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Pending Final Approval by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

As an interdisciplinary graduate program, the African American Studies (AAS) Ph.D. Programthe first program of its kind in the U.S. Southeastis a highly selective course of study combining the expertise of an esteemed group of more than 50 core and affiliated graduate faculty with research specializations in disciplinary and interdisciplinary fields such as African & African American Studies, American Studies, Anthropology, Art History, Comparative Literature, Creating Writing, Educational Studies, English, History, Music, Political Science, Religious Studies, Sociology, and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. The program provides rigorous training and preparation for Ph.D. students interested in careers within and outside of academe. Our program is organized around the four pillars upon which African American Studies as a field rests: interdisciplinarity, intersectionality, community engagement, and transnationalism. In addition, each student enrolled in the program will be equipped with specialized training in African American Studies through one of three cognate fields: Gender & Sexuality, Social Justice & Social Movements, and Expressive Arts & Cultures.

Program Details

Beginning with the first AAS Ph.D. cohort in Fall 2023, we expect to enroll four new Ph.D. students each year. We also anticipate that each student will complete the degree within five to six years. All Ph.D. students are fully funded for five years with an annual stipend of at least $31,000, a tuition remission, and health insurance. Though each student is guaranteed funding and support for five years, funding for a sixth year—if needed—will be possible.

Mission Statement

W.E.B. Du Bois, a scholar-activist and one of the early forerunners of Black studies, insisted on the essential link between social justice and rigorous scholarship. In keeping with this mandate, the African American Studies Ph.D. program provides interdisciplinary and trans-disciplinary, intersectional, and transnational training to tomorrow’s leading researchers of African-descended people in the United States and beyond. Our curriculum offers expertise in the cultural practices, visual arts, histories, intellectual traditions, and politics accentuating the global importance of the field and its attendant systems of knowledge production.