The department of history at UW-Eau Claire has sponsored a small graduate program for more than a quarter century, emphasizing collaborative work between the student and mentor. The department believes that the master’s degree serves an important role in training future historians for research, teaching and public service. All of the history department’s permanent faculty are engaged in graduate education. The graduate student can expect close supervision and guidance from a faculty mentor. The department’s teaching and research strengths include American history, American Indian history, public history, modern military history, comparative world cultures and women’s history.
The master of arts is a 30- to 33-credit degree that emphasizes small reading and discussion seminars. The MA includes two program options: a 30-credit program including a thesis or research paper (an intensive research project involving identification and engagement with sources, methods and interpretations — recommended for those planning further graduate study), and a 33-credit non-thesis program.
The purpose of the MA degree is to provide students with an opportunity to:
• Broaden and deepen their knowledge and understanding of history.
• Acquire an understanding of theoretical approaches to history and historiography.
• Develop an ability to analyze and interpret historical developments by historical research, writing and presentation.
• Apply their understanding of the historical complexity of the people, institutions, events, and ideas that shape the world today.
• Acquire a foundation of a professional identity as a historian.
The Graduate Certificate Program is intended for individuals who would like to expand their competence and knowledge in a particular area of history. Graduate certificates emphasize specialization and depth of knowledge in a specific area of interest, 15 hour graduate certificates are available in the following concentrations: United States History; Women, Family, and Gender History; African American History; Native American History; Global History; European History; Middle Eastern History; Asian History; Latin American History; Historical Research and Writing; Military History; Race and Ethnic History; and Public History.
The department does all that it can with limited funds to assist every qualified, admitted graduate student with financial assistance. In addition to helping students gain access to loans for graduate education, the department has offered the following types of financial aid:
• Graduate assistantships, which include stipends and the responsibility to work up to 20 hours per week for the department.
• Graduate fellowships, worth $1,000 per year, and no work requirement.
• Private research assistance employment, usually for department faculty members who have external research grants.
For graduate assistantships or fellowships, applications must be complete by March 1.
UW-Eau Claire’s master degree recipients in history now work in archives and historical museums across the United States. Other recipients have gone onto further graduate work at leading doctoral universities in the United States and Canada. Master’s recipients have enjoyed success in securing teaching positions in secondary schools in Wisconsin and in other states, or if they are returning to the classroom, they usually enjoy an advance in rank upon completion of the master’s degree. Many have also found opportunities in government and business.
• The department of history has been awarded nearly $7 million in grants from the U.S. Department of Education and the National Endowment for the Humanities to fund programming and graduate fellowships for teachers.
• The department of history was the recent recipient of University of Wisconsin Regents Teaching Excellence Award for Academic Departments and Programs.
• Two UW-Eau Claire History professors have been recipients of Wisconsin Professor of the Year awards.
• A baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution.
• A minimum of 24 semester credits of undergraduate history, with 30 semester credits recommended.
• An overall GPA of 3.0 or of 3.15 in the second half of all undergraduate work.
• The department admits the best qualified applicants from a pool each year depending on available space in the program and its assessment of a student’s potential for graduate work. Students normally are admitted from this pool for the fall semester and should have completed their applications by March 1. Students may occasionally be admitted for spring semester or the summer session if their qualifications and space in the program permit.
Note: The department occasionally may consider admission of a student whose grade-point average and/or other qualifications do not meet all those specified above, if there is convincing evidence that he/she is capable of
performing satisfactory graduate work. Admission under these circumstances is conditional.
To apply to the MA in history program, an applicant should submit the following documents by March 1:
• A completed graduate application form and submission of the application fee.
• Official transcripts from all postsecondary schools attended.
• A letter of intent from the prospective student, stating as precisely as possible the applicant’s special area of interest in history as well as career goals and expectations.
• Three letters of recommendation from professionals who are familiar with the applicant’s past work and potential to do graduate work. These letters also may be used for applying for graduate assistantships and fellowships.
• A research paper or a writing sample of at least 10 pages in length.
Send materials to:
Schofield Hall 111
Eau Claire WI 54702-4004
For information contact:
Dr. Jane Pederson, Director