Skip to Content

All University of South Carolina system institutions will be closed through the end of the spring semester. Columbia campus virtual instruction will continue through the end of the Summer II semester (Aug 1). Details can be found on the coronavirus landing page.

African American Studies Program

students laughing and smiling in class

Major in African American Studies

You will be exposed to exciting and rigorous coursework and develop an understanding of race and the African American experience, as well as the dynamics of the African diaspora. You also will be able to develop service-learning experience by applying your knowledge in local civic organizations, public agencies, churches and institutes of research.


A grade of C or above is required for the course to count toward the BA degree in African American Studies. 

  • AFAM 201: Intro to African American Studies: Social and Historical Foundations
  • AFAM 202: Intro to African American Studies: Arts and Cultural Foundations
  • Society and History (6 hours): Select two AFAM or approved discipline-based courses in social and historical topics (i.e. POLI, SOCI, PSYC, WGST, HIST, RELG, SOST JOUR, ANTH, and EDUC)
  • Arts and Culture (6 hours): Select two AFAM or approved discipline-based courses in arts and cultural topics (i.e. ENGL, CPLT, ANTH, FILM, THEA, DANC, LING, and all Art disciplines)
  • Three Additional Major Courses (9 hours): Select 3 AFAM or discipline-based courses (300-level or above) organized around 1-2 subjects in consultation with advisor
  • AFAM 498 or AFAM 499 (3 hours): Seminar in African American Studies


Learning Outcomes

  • Majors in AFAM 201 and 202 courses will demonstrate a growing competence in analysis of the contextualized, dynamic realities of race in America, especially utilizing African American intellectual currents, past and present. The rigorous engagement of scholarship and a collaborative work ethic will be expected of students.
  • Students will work across disciplines, synthesizing major themes, while developing skills in written and verbal communication of such scholarship.
  • Students’ development as scholars and researchers is of primary importance to the Program’s faculty. Therefore, tasks of rigorous scholarship are stressed, including: critical thinking; precise writing; constructive discussions; and critical engagement with written material, especially primary documents.
  • Majors will strengthen abilities to synthesize major ideas and produce well-written arguments and analyses. Students will learn to raise effective questions, leading to the creation of new knowledge, and thereby to develop as citizen leaders.

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.