Adding a Designated Emphasis to a doctoral degree is similar to an undergraduate’s selection of a minor. The Designated Emphasis is an optional certification in a specialty outside of a doctoral student’s home discipline.
Options for PhD students in the Department of African American Studies are Women and Gender Studies, Critical Theory, Film & Media, and New Media.
Typically, the designated emphasis means that a student has taken the required courses in that area and has a professor from that department serves on the qualifying exam and dissertation committees. See each website for further details.