About Us

The UCLA International Institute educates students, supports scholarship on the world at UCLA and serves as a campus and community resource.

With a history dating back to 1958, the Institute is the central hub for global and area studies on campus. Its more than 25 centers and programs support innovative multidisciplinary research on specific world regions and pressing global issues; its rigorous academic degree programs promote the study of globalization, international development, global health, and diverse regions of the world.


Academic Programs: Global and Area Studies. The Institute’s wide variety of interdisciplinary academic programs offer six undergraduate majors, nine undergraduate minors, and three graduate programs. Together, they enroll nearly 1,000 students each year. UCLA International Institute alumni — some of whom go on to pursue advanced research and professional degrees — work in the education, government, nonprofit, and business sectors of countries all over the world.

The internationally renowned faculty who serve as directors of the Institute's centers — and as chairs and professors of its academic programs — hold appointments throughout UCLA’s College of Letters and Science and professional schools. These faculty frequently enrich the Institute’s global and regional course offerings by leading travel study and education abroad programs.

To sustain the expertise that makes UCLA a leader in scholarship on the world, the International Institute actively recruits and helps fund faculty who specialize in international studies and supports advanced language classes and courses on specific world regions and topics. In addition, each of its individual centers creates networks of research scholars across the campus, the nation, and the world.

Research on the world. Both the UCLA International Institute and its centers support cutting-edge research via graduate student fellowships; language study scholarships; faculty grants; and funding for conferences, publications, and collaborative research projects. Across campus, the Institute is uniquely positioned to bring together departments and centers to foster collaborative research and debate on issues such as climate change, public health threats, international conflicts, and migration.

Recent initiatives spearheaded by the UCLA International Institute include conferences on water conservation and management in Australia and Los Angeles, the future of the Asia Pacific region, and why medical interventions that target indigenous populations in Central America fail to reach them.

Campus and community resource. Part of a leading public university in the global city of Los Angeles, the UCLA International Institute also serves as a first‐class resource for the city and its residents. The breadth and depth of its research interests make the International Institute a valuable partner for its home city. The multiethnic population and economic interests of Los Angeles connect it closely to the countries of the Pacific Rim and Latin America, as well as those of the Middle East, Africa and Europe.

Through some 500 annual public lectures, symposia, conferences, and cultural events, the UCLA International Institute serves as a first‐class resource not only for the campus, but for the global city of Los Angeles and its residents. The breadth and depth of its research interests make the Institute a valuable partner for its home city — LA’s multiethnic population and economic interests connect it closely to the countries of the Pacific Rim and Latin America, as well as those of the Middle East, Africa, and Europe.

Recent events sponsored by the Institute’s individual centers have included talks on the Ukrainian-Russian crisis, a panel of experts from Russia speaking on the Putin regime, lectures by several retired U.S. ambassadors, talks by Israeli and Ethiopian-American writers, an ongoing contemporary Brazilian film series, talks on China by contemporary American journalists and the leader of a top Chinese law firm, and professional development workshops for K–12 teachers.

UCLA International Institute in Facts and Figures
  • More than 700 affiliated faculty spanning all disciplines
  • 10 graduate and undergraduate degree programs
  • 392 undergraduate degree recipients in 2013
  • 23 graduate degree recipients in 2013
  • Received more than $14 million in extramural grants and funding over the past 5 academic years (2010-2014)
  • More than 250 study abroad options in 35 countries
  • Three federally funded Title VI National Resource Centers, which support area and language studies, together with teacher training:
         Latin American Institute
         Center for Southeast Asian Studies
         Asia Institute
  • One federally funded Language Resource Center (LRC), the first of its kind in the United States: National Heritage Language Resource Center
  • Awards over $2,000,000 annually in student fellowships and scholarships
  • Distributed close to $400,000 in faculty and center research grants over the past 5 academic years (2010-2014)
  • Sponsors and organizes more than 500 free public events annually
  • Hosts about 600 visiting international dignitaries and professional leaders annually
  • Manages more than 300 active agreements with 200 universities and institutions in 50 countries
  • Among American colleges and universities, UCLA has the 8th highest number of students who study abroad (2,074 participating in 2011-2012)
  • UCLA is the 6th most popular American college or university for international students, with 8,424 international students enrolled in Fall 2012