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African American Studies

College of Social Sciences and Public Policy

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Frequently Asked Questions

Why major in African American Studies?

The African American Studies program is an interdepartmental and interdisciplinary study of the history, culture, and socio-economic well being of African-Americans. Knowledge and research methods drawn from several disciplines enable students to enhance their understanding of African-Americans’ unique social circumstances and heritage, and acquire a deeper comprehension of the history and culture of the nation as a whole.

African American Studies is a classical liberal arts minor. That is, the minor enhances a student’s ability to engage in critical reasoning and analytical thought, with a premium placed on written and oral communication skills.

Just as African history is world history, African American Studies is American Studies. Successful minors examine America and the world community through the prism of the contemporary and historical experiences, culture expressions, and socioeconomic outcomes of African Americans and the collective African Diaspora.

What types of jobs are available to graduates with a major in African American Studies?

Everything. There are no limitations. African American Studies is excellent preparation for law, politics, public policy, teaching, or business, as well as graduate or professional school. For more information, please see What Can I Do With A Black Studies Major? 500+ Answers.

Derrick Alexander Endowment in African American Studies Program

To establish the student assistant stipend with the African American Studies Program. It will be awarded to economically-disadvantage students in any degree-earning program at Florida State University in compensation for work in the activities of the African American Studies Program. This will solve one the society’s important problems, the retention of economically-disadvantaged students in higher education.

What are the requirements for an African-American Studies Major?

The major consists of 36 hours of approved course work with a grade of C- or better in each course and an overall grade average of “C” (2.0) or higher in the major. Students pursuing the Bachelor of Science degree may specialize in economics, political science, or sociology. Students pursuing the Bachelor of Arts degree may specialize in humanities. In each case, the student selects nine (9) hours from African American Studies core courses, six (6) hours of either African or African American history, plus twenty-one (21) hours of approved elective courses. Courses from the African American Studies core provide the foundational knowledge and theoretical perspectives for the major. Utilizing the electives, students may complete a specialty within a particular area of intellectual interest. A minimum of fifteen (15) semester hours in the major must be taken at The Florida State University.

What are the requirements for an AFAS minor?

The African American Studies minor complements a student’s major area of study. The minor consists of eighteen (18) credit hours of approved course work with a grade of C- or better in each course and an overall grade average of “C” (2.0) or higher in the minor. The minor requires completion of nine (9) credit hours in African American Studies core courses selected according to the core course requirement for the major, three (3) credit hours of either African or African American history, plus six (6) hours of supplementary courses.