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  • UGA Graduation caps at sunset


    The institute wishes their 2022 graduates success in their future endeavors!

  • Students gathered by a bookcase

    Programs of Study

    The Institute offers a major, minor, and graduate certificate in African American Studies. 

  • AFAM Faculty & Ailey II Dancers

Welcome to the Institute for African American Studies

Students singing at the chapel
Students from the African American Choral Ensemble performing on the Chapel stage

The Institute for African American Studies offers students a degree that focuses on the history of the African American people, their impact on American culture, as well as their modern experience in today's world. We explore African American literature that dates back to the late 1700's, as well as their influence in theater and art.  It explores race and ethnicity in America, as well as cultural diversity and how it varies across groups.

Our institute provides students with the opportunity to participate in exciting lectures and discussions led by faculty members that are engaged in promoting the study of people of African descent and their experiences throughout history. 

Featured Content

Congratulations to Dr. Carolyn Jones Medine, Director of the IAAS, who has been appointed as the inaugural All Shall Be Well Professor in Religion.
Sha'Mira Covington is a PhD candidate in the Department of Textiles, Merchandising, and Interiors and the Institute for African American Studies, and she graduates in Spring 2023.

Support African American Studies at UGA

The Institute defines support in diverse ways to give you as many options as possible to assist in our mission. We consider “friend-raising" as important as fund-raising. Your financial contributions and support help us to develop and strengthen our programs and offerings, both on campus and in the community. 

Your gift makes a big difference. Learn more about how you can donate today.

Study within African American cultural history provides a basis for understanding political, social, and economic relations throughout human history.

Graduate Certificate

The Institute for African American Studies offers a graduate certificate in African American Studies. The program is designed for currently enrolled graduate students in good standing who are matriculated in Masters, Doctoral, Professional, and Specialist degree programs, as well as non-degree seeking enrolled graduate students.

Learn more about our Graduate Certificate


Sydney Patton graduated Spring 2021 with a major in Theatre and a minor in African American Studies. She plans to pursue a career in entertainment and visual art. Keep reading for her advice for current and prospective AFAM students.

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Greetings from Director

I am delighted to welcome you to the webpage for and to The Institute for African American Studies. The IAAS is the unit at The University of Georgia that examines all dimensions of the African diaspora in the United States. We are an interdisciplinary faculty, with scholars from English Language and Literature, Sociology, Theater and Film Studies, History, and Religion, among others. These diverse approaches offer our majors and minors and our certificate students, both undergraduate and graduate, multiple entry points into the study of African American life. We welcome all to our program, courses, and ongoing events.

Read more from our Director