Graduate Program

Graduate Admission and Degree Requirements

History department graduate handbook

Graduate advisor: Dr. Jeff Forret

  • Professional Night 2014
  • Professional Night 2014
  • Professional Night 2014

Admission Requirements:

Applicants for the Master of Arts in History must meet all Graduate College entrance requirements.

The history department requires that all applicants have a minimum 3.0 overall undergraduate GPA on a 4.0 scale and achieve scores of at least 153 on the verbal portion (500 on the former scale) and at least a 3 on the analytical portion of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). Applicants must also submit two letters of reference and a writing sample. A prospective student who already holds a master’s degree is not required to retake the GRE.

Background Knowledge:

Applicants to the M.A. program are expected to be familiar with a basic body of historical knowledge and should already have completed one year of U.S. survey courses (1301/1302) (6 hours), one year of western/world history (3321/3322) (6 hours), and one course in historical research and writing (3390) (3 hours).

Students lacking only one or two courses may be admitted into the program and take graduate courses while completing these requirements. All deficiency courses should be taken at the earliest opportunity in a graduate student’s academic career. Students will not be fully admitted into the program and may not graduate until all deficiency courses have been completed with a grade no lower than a B.


A College of Graduate Studies Scholarship of $1000 annually is available to full-time graduate students.

The history department offers a limited number of graduate assistantships, awarded competitively, in the amount of $8000 per academic year. Only full-time graduate students with no coursework deficiencies are eligible. The deadline for applications for the upcoming school year is April 15. See the graduate handbook for additional information and instructions.

Degree Requirements:

The thesis option is strongly recommended for those who plan to continue graduate study beyond the master's. It requires completion of 24 semester hours of class work. A minimum of 12 hours must be taken in Seminar, Readings, or Directed Readings courses. The student may take 6 graduate hours (class or seminar) in a supporting (minor) field. Six additional hours credit will be given for completion of the thesis.

Thesis students are also required to demonstrate a reading knowledge of one classical or modern foreign language. This requirement may be satisfied by completing the 2312 course in a language, OR by passing a nationally recognized standardized language proficiency test, OR by completing a reading project administered by faculty members in the History Department. American Sign Language (ASL) does not satisfy the foreign language requirement.

Herodotus thesis group

The inaugural members of Herodotus, the department's thesis-writing group, pictured with Dr. Forret.


The non-thesis option is intended to provide a strong foundation in a wide range of historical areas and periods for those who do not wish to pursue a higher degree. Non-thesis students are required to complete 36 semester hours of class work. A minimum of 18 hours must be in Seminar, Readings, or Directed Readings courses. The student may take six hours in an approved minor field. After completing their class work, students must take a comprehensive written and oral examination. A foreign language is not required for the non-thesis Master of Arts in History.

Graduate History Courses (HIST)

5300 Historiography

Mandatory course for all graduate students.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing.

5301 Native American History

5302 American West

5303 U.S. Expansion, 1763-1850

5304 The Old South

5305 American Slavery

5306 Women and Gender in American History

5307 American Presidency

5308 Directed Readings in History

Directed readings to be arranged by student in consultation with faculty member in area of mutual interest. Course may be applied to 5000 level course requirements for maximum of 6 hours in the thesis program and 9 hours in the non-thesis option.

5310 Seminar in United States History

Course may be repeated when topic varies.

5311 Colonial America

5312 American Revolution & Early National Era

5314 The American Civil War

5320 Readings in American History

Course may be repeated when topic varies.

5321 Sport in Modern America

5323 The Vietnam War

5331 Reconstruction and the Jim Crow South

5332 Gilded Age and Progressive Era

5333 U.S.: The Interwar Years

5335 Topics in History

Selected special topics in major areas of history. Course may be repeated for a maximum of six semester hours credit when the topic varies.

5338 Ancient Greece and Rome

5339 Medieval Europe

5340 Readings in European History

Course may be repeated when topic varies.

5343 Renaissance and Reformation Europe

5344 Witchcraft and the Occult in Early Modern Europe

5345 Atlantic World, 1400-1750

5346 French Revolution and Napoleon

5347 The British Empire

5348 Victorian England

5349 19th-Century Europe

5350 20th-Century Europe

5351 World War I

5352 World War II

5353 Nazi Germany

5354 The Holocaust

5355 Seminar in European History

Course may be repeated when topic varies.

5360 Readings in Asian History

Course may be repeated when topic varies.

5361 Seminar in Asian History

Course may be repeated when topic varies.

5364 East Asia to 1800

5365 East Asia since 1800

5368 Middle East in the Twentieth Century

5390-5391 Thesis

Prerequisite: Approval of graduate advisor. Must complete both for required 6 credits.