Program of Study
- Approval of courses by Graduate Program Director
- 30 units of coursework including
- HIST 500 Core Seminar (taken during the first semester) (3 units)
- HIST 501 Teaching Seminar (3 units)
- HIST 502 Public History Seminar (3 units)
- HIST 595 Thesis or HIST 596 Oral Examination (6 units)
- 18 units of elective courses, 12 units of which must be from history courses numbered in the 500s. An additional 6 elective units may be chosen from the following: history, political science, peace and justice studies, international relations, art, art history, marine science, theology and religious studies, literature, language, anthropology, ethnic studies, sociology, education, business administration, and law. Under certain circumstances and with special graduate level adjustments, 6 elective courses may be taken at the undergraduate, upper-division level.
- Only one course with a grade of "C+", "C", or "C-" may count towards the degree.
- No courses with a grade of "D" or "F" will count toward the degree although the grade will be calculated in the GPA.
- Satisfactory performance (minimum grade of "B") on a comprehensive examination in the final semester or completion and acceptance of a thesis.
Option 1: Comprehensive Examination
- The student must submit a portfolio containing 3 research papers developed in history graduate seminars. Each paper must be approximately 20 pages in length.
- The student must choose two fields of history in which to concentrate readings for the oral examination: a major field and a minor field. The student will develop a reading list in consultation with two history department faculty members who, together, will make up the student's examination committee.
- The student must write two essays surveying historical trends or interpretive debates in their major and minor fields. A 25-page historiographic essay will be required in the major field while a 15-page historiographic essay will be required in the minor field. The essays must be approved by the student's examination committee.
- The student must take an oral examination directed by the faculty advisor and one other history faculty member. The oral examination will address points raised by the student in the seminar papers and in the historiographic essays.
- The student who chooses the comprehensive examination option will register for HIST 596 "Oral Examination" (3 units). The student must complete at least twenty-one units of coursework to register for HIST 596 and begin the comprehensive examination process. The student will receive a "pass" for History 596 on successfully completing the essay and oral portions of the comprehensive examination. Thirty units of coursework are required for graduation.
Option 2: Thesis
The student must submit a thesis of at least 100 pages that shows proficiency in research into primary documents and independent thought. The thesis topic is to be approved by a faculty committee of at least two USD history department members. The student must register for HIST 595 "Thesis," until the 6 unit requirement is met and the thesis is completed. If the student has not completed the thesis by the time all required courses are completed (including the 6 units of HIST 595), they must continue to register for one-half (0.5) unit of thesis each semester (excluding summer and Intersession) until the thesis is completed and accepted. A pamphlet entitled Instructions for the Preparation and Submission of the Master's Thesis is available for sale in the University Bookstore.