DAAS offers two certificates—African Studies (code 01973) and African American and Diasporic Studies (code 01974)—that enable current U-M graduate students to supplement their disciplinary training with concentrated inquiry in a specific field.
Increasingly, academic institutions and industries seek an educated workforce with cultural proficiency in race, ethnicity, and inclusion; the graduate certificates in DAAS demonstrate deep engagements with the African continent and its diasporas in the United States, the Caribbean, Latin America and beyond. The graduate certificates in DAAS provide rigorous interdisciplinary training that signal you can integrate diverse racial and ethnic perspectives into your discipline whether it is in the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, or a professional school arena.
Admission Eligibility and Requirements
A total of fifteen (15) credit hours is required for earning a graduate certificate, including two required DAAS courses (Pro-seminar and Capstone). Up to seven (7) of the fifteen credit hours may be for courses required for the student’s degree; however, credits may not be triple-counted (e.g., the same course cannot simultaneously count towards the degree program, the DAAS Graduate Certificate Program (GCP), and another certificate program). Non-Rackham degree programs may have their own rules regulating double counting. Students should consult with their advisor regarding which courses can be approved and which can be double-counted.
African Studies: Course Requirements
African American and Diasporic Studies: Course Requirements
Students must select a faculty advisor, typically a DAAS faculty member or affiliate. Students have the option of changing advisors at any time. The role of the faculty advisor is to work with the student to ensure progress through the Certificate program, and to assist the student in submitting required forms in a timely manner. Generally speaking, students are encouraged to select the faculty member offering the initial Pro-Seminar course to serve as faculty advisor. A designated Graduate Program Coordinator (a member of the DAAS Graduate Committee) oversees approval of courses to meet the breadth requirement.
The Rackham Graduate School requires a Dual/Joint Degree Election Form to be completed and approved by both program departments (i.e., African Studies Certificate and Natural Resources & Environment). The Dual/Joint Degree Election Form must be submitted to Rackham in advance in order for applications for graduation to be processed in a timely fashion.
Why Choose a DAAS Certificate?
"My experiences in the African Studies certificate program were foundational in building out my dissertation framework. It helped me to theorize and engage as an interdisciplinary scholar, invested in the lifeworlds of Black girls on the continent and in the African Diaspora. It also gave me the opportunity to build community with other critical, interdisciplinary colleagues and advanced scholars in meaningful ways. One of the most memorable experiences was the time I was able to present at the African Studies Association of Africa (ASAA) in Kenya in 2019 among some brilliant Africanists and Black studies scholars. I was a second year student at the time, and this fellowship helped me to envision myself and my work as part of a radical, Black intellectual tradition that prioritizes the “margins."'