Ph.D. Minor

Use your Graduate Academic Bulletin

Students pursuing a graduate degree in African Studies should use the University Graduate School Academic Bulletin.

Official requirements for our Ph.D. minor degree can be found by clicking on the Bulletin below:

2019-20: African Studies University Graduate School Academic Bulletin

Degree information

For official degree requirements, you must consult with the Graduate School Bulletin. The information below is not the official record.

Core courses

Students wanting to minor in African Studies must complete African Studies (AFRI)-A650: Interdisciplinary Methods in African Studies as well as four other graduate-level courses in African Studies outside their major field.

These courses must:

  • Be taught by an African Studies Program-affiliated faculty member
  • Be approved by the African Studies program director

African Studies (AFRI)-A731: African Studies Interdisciplinary Graduate Seminar may be taken twice for a total of six credits, however variable credit is allowed only in addition to having taken it once as a three-credit seminar.

Students minoring in African Studies and another field may double count only one course.

Language requirement

Serious scholars of Africa are proficient in at least one African language, and language proficiency improves opportunities for fieldwork and funding. In some cases, it is often a requirement for overseas research grants from organizations like the Social Science Research Council (SSRC) and for Fulbright-Hays awards.

One language course in the third year of study, or higher, may be counted toward a minor in African Studies. It is strongly recommended that Ph.D. candidates who minor in African Studies take two years of an African language in addition to their course work for the minor.

Petition for credit

Students with special qualifications or previous course work at leading institutions may petition the Graduate Affairs Committee to give credit for work that is comparable to specific courses at IU. Petitions must include a formal letter of request from the candidate, as well as a syllabus from the course in question. The materials should be submitted to the chair of the Graduate Affairs Committee or the director of the African Studies Program. These requirements constitute a minimum level of expectation.


Your major and minor advisors will decide whether you need to take a comprehensive written exam. An African Studies faculty member, who is not in your major department, will certify that you have met minimum requirements.