The History Department admits students who have completed a BA or an MA, but we expect all of our students to continue toward a Ph.D. Students are not admitted to work solely toward an MA.  Below are the general requirements of the program.  Please see the Graduate Student Handbook for more specific information on each of these requirements. (link to somewhere not on one of the main pages)

Students admitted with a BA are expected to complete all the requirements for an MA in three semesters.

  • 30 credit hours (3 courses—9 hours—per semester in the first two, and 4 in the third semester) including Hist 700 (Thinking Historically);Hist 900 (Crafting a Historical Project); Hist 901 (Researching and Writing a Master’s Thesis); and Hist 993 (Master’s Thesis research and writing credit)
  • Reading proficiency in one foreign language
  • Thesis (an article-length research paper)
  • Oral defense of the thesis

At the end of the defense, the student’s faculty advisor and committee will decide whether the student should continue for a Ph.D.

Students admitted to UNC with an MA are expected to be admitted to Ph.D. candidacy within two years; by the end of the third year if they have been admitted with a BA.  The requirements include:

  • 15 credit hours including Hist 905 (Dissertation Design); one Field/Topical or Thematic 900-level research seminar; two courses in a minor field preferably at the 700 level or above in consultation with the student’s adviser; and Hist 994 (Doctoral Dissertation).
  • Reading proficiency in two foreign languages, advanced proficiency in one foreign language, or minimal proficiency in one foreign language and successful completion of a two-course program designed to develop proficiency in a research skill or theoretical perspective.
  • Written comprehensive examinations that vary by field
  • Completion and oral defense of a dissertation prospectus
  • Research and write a dissertation advancing knowledge in the chosen field