Master of Arts Program in History

The department of History, Philosophy and Political Science offers graduate study in African, European, United States and African-American history, Ancient history and the History of Religion.

 

Opportunities

The degree of Master of Arts in history is a multipurpose degree designed to prepare students for more effective teaching of history as in-service teachers who may wish to attain supervisory positions or employment at the community college level.  It also provides excellent preparation for those wishing careers in research and publishing, the legal field, public administration, the diplomatic field, library science or museum work.  The degree offers solid background and training for students wishing to pursue the doctorate.

 

Eligibility & Admission

  • Fulfillment of the general degree requirements for admission to the graduate program.  [See College of Graduate Studies catalogue]
  • B average (3.0) in the junior and senior years and in all undergraduate history courses.
  • Completion of a minimum of twenty-four (24) credit hours of undergraduate history courses, including twelve (12) credit hours of survey work in European/World and United States history.
  • Writing sample of 12-15 pages of an undergraduate essay or a paper of professional-level competency.

 

Conditional Admission

A minimum grade point average of 3.0 is required for full admission and 2.75-2.99 for conditional admission. The GPA is calculated by the Graduate Studies Office on the basis of the last sixty (60) hours of academic work. Additionally, students are expected to have completed 24 credit hours of history, including survey work with a “B” average.

Students with inadequate background in history are required to fulfill certain prerequisites. Those with less than a “B” average ordinarily must complete nine (9) hours of 5300-level courses specified by the graduate advisor with a “B” average to gain full admission to the program. It is the student’s responsibility to confer with the advisor and to notify Graduate Studies when the conditions have been met.

A minimum of half of the courses applied to the satisfaction of Master’s degree requirements must be at the 5400-level.

 

Graduate-at-Large

Students with low undergraduate G.P.A.s who desire admission to the graduate program are allowed to take up to12 hours of history courses as a Graduate-at-Large at Chicago State University to raise their G.P.A. The Graduate School will then reevaluate credits for admission.

 

Application Process

The application process formally begins with the College of Graduate Studies, located on the 4th floor of the University Library and normally takes approximately two months.  Actual admission dates are determined by the deadline application dates set by Graduate Studies, March 15th for the fall semester and October 15th for the Spring semester. The Department may receive applications sent by Graduate Studies although the department evaluation sheet may bear a different date of decision than the actual date set by Graduate Studies.

It is a good plan for students interested in the program to schedule a conference with the History Graduate Advisor and to bring in an unofficial transcript.  The prospective applicant can then be informed of his status with regard to eligibility, if any prerequisite courses are needed or if immediate application is recommended.

 

FIELDS OF STUDY: Major and Minor Fields

Areas for major and minor study include

African History U.S. History European History

African American History

Labor/Working-Class History

Ancient History
Intellectual & Cultural History History of Religion Gender History

 

Graduate Courses in History

There are two types of courses offered in our department: advanced lecture-discussion courses (5300-level) designed to acquaint the student with the literature and problems of a selected field, and research seminars (5400-level) in which intensive research on a particular historical topic provides experience in historical methodology and in the use of primary and secondary source materials.

 

Program

In the first year of the program students should decide whether to write a traditional M.A. thesis or do an M.A. Capstone Project.

1.   M.A. Thesis

Recommended for students interested in pursuing a Ph.D. in History or other post-graduate work.

  • Completion of thirty credit (30) hours at the graduate level
  • Maintain a “B” average
  • Choose a major and minor field
  • Completion of five (5) graduate seminars: 
    • HIST 5400 Seminar in Historical Methods (must be taken before any other 5400-level seminars) (3hrs)
    • 3 seminars at 5400-level (9 hrs)
    • HIST 5499 M.A. Thesis (3 hrs)
  • Completion of 5 elective courses at the HIST 5300-level (15 hrs.)
  • Oral Thesis defense

 

2.   M.A. Capstone Project

Recommended for graduate students who are pursuing an Master of Arts in History as a terminal degree and do not plan on pursuing a Ph.D. in History.

  • Completion of thirty credit (30) hours at the graduate level
  • Maintain a “B” average
  • Choose a major and minor field
  • Completion of five (5) graduate seminars: 
    • HIST 5400 Seminar in Historical Methods (must be taken before any other 5400-level seminars) (3hrs)
    • 3 seminars at HIST 5400-level (9 hrs)
    • HIST 5410 Advanced Readings in Historiography (3 hrs)
  • Completion of 5 elective courses at the 5300-level (15 hrs)
  • Written & Oral Exam: complete a written comprehensive examination and oral examination in the primary and secondary fields of study in the semester before graduation; a minimum grade of B on the written & oral exams is necessary to earn the degree.
  • M.A. Capstone Project will consist of a revised seminar paper turned in while completing HIST 5410 and to be kept on file in the department.

 

Courses Taken Outside the Department

Students may take a maximum of 3 hours of course credit in graduate-level cognate courses from another department at Chicago State University with the approval of the Department Graduate Committee.

 

Courses Taken Outside the University

Students may take a maximum of 3 hours of course credit in graduate-level courses from another university with the approval of the Department Graduate Committee.

 

SAMPLE CURRICULUM (2-year program/full-time)

M.A. Thesis Program (30 hours)

Semester 1: Fall

..........................9hrs

Semester 2: Spring

...........................9hrs

Semester 3: Summer

HIST 5400 (sem.1)

......................3 hrs

HIST 54xx (Sem.2)

......................3 hrs.

Optional
Elective 1 .......3 hrs. Elective 3 ........3 hrs.  
Elective 2 .......3 hrs. Elective 4........3 hrs.  
Choose thesis major field Choose thesis advisor  
     

Semester 4: Fall

......................6 hrs

Semester 5: Spring

...........................6 hrs

Semester 6: Summer

HIST 54xx (sem. 3)

....................3 hrs.

HIST 54xx (dir. reading seminar)

.........................3 hrs.

 
Elective 5 ........3 hrs HIST 5499 (thesis/seminar 5)  
  Thesis Defense Oral  

 

M.A. Capstone Project & Exam (30 hrs)

Semester 1: Fall

..........................9hrs

Semester 2: Spring

...........................9hrs

Semester 3: Summer

HIST 5400 (sem. 1)

.......................3 hrs

HIST 54xx (Sem. 2)

.........................3hrs

Elective......... 3 hrs
Elective 1 ...... 3 hrs Elective 3 ....... 3hrs  
Elective 2 ..... 3 hrs

Elective 4 ....... 3hrs

 
Choose major & minor fields Choose field advisors & reading lists  
     

Semester 4: Fall

..........................6hrs

Semester 5: Spring

..............................6hrs

Semester 6: Summer

HIST 54xx (Sem. 3)

.........................3 hrs

HIST 54xx (Sem. 4)

............................3 hrs

 
Elective 5 HIST 5410 Advanced Readings in Historiography.... 3 hrs  
  *Written & Oral Exams  

 

*Written & Oral Exams

Major and Minor field exams are written and oral. The examination period is in October or March. Students apply to take the major and minor field exams in advance of the date the examination is to be taken.

 

Assessment

Through a structured program of required courses and electives and consistent monitoring of students’ progress, the following goals should be attained.  Note the courses, which assist the student listed under each goal;

  • A broader yet more profound knowledge and understanding of diverse periods and areas of history than that achieved at the undergraduate level.

Courses: any 5400-level electives applicable to the degree and content seminars, 5470-5471-5472, 5480-5481-5482, 5490-5491.

  • A more facile ability to understand historical causality and effect as well as to analyze the intricacies of historical situations on a higher level.

Courses: any 5400-level electives applicable to the degree and content seminars, 5470-5471-5472, 5480-5481-5482, 5490-5491, also 5405

  • Greater familiarity with historical bibliography of various periods and ability to work with a variety of historical documents and sources.

Courses: any 5400-level electives requiring bibliographical work and research, any of the seminars, 5470-5471-5472, 5480-5481-5482, 5490-5491, 5499

  • Knowledge of the principles of historical methodology, namely how to conduct research, how to gather evidence, how to analyze it critically, and how to interpret it objectively.

Courses: any 5400-level electives with a research component, 5400, any of the seminars, 5470-5471-5472, 5480-5481-5482, 5490-5491, 5499

  • Production of scholarly research papers, utilizing knowledge gained on the methodology of research.  Also, proper mechanical format in their structure and organization and in footnoting and bibliography.

Courses: any 5400-level electives with a research component, primarily 5400, 5405, 5470-5471-5472, 5480-5481-5482, 5490-5491, 5499

  • Perfecting writing style, since writing is an integral part of the historical discipline.

Courses: any 5400-level electives, 5400, 5405, 5470-5471-5472, 5480-5481-5482, 5490-5491, 5499

  • Understanding the development of the idea of history through various ages, styles of historical writing, and investigation of meaning in history and various philosophies of history.

The major evaluation instrument is the master’s final examination (supra) Additional criteria to measure student outcomes are course projects and seminar research papers as explained in syllabi, also a thesis, if chosen, which must conform to designated standards.

Throughout their graduate careers, students will be involved in additional ways with the assessment process.  They will learn more about it in orientation sessions and discussions, and they will participate in periodic surveys and questionnaires, especially one given upon graduation.

In order to enhance student learning, the Master of Arts Program in History will be modified as assessment outcomes indicate.

 

The History Master’s program is assessed using a uniform plan.

CONTACT INFORMATION

Dr. Ann Kuzdale, Graduate Advisor

Department of History, Chicago State University, 9501 S. King Drive, Chicago, IL 60628

OFFICE: SCI. 273

PHONE: (773) 995-2252

EMAIL: akuzdale@csu.edu

Material on general Graduate Program rules, policies and procedures in the Graduate Catalog can be downloaded at the web site at www.csu.edu. The Graduate Studies office is located on the fourth floor of the CSU Academic Library (773) 995-2404.