This program aims to provide students with advanced knowledge and skills in the content, analytical theories, research methods, and public presentation of history. Students have an opportunity to study topics in European, Latin American, and United States history. The program also encourages students to involve themselves with historical activities and institutions in the metropolitan area.
The MA in History will benefit secondary school teachers seeking to enhance their professional skills and standing. It will also benefit students planning careers in academia, public history, or the professions.
Student Learning Outcomes
- Advanced knowledge and skills in content, analytical theories, research methods, and public presentation of history.
- Enhanced breadth of coverage, preparation, and professional skills for post-graduate application of MA in History – secondary schools or Ph.D programs.
- Advanced competency in using archival resources, conducting research, handling primary sources, constructing original historical theses, and effective writing.
Applicants must comply with all university admissions procedures outlined in the graduate catalog in effect at the time of their seeking admission into the program. They must also satisfy additional history area requirements. The combined requirements are listed below.
- Complete at least 6 hours of upper-level undergraduate history credits, with a GPA of 3.0 or better.
- Submit an application on the appropriate university form to the Office of Recruitment and Admissions.
- Submit official transcripts of all previous college-level studies to the University’s Office of Recruitment and Admissions.
- Submit two letters of recommendation, at least one from a professor in the undergraduate major, to the Coordinator of Graduate Studies in History.
- Submit a writing sample (minimally seven double-spaced pages in length with proper citations) of previous academic work in history to the Coordinator of Graduate Studies in History.
Students who cannot meet the requirements stated above may be accepted for admission if the History Graduate Committee decides this is appropriate.
A history admissions committee chaired by the Coordinator of Graduate Studies in History, and including two additional tenure-line members of the full-time faculty in history, will review the above materials. Basing their decision upon the information contained in all of the above items, the committee will unconditionally admit, conditionally admit, or deny admission. Students with conditional status for one term may accrue no more than 6 hours of graduate credit towards the MA prior to being formally admitted to the program.
International students must have their credentials evaluated for their equivalent value according to standard university procedure and meet other admissions requirements specified in the graduate catalog.
All students must complete their respective requirements with a 3.0 GPA or better, and can earn no more than one “C” grade in their graduate work.
Core Courses (6 semester hours) - All students must complete:
Exam Track (24 hours)
In addition to the two core courses, students electing the exam track must complete no less than six and no more than eight graduate history courses, and no more than two approved non-history graduate courses.
Thesis Track (24 hours)
In addition to the two core courses, students electing to write a thesis must complete no less than five and no more than six graduate history courses (15-18 hours), no more than one approved non-history graduate course (3 hours), and six hours of HIST 5395 - Thesis .
Students may transfer up to 12 hours of graduate credit from accredited institutions.
History graduate students may pursue two tracks to complete their degree based on each student’s career objectives. Both tracks provide advanced historical content and a comprehensive overview of the research and writing methods used by professional historians. Both tracks require students to identify a primary advisor and, with that advisor, organize an individualized graduate committee. The exam track culminates in a comprehensive exit exam. The thesis track culminates in a written thesis.
The exam track is designed for students for whom the MA is the terminal degree. With the exam track, students must pass a written comprehensive examination during the term of expected graduation. The comprehensive exam requires individualized study based upon a student’s historical interest and course preparation. The student’s three graduate committee members will construct the questions from an agreed upon reading list. The student’s graduate advisor will administer the examination, and the committee will evaluate the examination, designating the performance as a “pass with distinction,” “pass,” or “fail.” Any student who fails the comprehensive examination may retake it once within one calendar year. Failure to pass the examination a second time results in termination from the program.
The thesis track is designed for students who intend to pursue further academic study. Students intending to enter a history doctoral program are strongly encouraged to write a thesis. The history MA thesis requires substantial commitment and ongoing consultation with the student’s graduate advisor. The finished project must demonstrate historical knowledge, analytical ability, and research skills. Students applying to write a thesis will also be required to demonstrate competence in a second language, either by having successfully completed two years of an approved language as an undergraduate, or by successful completion of a language exam.
Students writing a thesis are required to defend the thesis in an oral examination, administered by the student’s three-person Graduate Committee. The candidate’s advisor and thesis director will chair the examining committee. Evaluators will give a grade of “pass with distinction,” “pass,” or “fail.” If the student receives a failing grade, the student may resubmit the project a second time. Failure on the second submission will result in the student’s termination from the program.
Students must complete all requirements for the comprehensive exam or thesis at least one month before scheduled graduation.
Students must use the required College of Graduate Studies forms and meet the deadlines for thesis committee formation and scheduling of the thesis defense. The thesis must meet the College of Graduate Studies thesis formatting requirements in addition to those of their discipline. For CGS deadlines and forms, refer to the CGS website and/or CGS Masters Handbook.
Graduate Advisor/Graduate Committee
By the end of a student’s first academic year, he or she will identify a graduate faculty advisor. In conjunction with the academic advisor, students will determine their preferred track. By the end of a student’s second academic year, the student and graduate faculty advisor will identify a graduate faculty committee consisting of no less than two additional tenure-line history faculty.
The degree plan, signed by the student and graduate faculty advisor, will become official when approved by the Dean, no later than the end of the second year of study. Any courses to remove deficiencies in undergraduate academic preparation will be included, along with the minimum number of graduate hours, in the degree plan and must be taken before any graduate level hours. Exceptions may be made if only three undergraduate hours are required, in which case they may be taken concurrently with a graduate level course.
Internships will consist of 50 to 100 hours of work with private and public sponsoring agencies in the greater Corpus Christi area. Some internships will be paid by the sponsoring agency; most will not, depending on the resources available to the sponsoring agency. The student, one member of the student’s Graduate Committee, and an administrator in the sponsoring agency, will design the internship. The latter two individuals will supervise the student’s performance during the internship. The student will submit a written report of the experience to the supervising member of the Graduate Committee within one month of the end of the internship. The student’s Graduate Committee will grade the internship report on a credit/noncredit basis, according to the procedure used for evaluating exit requirements described above.
Transfer of Credit
In addition to the University’s general policy on transfer of credit, the following regulations will apply to the MA in History program: Up to 12 semester hours of graduate-level study may be transferred from other accredited institutions of higher education if appropriate to the degree. No course with a grade of less than a “B”, and no course that has counted toward the earning of another graduate degree will be accepted as transfer credit. Credit that is more than seven years old will not be counted toward the MA degree.
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