Faculty: Professors Mallon (chair), Archdeacon, Bernault, Boswell, Chamberlain, Cohen, Cronon, Desan, Dunlavy, Enstad, Guerin-Gonzalez, Kantrowitz, Kleijwegt, Koshar, Mallon, McCoy, McDonald, Plummer, Reese, Roberts, Scarano, Sharpless, Sommerville, Stern, Sweet, Wandel, Winichakul, Wink, Young; Associate Professors Enke, Hirsch, Johnson, S., Jones, Kodesh, Michels, Neville, Ratner-Rosenhagen, Shoemaker, Thal; Assistant Professors Aiyar, Brophy, Chan, Cheng, Dennis, Hall, Ipsen, Johnson, M., Kim, Ussishkin.
The Department of History offers the master of arts and doctor of philosophy degrees in history as well as minor work for doctoral students in fields outside of history. The program is designed, however, to meet the needs of the Ph.D. candidate. Although the department occasionally accepts a student for terminal master's work, most students earn the master's degree as a part of a doctoral program. Students should consult the History Graduate Handbook for current information on the degrees offered.
The department anticipates that most of its students will accept positions as academic historians at the college and university level. To that end, the department seeks to train productive researchers, committed teachers, and engaged public intellectuals, who recognize a responsibility to participate actively in the world beyond the university. Seminars are rigorous, combining independent and collaborative work and emphasizing both scholarly production and intellectual connectedness.
The Department of History consists of the following programs or fields of study, each of which sets its own admissions policy and programmatic requirements, consistent with Graduate School policies and subject to the approval of the department as a whole: African history; Central Asian history; comparative world history; East Asian history; European history (ancient, medieval, early modern, modern, Russian, and British); Latin American and Caribbean history; Middle Eastern history; South Asian history (ancient, medieval, Muslim, modern, and South India); Southeast Asian history; United States history. See also Program in the History of Gender and Women, below.
Students are required to write a 35-page research paper within the framework of a research seminar They are also required to complete 24 graduate credits and one language requirement. The M.A. degree is awarded upon passing Second Year Review at the end of the fourth semester in residence. For additional details, prospective students should consult the History Graduate Handbook
Specific requirements for course work, languages, and preliminary examinations vary by program of study. Prospective students should consult the History Graduate Handbook for details. Also, students may be expected to meet special requirements depending on their educational background.
Admission to candidacy for the Ph.D. degree will be considered only after all requirements have been met. The recommendation to admit to candidacy or not to admit to candidacy comes from a committee composed of the student's faculty advisor and a panel of other faculty. It is based on the quality of the student's entire record and is reviewed by the Director of Graduate Studies.
Students in other departments who wish to minor in history must reach agreement (before beginning minor work) on an appropriate program of study with a history faculty member, who serves as the minor advisor. The program must include at least 9 credits of graduate-level work, of which not more than 3 credits may be in History 999. Contact the graduate coordinator for details.
For the joint Ph.D., students must first be admitted independently to both the history and the history of science departments, and should at that time indicate interest in the joint Ph.D. program. After completion of a master's degree in history or history of science (or an approved alternative), the student applies to a standing committee of the two departments for admission to the joint Ph.D. program. Students will be assigned a home department and will follow the regulations of that home department with regard to seminar requirements, financial aid, and regulations for satisfactory progress.
Students admitted to the joint Ph.D. program will be assigned a supervising committee, consisting of three members (two from the home department) who will supervise the student's subsequent work. The preliminary examination will test the student's competence in both history and history of science, balancing the material and the fields between the two departments. The number of preliminary fields must at least equal the number required of students majoring exclusively in history or history of science, plus one.
Students must fulfill the language requirements of the appropriate field of their home department. Since the joint Ph.D. meets the minor requirement of the Graduate School, no formal minor is required. However, students who wish to have a minor field recorded on the transcript may complete a regular Option A or Option B minor, or the internal minor of the department.
Preparation of the Ph.D. dissertation will be guided by the student's supervising committee. Satisfactory completion and defense of the dissertation constitute the final requirements for the joint Ph.D. degree.
Students in other departments who wish to pursue a joint Ph.D. (one degree, two majors) with history must first be admitted to the department. The proposal for the degree must be approved by the department Graduate Council before it is submitted to the Graduate School. Students admitted to a joint Ph.D. will satisfy all the normal requirements of their field in history except the minor requirement.
Students interested in American educational history apply for admission to the American history program and must be accepted by the admissions committee for American history. They prepare for the regular American history preliminary examination and otherwise follow the regulations established by the American history faculty. They may elect a minor in educational studies (in the Department of Educational Policy Studies) under the guidance of their advisor.
Students in both European and American educational history follow department or program rules regarding the M.A. degree and language requirements.
The program in the history of gender and women offers training with a specific geographic area of specialization while also providing opportunities for students to explore their research interests in a global perspective
Students may enter this program through one of the four programs of study: United States, Latin American and Caribbean, East Asian, or European history. Students who wish to be considered for the gender and women program should indicate this on their Graduate School application. Students who wish to apply through the Latin American branch may also do so when determining their Ph.D. minor.
Students in the program of gender and women will generally choose courses within and meet all the requirements of their geographic areas of specialization, while also meeting some additional requirements for the women's/gender history concentration and working under the supervision of a scholar active in the field of the history of gender and women within their geographic area. All students in the program will take a team-taught core seminar on the comparative and transnational history of women and gender.
The department requires an applicant to have a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution, with a minimum overall grade point average of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale), and a minimum 3.0 grade point average in history courses taken as an undergraduate (although successful applicants generally have far higher GPAs). The department occasionally admits superior students who have not had the equivalent of a history major. The department requires the Graduate Record Exam. The GRE must have been taken during the five years preceding application to the graduate program. Those taking the GRE need take only the general aptitude portion of the exam.
Applicants must also submit official transcripts from all colleges attended, three letters of recommendation, the selection of study sheet, and a statement of purpose (personal statement). All fields require a writing sample. International students must submit Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), International English Language Testing System (IELTS) or Michigan English Language Assessment Battery (MELAB) scores if English is not the language of the country of the student's permanent residence.
The application is judged on the basis of previous academic record, letters of recommendation (especially those provided by historians or scholars in related fields), the personal statement, the writing sample, and other criteria including GRE scores.
Admission is highly competitive. The deadline for application is December 1. Although the department may review exceptional applications arriving after that date, most slots are filled in the review that occurs in January.
Upper-division undergraduate courses (series 300 through 699) appearing either in this catalog or in the Course Guide for 4 credits may be taken by graduate students for 3 credits only. In several fields, undergraduate lecture courses may not be taken for credit after the first year of graduate study. Students are advised to check such restrictions in the History Graduate Handbook.
For more information: Department of History, 3211 Mosse Humanities Building, 455 North Park Street, Madison, WI 53706; 608-263-1962; firstname.lastname@example.org; history.wisc.edu.
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