Ethnology and African Studies (B.A.)

The most important facts at a glance:



Bachelor of Arts (Two-subject Bachelor)

Standard period of studies:

6 semesters


Winter and summer semester

Language of Instruction:


Admission restrictions:

Open admission


You find information on the application procedure for international students here.


Please keep in mind that you need a certification of recognition for all foreign certificates. The recognition process takes up to six weeks and the certificate must be included in your application.

winter semester: June 1 - September 1

summer semester: December 1 - March 1

If you combine a Two-subject Bachelor whose admission is open with one whose is restricted, the deadlines are:

winter semester: June 1 - July 15

summer semester: December 1 - January 15


Ethnology and African Studies (M.A.)


Institute of Anthropology and African Studies


Faculty 07: History and Cultural Studies


The accreditation of study programmes for Bachelor and Master Degrees constitutes as a precondition for the granting of state approval.

Subject Matter

Ethnology is a general and comparative social and cultural science. It deals with the diversity of human ways of life and highlights the similarities and differences. It looks at the societies, social groups, and everyday worlds that it covers, within the context of political, economic and cultural networks and structures, which are also affected by global processes. Ethnologists have therefore long been expanding their focus from non-industrial, non-literate societies outside Europe to include aspects such as transnational migration, the impacts of urbanization, and the revitalization or creation of new traditions as part of political transformations. Ethnological methods are also used when researching small, industrial communities (e.g. societies, sects, industrial companies, bureaucracies, ethnic movements, transnational networks) in and outside Europe. In this way, ethnology also applies a critical approach to addressing the cultural and social relativity of our own European ways of life and thinking.

The Institute of Anthropology and African Studies at the JGU sets itself apart with a range of teaching and research activities which is unique in Germany. These include traditional aspects of ethnology, as well as African languages and linguistics, literature, music, film, popular culture, and development sociology and policy.

The course focuses on societies outside Europe, as well as topical and problem-related aspects, such as the state in everyday life, current political conflicts, religious pluralism, and development policy. An additional feature of the course is the focus on languages and the products of cultural aspects predominantly in Africa, such as literature, musics, film, and video. Ethnology and African Studies is therefore a suitable major or minor subject to be studied in combination with other social, cultural and language-based Bachelor programs.

The aim of the course is to provide students with a basic knowledge of ethnology and to develop skills in analyzing modern societies and their cultural dimensions with a comparative approach. The course incorporates questions, methods and possible explanations from the fields of ethnology, development sociology, African languages and linguistics, media sciences, and cultural studies.


The International Office offers counselling for international students about the application process and general information.

The Student Counselling Office offers specific information on the subject (List available in German only).

The student representatives give information from a student perspective (List available in German only).