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Master of Arts in History

Our Master of Arts in History program is divided into three tracks.

  1. Thesis Track: this track offers the student a course of study that leads to the writing of a Master’s Thesis (80-100 pages). The thesis is a major scholarly work that is the capstone of the program. This track trains research historians. Often, students who pursue the thesis option have ambitions of heading on to a Ph.D. program where thesis work contributes later to a Ph.D. dissertations. However, sometimes students choose this track to gain higher level research and writing skills that can be utilized in a number of ways in the job market.
  2. Public History Track:  this track is designed to train professionals in public history. Public history emphasizes the skills and knowledge necessary for engagement with the community in a non-academic way. A public historian is academically trained but uses their knowledge to converse with a public audience. Practitioners may make documentary films, work in a museum, a national park, a historic site. provide historical tours, or run history themed websites. The training specializes in how to engage effectively with a non-academic audience. Our program does not micro-specialize in narrow skills such archival studies or preservation but instead focuses on the ability to communicate complex history to diverse audiences and perhaps influence public debate. The department expects the same level of rigor and quality in labor, research, and expertise of public history students as of students on other MA tracks.  Students complete a Project which is a research study that leads to a public history demonstration along with a written narrative.  Recognizing that public history projects of different types provide different challenges and opportunities to demonstrate a student’s level of mastery, the department requires that students and their committees agree upon a written portion to complement the public history demonstration. This written portion will typically take the form of a packet of written work accumulated and revised from the student’s coursework.   Overall this packet must demonstrate scholarly competence in writing, research, analysis, and historical documentation and will be from 60-80 pages.
  3. Educator Track ONLINE: this track offers the student a course of study that involves graduate level history content classes, an advanced level teaching class as well as practical work with Master Teacher workshop labs and the development of a portfolio that showcases the student’s advance development in teaching history.  This track does not require a thesis, however, the department expects the same level of rigor and quality in labor, research, and expertise of Educator Track history students as of students on other MA tracks.  The Educator Track is offered remotely online and is designed to be part time program to reach the wider community of Secondary Educators working full time throughout Idaho and the region. Please see our LINK to more information on the NEW online MA Educator track on the MAIN MENU. 

We specialize in the following multidisciplinary areas.

    • Public History
    • Environmental History
    • Religious History
    • Military History
    • History of Racism
    • Gender History
    • Constitutional and Intellectual History
    • Migration and Refugee History
    • Police History
    • Economic History
    • Historical Archaeology
  • Our department officially supports three geographic areas in general during most time periods. This is not an exhaustive list as faculty members change the emphasis of their research at times and the list would be too long.
      • US (including Western US history) 19th and 20th and 21st centuries.
      • Europe (Western Europe [specifically the UK, France, Belgium and Spain –including Basque], Eastern Europe and the Balkans [specifically Serbia, Croatia].  These areas include both Medieval and Modern periods.  Additionally we cover Italy and Greece in the ancient period.
      • Non-Western: Asia [specifically Korea and Pacific Oceania] and Middle East [specifically Iran])

Degree Requirements

The three tracks in the Master of Arts program each require 33 credits to graduate.  There are no foreign language requirements.  However, if a student chooses a topic that requires a foreign language for research then the student must have a knowledge of that language or they will have to choose another topic.