This is an archive of the 2015-2016 University Catalog.
To access the most recent version, please visit

This is an archive of the 2015-2016 University Catalog.
To access the most recent version, please visit


Program: B.A., Africana Studies

African and African-American Humanities and Cultural Studies


The Africana Studies (AFRS) major is a multidisciplinary academic major (45 units) designed for students who wish to gain an understanding of the history, psychology, sociology, literature, culture and education of African-Americans and other Africans in the diaspora and the continent. The three specific options within the major enable students to concentrate their efforts on certain aspects of this broad subject. These options are intended to enhance students’ preparation for both graduate school and employment. By carefully selecting Title 5 and General Education courses in consultation with a AFRS advisor, students majoring in AFRS also have the opportunity to complete a second major. For example, a double major in AFRS and Urban Studies and Planning can be completed with the selection of Option II (below) plus the core course requirements in Urban Studies and Planning. Consult an advisor for other possible combinations within the major.

Program Requirements

The Africana Studies major consists of two components: the completion of the core requirements (21 units) and the completion of one of three specific options (24 units). For each of the options, there are specific Lower and Upper Division core courses and electives that are relevant to that concentration. All students who major in Africana Studies must select one of the three options, each of which is designed to prepare students for graduate study or for a career of their choice.

1. Core Requirements for all Options (21 units)

2. Required Courses in African and African-American Humanities and Cultural Studies (18 units)

3. Complete 6 units from either the Humanities or Cultural Studies Track

a. Humanities Track Electives (6 units)

Select two courses from the following:

AFRS 244 African-American Literature to 1930 (3)
AFRS 246 Introduction to African-American Drama (3)
AFRS 280 Workshop in Creative Writing for Minority Students (3)
AFRS 331/L African-American Religious Music: History, Literature and Gospel/Lab (2/1)
AFRS 333 Coltrane (3)
AFRS 337 Black Images on the Silver Screen (3)
AFRS 345 African-American Autobiography (3)
AFRS 447 African-American Theatre (3)

b. Cultural Studies Track Electives (6 units)

Select two courses from the following:

AFRS 171 Classical African Civilization (3)
AFRS 274 History of Caribbean Societies Since the 1830s (3)
AFRS 282 African Religion in the New World (3)
AFRS 355 Black World News Practicum (3)
AFRS 368 Politics of Hip Hop (3)
AFRS 376 African Enslavement in the New World (3)

4. Languages (Optional)

All students majoring in Africana Studies are encouraged to take foreign languages (French, Portuguese, Spanish or Swahili recommended).

5. General Education (48 units)

Undergraduate students must complete 48 units of General Education as described in this Catalog.
The AFRS department offers courses in the GE pattern. Please consult with an undergraduate or departmental advisor before making decisions about these courses.

Total Units in the Major/Option: 45

General Education Units: 48

Additional Units: 27

Total Units Required for the B.A. Degree: 120


Chair: Sylvia Macauley
Santa Susana Hall (SN) 221
(818) 677-3311

Student Learning Outcomes

The interdisciplinary degree program in Africana Studies enables the graduate to gain an understanding of the political-social-historical cultural perspectives of the African-American and African experience. Students also will learn key concepts and fundamental literature; gain a knowledge of the broad cultural, political and historical contexts in which the African-American experience took place; and learn appropriate skills in research design and methodology used to examine the various interdisciplinary areas (e.g., political-historical, humanities, sociopsychological) of Africana Studies.