Ethnic Studies Certificate Requirements

Our undergraduate certificate aims to change the way our students view the world. The curriculum prepares students to pursue a wide range of intellectual interests through courses in the histories and social dynamics of different ethnic groups. It covers a wide range of topics including migration, land tenure, social movements, social inequality and social justice, labor history, and ethnic, race, and gender politics and relations in Hawaiʻi, Oceania, and the United States. Students will gain the ability to work effectively within global and multicultural communities in such areas as education, social services, government, business, law, cultural and labor organizations, communications, and nonprofit management.


Course Delivery Options

Students may choose to complete the certificate by taking in-person courses or a mix of in-person and online courses. Students are also able to complete the certificate fully online. The University of Hawaii at Mānoa is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) and the fully online Ethnic Studies 5-Course Certificate is approved by WASC.


Certificate Requirements

The certificate requires the completion of at least 5 courses meeting the following criteria:

  • Students must complete 15 total credit hours.
  • Students must earn 9 out of the 15 credits by taking upper-division courses (300-400 level).
  • Students must receive a minimum "C" grade (not "C-") in all selected ES courses.

ES Core: Introductory Courses (3 credit hours)

  • ES 101: Introduction to Ethnic Studies (3) DS

Group 1: History and Social Dynamics of the Various Major Ethnic Groups (6 credit hours)

  • ES 221/SUST 222: Hawaiians (3) DS
  • ES 305: African American Experience I (3) DS
  • ES 306: African American Experience II (3) DS
  • ES 318: Asian American: Survey (3) DH
  • ES 330: Japanese in Hawaiʻi (3) DH
  • ES 331: Chinese America: History, Politics, and Representation (3) DH
  • ES 333: Filipinos in Hawaiʻi (3) DH
  • ES 338: American Indian Experience (3) DH
  • ES 365: Pacific/Asian Women in Hawaiʻi (3) DS
  • ES 373: Filipino Americans: History, Culture, and Politics (3) DS
  • ES 443: Filipino Americans: Research Topics (3)
  • ES 470: Latinx Experience in Hawai‘i (3) DS
  • ES 486: Peoples of Hawaiʻi (3) DS

Group 2: History, Theories and Problems of Ethnic Groups and Ethnicity on the Framework of Social, Economic, and Political Change (6 credit hours)

  • ES 213: Race, Class, Gender in Popular Culture (3) DS
  • ES 214: Introduction to Race and Ethnic Relations (3) DS
  • ES 301: Ethnic Identity (3) May be substituted for ES 101 DS
  • ES 308: Race, Indigeneity, and Environmental Justice (3)
  • ES 310: Ethnicity and Community: Hawaiʻi (3) DS
  • ES 320/SUST 321 Hawaiʻi and the Pacific (3) DH
  • ES 340/SUST 341: Land Tenure and Use in Hawaiʻi (3) DH
  • ES 345: The Sounds of Race and Inequality (3) DH
  • ES 350/SUST 351: Economic Change and Hawaiʻi's People (3) DS
  • ES 360: Immigration to Hawaiʻi and US (3) DH
  • ES 370: Ethnic Literature of Hawaiʻi (3) DL
  • ES 372: Asian American Literature (3) DL
  • ES 375: Issues of Diversity in Higher Education (3) DS
  • ES 380: Field Work in Ethnic Studies (V) Max of 3 credits towards certificate
  • ES 381: Social Movements in Hawaiʻi (3) DS
  • ES 390: Gender and Race in US Society (3) DS
  • ES 391: Oceanic Gender, Sexual and Kinship Identities (3)
  • ES 392: Change in the Pacific—Polynesia (3) DS
  • ES 395: Multiethnic Popular Culture: Hip Hop (3)
  • ES 399: Directed Reading/Research (V) Max of 3 credits towards certificate
  • ES 400: Ethnic Studies in the Digital World (3) DS
  • ES 410: Race, Class, and the Law (3) DS
  • ES 418: Women and Work (3) DS
  • ES 420: American Ethnic and Race Relations (3) DS
  • ES 422: Mixed Race Identities, Multiracial Experiences (3)
  • ES 425: Filming Social Change (3)
  • ES 450: Food, Culture, and Empire in U.S. and Hawai‘i (3) DS
  • ES 455: (B) Topics in Comparative Ethnic Conflict—Middle East (3) DS
  • ES 455/SUST 445: (C) Topics in Comparative Ethnic Conflict—Hawaiian sovereignty in Pacific context (3) DS
  • ES 456: Racism and Ethnicity in Hawaiʻi (3) DS
  • ES 457: Politics of Men and Masculinity in U.S. Culture (3) DS
  • ES 460/SUST 461: Global Ethnic Conflict (3)
  • ES 480: Oceanic Ethnic Studies: Theories and Methods (3)
  • ES 492: Politics of Multiculturalism (3) DS
  • ES 493: Oral History: Theory and Practice (3) DH
  • ES 496: Special Topics in Ethnic Studies (3)

General Education Designations

  • DH: Diversification-Humanities
  • DL: Diversification-Literatures
  • DS: Diversification-Social Science

See the UH Catalog for more information.