Current Affairs

  • Taught by Leading Journalists, Historians, and Authors
  • Focuses on Issues Behind Today&rsquos News
  • Provides a Stimulating Environment for Discussion

If you are interested in current events, these courses will allow you to gain an in-depth and more contextualized understanding of today’s critical issues. This includes historic background, when appropriate, as well as an analysis of the actors and stakeholders affecting outcomes. Join your contemporaries for lively discussion and intellectual stimulation. 

This semester, study in-person or from anywhere in the world from the safety and comfort of your home through online or remote instruction.

The President, the Congress, the Courts, and The States: Conflict, Cooperation and 2024

The 2022 political dynamic will set the stage for the two years of national, state and local politics culminating in the 2024 election. The...

2023 Spring
1 section

Voices of the Modern Middle East

Register for this Spring 2023 course on the new NYU SPS Academy of Lifelong Learning website. This course will use the lens of...

2023 Spring
1 section

From Frontline to Headline: The 'War About the War' in Afghanistan

Register for this Spring 2023 course on the NYU SPS Academy of Lifelong Learning website. Multiple frontlines beset contemporary...

2022 Fall
+ 1 more semester
2 sections

China and America: A Global Power Struggle

Explore the competition between the US and China, from trade tensions to Beijing's censorship of Hollywood films to the battle for tech dominance.

2022 Fall
+ 1 more semester
2 sections

Disaster Preparedness and Humanitarian Assistance

In order to achieve the key UN Sustainable Development goals of "No Poverty, Zero Hunger, Good Health and Wellbeing, Gender Equality, Clean...

2023 Spring
1 section

Espionage: Fact vs. Fiction

Taught by a veteran intelligence professional, this course separates myth from reality in the field of espionage.

2022 Fall
+ 1 more semester
2 sections

International Development

Explore the main elements of country development—from economic, political, social, cultural, and environmental perspectives.

2022 Fall
1 section

International Relations

Gain an in-depth understanding of the post-Cold War world order and the Cold War’s impact on current geopolitical and economic landscapes.

2022 Fall
1 section

Shifting Global and Domestic Paradigms and the 2022 Midterms

Register for this Fall 2022 course on the new NYU SPS Academy of Lifelong Learning website. Significant global and domestic...

2022 Fall
1 section

America in the World: Dilemmas of Democracy at Home and Abroad

Explore how studying other democracies can shed light on the troubled present—and possible future—of American politics and government.

2022 Fall
1 section

The United States: The World's Liberal Hegemon, But Why?

Register for this Fall 2022 course on the new NYU SPS Academy of Lifelong Learning website. The United States is seen by its...

2022 Fall
1 section

Politics and Leadership in a Changing Middle East

Register for this Fall 2022 course on the new NYU SPS Academy of Lifelong Learning website. This course will look at the historical and...

2022 Fall
1 section

Economic Growth and Poverty Reduction

This course will examine the economic challenges poor countries face and the strategies proposed to deal with them, beginning with an analysis...

2022 Fall
1 section

Human Rights and Development

A rights-based approach to development has become increasingly central in explaining and addressing the underlying issues related to economic,...

2022 Fall
+ 1 more semester
2 sections

The Deeper Dive: Global Issues and US Politics in Uncertain Times

As media and rapidly changing events increasingly focus us on the immediate and short-term, we’ll step back to look at consequential...

Background and History of Organized Crime

This course will look at the organization and structure of mafia groups using several case studies. Students will use conceptual frameworks and...

Publishing Op-Eds and Blogposts

Develop a foundation in argumentative, critical, and analytic writing, and sharpen essential editing skills, for use in international affairs.

The History of Human Rights in US Foreign Policy

This course examines US foreign policy through the prism of human rights.

A Holistic Look at Iran: Economics, Religion, Politics, and More

Take a holistic look at the various aspects of Iran: environment, ethnolinguistic composition, religious proclivities, economics, and politics.

Education and International Development

According to the World Bank, education is a powerful driver of development and one of the strongest instruments for reducing poverty and...

The US-Latin America Relationship: Past, Present, and Future

The United States’ relationship with Latin America has been and continues to be one of the most important and controversial relationships...

Health in Developing Countries

The world has made immense strides in improving health outcomes and increasing life-expectancy over the past century in large part due to...

Politics and Development

"Good governance" is an essential condition for growth in low-income countries, and for human development as well. A number of the...

Scenarios Planning

The course addresses scenarios as a forecasting and planning tool. In a turbulent world, organizations-in public and private sectors-must make...

Critical Issues and Careers in Global Affairs

Thinking about grad school? Considering an impactful career in the global arena? Spend two weeks this summer in the heart of New York City...

Managing Risk and Uncertainty

Operating in conditions of uncertainty can be disorienting and bewildering. A risk-informed approach can allow global leaders to make informed...