All students, with the exception of those accepted into the Social Work Emphasis as seniors, are required to enroll in at least one of the following core courses focused on the African context. (Depending on course selections, students may opt to enroll in additional African Context courses.)


African Literature

3 semester credits

This course examines the literature of sub-Saharan Africa. Students will become familiar with the distinctive features of literature from East, West, and Southern Africa as well as to the genres of oral literature, fiction (both short story and novel), poetry, and drama. Students will study works on their own merit in regard to theme and style but also for their insights into African society and the concepts of negritude and black aesthetics. (Possible Credit: Literature, English)

Download the African Literature Syllabus  

Religions in Contemporary Uganda

3 semester credits

Religion plays a very important role in the life of Africans, dominating their social, political and economic lives.  This course examines the three religions that have had a strong influence in Uganda-- African Traditional Religion (ATR), Christianity and Islam.  Students will become familiar with these three major religions in Uganda with emphasis on ATR and Islam.  The study of ATR will be phenomenological in its view, looking at the scheme of ideas that help us appreciate the nature of African religions.  We will study the religion of three tribes in Uganda: Baganda, Bagisu and Acholi.  The study of Islam will emphasize a basic understanding and appreciation of the life of Prophet Muhammad, its formative influence on Islam as a religion, and its attendant cultural influence in Africa, and Uganda in particular.  In this course, we will also examine the influence of Christianity in Uganda.  A very important aspect of our study will be the historical interaction between the three religions--ATR, Islam and Christianity. Finally, issues of interfaith dialogue and understanding will be examined. (Possible Credit: Religion/Theology/Missions, Cross-Cultural Studies)

Download the Religions in Contemporary Uganda Syllabus  

East African History from 1800 to Independence

3 semester credits

This course examines the history of Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania and Rwanda from 1800 to independence. Students will become familiar with the pre-colonial era and with colonialism and its effects on East African culture and indigenous social institutions. We will review East African reaction to colonial policies and survey cultural and social changes experienced in East Africa during the colonial period up to the time of decolonialization. The focus on the history of this period will be done through the eyes of the cultures it affected rather than through the eyes of objective history.
(Possible Credit: General Studies, History)

Download the East African History from 1800 to Independence Syllabus  

East African Politics since Independence

3 semester credits

This course examines the politics of Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania and Rwanda, starting with the struggle for independence and concluding with an analysis of current political events in each country. Students will become familiar with the historical context for understanding contemporary politics in East Africa and with the theoretical and conceptual tools for analyzing recent developments in East Africa. We will also look at current political events in other countries bordering Uganda (DR Congo, Sudan) with a particular interest in how Uganda is affected by these events. Therefore, this course will raise profound questions regarding political change, economic development, and the nature of the international state system in African states generally.

Download the East African Politics since Independence Syllabus