Professor Jelani Mahiri teaching Intro to Africana Studies

Program Description

The Africana Studies Certificate consists of 15 credits in which students explore African and African American history, life, and culture from an interdisciplinary perspective. The Africana Studies certificate aims to complement existing majors at MSU-Bozeman. Students will develop the knowledge and intellectual skills to understand and appreciate the experiences of African and African Diasporic populations, to move beyond their own experiences to appreciate how they are connected to the larger global village. The certificate will provide students with a nuanced understanding of the historical, political and cultural contributions of the African and African American communities to the world.

Why choose a certificate in Africana Studies?

Programs of study that promote diversity develop empathy and widen knowledge for students who are becoming active citizens within our society. In addition, programs that promote diversity empower employees and employers in myriad ways, including providing the skills necessary to be flexible and accommodating to multiple lifestyles, and accepting experiences, views, and expertise that different people bring to the workplace. There is accumulating evidence that companies that value diversity will have lower turnover, higher job satisfaction, and more creativity. Promoting and understanding diversity matches statewide and national trends in the workplace (e.g. more than 40% of new entrants into the US workforce from non-majority groups; Montana experienced an increase of 185% in the number of people who identified with two or more races, according to the 2020 US Census Report) and enhances the ability to compete effectively in a global market.

Program of Study

The 15-credit certificate has two required courses, a 100-level introduction to Africana Studies and a 200 level course titled Approaches to Africana Studies. Students may then choose an anthropology, literature, or writing class focused on Africana studies followed by six elective credits.

Required Courses

  1. LS 194D, Introduction to Africana Studies (3 credits - Fall)
  2. ANTY 291, Approaches to Africana Studies (3 credits - Spring)

Choose three (3) credits from:

  • ANTY 348 – Contemporary Africa
  • LIT 343 - African American Literature


Take an additional six (6) credits from the following

  • AMST 101D - Intro to American Studies
  • ANTY 348 - Contemporary Africa
  • BIOE 491 - Special Topics: Tanzania, Mount Kilimanjaro, and the world's biomes
  • HDFS 464 - Gender, Race, Class, and Human Development
  • HSTA 416 - Race and Class in America
  • HSTR 431 - Race in Latin America
  • LIT 308 - Multicultural Literature
  • LIT 343 - African American Literature
  • MUSI 130IA - History of Jazz
  • PHL 291 - Special Topics: Introduction to Philosophy and Race (alternates w/ PHL 354)
  • PHL 354 - Philosophy of Race (alternates w/ PHL 291)
  • SOCI 340 - Social Movements
  • SOCI 344 - Sociology of Race and Ethnicity
  • SPNS 445 - Hispanic Caribbean: Cuba, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic


What can I do with a certificate in Africana Studies?

Jobs for Africana studies certificate graduates

A degree in Africana studies prepares you to enter any career field, whether it's the arts, medicine, education, law, or business.

  • University Professor       
  • High School Teacher    
  • Historian
  • Guidance Counselor


Government and Politics




Non-Profits and Advocacy



Why Diversity is Key to the Future of Engineering