Dickinson's American and global Mosaics are intensive, interdisciplinary, semester‐long research programs designed around ethnographic fieldwork and immersion in domestic and global communities.

Their objective is to encourage students to think reflexively about the diverse world in which they live as they engage in collaborative work with local, transnational and international communities. The Mosaics provide opportunities for students to meaningfully apply what they are learning in the classroom, both theoretically and methodologically, to the world beyond—and to bring their experiences back into the classroom.

The Mosaics challenge students to ask significant and relevant questions of the people and communities with which they are working; to actively listen to what others say about their lives and realities; to reflect on their own lives, worlds and perspectives; to design research that addresses the needs and interests of their partner communities; and finally to present what they have discovered in thoughtful, effective and ethical ways to multiple audiences.

Students learn not only how to design and conduct research but also how to produce their findings and analyses in various forms: written research papers and reports; conference presentations, video documentaries, audio podcasts and multimedia websites. The design of a specific Mosaic program is driven by pedagogical and research concerns and faculty interest and availability. Different Mosaic models have emerged—from a full semester of coursework taken by students with two or three faculty members from different disciplines, to cluster courses, to a one-credit course that integrates a "winterim" research trip.

What Is a Mosaic?

Current, Upcoming, & Recent Mosaics

German Energy Mosaic
Heather Bedi (Environmental Studies) and Antje Pfannkuchen (German) - Spring 2023

Dutch Mosaic: Managing Death and Dying in Comparative Perspective
Susan Rose. (Sociology) - Spring 2022

African American Foodways in the Civil Rights Movemement Mosaic - Did Not Run Due to COVID
Lynn Johnson (Africana Studies) and Say Burgin (History) – Spring 2020

Carlisle Mosaic: An Interdisciplinary Study of People, Places, and Policies
Neil Leary (Center for Sustainability Education), Emily Pawley (History), and Anthony Underwood (Economics) – Fall 2019

Rwanda mini Mosaic
Jeremy Ball (History), Jean-Pierre Karegeye (Philosophy), and Andy Bale (Art and Art History) – Spring 2019

Cuba mini-Mosaic: The African Diaspora
Trent Masiki (Africana Studies) and Sarah Skaggs (Dance) — May 2018


Steps for Proposing a Mosaic:
1. Developing a Mosaic
2. Proposing a Mosaic PDF Document and Proposing a Mosaic Word Document
3. Implementing a Mosaic
4. Mosaic Learning Goals and Assessment

Find out more about past American & Global Mosaics, apply or learn more about requirements for any current mosaics, or request more information.

You can also view Community Studies and Mosaics documentaries.

Community Studies and Mosaics Videos

Community Studies and Mosaics has produced many videos that can be seen on our youtube site. Below is a sample of the videos: