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Overseas and Off-Campus Programs

Senegal Dakar

Semester: Spring
Date: Mid-January to mid-April
Offered: Annually
Program Focus: Sub-Saharan Francophone Culture


For non-majors, 2 years of college French (through 202 or equivalent). For majors, 3 years of college French (through 321 or equivalent). GPA of 3.0 required in French.           

Campus Contact:

Philippe Brand
Assistant Professor of French
ext. 7429

Program Design:
The Senegal program focuses on the historical, cultural, and socio-economic institutions of sub-Saharan Francophone Africa.  Study takes place in Senegal’s largest city, Dakar.  Courses are taught by Africa Consultants International (ACI) and University Cheikh Anta Diop of Dakar (UCAD) faculty.  Topics may include colonial heritage, post-colonial politics, contemporary Senegalese society, West African art history, West African oral literature, and environmental issues.  All coursework is in French.  Housing is with host families.  The program includes research trips to various sites in Dakar and to Gorée Island (an island near Dakar which served as a major center for the slave trade), Saint Louis (Senegal’s second largest city), and the area of the Siné-Saloum delta (a national nature preserve containing wildlife, mangroves, lagoons, open forests, dunes, and sand islands).  Students also conduct field study in a Senegalese village.

Requirements Fulfilled:
Fulfills the French Studies overseas study requirement.  Fulfills the two-course international studies requirement.

4 courses per semester/16 credits required.


FL 101 Wolof Language Instruction (4 credits): Emphasis is placed on speaking and comprehension skills.  Cross-cultural information and training are integrated into the program.

IS 240: Area Study: Senegal (4 credits): Includes extensive orientation activities; a series of organized visits to familiarize students with some of Dakar’s major organizations working in the fields of culture, development, women’s issues, and the environment; visits and excursions to important historical and cultural sites outside Dakar; and intensive French language instruction.

IS 241: Contemporary Senegalese Society (4 credits):
Course includes three topics:

Senegalese Arts and Society: Students learn about traditional and contemporary arts and explore how they are linked to their social and environmental context through traditional coursework and through excursions and hands-on workshops.

Senegalese Literature: The Short Story:  A study of diverse aspects of contemporary Senegalese society through the short story genre.

Continuity and Change: Introduction to international and grassroots development activities through formal instruction and field study.

IS 242: History of Islam (4 credits): Presents the history of Islam in Senegal from the 10th through the 20th centuries, focusing on the beginnings of Islam in the Senegambia region, the slave trade and Islamization in the colonial and postcolonial era.

NOTE: Students with a severe peanut allergy should contact the Overseas Office before applying.


Senegal, Dakar

14.69115; -17.470644