Jul 21, 2024  
OHIO University Undergraduate Catalog 2024-25 
OHIO University Undergraduate Catalog 2024-25

African American Studies Major (B.A.)

Major code BA4903

College of Arts and Sciences  
African American Studies Department  
Bentley Annex
Phone: 740.593.4546

Dr. Gary Holcomb, Chair
Uzoma Miller, Advising Coordinator

Program Overview

The African American Studies Department was established in 1969, and remains one of a few programs with departmental status in the state of Ohio. A centerpiece of that legacy is our shared vision and philosophy with the National Council for Black Studies, which is to promote academic excellence and social responsibility in the areas of teaching, research, and service. We are a department that is committed to producing persons, to use the language of Dr. Nathan Hare, who are capable of solving problems in American (and global) society.

The faculty believe in preparing and mentoring all students to successfully complete their academic goals and objectives. Our mission is to contribute to an inclusive intellectual environment at Ohio University by developing and delivering an interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary curriculum that advances the University’s general education goals.

The African American Studies Department also offers an Honors program in African American Studies. See below for more information.

Admissions Information

Freshman/First-Year Admission

No requirements beyond University admission requirements.

Change of Program Policy

No selective or limited admission requirements.

External Transfer Admission

No requirements beyond University admission requirements.

Opportunities Upon Graduation

Many African American Studies majors have gone on to graduate school and carved for themselves influential careers in a variety of fields, including law, the performing arts, international affairs, religion, politics, education, and business. African American studies graduates are well-prepared to enter careers in social service, education, legal services and graduate school in multiple disciplines.

A degree in African American Studies, like all liberal arts degrees, provides students with the foundation to understand the world, how it functions, their responsibilities and opportunities in the world, and how to have an impact on the world, globally and locally. Specifically, however, African American Studies majors learn from many disciplines to explore the histories, societies, and cultures of African and African-descended people in the United States and abroad.

Examples of specific positions students can pursue with a degree in African American Studies include, but are not limited to, the following: education, management and industry, law, communications and media, government/politics, community relations and outreach, domestic and international advocacy, program administration, human resources, religious services, social worker, graduate studies, public policy specialist; etc.

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University-wide Graduation Requirements

Ohio University requires the completion of a minimum of 120 semester hours for the conferral of a bachelor’s degree. This program can be completed within that 120-hour requirement. For more information on the minimum hours requirement and other university-wide requirements, please review the Graduation Requirements – University-wide  page.

Liberal Arts and Sciences Distribution Requirement

View the College and Liberal Arts and Sciences Distribution Requirements .

African American Studies Hours Requirement

Complete a total of 30 semester credit hours of AAS coursework, including all of the requirements below. A minimum grade of ‘C’ (2.0) is required in each major course.

Required Core Course

Complete the following course:

African American Studies Tracks

Complete two of the following tracks.

Honors Program

The Department of African American Studies  offers an Honors option for all majors with an overall GPA of 3.0 and a cumulative GPA of 3.5 in AAS courses. Qualified candidates may apply for the Honor Program in the fall semester of their junior year. Candidates admitted to the program must complete two 3-hour independent studies, listed below, with a thesis advisor and then write an honors thesis during their senior year. Students who complete the thesis will graduate with the designation of “Honors” on their degrees.

  • Credit Hours: 3 - 9
  • Students wishing to complete the Honors program must take a 3-hour AAS 4930 twice for a total of 6 hours, once fall semester and once spring semester of senior year.