MA in History
The MA in History is a small, selective program that emphasizes comparative understanding of historical process. It is organized around colloquia in comparative and regional topics, the preparation of specific fields, and individual research in consultation with a faculty member.
The program is designed both to prepare students for further graduate study in doctoral programs in history and also to enhance the historical knowledge and interpretive skills of professionals working in secondary schools, libraries, foundations, and museums. In recent years, our MA graduates have continued on to PhD programs at Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Brandeis, Boston University, University of North Carolina and the University of Michigan.
The MA program offers students the opportunity to specialize in regional fields that include South Asia, East Asia, Africa, Latin America, Europe and the United States. Students can also choose to specialize in thematic fields, which combine interdisciplinary and comparative approaches. Some examples of thematic fields include:
- Transnational and Global History
- Race, Nationalism, Collective Identity
- Colonialism and Decolonization
- Gender and Sexuality
- International and Intercultural Relations
- Labor and Social Movements
- Intellectual History
- Civil Society, the Public Sphere, and the State
- Histories of Science, Technology, and the Environment
Program Requirements and Policies
- The MA in History requires successful completion of ten courses. Normally, students are expected to complete the MA program within two academic years. All students must take History 200: The Historiography Proseminar, a Graduate Colloquium, at least one Research Seminar, and an additional Research Seminar or one semester of directed graduate research.
- Ten courses are required for the MA in History. Normally, students are expected to complete the MA program within two academic years.
- Completion of the program requires proven reading proficiency in at least one language besides English. Proficiency can be demonstrated either by passing one of the language exams administered by the foreign language departments at Tufts or by taking two courses in a single foreign language, the second coming at least at level 3 of Tufts' language courses. To assist in deciding which route to adopt, each incoming student must take the pertinent foreign language placement exam at the time of registration for the first term, and upon receiving the results anyone intending to take courses must indicate a plan to do so within two years.
- Up to two of the ten courses required for the master's degree may, by prior agreement with the principal advisor, be taken in a department other than History. Appropriate courses offered by the Fletcher School will be accepted by petition for graduate credit in history.
- A student may devote two out of ten courses to writing a master's thesis. In that case, only one additional course needs to be allocated for a Research Seminar or directed graduate research.
- In the second year of graduate study the student will present a research project drawn from graduate course work at Tufts to an ongoing Graduate History Roundtable for critical discussion.
- Students will prepare two fields of study to be offered for examination. These fields may be regional or thematic in focus. Each student will consult with his or her graduate program advisor and a field committee to design a sequence of courses which will provide preparation for examinations in each field. Examinations must be taken at least six weeks prior to graduation. If the student chooses to write a thesis, only one field, different from the field of the thesis, need be prepared for examination.