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University of Pittsburgh    
2022-2023 Graduate & Professional Studies Catalog 
  Apr 15, 2024
2022-2023 Graduate & Professional Studies Catalog [Archived Catalog]

African Studies Certificate

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The African Studies Program offers the Graduate Certificate in African Studies and the Advanced Certificate in African Studies designed for students who wish to intensify their study of Africa as a world region. Students seeking a graduate degree at any school or department within the University may pursue a graduate certificate in African Studies by enrolling in the program and meeting the stipulated requirements. These certificates are specifically designed for graduate students who desire to develop real insights into issues of critical importance in their fields of research and career interests as relates to Africa. The program provides students with fundamental grounding in African Studies through exposure to the major areas of research and knowledge on Africa in their respective disciplines and professions. In addition, students are provided with opportunities to participate in research projects, symposia, lectures, conferences, fellowships, internships, and workshops on Africa. Successful completion of a certificate in African Studies can provide an important building block for careers in international development, foreign service, government, business, law, academia, and public service.

Language Proficiency

Students must complete one year of the study of either an indigenous African language or a European language that is relevant to African studies. Native speakers of an African language, or relevant European language, can have the language requirement waived.

Content Courses

12 credits of content coursework are required. 9 credits can overlap with the major. 3 credits must be outside the student’s major and in addition to the required credits in the major.

Students may contextualize non-credit-bearing internships that are required in various graduate degree programs as credit-bearing experiences for UCIS certificate programs. Prior approval must be received from the academic advisor to pursue this option.

Research Paper

This research paper/project is the culmination of the student’s learning experience and clearly demonstrates in-depth knowledge of African studies issues in at least one academic discipline. The capstone must be an assignment submitted as part of coursework, such as a final term paper and must have received a B or above grade. The paper must be at least 7 to 10 pages long and contain a minimum of 10 references.

Graduation Presentation

The graduation presentation is an opportunity for students to reflect on the African Studies Certificate and how their years of study have culminated into enhancing their knowledge and understanding of Africa. The presentation contains 4 slides, where students are asked to reflect on their research paper, experiential learning, and growth in African Studies. They are asked to submit a 1-page reflection on their presentation. The ASP uses the presentation to evaluate the certificate program to examine if the students have enhanced their knowledge and understanding of Africa. Students can choose to do an online portfolio instead of the presentation and paper if they so wish.

12 Credits

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