3280 History

Programs Offered:

  • Master of Arts in History
    • Concentration in World History
  • Dual B.A./M.A. in History
  • Combined Master of Arts/Doctor of Philosophy in History
  • Doctor of Philosophy in History

Department of History
34 Peachtree Street, Suite 2050
404/413-6385
E-mail: Director of Graduate Studies (DGShistory@gsu.edu)
history.gsu.edu

Michelle Brattain, Chair
Denise Davidson, Director of Graduate Studies
Robin Jackson, Graduate Studies Program Coordinator

The Master of Arts (M.A.) degree program prepares students to teach in junior, community, or small liberal arts colleges; for careers in the management and use of historical records in archives or museums and in historic preservation; and for admission into a doctoral program in history.

The Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degree program prepares students for positions in junior, community, small liberal arts, and senior colleges and universities; for productive postdoctoral research in history; and for careers in public service.

Major fields of study for the M.A. and Ph.D. degrees include: Colonial/Early National United States; 19th and 20th Century United States; Early Modern Europe; Modern Europe; World History; Regional and Global History; and Public History. The department also offers a number of regional fields as well as topical fields in a variety of subjects, including legal and constitutional history, labor history, urban studies, women’s and gender history, transnational and postcolonial studies, history of science, and historic preservation.

Applicants may obtain additional information about the Department of History by contacting the Director of Graduate Studies at the addresses above.

Additional Admission Requirements

In addition to the general requirements of the College of Arts and Sciences, the Department of History has the following requirements:

Master of Arts–Requirements for Full Graduate Status Admission
  1. An undergraduate major in history or its equivalent, which includes survey courses in American, World, and/or European history.
  2. Acceptable scores on the General (Aptitude) Test of the Graduate Record Examination.
  3. A high standard of undergraduate achievement, especially in the major.
  4. A statement of the applicant’s educational and professional goals.
  5. A writing sample.
  6. Three letters of recommendation from faculty members (preferably in history) with whom the applicant has studied.
  7. Official transcripts of all previous college and graduate level work.
Doctor of Philosophy–Requirements for Full Graduate Status Admission
  1. A high standard of undergraduate achievement, in undergraduate and graduate work, especially in the major field.
  2. Ordinarily, the M.A. degree in history. Additional course work may be required if the department deems previous graduate work inadequate for Ph.D. study in history.
  3. Acceptable scores on the General (Aptitude) Test of the Graduate Record Examination.
  4. Language skills deemed adequate by the department. This will normally include evidence of proficiency in at least one alternate language.
  5. Positive evidence of research aptitude and skill, such as the M.A. thesis, and a sample of the applicant’s research and written work.
  6. A statement of the applicant’s educational and professional goals.
  7. Recommendations from three faculty members (preferably in history), who have had the student in graduate courses.
  8. Official transcripts of all previous college and graduate level work.

Combined Master of Arts/Doctor of Philosophy–Requirements for Full Graduate Status Admission

Admission requirements for the Combined M.A. / Ph.D. program are the same as for the Ph.D. track (omitting the M.A. in history), with the following additions:

  1. Recommended, an overall Grade Point Average of at least 3.5
  2. Recommended, a Grade Point Average in the major of at least 3.8.
  3. Recommended, a score in the 90th percentile or higher on the Graduate Record Exam.
Procedural Rules
  1. The Department of History may require a personal interview with the Ph.D. applicant.
  2. Admission to the Ph.D. program is not automatic on the completion of the M.A. in history at Georgia State University.
  3. Normally, a student may not take three degrees—the bachelor’s, master’s, and doctorate—in the Department of History at Georgia State University.

Degree Requirements

Master of Arts
  1. Coursework:
    1. Students are required to take a total of nine courses. The distribution of courses is described below.
    2. HIST 7000 Introduction to Methods and Theory
    3. One course selected from HIST 7010, 7020, 7030 and 7040, to support the student’s major field.
    4. HIST 7050 Introduction to Graduate Studies and Pedagogy. Students not intending to teach may request permission from the Director of Graduate Studies to take 7045, a one-hour version of HIST 7050.
    5. Research Seminar: Thesis students must take HIST 7060; Non-thesis students can fulfill this requirement with HIST 7060 or any graduate course designated as a research seminar.
    6. Students may take up to two directed readings courses to fulfill their course requirements.
    7. All new students should take HIST 7050 in their first semester of study and HIST 7000 in their second semester of study.
    8. Major Field: Students must complete 3 courses in the major field and may apply HIST 7010, 7020, 7030, or 7040 to their major field. HIST 7060 may not apply to major field course requirements.
      Major Fields include:

      • Colonial/Early National U.S.
      • 19thand 20th Century US
      • Early Modern Europe
      • Modern Europe
      • World History
      • Regional and Global History
      • Public History
    9. Geographic Distribution: In addition to the regular M.A. requirements, students whose major field is in US history must also complete one course each in (a) European; and (b) African, Asian, Latin American, or Middle Eastern history. Students whose major field is in European history must also complete one course each in (a) US; and (b) African, Asian, Latin American, or Middle Eastern history.
    10. Electives: Remaining courses are electives.
  2. Language Requirement: Proficiency in one alternate language.
  3. Comprehensive Examination: A comprehensive examination to be taken within one semester after completion of coursework. The comprehensive examination may written or oral; the choice of format will be determined by the major adviser in consultation with the student. The examination will be conducted by a committee that will consist of at least three faculty members with whom the student has taken coursework. The examination may be repeated once following a minimum interval of three months. A student who fails the examination for the second time will be subject to scholastic termination. Committees for both the thesis and the non-thesis option are nominated by the student and appointed by the chair of the department.
  4. Continuous Enrollment: In order to remain in compliance with the university’s policy on continuous enrollment, students must maintain enrollment totaling 6 hours or more over all consecutive three-semester periods.
  5. Thesis/Non-Thesis Options
    1. Thesis option requirements:
      1. 6 hours of HIST 8999 Thesis Research
      2. A thesis prospectus, approved by a director and a second reader, and a thesis.
    2. Non-Thesis Option requirements:
    3. One additional graduate history class. A second comprehensive examination,either written or oral, to be administered by an examination committee, which will consist of the advisor and one additional faculty member.
  6. Graduation: Students must be registered for a minimum of one hour during the term of their graduation.

World History Concentration

The History Department offers a concentration in World History at the M.A. level. The concentration combines the theoretical and empirical frameworks of world history with opportunities to conduct more detailed research within chosen areas of interest. Students will apply theoretical approaches and empirical methodologies that support the comparative and global study of societies and cultures as well as the interconnections among different world regions. The requirements fit into the framework of a regular M.A. in history, with several more specific stipulations as noted below:

  1. Coursework:
    1. As in the regular History M.A., students must take nine courses. The distribution of courses is described below.
    2. HIST 7000: Introduction to Methods and Theory
    3. HIST 7030: Issues and Interpretations in World History
    4. Either 7010, 7020, or 7040
    5. HIST 7050 Introduction to Graduate Studies and Pedagogy. Students not intending to teach may request permission from the Director of Graduate Studies to take 7045, a one-hour version of HIST 7050.
    6. Research Seminar: Thesis students must take HIST 7060; Non-thesis students can fulfill this requirement with HIST 7060 or any graduate course designated as a research seminar.
    7. Major Field: Students must declare World History as their major field and complete 3 courses in the major field. One of these courses must be a research seminar or HIST 7060. Students may also apply HIST 7030 to the major field. Courses in the major field should demonstrate a conspicuous world history dimension.
    8. Geographic Distribution: In addition to the regular M.A. requirements, students completing the world history concentration must also complete one course each in (a) U.S.; (b) European; and (c) African, Asian, Latin American, or Middle Eastern history. Either the U.S. or the European course should have a world dimension, which is also desirable for the course chosen above under (c).
    9. Electives: Any of the remaining required nine courses are electives. Students are encouraged to select electives that include a world history dimension.
  2. Any courses taken as part of the major field or the geographic distribution or to meet the basic M.A. requirements may be applied elsewhere to meet the requirements of the concentration.
  3. Foreign language, oral examination, and requirements for the thesis or non-thesis option are the same as for a regular M.A.

The Program Director will advise students on courses qualifying as world history. Students may petition the World History Committee for the inclusion of other courses with conspicuous world dimensions.

Master of Heritage Preservation

The Department offers a Masters Degree in Heritage Preservation. This program is divided into two tracks of study: one in Historic Preservation and one in Public History. The program is designed to train professionals in the fields of cultural resource management and the interpretation of history to a broad audience. For more information about the Heritage Preservation Program contact the Director of visit the program website at heritagepr.gsu.edu.

Dual Bachelor’s/Master’s Degree Programs

The department offers the following dual degree program:

  • Dual B.A./M.A. in History
  • Dual B.A. in History and Master of Historic Preservation

These dual degree opportunities enable qualified students to enroll in graduate courses late in their undergraduate program and apply the coursework toward both the bachelor’s and master’s programs.

Students must be formally accepted into the dual degree program by the department and College of Arts and Sciences to be able to take graduate courses as an undergraduate. Additionally, acceptance into the dual program does not constitute admission to the master’s program. Students must fulfill regular graduate admissions requirements and apply for the master’s program following college processes.

Information about the dual program, including application instructions and program requirements, can be found at cas.gsu.edu/dual-degrees/.

Doctor of Philosophy

  1. Coursework:
    1. Students will complete 10 graduate level history courses. The distribution of courses is described below.
    2. HIST 7000 Introduction to Methods and Theory
    3. One course selected from HIST 7010, 7020, 7030, and 7040, to support the student’s major field.
    4. HIST 7050 Introduction to Graduate Studies and Pedagogy. Students not intending to teach may request permission from the Director of Graduate Studies to take 7045, a one-hour version of HIST 7050.
    5. HIST 7060 Research Seminar.
    6. Students who enter the Ph.D. program with an MA in history earned at GSU may replace two HIST 7000-level core courses with two sections of HIST 8890 (Special Topics in History).
    7. All new students should take HIST 7050 in their first semester of study and HIST 7000 in their second semester of study.
    8. Students may take up to two directed readings courses to fulfill their coursework requirements.
    9. Major Field: Students must complete 3 courses in the major field and may apply HIST 7010, 7020, 7030, or 7040 to their major field. HIST 7060 may not apply to major field course requirements.
      Major Fields Include:

      • Colonial/Early National U.S.
      • 19thand 20thCentury US
      • Early Modern Europe
      • Modern Europe
      • World History
      • Regional and Global
      • Public History
    10. Minor Fields: Students must declare two minor fields and complete at least 2 courses in each of their minor fields, which may include the appropriate 7000-level course. Minor fields must demonstrate temporal, methodological, or geographical diversity from the major field.
      Minor Fields include:

      • Any of the Major Fields
      • African Diaspora
      • East Asia
      • African-America
      • South Asia
      • Atlantic, Indian or Pacific Oceans
      • Mediterranean
      • Economic, Labor or Working Class History
      • Ancient
      • Legal and Constitutional History
      • Medieval
      • History of Science
      • Early Modern Britain
      • Immigration and Ethnicity
      • Modern Britain, Ireland, British Empire
      • Islamic World
      • American South
      • Russia and the Soviet Union
      • France
      • Germany
      • Religion
      • Women’s History
      • Sexuality
      • Gender
      • Historic Preservation
      • World
      • Empires

Students may define an alternative minor field in consultation with their advisor and the Director of the Graduate Studies.

  1. Language Requirement: The student must demonstrate reading proficiency in two alternate languages, through successful completion of a graduate language course or successfully completing a reading knowledge examination. Students whose major field is U.S. history may substitute an alternate research skill for one foreign language.   In certain circumstances students whose major field is not U.S. history may substitute an alternate research skill for one foreign language.
  2. Residency: Students in the doctoral program are required to be in residence for four semesters, two of which must be consecutive. In all four semesters the students must register for at least eight hours of coursework.
  3. Continuous Enrollment: In order to remain in compliance with the university’s policy on continuous enrollment, students must maintain enrollment totaling 6 hours or more over all consecutive three-semester periods.
  4. Examinations: Upon completion of the language requirements and the course work in the doctoral program, the doctoral student will be required to complete successfully a comprehensive examination (consisting of written and oral parts) in his/her major and minor fields. These examinations, administered by an examination committee consisting of two examiners for each field, will be offered twice a year in the Fall and Spring semesters on days and at times to be announced at least one month in advance. The student will normally complete the oral examination in the major and minor fields with two weeks of the written examination. At the conclusion of the comprehensive examination, the members of the examination committee will determine whether the student has passed or failed. A unanimous vote of the committee is required to pass. Should a student fail the comprehensive examination, the committee shall determine the conditions under which the student will be permitted to re-take the examination or portions thereof in accordance with the regulations of the Graduate Division of the College of Arts and Sciences. The examination may be repeated once following a minimum interval of six months. A student who fails the examination a second time will be subject to termination. The examination must be passed at least one academic year prior to the conferral of the degree.
  5. Dissertation Prospectus: On the successful completion of the written and oral parts of the general examination, the student will be required to submit a prospectus of the dissertation to a scheduled meeting of members of the dissertation committee (which will normally comprise three professors of the Department of History faculty), who are nominated by the student and appointed by the chair of the department. The prospectus will include a carefully prepared and closely reasoned statement or exposition of the topic or subject that the student has chosen to research in consultation with the dissertation adviser. An oral defense of the dissertation prospectus will normally follow within six months of exams and will be administered by the dissertation committee.
  6. Candidacy: After completing the language, course work, general examination and dissertation prospectus requirements, the student will be admitted to candidacy for the degree.
  7. Dissertation: The student must complete satisfactorily a dissertation and earn not less than twenty hours of credit in HIST 9999 (Dissertation Research), supervised by the dissertation director.
  8. Dissertation Defense. Upon completion of the dissertation, the candidate will be required to complete a dissertation defense, conducted by members of the dissertation committee, that shall be devoted to a defense of the dissertation.
  9. Graduation: Students must be registered for a minimum of one hour during the term of their graduation.

Combined Master of Arts / Doctor of Philosophy

The requirements for the M.A. / Ph.D. degree are the same as for the Ph.D., except in the area of coursework. Students are required to complete at least twelve graduate level courses, which are distributed as follows.

A. Coursework:

  1. Students will complete 12 graduate level history courses. The distribution of courses is described below.
  2. HIST 7000 Introduction to Methods and Theory
  3. One course selected from HIST 7010, 7020, 7030, and 7040, to support the student’s major field.
  4. HIST 7050 Introduction to Graduate Studies and Pedagogy. Students not intending to teach may request permission from the Director of Graduate Studies to take 7045, a one-hour version of HIST 7050.
  5. HIST 7060 Research Seminar.
  6. All new students should take HIST 7050 in their first semester of study and HIST 7000 in their second semester of study.
  7. Students may take up to two directed readings courses to fulfill their coursework requirements.
  8. Major Field: Students must complete 3 courses in the major field and may apply HIST 7010, 7020, 7030, or 7040 to their major field. HIST 7060 may not apply to major field course requirements. For list of fields see above.
  9. Minor Fields: Students must declare two minor fields and complete at least 2 courses in each of their minor fields, which may include the appropriate 7000-level course. Minor fields must demonstrate temporal, methodological, or geographical diversity from the major field. For list of fields see above.
  10. Electives to complete the required total of 12 courses.

B. Award of M.A. degree:

Students may apply to earn a non-thesis M.A. degree on route to completing the doctoral program after completing 10 courses and passing their Ph.D. comprehensive exams, normally in the third year of coursework. Students who wish to leave the program may opt in to the M.A. degree program and may earn a non-thesis or thesis M.A. degree after completing all requirements for that degree.