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Critical Race and Ethnic Studies, Bachelor of Arts


Critical Race and Ethnic Studies (CRES) foregrounds the examination of class, gender, race, sexuality, and other modalities of lived identity in our interconnected world. Understanding marginalized and minoritized people in the United States, and their links to the African, Asian, Indigenous, Latin America, and Oceanic diasporas, is crucial for day-to-day workforce knowledge and experience in many fields. CRES majors engage in an interdisciplinary course of study including the arts, economics, history, politics, and sociology to graduate with a skill set focused on enacting social change on the local and global scale.

The Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Critical Race and Ethnic Studies provides a comprehensive curriculum that prepares you for graduate school or for a career in advocacy, the arts, business, education, government, journalism, law, public health, and social work.

Critical Race and Ethnic Studies (CRES) at St. John’s University is a home for cutting-edge research and critical pedagogy on colonialism, contemporary and historical structural and social inequalities, economic globalization, empire, health-care systems, international migration, and legal and carceral structures. CRES provides you with rigorous training in methods of critical inquiry that are relevant to the most pressing cultural, political, and social challenges we face in the 21st century and their historical antecedents. 

The B.A. in Critical Race and Ethnic Studies program requires a total of 33 credits (15 credits in the CRES major sequence and 18 credits of interdisciplinary elective courses and an internship). The design of the program provides you with the flexibility to add another major or minor if desired.

Apply Plan Your Visit Institute for Critical Race and Ethnic Studies

Department Contact

Natalie Byfield

Natalie P. Byfield, Ph.D.

Founding Director, CRES, and Professor of Sociology

[email protected]


For more information about admission to this and other acclaimed undergraduate programs at St. John’s University, please visit Undergraduate Admission.


To earn the B.A. in Critical Race and Ethnic Studies, you complete 120 credits including core, major sequence, and elective requirements. For more information about courses, please see the St. John’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences section of the Undergraduate Bulletin.


CRES 1000

Introduction to Critical Race and Ethnic Studies


CRES 2000

Methods in Critical Race and Ethnic Studies


CRES 3000

Anti-Blackness Around the Globe


CRES 3050

Comparative Racialization: Blackness, Indigeneity, Asianness, and Latinidad


CRES 4995

Capstone Seminar in Critical Race and Ethnic Studies


To fulfill the elective requirements, you must select one course each from six of the seven field categories.

History, Historicism, and Historiography 


HIS 3375

Asian American History


HIS 3711

African American History to 1900


HIS 3712

African American History since 1900


 Sociology, Social Formation, and Sociogeny

CourseTitle Credits

SOC 2230

Sociology of Latinos/as in the US


SOC 2350

Social Construction of Race in the Americas


SOC 2450

Sociology of the Black Experience


PSY 2230

Psychology of the African American Experience


ENG 3645

Comparative Migration Literature


ENG 3650

 Caribbean Literature 3

FRE 3820/3822

French Afro-Caribbean Literature and Culture (French/English)


FRE 3850/3908

Race and Immigration in France (French/English)


FRE 3870/3923

Urban Culture in Contemporary France (French/English)


Religion, Law, and Philosophy


PHI 3750

The Philosophy of Race3

THE 3245

Liberation Theology


THE 3255

Race and Religion in the US


Political Economy and Economics, Capital, and Accumulation



Racial Capitalism and Political Economy


STEM: Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (Natural, Health, Clinical Sciences)


ANT 2500

Critical Approaches to Reading and Writing Anthropology


SOC 1035

Science, Technology, and the “Human”


CRES 3510

BIPOC Feminist Science and Technology Studies


Education and Social Justice


ENG 3420

Race and the Environment


ENG 3760

Writing as Social Action


ENG 3845

Black Women’s Rhetoric


CRES 4999



THE 4995

Integrating Interdisciplinary Social Justice Seminar


FRE 3920

Human Rights in Francophone Africa


RCT 2100

Transnational Feminist Rhetoric3

Arts, Performance, and the Digital


ENG 3560

American Ethnic Literature


ENG 3590

Hip-Hop Aesthetics


ENG 3640

Vernacular Literature


MUS 1210

American Popular Music in the 20th/21st Centuries


MUS 1300

History of Jazz


ART 1830

Racism in Film


Career Outcomes

With an understanding of Critical Race and Ethnic Studies, many career paths are open to you, including in education, politics, public health, research, and social work. Graduates often combine their disciplinary training with complimentary interests and skill sets. Top career areas include

  • Area, ethnic, and cultural studies teachers, postsecondary
  • Social and community service managers
  • Social science research assistants
  • Social scientists and related workers

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of Social and Community Service Managers will grow 27.6 percent in New York through 2028. In a 2021 market study conducted by Hanover Research, there is an expected 26.8 percent upward trend for area, ethnic, and cultural studies teachers, postsecondary, between 2019 and 2029 in the greater New York area.

St. John’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences provides the opportunity to obtain practical experience and networking connections through valuable internships and externships throughout the New York metropolitan area. Please visit University Career Services for more information.

Global Approach to Education

You benefit from St. John’s University’s focus on an international academic experience. The University offers extensive study abroad courses during the academic year, as well as during the winter and summer semesters. You can live and learn at St. John’s Rome, Italy, campus and at our Paris, France, and Limerick, Ireland, location. For more information, please visit Global Education.

Additional Information

Other facilities include high-tech classrooms, laboratories, and our 1.7 million-volume University Library. Our D’Angelo Center is a five-story, 127,000-square-foot University and student center, with classrooms, lecture halls, and a Starbucks café.

All students take advantage of St. John’s location in dynamic New York City. Our faculty and University Career Serviceshave strongties to employers and other professional and educational resources throughout the New York area.