Apr 16, 2024  
Fitchburg State University 2023-2024 Graduate Catalog 
    
Fitchburg State University 2023-2024 Graduate Catalog

History, M.A.


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Master of Arts in History


Graduate Program Chair

Daniel Sarefield, PhD

Graduate Committee

Laura Baker, PhD
Christine Dee, PhD
Sean Goodlett, PhD
Katherine Jewell, PhD
Benjamin Lieberman, PhD
René Reeves, PhD
Teresa Fava Thomas, PhD
Joseph Wachtel, PhD

Program Objectives

The Master of Arts (MA) in History Program is designed for students pursuing careers in historical research, public history writing, postsecondary level teaching, and for secondary teachers pursuing advanced study in history. The MA in History offers two tracks, a thesis track and a non-thesis track.

Program Description

Students in the MA in History Program must complete thirty semester hours of graduate-level history coursework, including HIST 7450 - Historiography. The coursework may be completed 100% online for students who prefer the convenience and flexibility that online courses offer, but institute courses are also offered during the summer terms as a value-added option. The institute courses provide graduate coursework in a hybrid platform, with a short-duration (1 or 2 week) face-to-face component and the remainder of the course completed online.

The curriculum for the MA in History aims to:

•    Promote graduate-level historical scholarship.
•    Facilitate the development of a wide range of historical skills and knowledge, including a global perspective.

Student Learning Outcomes

Historical Knowledge

Graduates with the Master of Arts in History develop an advanced understanding of the historical enterprise. They acquire in-depth knowledge of historical periods, regions, and events; understanding of major historiographical trends and the methodological and interpretive innovations associated with these trends; and the ability to critically evaluate and apply methodologies and theories appropriate to historical subfields.

Historical Reasoning and Research

Graduates with the Master of Arts in History acquire an advanced understanding of the methods and ethics of historical research; conduct both traditional and digital archival research; and demonstrate historical knowledge and original analysis in essays or projects that follow the professional standards of the discipline.

Communication

Graduates with the Master of Arts in History acquire and apply the diverse sets of skills required for the presentation of historical research, including professional-level oral presentation, book and historiographical reviews, and journal-length articles suitable for submission to peer reviewed journals.

Through each of these three areas, students taking graduate courses in history refine critical thinking skills by analyzing historical data and literary and artistic evidence in order to evaluate and put forth historical arguments; sharpen communication skills by expressing their ideas in course discussions and written assignments; deepen knowledge of the human experience at the local, national and global levels; develop the capacity to recognize and confront ethical issues in historical reasoning and research, and understand contexts that produce historical ideas and historical works.

Admissions Standards and Criteria

To apply for admission to the MA in History program, students must submit documents as outlined in the graduate admissions section of the catalog as well as:

  • An official transcript of a Bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution, preferably with (but not limited to) a major or minor in history. A minimum overall GPA of 3.0 is required.
  • A writing sample. This may include an undergraduate level term paper or a published article and should be the equivalent of at least 10 typed, doubled-spaced pages and include footnotes and a bibliography.

Note: Applicants with inadequate preparation in history may be required to take undergraduate courses in history prior to admission.

Program Requirements

The MA in History Program requires thirty semester hours of graduate-level history coursework. There are two tracks, a thesis track and a non-thesis track. Following the completion of their other coursework, thesis track students must complete six credit hours of HIST 9100 - Thesis in History and a Master’s thesis under the direction of their thesis adviser, and complete a thesis defense. Non-thesis track students must complete a comprehensive exit examination. Details regarding advancement to candidacy are available from the Graduate Program Chair.

Required Courses, Thesis Track


One course in each of 3 areas:


  • World History, 3 cr.
  • European History, 3 cr.
  • U.S. History, 3 cr.

Total for Degree, Non-Thesis Track: 30 credits


Required Courses, Non-Thesis Track


One course in each of 3 areas:


  • World History, 3 cr.
  • European History, 3 cr.
  • U.S. History, 3 cr.

Total for Degree, Non-Thesis Track: 30 credits


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