Declare the African and Middle Eastern Studies (AMES) Major


Declaring the Major

Click on the blue link above to request to declare the major. You must have all the major preparation coursework completed (click here to view the major worksheet). For the foreign language requirement, you can declare the major with only the elementary language level completed. Note that students must be in good academic standing (2.0 overall GPA) and have a 2.0 major prep GPA in order to be admitted into the major. All preparation coursework grades must be posted (not in-progress) before submitting the request to declare the major. 


Interested in Switching to African and Middle Eastern Studies?

Students admitted to UCLA with a different major can apply to switch into African and Middle Eastern Studies. Please contact our Advising Office for individual details.


Interested in Double Majoring with African and Middle Eastern Studies?

With careful planning, students can elect to double major with African and Middle Eastern Studies and a different major. Please contact our Advising Office to set up an individual appointment to review your academic plan.


Incoming UCLA Students

Incoming freshmen and transfer students may enter UCLA as a Pre-African and Middle Eastern Studies major. Students can be officially changed to African and Middle Eastern Studies once they complete the preparation coursework for the major. 

Incoming Transfer Students:

Transfer students interested in the African and Middle Eastern Studies major should complete as many preparation courses prior to coming to UCLA as possible, leaving only I A STD 1 to be taken at UCLA (typically during their first Fall Quarter unless taken during a prior summer term at UCLA). Please review and UCLA's Admissions page as needed.


Please contact the I A STD Academic Counseling Office if you have any further questions.

To be admitted to the minor, students must:

  • Be in good academic standing (minimum 2.00 GPA overall)
  • Have completed all preparation courses for the minor with a minimum GPA of 2.00 in these courses
  • Have completed 45 units
  • Be able to complete the requirements within their Time to Degree

*If adding a minor, students must still prioritize their major to ensure that they are able to graduate within their Time to Degree. If students are unable to graduate within their approved time, they may be ineligible for a UCLA degree. Students should consult with an academic advisor in the College if their academic program changes or they encounter challenges that prevent them from finishing on time.

 Note: Minor declaration requests may take up to two weeks. You will be notified via email. We appreciate your patience.


Fill out the online petition (below) to declare the African & Middle Eastern Studies minor or African Studies minor. 

 Petition to Declare a Minor


The International Institute is home to a diverse transfer population, including international, non-traditional, first-generation, and parenting students. Transfer students admitted to UCLA with ANY major are eligible to apply to our majors.


Please make sure you sign up for New Student Session and attend the Departmental Counseling session to learn about major requirements and suggested courses. If you are unable to attend New Student Session, please contact our office at Please note, if you cannot attend, you will be allowed to enroll in classes starting in mid-September.


In addition to reviewing and UCLA's Admissions page, please review our website and familiarize yourself with our programs.

Transfer students should complete as many major preparation courses prior to coming to UCLA as possible, leaving only International & Area Studies 1 to be taken at UCLA during their first Fall Quarter (unless taken during the prior summer term at UCLA). 


Check out our Transfer Student Handbook and let us know if you have questions!

The UCLA Transfer Center connects incoming transfers to the university and provides resources and events to ease the transition to UCLA. Visit the Transfer Center in 128 Kerckhoff Hall or connect with them on Instagram (@bruintransfers) or Facebook (UCLA Transfer Students). Current Transfers are eager to meet you!

Apply to join the Transfer Mentor Program! Each incoming Transfer student will be placed into a group with other incoming transfers and one continuing transfer mentor.


If you hold an F1 visa and/or attended high school where instruction was not in English, the foreign language requirement for the major may be waived. Please check with your major counselor at orientation. 


For any questions about our majors, please contact our Advising Office at or sign-up for an appointment on Karina's or Yumi's calendar. 

Please note: questions about course transferability will only be addressed once transcripts are posted.



Foreign Language Requirement for AMES Major

The African and Middle Eastern Studies Major at UCLA requires students to complete the intermediate level of a foreign language spoken in African or the Middle East. In most cases, the intermediate level of a foreign language is equivalent to the completion of the sixth quarter at UCLA (ex. Arabic 102C).

NoteStudents minoring in African and Middle Eastern Studies or African Studies do not have to complete a language requirement.

Acceptable Languages:
The African and Middle Eastern Studies Major accepts: Arabic, Armenian, Hebrew, Iranian, and Turkic Languages. For other language requests, please consult with the AMES Advisors.

You may be exempted from the Foreign Language requirement for the following reasons:

  •  Completion of a Language Placement Test. Placement Tests are offered through the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures
  •  AP Test credit can be accepted depending on the AP score. Please contact our Advising Office.
  • International Students from an African or Middle Eastern country may be exempt. Please contact our Advising Office.
  • Students who attended a high school were the primary language of instruction was in a language spoken in Africa or the Middle East may be exempt. Please contact our Advising Office.


When declaring the African and Middle Eastern Studies major, completion of the elementary year of the foreign language is acceptable. Completion of the intermediate year of the foreign language must be completed by graduation in order to fulfill all preparation requirements.


For 2023-2024 we will be offering virtual and in-person advising support.

We appreciate your understanding and encourage you to read our FAQs and program websites. If you still have questions or concerns, you may contact us at (please include your name & UID).

We strive to provide holistic and comprehensive support to our students through one-on-one advising, workshops, and events that focus on academic and professional planning, exploration of research, internship opportunities, and experiences abroad. 


Yumi Kinoshita

Academic Advisor

Undergraduate Counselor


  Karina Barrera

   Undergraduate Advisor

We can assist you with:

  • Major, pre-major, and minor questions and petitions to declare (I A STD & Global Health)
  • Educational planning and course sequencing
  • Course petitions and substitutions
  • DARS updates for major/minor
  • Enrollment questions for I A STD and Global Health courses
  • Contract courses (I A STD 195CE & 198A/B/C, GH 199)
  • Exploration of research, Departmental Honors, internship/career opportunities, and study abroad
  • Graduation checks

Contact Us

Please include your name and UID in all emails.

Email us if you need accommodations for same day or outside office hours appointments.

Undergraduate Advising:

 Graduate Advising: 

Current UCLA undergraduate students can make an advising appointment with Karina at Academic Counseling - Barrera, Karina.

 If you're not a UCLA student, please e-mail us at the corresponding email as noted above.  

  Bunche Hall 10256 & 10254 (10th floor)

 Mailing Address:
Academic Advisor
UCLA International Institute Academic Programs
Office of Academic Advising
10256 Bunche Hall, Mail Code 148703
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1487


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For other questions or concerns, please review the following information:

Refer to your main Counseling Unit for questions about GE/IGETC Requirements, Course Add/Drop Petitions, Degree Plan Contracts, College-specific requirements, Holds, Grad Checks, Academic Probation status, Readmission, etc.

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