Jul 21, 2024  
2024-2025 Graduate Catalog 
2024-2025 Graduate Catalog

History, M.A.

General Program Information

Doug Burgess, Chair
109 Rogers-Stout Hall
Box 70672
(423) 439-6691
e-mail: burgessw@etsu.edu

Dinah Mayo-Bobee, Ph.D., Graduate Coordinator
114 Rogers-Stout Hall
Box 70672
(423) 439-6696
e-mail: mayobobee@etsu.edu

Faculty: Leila al-Imad; Henry Antkiewicz; Douglas Burgess; Dorothy Drinkard-Hawkshawe; Stephen Fritz; Tom Lee; Brian Maxson; Steven Nash; Andrew Slap; Elwood Watson.

The Department of History offers a graduate degree program leading to the Master of Arts degree.

Program Admission Requirements

The minimum requirements for admission are:

  1. A bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution.
  2. Completion of a minimum of 27 credit-hours of study in history.
  3. At least a 3.0 grade point average in upper-level history courses.
  4. Letters of recommendation from three (3) undergraduate (preferably History) instructors.
  5. An application essay of 250-300 words which conforms to accepted standards of good, written English and which addresses specific fields of historical interest and reasons for wishing to pursue study in the History graduate program at ETSU.

Applicants who do not meet these requirements may be admitted to the graduate program with provision(s) and with departmental permission but may be required to complete successfully prescribed undergraduate courses without graduate credit. After admission, each student shall consult with the graduate advisor of the department before beginning graduate study. The purpose of this consultation is to determine the academic needs of each student and to provide a program of study in history which will assist the graduate student to achieve individual aims in the School of Graduate Studies (as outlined in the application essay).

Academic Status Committee-A departmental committee will review the work of all graduate students at the end of each semester. Students whose work is judged conditional or unsatisfactory will be informed of their status and written reports and recommendations will be sent to members of the department and the graduate dean.

Admission to Candidacy-After satisfactorily completing twelve (12) credits of approved coursework, the student shall apply to the School of Graduate Studies for admission to candidacy for the master’s degree. Students who fail to apply for admission to candidacy after earning twelve (12) credits of approved graduate credit in the department will be summoned before the academic status committee for special consultation.

Articulation Agreements

A student who completes the graduate certificate in History and later wishes to pursue the MA in History may apply up to 12 certificate credits into the master’s program with approval of the Department of History Graduate Coordinator and the School of Graduate Studies. Only credits that meet GPA requirements and are completed within the ETSU six-year matriculation period will be accepted.

A student who completes the graduate certificate in Heritage Interpretation and Museum Studies and later wishes to pursue the MA in History via the non-thesis track may apply up to 12 History credits from the certificate into the master’s degree with the approval of the degree graduate coordinator and the School of Graduate Studies. All credit, however, must meet GPA requirements and must be within the six-year matriculation limits.

History, M.A. Degree Requirements: 30-39 credits

Core Requirements 6 credits
Advisor Approved Electives 21-33 credits
Thesis 0-3 credits
TOTAL 30-39 credits


Thesis: The thesis option requires 30 total credits. This includes 21 credits of advisor approved electives.

Non-Thesis: The non-thesis option requires 39 total credits. This includes 33 credits of advisor approved electives.

History Core Requirements: 6 credits

Thesis Option: 24 credits

Students who plan to continue graduate study at the doctoral level should write theses; in consultation with the graduate coordinator other students are also encouraged to select this option. An advisory committee for the thesis will be appointed by the department chair and graduate advisor after the student selects a subject acceptable to the professor in which field the student wishes to work. In addition to the six (6) credits of required courses, the student must complete HIST 5960  (Thesis) and an additional 21 credits of electives, for a minimum total of 30 credits. Students will designate a primary and secondary area of study. The secondary field shall consist of not less than six (6) credits and shall include a seminar in the field. The student taking the thesis option must also pass a final examination. At the discretion of the candidate’s committee, the final examination may be written, oral, or a combination of the two. It may be comprehensive and cover the thesis and coursework. The student may pass the examination; fail with no opportunity for re-examination; or fail with an opportunity for further study and re-examination by the committee on a specified date.

Non-Thesis Option: 33 credits

  • Advisor Approved Electives (33 credits)

All students selecting the coursework option will be required to complete an additional 33 credits of electives, in addition to the six (6) credits of required courses, for a minimum total of 39 credits. A minimum of 30 credits must be in History and no more than nine (9) credits may be in courses in collateral fields approved by the graduate coordinator. Students must declare a primary and secondary field of study. The primary area must include a seminar in that field which will include the completion of a major research paper; the secondary field shall include a minimum of nine (9) credits of study. The department chair and graduate coordinator will nominate an advisory committee for each student which will include two (2) professors in the primary area and one (1) in the secondary area. During the student’s final semester of coursework, each student will take a comprehensive written examination set by the committee over the primary and secondary areas of study which will be followed by a comprehensive oral examination. The student may pass the examination; fail with an opportunity for further study and review with re-examination by the committee; or fail with no opportunity for re-examination.