Degree Requirements

M.A. Degree Requirements

The African and African-American studies M.A. program takes 2 years of full-time study. 9 upper-division and graduate courses, in addition to a thesis or additional course work for a nonthesis option, are required for the degree—a total of 33 credit hours. There are 4 core courses:

  • AAAS 801 Introduction to Africana Studies I: African-American
  • AAAS 802 Introduction to Africana Studies II: African
  • AAAS 803 Research Methods in Africana Studies
  • AAAS 804 Seminar in Africana Studies

Students are expected to choose 5 courses (15 credit hours) in their areas of specialization. Students can take 6 credit hours outside the department in related course offerings including among others American studies; anthropology; art; communication studies; economics; education; English; film and media studies; geography; history; philosophy; political science; religion; sociology; theatre; and women, gender, and sexuality studies.

Research Skills

Students will fulfill a language/research skills requirement in accordance with the concentration chosen. Language/research skills courses must be at the 500 level or above to be counted toward the 33 hours required for the degree.

1. A master’s degree in African and African-American studies with an African studies concentration requires proficiency in an African language. Proficiency may be fulfilled by 1 of the following:

  • Completing 2 years of college-level study at KU, at an equivalent institution, or through an intensive course. Language courses offered on a regular basis at KU that count toward proficiency are Amharic, Arabic, Hausa, KiSwahili, Wolof and any one of the number of African languages for which the Kansas African Studies Center has pedagogical materials and proficiency-testing capabilities.
  • The equivalent of 2 years of an approved language.
  • Proof that the student is a native speaker of an African language.

2. A master’s degree in African and African-American studies with an African-American Studies concentration requires that a student

  • Fulfill the African language requirement outlined above, or
  • Fulfill a non-African language requirement employing standards comparable to those governing the African language requirement outlined above, or
  • Demonstrate competence in a research skill relevant to the student’s specific concentration in African-American studies. Competence in a research skill is certified by the department’s graduate studies director.

In consultation with their advisors and to the satisfaction of the department, students must demonstrate that their choice of a language or research skill is appropriate for their specific research interest in the field of African-American studies.

Plan of Study

Students are expected to discuss their plans of study with the graduate advisor. The information that follows is only a guide toward that discussion.

Semester 1

  • AAAS 801 Introduction to Africana Studies I: African-American (3 credit hours) Required
  • 2 electives (6 credit hours)
  • Demonstrate research skill competence or begin work toward it

Semester 2

  • AAAS 802 Introduction to Africana Studies II: African (3 credit hours) Required
  • 2 electives (6 credit hours)
  • Demonstrate research skill competence or continue work toward it

Semester 3

  • AAAS 803 Research Methods in Africana Studies (3 credit hours) Required
  • 1 elective (3 credit hours)
  • Demonstrate research skill competence or continue work toward it

Semester 4

  • AAAS 804 Seminar in Africana Studies (3 credit hours) Required
  • Demonstrate meeting research skill competence requirement
  • Thesis (6 credit hours) or 2 courses (6 credit hours)

Handbook for Graduate Students

Detailed information, application deadlines, and general information may be found in The M.A. Program in African and African-American Studies, available on request from the department.

Contact Info

Department of African and African-American Studies

Bailey Hall
1440 Jayhawk Blvd., Room 9
Lawrence, KS 66045-7594
785-864-3054
785-864-5330
afs@ku.edu
http://afs.ku.edu
Peter Ukpokodu, Chair
785-864-3054

Department of African and African-American Studies

Bailey Hall
1440 Jayhawk Blvd., Room 9
Lawrence, KS 66045-7594
785-864-3054
785-864-5330
afs@ku.edu
http://afs.ku.edu
Clarence Lang, Undergraduate Advisor
785-864-5569
celang@ku.edu

Department of African and African-American Studies

Bailey Hall
1440 Jayhawk Blvd., Room 9
Lawrence, KS 66045-7594
785-864-3054
785-864-5330
afs@ku.edu
http://afs.ku.edu
Shawn Alexander, Director, Graduate Studies
785-864-3054
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