The minor in African, African American, and Diaspora (AAAD) Studies broadens students' world perspectives by enhancing their acquaintance with and understanding of the peoples, cultures, and institutions of Africa and the African Diaspora. The AAAD program engages cross disciplinary approaches to understand and to encounter Africa and the African Diaspora in a global context. The cross disciplinary character of the program is further enhanced by the fact that courses taken to fulfill program requirements are drawn from several departments. From these course offerings, students will examine and engage with some of AAAD Studies key contributing disciplines, concepts, methods and topics including the development of new identities.

The minor program in AAAD Studies is open to all undergraduate students at JMU. Courses taken to complete the AAAD minor can also be used to satisfy the student's major, as well as General Education requirements.

Winter 2024

SCOM 300: Interdisciplinary Special Topics in Communication Studies: Critical Race Theory and Comm 

2103 | Kathryn Hobson | TBA (01/02/2024 - 01/12/2024) | Online

This course is a study of interdisciplinary topics and issues in human communication. Emphasis will be on contemporary theories, research and principles. May be repeated up to six credits. 

MUS 498: Selected Topics in Music: Racism in Popular Music

Section 1201 | Joseph Taylor | MoTuWeThFr 1:00PM - 3:40PM (01/08/2024 - 01/12/2024) | Online

Courses in music or music education which are of a topical nature. This may be repeated. 


Class of interest:  

This course is too low to count toward but should be of interest to AAAD minors.  

PHIL 103: “What is Racism?” 

Section 0001 | Alberto Urquidez | Online Asynchronous 

This will be a one-credit course offered in the first week (Jan 2–6). 

Spring 2024

AAAD 200: Introduction to African, African American, and Diaspora Studies [C4GE]

Section 0001 | Jaimee Swift | TuTh 12:45PM - 2:00PM | In person, Miller Hall 2140

Section 0002 | Rachel Rhoades | TuTh 11:10AM - 12:25PM | In person, Burruss Hall 036

Section 0003 | Delores Phillips | TuTh 2:20PM - 3:35PM | In person, Moody Hall 0109

Section 0004 | Kathryn Hobson | MoWe 1:50PM - 3:05PM | In person, Gabbin Hall 0101

An introductory survey of basic theoretical concepts to analyze the Black experience, with special focus on the general historical process common to Africa and the African Diaspora. May be used for general education credit.

AAAD 401: Internship in African, African American and Diaspora Studies

Section 0001; 0002; 0003; 7201 | Case Watkins | TBD

This internship course provides the student with the opportunity to apply knowledge learned in the classroom in a practical/real-world setting(s). It prepares students for working independently in the field. Any internship experience must be approved by the internship coordinator in advance, and details of supervision and evaluation should be spelled out in advance by the supervising faculty member. If the internship is through an academic unit, it must be approved for credit by the African, African American and Diaspora Studies internship coordinator in advance of the experience.

AAAD 489: African, African American and Diaspora Studies Senior Research Experience

Section 0001 | Rachel Rhoades | TBD

In this research-oriented experience, students design and complete research projects relevant to their interests in African, African American and Diaspora studies, as well as connect their projects to previous course work and experiences within the AAAD studies minor. Prerequisite(s): AAAD 200, senior standing and permission of the instructor.

ARTH 424: Arts of Ancient Egypt 

Section 0001 | Aderonke Adesanya | TuTh 12:45 pm-2 pm | In Person, Duke Hall 1041

 A study of the arts and culture of Ancient Egypt (c. 3000 B.C. to c. 300 B.C.). This course will focus on the art and architecture of the Old and New Kingdoms and also examine the enduring fascination with this unique artistic heritage from the excavations of Napoleon to the present.  

EDUC 310: Teaching in a Diverse Society 

Section 0001 | Diana Meza | TuTh 11:10AM - 12:25PM | In Person, Memorial Hall 3140

Section 0002 | Diana Meza | MoWe 9:35AM - 10:50AM | In Person, Memorial Hall 3140

Section 0004| Diana Meza | TuTh 12:45PM - 2:00PM | In Person, Memorial Hall 3140 

 This course will examine how personal and professional values, attitudes, beliefs and behaviors affect teaching and learning. The pre-service teachers will develop an understanding of similar unique characteristics of Pre-K to 12 grade students and their families, including culture, race, ethnicity, heritage language and learning abilities, gender socialization and sexual orientation. Corequisite(s): MIED 211 and LED 212 for middle students. 
ELED 310: Diversity, Equity, and Justice in Elementary Education 

Section 0001 | Kara M. Kavanagh | Mondays 11:30-2:15 | In Person

Section 0002 | Kara M. Kavanagh | Wednesdays 11:30-2:15 | In Person

Section 0003 | Kara M. Kavanagh | Mondays 8:00-10:45 | In Person

This course will examine how personal and professional values, attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors affect teaching and learning. The pre-service teachers will develop an understanding of unique characteristics of Pre-K to 12 grade students and their families, including culture, race, ethnicity, heritage, language, learning abilities, gender socialization, and sexual orientation. 

ENG 260: Survey of African American Literature [C2L] 

Section 0001 | Allison Fagan, Courtney Swartzentruber | MoWeFr 9:10AM - 10:00AM | In Person, Miller Hall 1101 

Survey of literature by African American authors from the 18th century to the present. May be used for general education credit. 

HIST 341: Selected Themes in World History: Africa 

Section 0001 | Ojo Afolabi | TuTh 11:10AM - 12:25PM | In Person, Keezell Hall G001 

Selected themes are studied in depth. Course may be repeated when content changes. Only courses with significant content outside of Europe will count toward the world history requirement. See MyMadison and the history department website for information on current classes. 

HIST 470: Modern Africa 

Section 0001 | David Owusu-Ansah | MoWe 8:00AM - 9:15AM | In Person, Wilson Hall 4033 

A historical analysis of the major themes in modern African history since the colonial era. 

JUST328: Race, Class and Justice 

Section 0001 | Gianluca De Fazio | TuTh 11:10AM - 12:25PM | In Person 

This course provides students with an overview of contemporary justice issues in a comparative perspective. It includes an introduction to case-studies, comparative research methods and cross-national comparisons of justice issues concerning race and class. 

MUS 440: Jazz Improvisation Laboratory II 

Section 0001 | Adam Larrabee | MoWe 11:30AM - 12:20PM | In Person, Music Building 0108 

Section 0002 | Masayoshi Ishikawa | MoWe 11:30AM - 12:20PM | In Person, Music Building 0148 

Section 0003 | Chuck Dotas | TuTh 11:35AM - 12:25PM | In Person, Music Building 0318 

Presents intermediate to advanced improvisation skills in the jazz idiom alone. There is an emphasis on the theoretical analysis of chord progressions as well as on creative musical application. The course concludes by introducing some advanced musical improvisation concepts. May be repeated. Prerequisite(s): MUS 240 or permission of the instructor. 

MUS 446: Jazz Composition 

Section 0001 | David Pope | TuTh 2:20PM - 3:35PM | In Person, Music Building B071 

An introduction to techniques of jazz composition. Students will study classic jazz compositions and create original compositions utilizing various harmonic techniques. Prerequisite(s): MUS 255, MUS 244, MUS 305 

MUS 473: Jazz Ensemble Procedures and Techniques 

Section 0001 | Greg Thomas | TuTh 11:35AM - 12:25PM | In Person, Music Building 0108 

This course addresses all aspects of instrumental jazz instruction (big band and small group). Teaching philosophies, rehearsal techniques and resource materials will be examined; the syllabus includes opportunities to observe and rehearse jazz groups. Enrollment is not limited to traditional jazz instrumentation. Required for the jazz studies concentration and recommended as an elective for music education students. 

POSC 326: Civil Rights 

Section 0001 | Robin Leiter-White | MoWe 9:35AM - 10:50AM | In Person, Miller Hall 2110 

An examination of the judicial interpretation of civil rights in America with emphasis on freedom of speech, due process of law and equal protection under the 14th Amendment.

STAD322: Equity, Access and Inclusion in Education and Performance 

Section 0001 | Rachel Rhoades | TTh 11:10AM-12:25PM | In Person, Forbes 2234 

This course examines the role of education and the performing/applied arts in two major tasks: 1) Enhancing access to resources and opportunities for artists from non-dominant identity groups, and 2) Opening space for all peoples to participate in dismantling systems of oppression, specifically through artistic cultural production. 

In this course, you will learn a range of critical theories (e.g. Black Feminism, Critical Disability Theory, Critical Race Theory, Indigenous Theory) and their foundational relevance to school- and community-based critical education, performing arts contexts, and in arts-based, youth-led social movement activism. 

We will examine not only the current issues around equity, access, and inclusion in education and the arts, but also become familiar with and imagine new forms of resistance to those injustices. We will explore case studies such as: anti-colonial, anti-capitalist youth arts “colectivos” in Venezuela; Indigenous climate justice music videos galvanizing policy change across the US; and Chilean college students utilizing “carnival strategies” such as public dance performances to challenge the egregious state of education.  

You will develop academic, professional, and interpersonal skills to prepare you as an advocate, educator, and artist- all of us can use our collective agency in any of these roles to demand justice! In all aspects of my teaching, my goal is to engage in the exchange of knowledge and collective inquiry on urgent issues as a means to unite students and myself as, what critical education pioneer Freire (1973) calls, “co-investigators in dialogue” as we work together towards “critical intervention in reality” through lenses of critique and renewal. 

PHIL 390: Special Topics in Philosophy: Racism and Racial Injustice

Section 0001 | Alberto Urquidez | MoWe 9:35AM - 10:50AM | Online Synchronous 

Topics for this intermediate-level course may be drawn from any area or period of philosophy chosen by the instructor. The course is designed primarily for philosophy majors and minors, but any suitably prepared student may take the course with permission of the instructor. Prerequisite(s): One other PHIL course or permission of the instructor. 

ENGR 498: Design for Sustainable Development: PeaceLab Studio

Section 0001 | Justin Henriques | TuTh 3:55-5:10PM | In Person, ENGEO 1024

This course is not just about learning; it’s about doing. Here, you will not only think but also act. You will collaborate with peers across continents, from the US to Kenya, to conceptualize and create sustainable design solutions that address the pressing needs of our times: climate adaptation and peace in low-resource settings.

You will engage directly with communities, learn to listen, and develop solutions that are not only sustainable but peace-promoting. You will be part of a global classroom without walls, participating in multicultural teams through the Global Virtual Exchange (GVE) / Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL) approach, enabling you to work with and learn from international peers.


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