Graduate study in history is conducted under the regulations adopted by the faculty of the Graduate College as set forth in the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Graduate Studies Bulletin. Within these regulations of the Graduate College, this guide describes the specific requirements and procedures of the Department of History. In no way does it supersede or abrogate the regulations of the Graduate College. Students and advisers should familiarize themselves with the regulations of both this guide and the Graduate Studies Bulletin.
Graduate students may continue a master's degree program under regulations in force when they were admitted to the degree program. Regulations in this guide will not be applied retroactively to students whose status or degree objective does not change. Students admitted to the master's degree program after the adoption of this guide will be expected to adhere to these regulations.
The Graduate Committee is appointed by the Dean of Graduate Studies upon the recommendation of the chair of the department. It is responsible for the maintenance of regulations concerning the department's graduate program.
The Office of Graduate Studies awards fellowships to graduate students. The Department of History also awards a few fellowships and grants for study/research to qualified graduate students. For more information, contact the Office of Graduate Studies or the chair of the departmental Graduate Committee.
The master's degree at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln is a thesis degree. A student must earn a minimum of 30 semester hours of credit, consisting of 24 credit hours of regular course work and a thesis equivalent to 6 to 10 credit hours. At least 18 hours of the required work, including thesis, must be taken in the History Department. The remaining work must be in a second global area or in a minor in another department consisting of at least 9 credit hours. Twelve hours credit, in addition to the thesis, must be earned in courses open exclusively to graduate student (i.e. at the 900 level) but History 990 (Seminar on Teaching History) cannot be included among these 12 credits. Students will ordinarily receive graduate credit for no more than 3 credit hours of independent readings, defined as History 889 without a letter suffix indicating cross-listing with a lecture course at the 300 level.
The language requirement for the master’s degree is normally satisfied by two years of college-level coursework in a single foreign language, with a grade of “B” or better in each semester.
The M.A. Thesis
The subject of the master's thesis must be chosen from the candidate's broad area in history. The thesis should reveal a capacity to carry on independent research and should demonstrate the student's ability to use the techniques employed in his/her area of investigation.
The master's thesis and abstract in preliminary form must be approved by the adviser prior to applying for the final oral examination (at least four weeks prior to the examination). The thesis must comply with the requirements for style and form as stipulated in the Graduate Studies Bulletin. Although the Department of History does not require a thesis of any fixed length, 75 to 125 pages should be adequate to cover the subject. It may be either entirely or in part produced as digital scholarship of a scope and significance appropriate to the master's thesis. Whether in print form or digitally produced, the thesis should demonstrate the student's capability to form an argument, analyze evidence, and relate the question to the broader concerns of the field. A copy of the thesis and abstract in preliminary form must be submitted to the Office of Graduate Studies for approval at least two weeks (one week in summer) prior to the final oral examination. This copy will be reviewed by the master's degree assistant and returned to the student. A preliminary copy of the thesis should also be distributed to all members of the examining committee two weeks before the oral examination. A candidate is not eligible for the oral examination until the thesis is completed and approved by the major adviser.
The examining committee, approved by the Office of Graduate Studies on recommendation of the departmental Graduate Committee, will consist of at least three members from history if the student has completed their primary and secondary areas in the history department, and two from history and one from the other department if the student has an external minor in another department. All members of the committee must be either on the Graduate Faculty or approved to perform specified Graduate Faculty duties. In exceptional circumstances, the final oral examination may be waived by agreement of the members of the examining committee.
When the thesis has been accepted by the examining committee, one copy must be supplied to the major department and two copies must be deposited with the Dean of University Libraries.