African and African American Studies, B.A.

Program Code: AASBA_BA

Entrance to Major

In order to be eligible for entrance to this major, a student must:

  1. attain at least a C (2.00) cumulative grade-point average for all courses taken at the University; and
  2. have third-semester classification.

READ SENATE POLICY 37-30: ENTRANCE TO AND CHANGES IN MAJOR PROGRAMS OF STUDY

Degree Requirements

For the Bachelor of Arts degree in African and African American Studies, a minimum of 123 credits is required:

Requirement Credits
General Education 45
Electives 9-18
Bachelor of Arts Degree Requirements 24
Requirements for the Major 45

0-9 of the 45 credits for General Education are included in the Requirements for the Major. This includes: African American Studies Option -- 0-3 credits of GA courses; 0-3 credits of GH courses; 0-3 credits of GS courses. African Studies Option -- 0-3 credits of GH courses; 0-3 credits of GS courses. Law and Social Justice Option -- 0-3 credits of GS courses.

3 of the 24 credits for Bachelor of Arts Degree Requirements are included in the Requirements for the Major, General Education, or Electives and 0-12 credits are included in Electives if foreign language proficiency is demonstrated by examination.

Per Senate Policy 83-80.5, the college dean or campus chancellor and program faculty may require up to 24 credits of coursework in the major to be taken at the location or in the college or program where the degree is earned. For more information, check the Recommended Academic Plan for your intended program.

General Education

Connecting career and curiosity, the General Education curriculum provides the opportunity for students to acquire transferable skills necessary to be successful in the future and to thrive while living in interconnected contexts. General Education aids students in developing intellectual curiosity, a strengthened ability to think, and a deeper sense of aesthetic appreciation. These are requirements for all baccalaureate students and are often partially incorporated into the requirements of a program. For additional information, see the General Education Requirements section of the Bulletin and consult your academic adviser.

The keystone symbol Keystone/General Education Course appears next to the title of any course that is designated as a General Education course. Program requirements may also satisfy General Education requirements and vary for each program.

Foundations (grade of C or better is required.)

  • Quantification (GQ): 6 credits
  • Writing and Speaking (GWS): 9 credits

Knowledge Domains

  • Arts (GA): 6 credits
  • Health and Wellness (GHW): 3 credits
  • Humanities (GH): 6 credits
  • Social and Behavioral Sciences (GS): 6 credits
  • Natural Sciences (GN): 9 credits

Integrative Studies (may also complete a Knowledge Domain requirement)

  • Inter-Domain or Approved Linked Courses: 6 credits

University Degree Requirements

First Year Engagement

All students enrolled in a college or the Division of Undergraduate Studies at University Park, and the World Campus are required to take 1 to 3 credits of the First-Year Seminar, as specified by their college First-Year Engagement Plan.

Other Penn State colleges and campuses may require the First-Year Seminar; colleges and campuses that do not require a First-Year Seminar provide students with a first-year engagement experience.

First-year baccalaureate students entering Penn State should consult their academic adviser for these requirements.

Cultures Requirement    

6 credits are required and may satisfy other requirements

  • United States Cultures: 3 credits
  • International Cultures: 3 credits

Writing Across the Curriculum

3 credits required from the college of graduation and likely prescribed as part of major requirements.

Total Minimum Credits

A minimum of 120 degree credits must be earned for a baccalaureate degree. The requirements for some programs may exceed 120 credits. Students should consult with their college or department adviser for information on specific credit requirements.

Quality of Work

Candidates must complete the degree requirements for their major and earn at least a 2.00 grade-point average for all courses completed within their degree program.

Limitations on Source and Time for Credit Acquisition

The college dean or campus chancellor and program faculty may require up to 24 credits of course work in the major to be taken at the location or in the college or program where the degree is earned. Credit used toward degree programs may need to be earned from a particular source or within time constraints (see Senate Policy 83-80). For more information, check the Suggested Academic Plan for your intended program.

B.A. Degree Requirements

Foreign Language (0-12 credits): Student must attain 12th credit level of proficiency in one foreign language. See the Placement Policy for Penn State Foreign Language Courses.

B.A. Fields (9 credits): Humanities, Social and Behavioral Sciences, Arts, Foreign Languages, Natural Sciences, Quantification (may not be taken in the area of the student's primary major; foreign language credits in this category must be in a second foreign language or beyond the 12th credit level of proficiency in the first language)

Other Cultures (0-3 credits): Select 3 credits from approved list. Students may count courses in this category in order to meet other major, minor, elective, or General Education requirements, except for the General Education US/IL requirement.​

Requirements for the Major

A grade of C or better is required for all courses in the major. To graduate, a student enrolled in the major must earn at least a C grade in each course designated by the major as a C-required course, as specified by Senate Policy 82-44.

Common Requirements for the Major (All Options)

Prescribed Courses
Prescribed Courses: Require a grade of C or better
AFAM 100NBlack Freedom Struggles Keystone/General Education Course3
AFAM/HIST 211Slavery and Freedom in the Black Atlantic Keystone/General Education Course3
AFR 1103
SOC 207Research Methods in Sociology3
Requirements for the Option
Requirements for the Option: Require a grade of C or better
Select an option33

Requirements for the Option

African American Studies Option (33 credits)
Prescribed Courses
Prescribed Courses: Require a grade of C or better
AFAM/WMNST 1013
AFAM/SOC/WMNST 103Racism and Sexism Keystone/General Education Course3
AFAM 401Afro-American Studies Seminar3
Additional Courses
Additional Courses: Require a grade of C or better
Select 24 credits from one of the following three areas of concentration: 124
1. History Perspective
The Life and Thought of Martin Luther King, Jr. Keystone/General Education Course
The Life and Thought of Malcolm X Keystone/General Education Course
Freedom's First Generation: African American Life and Work, from the Civil War to World War II Keystone/General Education Course
Racial and Ethnic Inequality in America
Black Liberation and American Foreign Policy
The Post-World War II Civil Rights Movement
The Vernacular Roots of African American Literature
Slavery and the Literary Imagination
African American History Keystone/General Education Course
Civil Liberties and Due Process
SOC 119
2. Social Sciences and Community Development
Women of the African Diaspora Keystone/General Education Course
The Life and Thought of Martin Luther King, Jr. Keystone/General Education Course
The Life and Thought of Malcolm X Keystone/General Education Course
Freedom's First Generation: African American Life and Work, from the Civil War to World War II Keystone/General Education Course
Racial and Ethnic Inequality in America
Black Liberation and American Foreign Policy
The Post-World War II Civil Rights Movement
Race, Crime, and Justice
Intermediate Macroeconomic Analysis Keystone/General Education Course
Economics of Discrimination
Ethnic Minorities and Schools in the United States
Policy Making and Evaluation
SOC 119
3. Cultural and Gender Perspective:
Women of the African Diaspora Keystone/General Education Course
African Diaspora Religions and Spiritualities Keystone/General Education Course
Workshop: Theatre in Diverse Cultures Keystone/General Education Course
Spirit, Space, Survival: Contemporary Black Women
African American Theatre
Contemporary African American Communication
Gender, Diversity and the Media Keystone/General Education Course
Cultural Aspects of the Mass Media
Ethnic Minorities and Schools in the United States
African American Literature Keystone/General Education Course
From Folk Shouts and Songs to Hip Hop Poetry
Reading Black, Reading Feminist
African American Autobiography
African American Novel II
Slavery and the Literary Imagination
Evolution of Jazz Keystone/General Education Course
SOC 119
African Studies Option (33 credits)
Prescribed Courses
Prescribed Courses: Require a grade of C or better
AAAS 4003
AFR/HIST 191Early African History Keystone/General Education Course3
AFR/HIST 192Modern African History Keystone/General Education Course3
AFR/PLSC 454Government and Politics of Africa3
Additional Courses
Additional Courses: Require a grade of C or better
Select 21 credits from one of the following two areas of concentration: 121
1. Humanities Perspective
AAAS 404
Black Liberation and American Foreign Policy
The Post-World War II Civil Rights Movement
Women, Gender, and Feminisms in Africa Keystone/General Education Course
Introduction to African Literatures Keystone/General Education Course
African Drama
African Novel
African Literature of French Expression
History of Imperialism and Nationalism in Africa
Elementary Swahili I
Elementary Swahili II
2. Social Science Perspective
AAAS 404
Black Liberation and American Foreign Policy
The Post-World War II Civil Rights Movement
Women, Gender, and Feminisms in Africa Keystone/General Education Course
South Africa Today
Intermediate Macroeconomic Analysis Keystone/General Education Course
Growth and Development
African Resources and Development
Political Processes in Underdeveloped Systems
Elementary Swahili I
Elementary Swahili II
Law and Social Justice Option (33 credits)
Prescribed Courses
Prescribed Courses: Require a grade of C or better
AFAM/HIST 210Freedom's First Generation: African American Life and Work, from the Civil War to World War II Keystone/General Education Course3
AFAM 401Afro-American Studies Seminar3
CRIM 100Introduction to Criminal Justice Keystone/General Education Course3
CRIM 451Race, Crime, and Justice3
CRIMJ/CRIM/SOC 12Criminology Keystone/General Education Course3
CRIMJ/CRIM 113Introduction to Law3
Additional Courses
Additional Courses: Require a grade of C or better
Select 15 credits of the following:15
Racial and Ethnic Inequality in America
Black Liberation and American Foreign Policy
Politics of Affirmative Action
The Post-World War II Civil Rights Movement
Globalization and Its Implications
American Correctional System
Sentencing
Policing in America
The Juvenile Justice System
Law and Society
Crime Policy
Women and the Criminal Justice System
Economics of Discrimination

Academic Advising

The objectives of the university’s academic advising program are to help advisees identify and achieve their academic goals, to promote their intellectual discovery, and to encourage students to take advantage of both in-and out-of class educational opportunities in order that they become self-directed learners and decision makers.

Both advisers and advisees share responsibility for making the advising relationship succeed. By encouraging their advisees to become engaged in their education, to meet their educational goals, and to develop the habit of learning, advisers assume a significant educational role. The advisee’s unit of enrollment will provide each advisee with a primary academic adviser, the information needed to plan the chosen program of study, and referrals to other specialized resources.

READ SENATE POLICY 32-00: ADVISING POLICY

University Park

Liberal Arts Academic Advising
814-865-2545
Use the Liberal Arts Majors and Minors web page to see the contact information for the specific adviser(s) of this program

Contact

University Park

DEPARTMENT OF AFRICAN AMERICAN STUDIES
133 Willard Building
University Park, PA 16802
814-863-4243
jle1@psu.edu

http://www.afam.la.psu.edu