Graduate Certificate in African American Studies
The graduate certificate in African American studies requires a least 12 s.h. of credit. Students must maintain a g.p.a. of at least 2.75 in work for the certificate. With civil and corporate work environments taking a distinct interest in the diversity of people, training, and ideas within their respective environments, the certificate provides a means of formally acknowledging cultural and intellectual understanding that is being sought by potential employers.
The graduate certificate in African American studies is an add-on credential to either a PhD, MA or MFA degree in the student’s chosen area of primary study. Potential students must be admitted to the program that corresponds with their field of specialization before they are able to apply to the African American Studies Certificate program. The program is not open to students who are non-degree seeking.
Graduate students from across the university already incorporate African American studies theories, topics, and methods into their coursework and theses. Our primary purpose, then, is to coalesce currently existing courses into a logical sequence that provides students with a formal graduate credential. In the process, the certificate enhances both the cultural competency and marketability of interested graduate students. As both civil and corporate work environments have begun taking a distinct interest in the diversity of people, training and ideas within their respective environments, this credential provides a means of formally acknowledging cultural and intellectual understanding that is actively sought by potential employers who are openly embracing this goal.
For more specific information on courses, curriculum, and requirements of the Graduate Certificate in African American Studies, visit the UI General Catalog.
To ensure timely completion of the credential, PhD students are encouraged to apply for the Certificate in their first year of graduate coursework, and master’s students in their first semester. This also ensures that students have sufficient time to choose coursework in the sub-field of African-American studies that is most appealing to them. The following application deadlines are firm, so please make a note of them:
Fall Application Deadline: November 1 (for program start the following spring semester)
Spring Application Deadline: March 15th (for program start the following summer or fall semester)
Admission to the certificate program will be determined by application, which will be reviewed by the Graduate Steering Committee of the Program in African American Studies twice per year. Certificate applicants must carry a GPA of 2.75 or above at the time of application and throughout their work toward the credential.
This application requires the submission of four primary documents:
- Completed application form (including prior course considerations and justification statements, if any)
- Copy of unofficial transcript (from UIowa or, if a new UI student, transcript from degree earned just prior to enrollment at Iowa)
- Personal statement
- Recommendation letter. We prefer that the letter accompany your completed application, however, recommendations sent under separate cover will be accepted if need be.
All application materials should be submitted electronically (in pdf format) to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Acceptance of Credits Previously Earned
Please consult with the African American Studies Director of Graduate Studies for a list of currently approved courses offered during prior semesters. If you have successfully completed any of these classes, we will retroactively count them toward the credential requirements once the student is admitted to the certificate program. If you have completed graduate courses beyond the list provided that are clearly connected to the field of African American Studies, those courses will be considered as possible partial satisfaction of the certificate requirements. If you have courses that you would like to be reviewed for credit toward the certificate, please be sure to indicate them (including written justification) on your certificate program application or set a meeting to speak with the Director of Graduate Studies as soon as possible to begin the consideration process.