The Department of History at the University of California, Irvine emphasizes graduate training in regional areas, world and transnational history, and thematic specialties as elaborated in the graduate handbook. Whatever the student's chosen emphasis, the History Graduate Program encourages students to think across national and regional borders and to have a solid understanding of how the discipline of History contributes to debates about global and local transformation.
It is desirable that an applicant have the equivalent of an undergraduate major in History; however, the Department also considers students who have previously specialized in other subject areas and who have strong analytical and writing skills. The Department's required grade-point minimums and English Language Proficiency requirements for international student admission are consistent with university policy. A GRE score is not required for admission. Students are accepted for fall admission only.
Program of Study
Masters students receive similar opportunities as those offered doctoral students to train in the history of area regions and thematic emphases. A total of nine courses are required: three in a first field (either area-based or thematic), two in a second field (area-based or thematic), the two-quarter first-year research seminar (HISTORY 202A and HISTORY 202B), and two electives that may be taken outside the Department. It is strongly recommended that at least one of these electives be a directed readings course (HISTORY 291) with the advisor to either work on the thesis or prepare for the comprehensive exam. Upon entering the program, M.A. students must chose a department faculty member to serve as their advisor.
The M.A. is a one-year program in academic residence as a full-time student. However, it is understood that many M.A. students are employed and need to enroll on a part-time basis. Students are allowed up to three years of graduate study to complete the degree.
Degree Conferral Plan I- Thesis: The master’s thesis represents a revision of the first-year research paper, equivalent to a scholarly article, under the supervision of the faculty advisor. The project is reviewed and approved by the advisor and the thesis committee.
Degree Conferral Plan II- Comprehensive Exam: At the end of the final quarter, the M.A. candidate must pass a comprehensive oral exam administered by the faculty advisor and one other faculty member. Students are examined on their first field.
Students in the M.A. program whose major field requires use of foreign language sources must demonstrate competence in a foreign language in the process of writing the first-year research paper and thesis. Other M.A. students do not have to meet a foreign language or alternative skills requirement.