History: MA, MS
The Department of History has been recognized by the American Historical Association as one of 12 outstanding history departments in the United States and Canada, selected for its “brilliant teaching and leadership.” The department's graduate program attracts students from across the United States and overseas. Because the department limits its entering class to approximately 12, every graduate student is important. Moreover, master’s-level students are not competing with doctoral students for the faculty’s time or for history-related work experiences.
The faculty members of the History Department have a broad array of specialties, so students can study a variety of time periods and geographic areas in history. In particular, the department has particular depth in the areas of environmental history, religious studies, and Western United States studies.
The MA degree requires students to gain proficiency in one or more foreign languages. The MS degree requires students to incorporate computer, social, or natural science into their research in lieu of a foreign language. A course plan will be developed for each student with their committee in their first year.
Graduates with a master’s degree in history can find careers in many venues, such as:
- Historical societies
- Publishing companies
- Government agencies
- High schools
Many master's students go on to prestigious doctoral programs or have careers as writers.
The Department of History strongly recommends that applicants have either an undergraduate major or minor in history or a closely related field.
- Complete the online application
- Pay the $55 application fee
- Score at or above the 40th percentile on in the GRE
- Have a 3.0 or higher GPA on your last 60 semester or 90 quarter credits
- Provide transcripts of all college/university credits
- Provide three contacts for letters of recommendation
International students have additional admissions requirements.
It is important that students be aware of the areas of expertise of the History Department faculty. If students wish to study a field not covered by faculty at USU, they may not be admitted to the program.
The department accepts new students each fall and has the following application deadline:
- Fall semester – December 15
- Applicants who submit applications after the December 15 deadline may still be admitted to the program; however, they will not be considered for financial assistance.
Master's Degree Plan Option(s)
Students can receive the MS or MA by pursuing one of two options:
- In the Plan A option, students complete graduate-level coursework and must write a thesis.
- The Plan B option requires the production of a paper or creative work of art and is expected to reflect equivalent scholarship standards as a thesis.
The History Department offers various types of graduate financial assistance:
Graduate assistantships are the primary financial assistance offered by the Department of History. Offered annually on a competitive basis, there are seven graduate assistantships each year for qualified students. These assistantships entail approximately 20 hours of work a week assisting the faculty in the introductory survey courses taught by the department. The award carries a stipend of $3,750 for one semester of work and $10,000 per academic year and a nonresident tuition award. A GA must maintain a GPA of 3.0 and be enrolled as a full-time student to keep an assistantship and may hold graduate assistantships for a maximum of two years while enrolled in the master's program. Applications for graduate assistantships should be postmarked no later than December 15 for the next academic year.
Additional financial assistance: The department has a small number of Carr Graduate Fellowships which are usually awarded to supplement the stipend provided to graduate assistants and to support summer research travel. In addition, a $500 summer research award, the Charles and Elizabeth Peterson Thesis Award, is given on a competitive basis to a student working on the history of Utah or the West.
Additionally, the cost of living in Logan, Utah, is about 12% lower than the national average.
Rebecca Anderson, PhD, Arizona State
Area: Public History, Utah History
Office: Main 321Q
Phone: (435) 797-4159
Seth Archer, ,
Area: Native american
Office: MAIN 321M
Philip Barlow, PhD, Harvard University
Professor, Arrington Chair of Mormon Studies & Culture
Area: Religious studies, American religion, Mormon history and culture
Office: MAIN 321U
Phone: (435) 797-1299
John Barton, MA, Brigham Young University
Area: American History, Western American History, Utah History, American Indian History, Colonial History
Phone: (435) 722-1734
Clayton Brown, PhD, University of Pittsburgh
Area: Ancient and Modern China, WWII in Asia, China's Cultural Revolution, Vietnam War
Office: Bingham Research Cen
Phone: (435) 722-1772
Jonathan Brunstedt, PhD, University of Oxford
Area: Modern Europe, Russia and the Soviet Union, Second World War, Modern Germany, Eastern Europe, Cold War, Ideology, Nationalism, and Social Memory
Office: Main 321K
Phone: (435) 797-1291
Kyle Bulthius, PhD, University of California - Davis
Area: Early American history, U.S. West, religious history, social and cultural history
Office: MAIN 323 F
Phone: (435) 797-1213
Susan Cogan, PhD, University of Colorado
Area: Early Modern Europe
Office: Main 321J
Phone: (435) 797-1106
Christopher Conte, PhD, Michigan State University
Area: Africa, world, and environmental history
Office: MAIN 323 G
Phone: (435) 797-1303
Lawrence Culver, PhD, University of California - Los Angeles
Area: U.S. southwest borderlands, U.S. West, cultural, environmental, and urban history
Office: MAIN 321 H
Phone: (435) 797-3101
Mark Damen, PhD, University of Texas - Austin
Area: Latin and Greek languages, ancient civilization, classical drama
Office: MAIN 307
Angela Diaz, PhD, University of Florida
Area: 19th century United States
Phone: (435) 797-1301
Julia Gossard, PhD, University of Texas at Austin
Area: Early Modern Europe & World (proficient in Medieval & Modern as well); French History; Social History; History of Childhood, Children, & Youth; Gender & Sexuality; History of Education; History of Social Reform; Atlantic History
Office: Main 323F
Phone: (435) 797-0870
Susan Grayzel, PhD, University of California, Berkeley
Area: Modern Europe; women and gender; cultural history of war; modern Britain and France
Office: Main 323G
Phone: (435) 797-4175
Victoria Grieve, PhD, George Washington University
Associate Professor, graduate advisor
Area: Modern American cultural and intellectual history, art and culture of the West
Office: MAIN 321
Phone: (435) 797-0145
Ravi Gupta, PhD, University of Oxford
Professor-Charles Redd Chair of Religious Studies
Area: World Religions, Hinduism, Interfaith Dialogue, Religion in Performance
Office: MAIN 321
Phone: (435) 797-1196
Norman Jones, PhD, Cambridge University
Area: Renaissance-Reformation Europe, Tudor England, history of Christianity
Office: MAIN 323
Phone: (435) 797-1293
Daniel McInerney, PhD, Purdue University
Area: American intellectual history, 19th century United States
Office: MAIN 323 H
Phone: (435) 797-1283
Robert Mueller, PhD, University of California at Santa Barbara
Area: Medieval and Early Modern Europe, British History, American Popular Culture
Phone: (435) 797-9929
Susan Neel, Phd, University of California at Los Angeles
Area: U.S. history since 1877; environmental history, America in the 1960s, Environmental History
Office: USU Eastern
Phone: (435) 609-6593
Colleen O’Neill, PhD, Rutgers University
Area: American West, American Indian, labor, ethnic, women and gender
Office: MAIN 321 E
Phone: (435) 797-1297
Tammy Proctor, PhD, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
Department Head, Professor
Area: Modern Europe, Gender, Youth, Imperialism, First World War
Office: MAIN 323A
Phone: (435) 797-8452
Danielle Ross, PhD, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Area: Islam, Central Asia, South Asia, Middle East, Colonialism, Revolution
Office: Main 323I
Phone: (435) 797-3791
James Sanders, PhD, University of Pittsburgh
Area: Latin America, Atlantic world
Office: MAIN 323 E
Phone: (435) 797-1294
Susan Shapiro, PhD, University of Texas - Austin
Area: Ancient Western civilization, Latin and Greek, Greek intellectual history
Office: MAIN 323 D
Phone: (435) 797-2091
Dominic Sur, PhD, University of Virginia
Area: Asian Intellectual and Cultural History, Literature, Philosophy
Office: MAIN 321T
Phone: (435) 797-9058
Francis Titchener, PhD, University of Texas - Austin
Area: Ancient Greece and Rome, Celtic Europe, Latin and Greek
Office: MAIN 310
Phone: (435) 797-1298
Professional Organizations, Honor Societies, and Clubs
American Historical Association: The American Historical Association was founded in 1884 and was incorporated by Congress in 1889 to serve the broad field of history. It encompasses every historical period and geographical area and serves professional historians in all areas of employment.
Western History Association: The Western History Association is the professional organization focused on the history of the American West that publishes the journal Western Historical Quarterly, which is housed at USU.
Phi Alpha Theta: This professional society has a mission to promote the study of history through the encouragement of research, good teaching, publication, and the exchange of learning and ideas among historians.
Labs, Centers, Research
Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art: This museum collects, maintains, preserves, and regularly exhibits art in diverse media created primarily in the American West with an emphasis on modern and contemporary movements. Through exhibitions and education programs, the museum provides the campus and community with opportunities for growth, discovery, and scholarly research.
Special Collections and Archives: One of the most important centers for students’ historical research is housed within the Merrill-Cazier Library in the Special Collections and Archives division. The division is composed of seven distinct sections (art book collections, folklore, manuscripts, western and Mormon americana, photographs, preservation, and USU archives). Each section is assigned a specialist who is responsible for the care and use of the materials. In addition, the Merrill-Cazier Library provides extensive reference and database collections covering historical experience from the classical period through the present.