Departments & Programs

African American & African Diaspora Studies

Major in African American and African Diaspora Studies


The major prepares students for a variety of professional careers or for graduate study. Students planning to enter the workforce immediately after graduation may wish to select a double major. African American and African Diaspora Studies graduates enjoy careers in medicine, theatre and drama, music composition, and information science.


Students must complete a minimum of 30 credit hours of undergraduate course work selected from the department’s three concentration areas:

  1. Arts
  2. Literature
  3. History, Culture, and Social Issues.

Not more than 6 credit hours at the 100 level and not more than 9 credit hours at the 200 level can be counted toward the major. At the time of admission to the department, each student and the undergraduate advisor together plan an individualized program of study, including the selection of a major concentration area.

Majors must complete the following:

  1. A150.
  2. A355 or A356 (history).
  3. A379 or A380 (literature).
  4. 24 credit hours in the major (12 in one of the three concentration areas of the student's choice and 6 in each of the other two areas. A355, A356, A379, and A380, including those taken for requirements 2 and 3 above count toward their respective concentration areas).
  5. A493 Senior Seminar in African American Studies.

Students must also complete the degree requirements of the College of Arts and Sciences.


During the freshman and sophomore years, students should take African American and African Diaspora Studies A131, A132, or A150, which carry Breadth of Inquiry credit for Arts and Humanities. A131 and A132 do not count toward the major or minor in African American and African Diaspora Studies.

Students who plan to have a double major should make this decision as early as possible so that course selections in African American and African Diaspora Studies and the second major can be closely coordinated.

Majors in journalism, telecommunications, business, public and environmental affairs, pre-law, social work, education, and many other disciplines have found African American and African Diaspora Studies courses to be useful, interesting, and important to their chosen fields.