Course offer and course content

The master's degree in African Studies at the Humboldt University in Berlin imparts knowledge about Africa by combining the regionally oriented scientific disciplines of African linguistics, African literatures and cultures, and the history of Africa. Students learn an African language, which gives them access to at least one specific culture. Furthermore, scientific tools for developing your own research questions in the mentioned disciplines are imparted.


Organization of studies

In the master’s course in African StudiesAfter an interdisciplinary introduction and basic knowledge of Africa, students choose one of the three academic disciplines and develop this as a theoretical and methodological basis for their own research work. In the first semester, the introductory module, which consists of three reading-intensive seminars, offers students a theoretical basis and basic knowledge in all three disciplines. In the second semester, the students decide to specialize in one of the disciplines and take two modules in the form of research-oriented seminars. In the third semester, a project module in the chosen specialization prepares students for independent research. In the fourth semester, the students write their master's thesis in which they show that they are able to to work independently on a scientific question and to reflect on it in depth. The elective area enables a personally designed, disciplinary in-depth, but also interdisciplinary study. The students are taught in German and English. 



Learning an African language is an integral part of the Master’s African Studies in Berlin. Participation in a language course is therefore compulsory for students who have not yet learned an African language. Our institute regularly offers language courses in Swahili, Hausa and North Sotho; Bambara is currently also available. All language courses are taught over three semesters. They start at beginner level I and are completed with advanced level III. During the individual language teaching modules, students learn the structure and basic vocabulary of the language. In addition, students acquire basic reading skills, speaking skills, listening comprehension and general language comprehension.

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