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Columbus State University

Master of Arts
History (Race, Ethnicity and Society Track)

College of Letters and Sciences

Department of History and Geography

Program Description

The Master of Arts with a major in History is a professional degree program that allows students to pursue their interest in history in any area of concentration within the department’s course offerings. The core of the degree is designed to help degree candidates become proficient at advanced historical research methods and writing. The general degree program, as opposed to a concentration, allows degree candidates to choose broadly from the department’s course offerings in U.S., global, and military history while benefitting from the department’s strengths in race, social, and cultural history. Up to six credits of elective coursework are available to students outside of the history department. 

The Master of Arts with a major in History program is delivered through content courses (5000 level HIST U/G courses) and graduate seminars (7000 level courses). In addition to general coursework, degree candidates will have the option to complete an advanced research project by producing a thesis in their final year. Language proficiency, whether through traditional languages or GIS, is required. Degree candidates will need to take a reading proficiency exam in the foreign language and show English competency in TOEFL exam if they are non-native English speakers.

Career Opportunities

The Master of Arts with a major in History is a professional degree program that allows students to pursue their interest in history in any area of concentration within the department’s course offerings. The core of the degree is designed to help degree candidates become proficient at advanced historical research methods and writing. The general degree program, as opposed to a concentration, allows degree candidates to choose broadly from the department’s course offerings in U.S., global, and military history while benefitting from the department’s strengths in race, social, and cultural history. Up to six credits of elective coursework are available to students outside of the history department. 

The Master of Arts with a major in History program is delivered through content courses (5000 level HIST U/G courses) and graduate seminars (7000 level courses). In addition to general coursework, degree candidates will have the option to complete an advanced research project by producing a thesis in their final year. Language proficiency, whether through traditional languages or GIS, is required. Degree candidates will need to take a reading proficiency exam in the foreign language and show English competency in TOEFL exam if they are non-native English speakers.

Admission Requirements

Regular Admission to the Program:

Applicants interested in applying to the graduate program in the Department of History and Geography must file a graduate application with the Columbus State University Graduate School office. A student must meet both university and departmental requirements to be admitted into the degree program.

  • B.A. in History or equivalent in the proposed field of study from an accredited college or university; people with a major in a related field may be admitted on a provisional basis if they have completed 15 semester hours in upper division history credit with no grade below a C.
  • G.P.A. of 3.0 overall and 3.0 in History with no grade in History below a C.
  • University Application Form completed online or mailed to the graduate school.

In addition to this application, prospective applicants must complete a separate Departmental Application Form (PDF)  and submit the form along with other documentation to the graduate coordinator of the Department of History and Geography (on behalf of the Department of History and Geography Admissions Committee). Non-native English speakers must complete the TOEFL exam .  These materials include:

  • College transcripts;
  • Departmental application form (PDF) ;
  • A statement of purpose outlining research interest, career objectives, rationale for pursuing a M.A. in History, and undergraduate preparation for pursuing the degree.  
  • Writing sample, such as a senior seminar paper, showing proficiency in primary source research, as well as excellent citation of sources and writing skills;
  • Two letters of recommendation (PDF) from undergraduate professors or other referees able to comment on the applicant’s potential for successful graduate study.
  • Curriculum vitae.
  • TOEFL Scores (If applicable).

Provisional Admission :

Applicants who fail to meet one of the requirements for regular admission may be accepted on a provisional status. Provisional degree candidates who take nine semester hours of graduate history courses at Columbus State University with no grade less than a B will be reclassified with regular admission.

Learning Outcomes

History students at the masters level should display both a grasp of  mayor historical events on a global scale as well as a more detailed knowledge of these and other events and people within an area of specialization such as the United States, Latin America, Asia, etc.

Masters students should also demonstrate an understanding of history as a branch of philosophy, as a vehicle for gaining wisdom about the meaning of life beyond the study of  discrete  historical events and time periods for their own sake. 

Masters students should also demonstrate their improved historical research and writing skills by producing a sophisticated thesis as one of  the degree requirements.

Masters students should also demonstrate at least a reading competency in a foreign language as one of their degree requirements.

Masters students should demonstrate an ability to handle increased reading, writing and oral communications requirements in their advanced history classes.  

Masters students should also demonstrate an interest in becoming a part of  the community of  scholars by participating in history conferences and presenting their work to other interested students.

Additional Program Requirements

This degree is subject to the following requirements and conditions.  

  • To remain in good standing, degree candidates must enroll in at least three hours of coursework per semester, not including summers. Those who do not maintain continuous admission must reapply for acceptance into the program.
  • Degree candidates may not receive credit for a C in any course in the major. Upon receipt of a grade of C or lower in any course the student will be placed on academic probation and will receive advisement. Earning a second C or a lower grade will be cause for removal from the program.
  • Students who do not complete their language or technological skills proficiency by the end of the first year may have their academic funding reduced or ended until the requirement is fulfilled.
  • All requirements for the M.A. must be completed within six years of matriculation.

Program Of Study

Graduate Language or Technological Skill Requirement
The department requires reading proficiency in one foreign language as determined by examination or by the completion of 6 semester hours in intermediate and advanced GIS courses (GEOG 3215 and 5215) with a B or better for students focusing on modern history. GEOG 3215 taken for GIS language proficiency can be counted towards the Masters of Arts language proficiency requirement, but does not count for degree credit in the degree program. The student must receive a B or better in these courses and obtain certification from the instructor attesting to their proficiency in GIS for graduate work. Students working on ancient, medieval, or global history will be required to show reading proficiency in the languages of their primary sources if pursuing the thesis option.

Area 1 Core Required Hours: 3
HIST 5195 Historiography

Area 2 Concentration Required Hours: 21
HIST 6735 Method and Theory in Race and History
Select six of the following courses, at least one of which must be at the 6000-level or topics courses approved by the graduate coordinator and department chair.
HIST 5112 American Slavery and Emancipation, 1619-1877
HIST 5135 Race and Ethnicity in Latin America
HIST 5136 Slavery in Latin America
HIST 5137 Nazi Germany and the Holocaust
HIST 5138 Race and Ethnicity in Colonial America
HIST 5535 Selected Topics in Latin American History
HIST 5555 Selected Topics in World History
HIST 5559 Selected Topics in United States History
HIST 5566 Selected Topics in Race and American History
HIST 5575 Selected Topics in European History
HIST 5706 Orientalism, Europe, and the World
HIST 6555 Selected Topics in United States History
HIST 6556 Selected Topics in European History
HIST 6557 Selected Topics in Latin American History
HIST 6558 Selected Topics in African History
HIST 6559 Selected Topics in World History

Area 3 Program Electives and Thesis Option Required Hours: 12
Any HIST 5000-level or above
Up to two courses 5000-level or above outside of HIST as approved by graduate coordinator and departmental chair.
HIST 6999 Thesis Research and Writing (may be taken twice)

Total hours: 36