Graduate Degrees

Students working on laptops together on campus.

Graduate students in the Department of Africana and American Studies may pursue degrees in American Studies, Canadian Studies or an interdisciplinary humanities program in Caribbean and Latin American Studies or African-American Studies.

About the Graduate Programs

We take a global and hemispheric approach to the study of the Americas, examining local cultures, nations and regions within their larger geopolitical contexts. Building on our traditional strengths in American Indian studies, critical race theory, feminism, class analysis and community engagement, we encourage scholarly work on history, politics, visual cultures, literary and oral cultures, environmental and agricultural practices, religions, gender, sexualities, kinship systems, geography and economics. 

Student Testimonials

"When choosing UB, I reverted to the factor I was looking for initially: a sense of family, and the ability to build a relationship with a department. The faculty in the department is what really reeled me in.” – Taylor Coleman, MA and PhD Student, Schomburg Fellowship Recipient

Degree Options

PhD in American Studies

The PhD degree prepares students for intellectual work in many different careers, including the highest levels of college and university teaching and research. The program consists of three basic stages: 1) coursework, 2) written and oral exams, and 3) researching, writing, and defending a dissertation. Most of our doctoral students complete their PhD within four to seven years.

MA in American Studies

The MA in American Studies program offers students a solid grounding in professional study of the history and culture of the Americas. As our students comprise a varied audience—from documentary producers to social workers to pre-doctoral students—we offer a broad-based curriculum that includes many opportunities to pursue specific research interests. Most of our MA students complete their degree within two years.

Humanities Interdisciplinary MA

Through this interdisciplinary degree, students may choose to center their coursework on African-American Studies or Caribbean and Latin American Studies by combining Department of Africana and American Studies courses and other arts and humanities courses from across the university. Most of our MA students complete their degree within two years.

Canadian Studies

The Canadian-American Studies program takes advantage of UB's location on the Canada-U.S. border. Students have several options for pursuing Canadian Studies at UB. 

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