The Graduate Certificate in African Studies is awarded to students at the graduate level at the University of Wisconsin–Madison to certify advanced training in African studies. It is awarded by the African Studies Program and the Graduate School.

Application for Graduate Certificate in African Studies

  • Contact Aleia McCord, assistant director and advisor, at
  • Submit the application form for the Graduate Certificate in African Studies and obtain the approval and signature of the major professor. After the student has completed the requirements for the graduate certificate in African studies, the African Studies Program director or designate will inform the major department that the student has earned the certificate.

Information about funding through the African Studies Program is available from our website. We also encourage our students to explore funding options available through the Institute for Regional and International Studies (IRIS) Awards Office.

  • Complete at least 12 credits of African Studies Program core courses or extended core courses taught by an African Studies Program faculty member.
  • Graduate credit is available only for courses numbered 300 or higher.
  • Maintain a grade point average of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale).
  • Fulfill the requirements for a master’s or doctoral degree at the University of Wisconsin–Madison.
  • Include 9 credits outside the major department. No more than 3 credits will count from the major department.
  • Complete at least one graduate-level seminar in African studies with a grade of AB or better. It may be in the major field.

Additional terms

  • Include no more than 3 credits of directed reading and research or independent reading (AFRICAN 699 Directed Study, AFRICAN 999 Independent Reading and Research). No thesis/dissertation credits (AFRICAN 990 Thesis) may be included.
  • Only one course in a single language may count toward the certificate, but two languages courses count if they are in different African languages.
  • Note: All African Cultural Studies courses may count toward the graduate certificate within the limits set by the distribution requirements described above.

1. Regional expertise: advanced knowledge of the societies and cultures of the region through in-depth understanding of the principal historical, social, political, cultural and scientific forces and conditions that have given rise to the unity and diversity in the region today.

2. Multi-disciplinarity: analyzing contemporary political, economic, and cultural realities in the region from at least two disciplinary perspectives, ideally including humanities, social sciences and sometimes natural science approaches.

3. Depth of knowledge: advanced knowledge of particular facets of life in the region by taking courses on particular sub-regions or countries, by studying a regional language, or by taking at least two courses on the region in one discipline

4. Research and methods: Students must demonstrate the ability to conduct interdisciplinary research that shows knowledge of research methodologies, demonstrates analytical skills, and the ability to articulate and elaborate research findings.

Faculty: Professors Hutchinson (chair) (African Studies/Anthropology), Adell (Afro-American Studies), Anderson (Music), Barrows (Agricultural and Applied Economics), Baumann (Nursing), Bernault (History), Bershady (Astronomy), Bloch (Curriculum and Instruction), Bosu (Veterinary Medicine), Bunn (Anthropology), Carter (Agricultural and Applied Economics), Chavas (Agricultural and Applied Economics), Christensen (Animal Health and Biomedical Sciences), Cowell (African Languages and Literature), Drewal (Art History/Afro-American Studies), Fair (Journalism and Mass Communication), Gallagher (Astronomy), Gjerde (Medicine and Public Health), Graziano (Medicine and Public Health), Haq (Medicine and Public Health), Hauner (African Languages and Literature), Hewson (Curriculum and Instruction), Johnson-Powell (Medicine and Public Health), Klug (Law), Ladson-Billings (Medicine and Public Health), Langston (Forest and Wildlife Ecology), McClintock (English), Memon (Languages and Cultures of Asia), Naughton (Geography), Nixon (English), Ntambi (Biochemistry), Olaniyan (African Languages and Literature/English), Payne (Political Science), Popkewitz (Curriculum and Instruction), Posner (Agronomy), Reed (Animal Sciences), Reschovsky (Agricultural and Applied Economics), Schatzberg (Political Science), Scheub (African Languages and Literature), Schleicher (African Languages and Literature), Seidman (Sociology), Shapiro (Agricultural and Applied Economics), Songolo (African Languages and Literature/French and Italian), Tesfagiorgis (Afro-American Studies), Thompson (Law), Tripp (Political Science/Gender and Women's Studies), Turner (Geography), Verna (Art), Wilcots (Astronomy), Zeichner (Curriculum and Instruction); Associate Professors Al-Ghadeer (African Languages and Literature), Anstett (Family Medicine), Chamberlain (History), Conway (Communication Arts), Conway (Pediatrics), Foltz (Agricultural and Applied Economics), Jenson (French and Italian), Lambert (Anthropology), Madureira (Comparative Literature), Nesper (Anthropology), Pickering (Anthropology), Sapega (Spanish and Portuguese), Stambach (Educational Policy Studies), Sweet (History); Assistant Professors Hark (Design), Keller (History of Science), Kendall (Educational Policy Studies), Kodesh (History), Sellers (Social Work), Straus (Political Science), Wendland (Medicine and Public Health/Anthropology)