Oct 15, 2019  
Semester Catalog 2019-2020 
    
Semester Catalog 2019-2020

History, M.A.


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The Master of Arts degree in History is designed for the attainment of a liberal-arts education appropriate to careers in such professions as law, journalism, business, government service, and librarianship, as well as preparation for teaching and further graduate study.

The program requires intensive study involving courses, seminars, and directed reading in preparation for comprehensive examinations and an optional thesis.

Admission to the Program

Application must be made both to the Department of History and the University. See www.calstateapply.edu for admission materials and submission of application. See department office or website (http://www.calstatela.edu/academic/history) for department application material. Please note that acceptance into the university does not guarantee admittance to the department.
 

Departmental Admission Requirements

All applicants must submit two letters of recommendation. At least one letter must come from a professor or an individual capable of evaluating the applicant’s qualifications for graduate study.

All applicants must also submit a statement of purpose essay, 500-750 words in length, stating the applicant’s purpose in applying for graduate study, any special areas of interest, plans for future occupation or profession and any additional information that may aid the selection committee in evaluating the applicant’s preparation and aptitude for graduate study at Cal State LA.

Applications will be considered for fall or spring admissions only. Please see www.calstateapply.edu for University application deadlines, and the History Department website (http://www.calstatela.edu/academic/history) for department application deadlines.

Admission to the department will be based on evaluation of the letters of recommendation and statement of purpose, as well as the following requirements:
 

I. Additional admission requirements for applicants with history major baccalaureates.

  1. In addition to university requirements for admission to graduate study, to be considered for departmental admission, applicants must have a grade point average in the last 60 semester (90 quarter) units of 3.00 or better. Applicants with GPAs between 2.75 and 3.00 may be admitted at the discretion of the department’s graduate admissions committee after completing prerequisite or qualifying courses, if necessary, with a minimum grade of B (3.0) in each prerequisite or qualifying course.
  2. Applicants who have not passed HIST 3080 and HIST 3090 or their equivalent in another accredited college or university will be required to complete those classes with a minimum grade of B (3.0) prior to admittance.
     

II. Additional admission requirements for applicants with a baccalaureate in a major other than history.

  1. In addition to university requirements for admission to graduate study, to be considered for departmental admission applicants must have a grade point average in the last 60 semester (90 quarter) units of 3.0 or better in the coursework of their major field. Applicants with GPAs between 2.75 and 3.00 may be admitted at the discretion of the department’s graduate admissions committee after completing prerequisite or qualifying courses, if necessary, with a minimum grade of B (3 .0) in each prerequisite or qualifying course.
  2. Applicants with a baccalaureate in a major other than history must also complete 15-21 units of approved upper division history courses with a minimum grade of B (3.0) in each course, including HIST 3080 and HIST 3090, before admission into the program.
     

Foreign Languages

Students writing a thesis, particularly in a non-U.S. field, may be required to have competency in one or more foreign languages to complete the thesis. The history department strongly recommends that all its M.A. students learn a foreign language, especially those planning to pursue a PhD. Such students should speak with their field advisors as early as possible about foreign language competency requirements for PhD. Programs.

Requirements for the Degree (30-33 units)


A minimum of 30 to 33 units are required, depending on whether the program is completed by comprehensive examinations or a thesis. At least 21 units must be in 5000-level courses.

Required Courses (6 units)


HIST 5000  and 5940  are required of all students, and are included in the 21 units of required 5000-level history coursework.

Students will take 15 units (five courses) of required 5000-level history from the three fields offered by the History Department. They include the United States, Latin America, and World History. Please make sure to take no more than five courses from a single field of history.

Electives (6 units)


Select six units of 4000- or 5000-level courses in history with advisor approval. 

World


Completion of Program


Students may complete the program either by passing comprehensive examinations or by writing a thesis with the approval of the department Graduate Studies Committee.

1. Comprehensive Examinations (0 units)


Students must register and complete Hist 5910 (Comprehensive Exam Preparation Class) before taking their comprehensive exams, HIST 5960. Students may register for HIST 5960  and take the comprehensive examinations only after they complete all course work in their program.

Download Complete policies and guidelines for comprehensive examinations (effective Fall 2016).

Students who were matriculated in the MA program prior to Fall 2016 should also consult the following document for information on how to complete comprehensive examinations in either three (quarter) fields or two (semester) fields: comps comparison for quarter-to-semester students.

2. Thesis (6 units)


Students must complete 18 units before formally beginning the Thesis Option. Students must maintain at least a 3.5 GPA in these 18 units, 12 of which must be 5000-level seminars.

The thesis (HIST 5990  ) will substitute for the 3 units 5910 requirement in the comprehensive exam option. Thesis students will register for 6 units of HIST 5990, for a program total of 33 units.

For further guidelines on thesis preparation, consult the History Department’s grad bulletin and the College of Natural and Social Sciences Procedures for the Master’s Thesis.

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