Jul 21, 2024  
2019-2020 Graduate Catalog 
2019-2020 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Appalachian Studies, M.A. (Appalachian Culture and Heritage Concentration)

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General Program Information

Graduate School Contact:
Rickie Carter; carterrh@etsu.edu; (423) 439-6165

Department of Appalachian Studies

Department Chair: Ron Roach, Ph.D.
222 Nicks Hall
Box 70556
(423) 439-7494
e-mail: roachr@etsu.edu

Graduate Coordinator: Lee Bidgood, Ph.D.
304C Memorial Hall (Brooks Gym)
Box 70435
(423) 439-9594
e-mail: bidgood@etsu.edu

Faculty: Roy Andrade; Lee Bidgood; Daniel Boner; Rebecca Fletcher; Jane MacMorran; Nate Olson; Ted Olson; Ron Roach; Fred Sauceman; and additional faculty in other academic units who teach Appalachian-related courses.

The Master of Arts in Appalachian Studies is an interdisciplinary graduate degree designed to provide a comprehensive study of the Appalachian region, including its history, environment, culture, and current challenges. The program is designed to meet the needs of three types of students:

  1. Students for whom a graduate degree in the discipline of Appalachian Studies would improve their qualifications for the job market;
  2. Students who are already in the workforce but can profit from and perhaps advance in their careers with deeper knowledge of the region; and
  3. Students who are interested in understanding the region from a variety of historical, cultural, and global perspectives; who will profit from concentrated study and research; and who may plan to enter doctoral programs upon the completion of the degree.

As a broad, interdisciplinary degree, the M.A. in Appalachian Studies is intended to be highly flexible and customizable to fit each student’s educational and career goals. As such, it is a general degree that can prepare students to pursue many paths, whether they lead to the workforce or to further graduate studies. Possible career areas that may be served by this degree include education, local and regional planning, economic development, service organizations, nonprofit organizations, cultural and arts organizations, museums, natural and cultural heritage sites, national and state parks, and health-related fields. 

The department offers financial support in the form of Graduate Assistantships and Tuition Scholarships. Decisions on offers of support are initiated at the end of March for the following academic year. In order to receive full consideration, applicants seeking funding from this department are encouraged to submit all materials by February 15th.

Deadline for Spring admission - November 1

Deadline for Fall admission - March 1

Admission Requirements

The following requirements are in addition to the general admission, retention, and graduation requirements of the School of Graduate Studies:

  • The personal essay (required by the School of Graduate Studies) should address the student’s reasons for choosing an Appalachian studies program;
  • Acceptable GPA (3.0 on a 4.0 scale preferred);
  • GRE scores (students who have successfully completed the Graduate Certificate in Appalachian Studies or who have previously earned a graduate degree may be admitted without the GRE scores);
  • Three letters of recommendation; and
  • A writing sample, such as a paper previously submitted for credit in an undergraduate or graduate course.

A student who completes the Graduate Certificate in Appalachian Studies may transfer all 18 credits into the Master of Arts in Appalachian Studies, with the approval of the APST graduate coordinator. All transfer credit, however, must meet GPA requirements and must be within the six-year matriculation limit.

Appalachian Studies, M.A. Degree Requirements: 30-33 credits

Core Requirements 9 credits
Concentration 9 credits
Advisor Approved Electives 9-15 credits
Thesis or Non-Thesis Option 0-3 credits
TOTAL 30-33 credits


Thesis: The thesis option requires 30 total credits. This includes 9 credits of advisor approved electives.

Non-Thesis: The non-thesis option requires 33 total credits. This includes 15 credits of advisor approved electives.

Appalachian Culture and Heritage Concentration: 9 credits

Choose 3 courses from the following:

Thesis Option: 12 credits

Non-Thesis Option: 15 credits

  • Advisor Approved Electives from the list below (15 credits)

Advisor Approved Electives

Students will select electives in consultation with the APST graduate program coordinator. Courses listed in but not counted toward a concentration may be counted as electives, along with other seminars, independent studies, topics/studies in courses, and problems courses, including 5956 summer offerings when the topic is Appalachian and with the approval of the graduate program coordinator.

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