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The graduate history program at UNC-Chapel Hill is committed to training professional historians to be both scholars and teachers, so we require both broad general historical knowledge and specialized study Our degree requirements and departmental culture encourage comparative and interdisciplinary study, and most of our graduate students get extensive experience as Teaching Assistants in broad survey courses in many fields.  While we expect our students to choose one field in which to specialize, we also insist that they have a second field of special knowledge for comparative and teaching purposes.

Graduate study in History at UNC is organized around the following fields of study:


These “major fields” of the Department are particularly important for shaping (a) a student’s curriculum (most major fields have a few required courses) and (b) the structure of his/her comprehensive examinations. When applying for admission, each student indicates the major field of history in which he/she wishes to concentrate.

In addition, graduate students are encouraged to be aware of and to take advantage of, the presence of faculty members who may work outside a student’s major field but who share similar thematic concerns or have experience in research methods relevant to a student’s developing research. See the Faculty page to see a list of faculty in one Interest or Concentration.

For details about the graduate program including information about funding, degree requirements, field-specific comprehensive exam requirements, graduate student teaching, and other information, please consult the Graduate Student Handbook.