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Master’s Degree programs
There are two degree programs within the Master of Arts, History:
- Master of Arts — for persons interested in pursuing the study of history for college teaching or for other purposes. Students who plan to study for the Ph.D. are advised to learn to read one foreign language and advised to complete a master’s thesis.
- Secondary School Teachers Concentration M.A. — for persons with valid secondary teaching credentials. Considered a terminal degree.
Program Learning Outcomes
- advanced skills in critical thinking and analysis;
- the ability to locate secondary and primary historical sources in all forms;
- the ability to analyze primary sources understanding the importance of historical context;
- effective written and oral communication skills;
- the ability to cite sources properly; and
- the ability to perceive any given event from more than one cultural viewpoint.
Prerequisites for Admission
(M.A. History, Secondary School Teachers)
The department considers two overall areas in deciding on qualifications for admission: overall GPA (including GPA in history courses) and recency of coursework. Specifically, the requirements for admission are:
- An overall grade point average of 3.0.
- At least 21 units of upper-division history, including a senior thesis, with a GPA of 3.0 or better in these courses. Units taken 15 or more years prior to application will be considered outdated; if 9 or more upper-division units are outdated, a student will be admitted into provisional status with conversion to conditional classified status (the normal status for new students in the program) contingent upon the completion of additional coursework according to the following formula:
- Applicants with 9 to 11 outdated units must complete Senior Seminar (including the writing of a senior thesis) with a grade of B or better.
- Applicants with 12 to 21 outdated units and a GPA of 3.5 or better must complete Senior Seminar (including the writing of a senior thesis) plus two regular upper-division courses with a GPA of 3.0 or better in these courses. Except for Senior Seminar, these units may be taken for graduate credit and may be counted toward the M.A. if they are at the 4000 level.
- Applicants with 12 to 21 outdated units and a GPA between 3.0 and 3.49 must complete Senior Seminar (including the writing of a senior thesis) plus three regular upper-division courses with a GPA of 3.0 or better in these courses. Except for Senior Seminar, these units may be taken for graduate credit and may be counted toward the M.A. if they are at the 4000 level.
- Satisfactory performance on the Graduate Record Examination, General Test, unless the student has completed 15 or more units of upper-division history at CSU Stanislaus.
- Students may be admitted on a provisional basis if they have both an overall GPA and a history GPA between 2.9 and 3.0. During their first year, these students must complete 9 units of 4000 level coursework (not including senior seminar) with extra graduate-level work, and with a GPA of 3.0 or better in these courses. Students who do not meet this requirement within one year will be discontinued from the program. These courses may then count for graduate credit if they are subsequently admitted to Conditional Classified Status. Coursework taken under provisional status which is counted toward the M.A. will fall under the seven-year maximum for completion of the degree.
Note: Secondary School Teachers Concentration M.A. additionally requires a valid California secondary teaching credential.
- Upon admittance, students will be assigned an adviser, usually the Chair of the Graduate Committee.
- Students generally begin with “Conditionally Classified” status.
- After completing 10 units of history or other preapproved courses with a B average, assuming all other prerequisites have been met, the student will be evaluated for “Classified” status.
- Pending completion of all classes counting toward the M.A., minus the thesis (if the student chooses to write one), each student must write a letter to the Chair of the Graduate Committee announcing his/her readiness to take comprehensive exams.
- Students must take their comprehensive exams within one calendar year of completing their coursework, minus the thesis, during the times specified by the department.
- Upon completing all requirements for the M.A., the student achieves “Candidacy” status and is ready for graduation.
- Thirty units are required, of which 24 units are to be taken in courses offered by CSU Stanislaus.
- Fifteen of the 24 units must be at the 5000-level. Four of those units must be HIST 5930; at least eight units must be chosen from HIST 5900, 5910, 5920 and/or 5970.
- No coursework below B- nor CR-graded courses may fulfill any M.A. requirement, with the exception of thesis units, which are always CR-graded units.
- When enrolled in a 4000-level (senior) course, the graduate student must do additional work as specified by the instructor to earn graduate credit. Students may not take HIST 4000, 4960, or 4980 for graduate credit.
- A student not doing a thesis must submit at least two substantial papers, written during graduate classes, for the files.
- A comprehensive written examination is required of all candidates and will cover all work taken in the program. In addition, if the thesis option is chosen, then an oral defense of a thesis is required.
- In the papers and examination, the student is expected to demonstrate knowledge of the subject matter, its historiography, and competence in the following three skills: ability to perform research operations, analytical skills, and ability to communicate clearly.
1. All graduate students with conditionally classified status must take the following course at the first opportunity that the course is offered:
2. All students must take 11 additional units at the 5000 level.
At least eight of these additional units must be from the following Graduate Seminars: HIST 5900, 5910, 5920 and/or 5970.
The applicable courses are:
3. The remaining 5000 level units may come from the following courses:
Note: HIST 5900, 5910, 5920, and 5970 may only be repeated for credit with a different instructor.
4. All students must complete additional coursework at the 4000 level.
Extra work, as specified by the instructor, is required to complete the 30-unit master’s degree requirement. The only 4000-level classes not appropriate for graduate students are HIST 4000, 4960, and 4980.
5. Other courses may be considered for all concentrations in consultation with the Graduate Committee.
Prior approval required.