Graduate Program
Master of Arts History

Savannah and the Georgia Lowcountry, with their rich mixture of history and culture, offer a perfect setting for graduate study in history. Internationally famous for the beauty of her parks, public squares, and architecture, Savannah and her environs are rife with opportunities for research in social, political, religious, military, agricultural, industrial, and maritime history. With the nation's largest National Historic Landmark District, acclaimed museums, and state and federal research centers, Savannah is also a living laboratory with sites ranging from prehistoric occupations and colonial settlements to twentieth-century resort communities awaiting scholars interested in Public History.

Armstrong students tailor their courses of study to their particular interests, enabling them to complete their degrees within two years.

Admission Standards
Standards of Progression and Graduation
Program of Study Courses

American and European History students may take a variety of specialized courses, seminars, and colloquia in their primary fields, and choose from a broad offering of electives. Students also have the opportunity to complement their graduate experience by taking Public History courses, acquiring understanding of non-academic history traditions. The range of recently-completed theses includes examinations of the Cold War and the evolution of the C.I.A., stag hunting in medieval England, the early modernist art movement in America, the Tennessee Valley Authority, Irish nationalist leader Thomas Russell, and the Confederate ironclad CSS Georgia.

Public History students will sample a variety of different public history disciplines, but may focus their studies in Historic Preservation, Folklife, Museum Studies, Archival Studies, or other public history fields. Professors in the program work with Savannah's historic community and supplement classroom experience with other educational opportunities in the field. Public History students culminate their degrees by completing an internship with a historic agency or writing a master's thesis.

The program of study will:

  1. Provide a sophisticated and comprehensive understanding of the complexities of human history
  2. Examine carefully the theoretical and methodological elements of the discipline of history
  3. Enable the student to exercise advanced research techniques and analytical skills necessary to their major
  4. Provide numerous opportunities for the student to communicate orally and in writing the knowledge and skills gained by participation in the program
  5. Equip all students with some familiarity in the public applications of historical inquiry and provide public history majors with a solid grounding in the standard methods and canon of historical research or archaeological methods

Admission Standards

Regular Admission
For regular admission the applicant must have:

  • Completed requirements for the baccalaureate degree from a regionally-accredited institution.
  • A 3.0 overall grade point average or higher on all undergraduate work.
  • A score of no less than 550 on the verbal section and 450 on the quantitative section or 4.5 on the analytical section of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE).
  • An undergraduate major in history or the equivalent in the proposed field of study.
  • Three letters of recommendation.

Provisional Admission
For provisional admission the applicant must have:

  • Completed requirements for the baccalaureate degree from a regionally-accredited institution.
  • A minimum score of 450 on the verbal section and 400 on the quantitative section or 3.5 on the analytical section of the GRE.
  • At least a 2.75 overall grade point average on undergraduate college work.
  • An undergraduate major in history or the equivalent in the proposed field of study.
  • Three letters of recommendation.
  • A student may be reclassified with regular admission providing they have taken at least one Armstrong course, approved by their advisor, with a grade of no less than B. Additional courses may be required to be completed prior to a student's reclassification. No more than nine hours may be earned.

Standards of Progression and Graduation

  1. Time Limit
    All degree requirements must be completed within seven years.
  2. Program of Study
    Students will formalize a program of study with their major advisor. Students must choose a concentration in one of the following: American, European, or public history. The student, major advisor, and program coordinator will sign the program of study and submit it with the application for graduation two semesters prior to graduation.

    The courses listed in the program of study must include a minimum of 36 hours of graduate work, and at least 50 percent of the projected courses must be courses open only to graduate students. If any change in the approved program of study is required, an amended program of study signed by the advisor and the student must be submitted and approved by the dean of graduate studies.
  3. Graduation Requirements
    The student must maintain a 3.0 overall average of all graduate courses completed. Students must also satisfactorily pass the following before beginning work on the master's thesis:
    • A foreign language examination
    • A written comprehensive assessment in the major
    • An oral comprehensive assessment
    • The student must apply for graduation two semesters before the date of graduation.
  4. Thesis, Internship, and Advanced Fieldwork
    A prospective candidate for a graduate degree must register for a minimum of six hours of thesis credit. Six hours of public history internship (HIST 8100) or six hours of advanced archeological course work (HIST 8210) may be substituted for thesis work for the public history concentration. In addition, a student must register for the thesis during each semester in which the thesis is under preparation and where university facilities or staff time are utilized.

    The letters "IP" will be recorded each semester that a graduate student registers for thesis credit without completing the thesis requirements. When the thesis has been accepted by the thesis committee and approved by the dean of graduate studies, a grade will be assigned for thesis credit. Only six hours of thesis credit will count toward a degree.

    The master of arts thesis must demonstrate the student's ability to research and analyze a problem in history. The research must utilize primary sources, as well as incorporate a critical grasp of the secondary works relevant to the thesis inquiry. The thesis shall be written under the direction of the student's advisor/major professor and must receive the approval of two of the three members of the committee assigned to review the thesis. The thesis must be signed by the major professor and the assenting committee members and submitted to the dean of graduate studies.