Graduate Certificate

Graduates listening to panelists

We offer a Graduate Certificate in African & African American Studies for students enrolled in doctoral and master's programs at Duke. The curriculum includes course work, teaching and research. The award of a graduate certificate is carried on the student's official transcript upon completion of the program. Students enrolled in the graduate program are eligible to apply for AAAS teaching assistantships and research funds.

Recommendations & Requirements

Graduate students enrolled in the program are encouraged to participate in all African & African American Studies program events, including the program's lecture series and symposia. African & African American Studies at Duke has a specific interdisciplinary focus on Diaspora Studies and Gender Studies. This emphasis characterizes both our faculty's strength and the curriculum's critical interdisciplinary strategy. AAAS at Duke University is committed to a new model of Black Studies, one which sees race as inevitably intertwined with other social hierarchies and one which forces attention to continuities and disjunctures of social experience across the Diaspora.

Certificate Requirements

  • AAAS 699S (Proseminar)
  • Three additional graduate-level courses (500-level or above), two of which must be taught by AAAS core or secondary faculty.  If not an AAAS course or a course cross-listed with AAAS, then the third course must be approved by the DGS.
  • Select either Option A, B or C:
    • Option A:  Teaching an AAAS undergraduate course OR serving as a teaching assistant.  Assistantships must be supervised by an AAAS core or secondary faculty member to be eligible for certificate credit.  Instructorships must be sponsored by AAAS or approved by the DGS if the student is seeking credit for the course.
    • Option B:  A fourth graduate course, excluding the Proseminar.  If the course emanates from outside AAAS, approval must be sought from the DGS.
    • Option C:  The development of a course proposal and syllabus for an AAAS course.  The proposal and syllabus must be approved by an AAAS core or secondary faculty member.
  • Dissertation:  A dissertation in an AAAS area with core or secondary faculty represented on the dissertation committee.

Important Forms: 


  • AAAS 699S (Proseminar)
  • Two additional graduate-level courses (500-level or above) taught by AAAS core or secondary faculty member
  • Independent Study:  An AAAS independent study developed in association with an AAAS core or secondary faculty member OR a third graduate-level (500-level or above) course
  • Thesis/Project:  A final thesis/project (GLS courses that address an aspect of the program's scholarly mission must be approved in advance by the DGS).  An AAAS core or secondary faculty member must serve as the final reader of the thesis/project or as an examiner in its final review.

Important Forms: