ALA HOSTS INAUGURAL HUMANITIES RESEARCH SYMPOSIUM

May 6th, 2013

At ALA, we are hopeful for the future of research, not only in Africa, but the world. In line with this, ALA hosted our first Humanities Research Symposium on Saturday, 4th May 2013.

The Humanities Research Symposium is a showcase for presenting the final research projects of all students who have taken the ALA Humanities Research course as an elective. This course is offered to ALA students who have excelled in the Humanities, and/or our flagship African Studies and Entrepreneurial Leadership program and wish to extend themselves by conducting independent research in any of these fields.

ALA consistently hosts an annual Scientific Research Symposium.  However, given the importance of giving more of our students exposure to practical high-level research in various fields beyond the sciences, we decided to create this new Humanities Research course and to host the Humanities Research Symposium in order to cater to our students with varying research interests.

Our Humanities Research course is a uniquely student-driven course that is designed to expose students to current research in the various humanities fields including African Studies and Entrepreneurial Leadership. As part of this course, students spend two terms learning about different social science research methods and use these foundations to further explore topics of their choice. The aim of this new course is to teach our students to fully analyze and interpret journal-level writing, and to allow them to become experts in a particular area that aligns with their research interests.

A total of fourteen students were selected to be part of our first Humanities Research course. All fourteen of our students engaged, researched, and tackled an array of interesting topics ranging from: Socialism in Tanzania, Mobile and Digital Media in African Presidential Campaigns Copreneurship and its Effect on Family Development, Comedy and Gender, and much more.

During the Symposium, all fourteen students in our Humanities Research course gave poster presentations to teach and share with guests and visitors more about their research topics.  After the poster presentations, five of the fourteen students gave a more extensive presentation and keynote speeches on their research findings and insights.

After this experience, many of the students who participated in the Humanities Research course and Symposium said that they plan to continue pursuing their research even after they graduate from ALA and go on to University.

ALA also intends on publishing a Humanities Journal where we plan to compile and publish many of our students’ research and findings.

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