deals with the various past and present influences that hold back or catalyse development, in ways that are local to specific areas of the world, as well as to the world in general. Students tend to combine their academic program with some element of hands-on work experience in development, generally through a Study Abroad program to a developing or underdeveloped nation.

Study Development in USA
In the USA, Development Studies is generally termed International Development Studies, and invariably include opportunities for travel and internships to contribute towards a requirement for relevant work experience.  A lot of programs also include course work in a foreign language.

Delving into the vagaries of Development requires people to step out of what is familiar. There is not a single nation’s student population that is as demographically and psychographically diverse as that of the United States. Take a look at what UNESCO has to say about the inflow of students into the United States from other countries.


With discussions on development and cultural as well as national differences take on a unique depth when they see participation from people belonging to every shade on the spectrum.

Applicants to Master’s programmes in Development Studies are expected to have a Bachelor’s Degree from an accredited university. A few years of relevant work experience and proficiency in languages other than English are seen as an added advantage.

Here are the top 5 universities in the US for Development Studies and the available programmes. These programmes have been ranked by QS against similar programmes all over the world.


Those wanting to take advantage of the excellent academic tradition and opportunities afforded by the US college system can apply for the following grants and scholarships for funding.

Hubert Humphrey Fellowships in USA for International Students

USA Government

Rotary Foundation Global Scholarship Grants for Development

Rotary Foundation
Masters/PhD Degrees

Rotary International Peace Fellowships

Rotary International

OFID Scholarship Award for International Students

Masters (MS) Degree

Development is growing to be a highly dynamic area of study that goes far beyond grassroots or economic analysis. Google’s Project Loon, and other such innovations will change the face of how development works, making the process a lot more collaborative and active on the part of those undergoing the process. Such a scenario requires people who are as specialized as they are generalized, making Development studies one of the most exciting interdisciplinary schools of study today.

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About The Author


Kelly Brooke

My name is Kelly Brooke and I am a freelance writer from Singapore. I am a graduate of Literature from...


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