Africana Studies

Bachelor of Arts
Interdisciplinary Program
College of Arts and Sciences

Would you like to plan your own major and choose courses from a number of subject areas that interest you? Would you like to travel and study abroad? Would you like to work abroad? Do you enjoy studying the history, culture, social issues and achievements of peoples of African descent in the United States and other parts of the world? Would you like to receive a first-rate liberal arts degree in order to be well prepared for the job market and for graduate study? If you have answered yes to these questions, you should seriously consider majoring in Africana studies.

International Dimensions of Africana Studies

There is a demand for individuals who are knowledgeable about political, economic, educational, cultural, medical, technological and artistic contributions and issues of Africana peoples worldwide. On six continents, governments and private citizens have Africana-related alliances and partnerships, ranging from the diplomatic corps and business corporations, health agencies and media services to agricultural and educational, media and entertainment systems. Majors in Africana studies are prepared to participate in this global dimension of opportunity and adventure.

Africana studies is a planned major that allows students to pursue an interdisciplinary approach to the study of people of African descent by taking courses in several disciplines. The interdisciplinary approach prepares students to effectively analyze issues and complex problems within the diverse Africana communities of the world from a variety of theoretical and practical perspectives.

Jobs in the field of Africana studies field are open to all individuals, and schools and universities in many countries offer courses on Africana topics. Individuals from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds have specialized in Africana studies and pursued productive careers in the field worldwide.

Career Opportunities

Significant employment opportunities abound for majors in Africana studies. Although students may pursue a single major in Africana studies, they may also enroll into a second major or a minor in order to be more competitive on the job market. To maximize employment opportunities, student may combine the Africana studies major with a major or minor in fields such as art, business, communications, education, history, literature, languages, psychology, sociology, social work, political science, philosophy, recreation, family and consumer services, and studies in international, environmental, women’s, American culture, ethnic, pre-medicine and health, mathematics and the sciences, popular culture and film. Government, non-government public and private agencies, social and civic organizations, museums and arts councils, and libraries and archives employ graduates with Africana specialities. The field of Africana studies lays a foundation for future advanced work toward careers in several fields, including diplomatic services, education, law, social sciences, library and archival services, humanities and arts.

Objectives of Africana Studies

Africana studies provides majors with a base of knowledge and skills that are international and interdisciplinary. It focuses on people of African descent in Africa and in the African diaspora on six continents. Drawing from several disciplines, Africana studies offers courses that provide insight into international connections and prepare majors to examine issues and concepts from a variety of perspectives. Objectives of the program include:

Special Features

The Africana studies program sponsors the Annual Student Research Colloquium and Luncheon. This day-long event focuses on student research and discourse. The colloquium is designed to inspire student interest in archival and field research on Africana topics. Keynote speakers for the luncheon have included Dr. Molefi Kete Asante, Dr. Ali Mazrui, Dr. Mae Jemison and Dr. Paul Lovejoy.

Students are encouraged to travel and study abroad by participating in one of the three program-related, African based seminars. Majors and minor may take 3-6 hours of these study abroad-courses: Art, Music and Culture in Ghana; History, Religion and Culture in the Republic of Benin; and French and Cultural Arts in Burkina Faso.

The Africana Studies Program is affiliated with the Babatunde Olatunji Drum Circle for World peace, the African Peoples Association and the Africana Dance Troupe at Bowling Green State University.

Scholarship, Internships, Study Abroad

Majors should contact the director of this program for information on the Africana Studies Scholarship, which was established in 2002 for students with high achievement.

Consult the director for a listing of internships and placement opportunities.

Inquire about opportunities for students to participate in archaeological projects in the United States and in Africa. Anticipate special summer workshops in the arts and humanities that are offered on the campuses of American and European universities on Africana topics.

Requirements for the Major

The Africana studies faculty works closely with students to assist them in developing a major or dual major or a minor that is determined by individual career and future graduate school interests. In addition to the general education requirements, students must complete 30 hours of core and interdisciplinary courses for the major in Africana studies.

Africana Studies core courses:

(9 hours required)

Africana interdisciplinary courses:

(21 hours required in courses from at least three different departments; check the Africana studies website for updated listings.)

Preparation for College

Completing the requirements for high school graduation is necessary for admission to BGSU, but only finishing the minimum coursework will leave you unprepared for college. Consider taking four years of mathematics instead of the three that are required. Two, three or even four years of the same foreign language is excellent for preparation for college. You will also benefit from competency in computer use. Courses that provide exposure to or training in the visual and performing arts are excellent choices.

For Further Information

Internet Access

BGSU's website for future students contains University highlights, admissions procedures, financial aid information and many department profiles. It can be accessed at

The University

Bowling Green State University is a vibrant university that engages, challenges and prepares students for meaningful futures. At BGSU, students enjoy an education that integrates personal growth, academic excellence and an environment that expands their thinking and potential. A mid-size residential university, BGSU has an enrollment of approximately 20,000 and a full-time faculty of more than 900 on its main campus. More than 200 undergraduate majors and programs are offered as well as master's and doctoral level programs.

NOTE: Information in this guide is subject to change without notice. To learn more about the official program of study for Africana Studies, please check the undergraduate catalog online at: