About Us

The Center for African Studies (CAS) at the University of Pittsburgh fulfills the University's vision of graduating global citizens by promoting the interdisciplinary study of Africa through high quality education about Africa and the African Diaspora. We strive to provide a rich learning environment that facilitates a comprehensive and critical understanding of the continent through Africa-related courses, African languages, research, and outside-the-classroom educational activities designed to help students grasp Africa's internal dynamics and evolving place on the international stage as they prepare for their leadership and service roles in a global society.


Program Summary

The African Studies Program offers both graduate and undergraduate certificates in African Studies designed to provide students with opportunities for the interdisciplinary study of Africa as they pursue their respective degree programs. The certificates deepen students’ knowledge and enhance their understanding and appreciation of Africa through a wide range of courses on such diverse topics as African cultures, business, development, economics, education, environment, history, languages, politics, and religions.

To accomplish our mission, CAS draws on a wealth of experience of Africanist faculty and visiting scholars whose research, teaching, and service focuses on Africa-related topics from a broad range of disciplines and professions.
We focus on the following:

  • Teaching Africa-related courses that enhance understanding of the history, culture, politics, development, social transformations, the environment, and globalization.
  • Enriching student learning through exchanges, study abroad, service learning, and internship opportunities - not only in Africa, but also locally - working with institutions that have some emphasis on Africa-related activities.
  • Sponsoring a wide variety of program activities (lecture series, symposia, conferences) on topics that are critical to Africa and pertinent to improved understanding of the African experience.
  • Building institutional partnerships and exchanges that enhance collaborative research on problems of critical concern to the continent and finding innovative solutions.
  • Serving as a public resource on Africa for the K-12 schools and the wider Pittsburgh community.


Credentials for Undergraduate and Graduate Students

We offer the following credentials for Undergraduate Students:

We offer the following credentials for Graduate Students:

If you are a student interested in one of these credentials, please contact Anna-Maria Karnes, our academic advisor!


Events and Series

At the CAS, we offer the following events and series for students, faculty, staff, and the greater Pittsburgh community:

  • Let's Talk Africa and Critical Research on Africa: Speakers share their experiences living and/or working in Africa, and their latest Africa-related research.
  • Model African Union, which provides high school students the opportunity to learn diplomacy skills and deepen their knowledge of a particular African country
  • Spring Conference, which brings together scholars at the top of their fields. Information about this spring's conference is forthcoming!


Annual Reports

The Center for African Studies publishes an Annual Report each year to highlight the achievements of the past year. Each report highlight student projects and internships, study abroad, and other collaborative partnerships related to Africa and demonstrate the centers dedication to  cultivating the next generation of Africanist scholars, experts, leaders and activists committed to making the world a better place. Check out the latest report to read about just a few of the Center for African Studies' amazing students, faculty, and staff.and all that they do.

2021-2022 Annual Report

2020-2021 Annual Report

2019-2020 Annual Report

2018-2019 Annual Report

2017-2018 Annual Report

2016-2017 Annual Report

2015-2016 Annual Report