College of Liberal Arts & Social Sciences > Academics > African and Black Diaspora Studies > Undergraduate > African and Black Diaspora Studies (BA) > Major Requirements

Major Requirements

Course Requirements

Core Courses

Students are required to complete four core ABD courses (16-quarter credit hours).  The core courses are designed to accomplish three goals: to introduce students to the learning goals and outcomes of the Department of African and Black Diaspora Studies; to emphasize the Vincentian tenet that questions of human value are central to scholarly inquiry; and to strengthen an understanding of the interrelationships and dynamics between Africa, the Caribbean and Latin America, and the United States.

300-level Courses in an Area of Inquiry

For this requirement, students must take four ABD courses (16-quarter credit hours) at the 300 level.

These courses build upon the general foundation of knowledge provided by the core courses. They serve to reinforce and extend student knowledge about a particular area of study relating to Africa and/or the Black Diaspora as well as the Department's core sites of inquiry (culture, gender, history, power, and race). 

To insure that students are exposed to a variety of methodological approaches, students will endeavor to take courses in the social and behavioral sciences (i.e. anthropology, geography, history, international studies, psychology, political science, and sociology), humanities (i.e. history of art and architecture, literature, modern languages, music, philosophy, religious studies, and theatre), and interdisciplinary studies (i.e. American studies, Latin American & Latino studies, Women's and Gender studies, LGBT studies, etc.). 

Each student, in consultation with his or her advisor, will work to design an area of study that is attentive to comparative analysis. Students who wish to take a 200-level course in partial fulfillment of this requirement must petition the Department of African and Black Diaspora Studies chair for approval (this is not common). 

Major Field Electives

Students in the Department of African and Black Diaspora Studies will take four ABD courses as major field electives (16-quarter credit hours). These courses can be at the 200-level or 300-level. We urge students to consider courses at the 300-level to fulfill this requirement.

Such courses are designed to provide students with an opportunity to take courses related to their field of concentration in African and Black Diaspora Studies and at the same time extend their academic preparation through coursework in allied fields. The selection of electives will be done in consultation with the student’s academic advisor.


This senior seminar (four quarter hours) engages students in a synthesis of what they have learned through coursework. The capstone course will involve reading, writing, discussion, as well as the preparation by students a substantive piece of work (e.g., a senior thesis, a research paper, or a creative work).

Open Electives​

Open elective credits are also required to meet the minimum graduation requirement of 192 quarter-credit hours.

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