MA Requirements

The following requirements are for students who enter the program in the 2015-16 and succeeding academic years.  Students who began the program prior to August 2015 should consult the 2014-15 Graduate Handbook, available in the department office.

Course requirements:
The Master of Arts degree in History at Miami University consists of at least 36 credit hours beyond the undergraduate degree, which fall into three Groups of courses and related requirements:  (A) Courses required of all students; (B) the elective Module; and (C) preparation of a substantial Final Product, either through Thesis/Project Hours with oral defense of the thesis, or through Examination Hours with cumulative written and oral examinations.  See Appendix C, the MA Program Worksheet, for a typical sequence of course work.

Group A.  Courses required of all students.  These constitute the majority of the required credits, and include some courses that must be taken in a fixed sequence:

  • HST 601, Historical Methods (3)
  • HST 602, History and Theories (3)
  • HST 603, Research Seminar I (3)
  • HST 604, Research Seminar II (3)
  • HST 677, Independent Study (3)
  • Two Readings Colloquia in the History Department, HST 670 (6)


  • HST 601 and 677 (for advanced independent study in the field of specialization) must be taken in the Fall Semester of the first year.
  • HST 602 and 603 must be taken in the Spring Semester of the first year.  In HST 602 students prepare the prospectus of their final product.
  • HST 604 must be taken in the Fall Semester of the second year; in it students complete a substantial portion of the final product.
  • Graduate Assistants are also required to enroll in HST 645 (0), College Teaching of History Surveys, which meets each year during the week before the Fall Semester begins.

Group B.  One module selected by the student (a set of three related courses, included in the total credit hour requirement); see the list below (9 or 10 credits).

Each student, in consultation with the DGS,must choose one of the following modules by the end of Semester I (Fall of the first year).  The modules are sets of courses arranged to provide students with skills and knowledge appropriate to a range of future academic and professional paths.  Students also have the option to craft their own modules with the approval of the DGS.  The course credits associated with the modules are included in the 36 total credit hours required for completion of the MA program.  Modules consist of either 9 or (where specifically noted) 10 credits.

  • Art History:  Three elective courses from the following:  ART 586 Art of the Late 19th Century (3), ART 587 Art of the Early 20th Century (3), ART 589 Postwar to Postmodern, 1945-1980 (3), ART 506 Art since 1980 (3), ART 680 Graduate Seminar in Art History (3).
  • Geographic Information Systems (GIS):  GEO 541 Introduction to GIS (3); GEO 542 Advanced GIS (3); and one elective (3) chosen from GEO 543 Python Programming for ArcGIS, GEO 548 Remote Sensing, GEO 544 GISci Techniques in Landscape Ecology, GEO 547 Aerial Photo Interpretation.
  • Gerontology (GTY):  GTY 608 The Logic of Inquiry (4); GTY 609 Qualitative Research Methods (3); and one elective (3) chosen from GTY 611 Linking Research and Practice, GTY 641 Organizations and the Aging Enterprise, GTY 667 Policy and Politics of Aging, GTY 708 Quantitative Methods and Statistics.  (Note: This is a 10-credit module.)
  • History (HST):  one additional HST 670 Colloquium (3), one additional HST 677 Independent Study (3), and one graduate-level elective (3; may be a course outside History).
  • Interactive Media Studies (IMS):  IMS 540 Interactive Media Studies Practicum (4), ENG/IMS 511 Visual Rhetoric (3), and one graduate-level elective (3).  (Note:  This is a 10-credit module.)

Group C.  A substantial Final Product, either through HST 700 Thesis/Project Hours with oral defense of the thesis/project, or through HST 730 Examination Hours with cumulative written and oral examinations (6)

In both the Thesis/Project and the Examination options, students are given a final assessment to measure their achievemsnt of three general learning outcomes:  (1) mastery of a particular field of historical expertise, (2) ability to analyze the theoretical/historiographical underpinnings of historical scholarship, and (3) ability to carry out independent scholarly analysis and interpretation of historical sources and problems.  Students are also asked to assess the program's performance in delivering these learning outcomes.  The rubric and instruments used in assessment are included in Appendix E.

Note on Language Study:  Language requirements are determined by faculty in the area of specialization.  Hours taken for qualification in a language do not count toward the MA degree in History.

Selection of Program Option (Thesis/Project or Examination).  By April 15 in the second semester after entering the program, students must submit to the GSC the MA Program/Committee Form, which lists the advisor and committee members, module choice, Thesis/Project or Examination option, and major and minor fields for examinations.  Prior to submitting the form, students should give careful consideration to these options in consultation with their advisors and the DGS.  Changing options, while allowed in most cases, may pose  practical difficulties when requirements do not align.