Major or Minor Planning
Planning Your Major or Minor
If you are considering majoring or minoring in Africana Studies, it would be useful to fill out the course planning forms below even if you are unable to officially declare at that time. By completing them you will be able to see the relevant courses you have taken or might need to take in the future.
When it is time to declare, deliver or email it to your advisor. You must submit a hard copy to the Africana Studies program office after you meet with your advisor, and you will be asked to update it every semester.
A Suggested Timeline
As you progress through the major, you are encouraged to take the initiative in your own explorations. Why major or minor in Africana Studies?
In the first year, you will begin to survey courses in the curriculum. First-year seminars, 1000-level introductory courses, and many 2000-level courses are all open to first years; the first-year seminar is especially encouraged. You should take courses in various regions, especially those that were unavailable to you in high school. You should also study with several professors and begin to consider who might serve as your advisor.
Potential majors may take the 1000-level introductory course. You are encouraged to take 2000-level lecture courses in a variety of fields and to consider the 2000-level intermediate seminar on a topic of interest. During the spring semester, students will declare their majors. You should meet with your Africana studies advisor early in the semester to discuss your major options, such as the selection of a track or concentration. If you are considering off-campus study/study abroad, you should approach potential advisors early on, and meet in the late fall or early spring to ensure that you will be able to complete the major requirements. If you plan to be away for your entire junior year, you should take an intermediate seminar. Sophomore year is an excellent time to identify those departmental requirements that may require planning to fulfill, e.g. 1 course from the track that is not your concentration, at least 1 3000-level seminar; and begin to take these courses.
By junior year, most students should have chosen their major track. Students should complete the intermediate seminar requirement by the end of junior year. You are also encouraged to have met the program’s requirements for the non-track and 3000-level courses. Students in their junior year are well positioned to approach a professor about an independent study on a topic of interest. You may take a 3000-level advanced seminar, especially if you plan to pursue an honors project or if it fits your interests well, because only a few of these courses are offered in each year. Students intending to do an honors project should begin to speak with their advisor as early as possible in the spring semester to discuss the process, begin to find a topic, and lay out a plan for summer research.
In addition to completing the range of courses necessary to fulfill the requirements for the major, senior students are strongly encouraged to pursue their own research projects through 3000-level advanced seminars, independent studies, or an honors project. Students should plan independent work with their advisors or with another member of the program well in advance of the start of the semester.