MA in History

The Canada’s Internment Era Field School

The Canada’s Internment Era Field School – the first post-secondary course dedicated to the internment and dispossession in Canada. In July 2019 ten students and ten teachers embarked on a five-day tour of the former sites of the Japanese Canadian internment. East Lillooet was the final stop in the tour.

The Canada’s Internment Era Field School

The Canada’s Internment Era Field School – the first post-secondary course dedicated to the internment and dispossession in Canada.

Public History

Students Stephen Topfer and Lesley Golding discuss Stephen's exhibit at the Victoria Art Gallery

Come and experience:

  • Oral and Indigenous History
  • Cutting-Edge Research 
  • Hands-on Community Engagement
  • Real-World Work Experience and Professional Networking
  • History for the Digital World/New Media    

Public history stream

Our 20-month MA in Public History trains students to communicate the rich stories from the past to the widest possible audience. Public historians are skilled researchers and creative professional communicators who work for archives, museums, First Nations, historic parks, tourism agencies, art galleries, universities and government, conveying history via digital and traditional media. As students work alongside faculty to carry history to public audiences, they’ll learn its purpose, importance, and meaning.

Admission Requirements

Subject to the admission requirements of the Faculty of Graduate Studies, admission to the MA stream in Public History normally requires a bachelor’s degree with a minimum overall average of B+ (6.0 GPA), or a bachelor’s degree with a minimum average of A- (7.0 GPA) in the final year’s work. Many more students apply each year than can be accommodated in the program. A candidate with background deficiencies in History may be required to register for a year as a non-degree undergraduate student before being admitted to the program. A candidate with significant experience in community-based or professional historical engagement may be considered for admission without meeting the full requirements indicated above.

How to apply 

Program Requirements

The public history stream is designed to be completed within sixteen months of full-time enrollment: three full-time academic semesters and one full-time co-op work experience semester.

Students are required to take HSTR 500, HSTR 515A, 3.0 units of graduate History courses (normally HSTR 501A–528, HSTR 590, HSTR 591), and 3.0 units of AHVS 480 series courses in Cultural Heritage Management. Students are also required to complete a final project (HSTR 597) and a work-experience component.

The 3.0 units of graduate History courses may include only 1.5 units of field school courses. The department will accept GMST 589 in lieu of 1.5 units of graduate History courses. The Faculty of Graduate Studies normally allows graduate students to take 1.5 units of graduate level courses outside of their home department, subject to approval of the departmental graduate advisor.

Course requirements Unit Values
HSTR 500 1.5
HSTR 515A 1.5
Geographical or Topical Field course (HSTR) 3.0
AHVS 480 series courses in Cultural Resource Management 3.0
HSTR 597 6.0
Total 15.0

History graduate courses are defined as either geographical and topical, and students are required to develop a program, in consultation with their supervisor and the graduate adviser, that draws from both types. Geographical field courses are defined by territorial or regional boundaries. Topical field courses examine significant themes that cut across geographical and/or temporal boundaries, such as social, military, intellectual/cultural, family, women's, Indigenous, gender, religious, colonial, world or maritime history.

Work Experience

In order to be awarded an MA in the public history stream, students are also required to complete a semester of work experience, normally over the summer after their first year, with a museum, archive, historic site or other public history organization.  The work experience may be paid or unpaid. The work experience requirement is normally fulfilled through the University of Victoria Co-op program and the placement must also be approved by the History graduate adviser. Students who are currently working professionals in public history or have extensive volunteer experience in the field may be considered to have fulfilled the semester of work experience requirement.

Final Project( HSTR 597)

Students will complete a final project on a public history topic based on primary sources. This may take the form of a 40-50 page research paper or an alternate mode of dissemination such as website, a podcast, a museum exhibit or a film etc. Projects that are not research papers will be accompanied by a 20-page written paper documenting the research component of the project. The final project may be an outgrowth of the required work experience. This project will be graded by the supervisor and a second reader, both of whom must be members of the Faculty of Graduate Studies. This project will not be subject to oral defense.

Other Requirements

After the first eight months of coursework, students are required to meet with their supervisors and fill out the MA Student-Supervisor form. This form is due to the graduate secretary by May 31.

By October 15 of the second year of study, the supervisor and student will meet to assess the student’s progress and make plans for degree completion.  The MA Progress Report is due to the graduate secretary due by October 15.  Students who do not complete the program within the normal timeframe are required to fill and sign out a new progress report each year by October 15.

Supervisor

Each student will have a supervisor nominated by the academic unit who is a member of the Faculty of Graduate Studies. A faculty member who wishes to be appointed as a co-supervisor for a student who is in a program outside of the faculty member’s academic unit must be approved for the Faculty of Graduate Studies’ Membership list as an Associate Member in the student’s home academic unit.

The duties of the supervisor include: recommending a program of study chosen in conformity with the Faculty of Graduate Studies and academic unit’s regulations and supervision of the project. See “ Graduate Supervision Policy” on the Faculty of Graduate Studies website for more information.

Good Standing

Students must remain in good standing in order to continue to register each semester. Any concerns about academic or non-academic good standing will normally be handled by a committee including the student’s supervisor and the graduate advisor.  Any issues relating to supervisor/student relations will normally be adjudicated by the graduate advisor and the chair of the department.  All determinations of good standing follow the procedures outlined in the Graduate Supervision policy. 

Thesis-based option

Admission Requirements

Subject to the admission requirements of the Faculty of Graduate Studies, admission to the MA thesis stream in History normally requires a bachelor’s degree with a minimum overall average of B+ (6.0 GPA), or a bachelor’s degree with a minimum average of A- (7.0 GPA) in the final year’s work. Many more students apply each year than can be accommodated in the program. A candidate with background deficiencies in History may be required to register for a year as a non-degree undergraduate student before being admitted to the program.

How to apply.

Cultural, Social and Political Thought concentration

Students with an interest in theory may wish to consider applying to the CSPT concentration which can be combined with the MA thesis program. Students registered in the History MA and CSPT concentration fulfill slightly different program requirements. Please see the Cultural, Social and Political Thought drop down menu for more information.

Program Requirements

The MA thesis stream is designed to be completed within twenty-four months of full-time study: six full-time academic semesters.  Thesis stream MA students are required to complete HSTR 500, 4.5 additional units of graduate History courses (HSTR 501-526, HSTR 590, HSTR 591), and a 70-120 page thesis based on primary sources (HSTR 599). 

Course requirements (Unit Values)

History graduate courses are defined as either geographical and topical, and students are required to develop a program, in consultation with their supervisor and the graduate adviser, that draws from both types.

Geographical field courses are defined by territorial or regional boundaries. Topical field courses examine significant themes that cut across geographical and/or temporal boundaries, such as social, military, intellectual/cultural, family, women's, Indigenous, gender, religious, colonial, world or maritime history.The required courses must be comprised of 1.5 or 3 units of field courses in a geographical area relating to the student's thesis topic and 1.5 or 3 units of topical field courses. At least 1.5 units must be in a geographical or thematic area outside that covered in the thesis. The 4.5 units of graduate History courses may include only 1.5 units of field school courses.

The department will accept GMST 589 in lieu of 1.5 units of graduate History courses. The Faculty of Graduate Studies normally allows graduate students to take 1.5 units of graduate level courses outside of their home department, subject to approval of the departmental graduate advisor. 

Other Requirements

After the first eight months of coursework, students are required to meet with their supervisors and fill out the MA Student-Supervisor form.  This form is due to the graduate secretary by May 31

At the end of the first month of their fourth term of registration (usually September of the 2nd year of study), students are required to submit a short chapter to their supervisor and to the graduate adviser. Following this, the supervisor and committee member will assess the progress made to date and make plans in conjunction with the student regarding completion of the program by filling out the MA Progress Report form, due by October 15.  Students who do not complete the program within the normal two years are required to fill out a new progress report each year by October 15.

Supervisory Committee

Each student will have a supervisory committee nominated by the academic unit and approved by the Dean of Graduate Studies. The academic supervisor will facilitate all activities of the supervisory committee. All members of a supervisory committee must be members of the Faculty of Graduate Studies or be specifically approved by the Dean. A faculty member who wishes to be appointed as a co-supervisor for a student who is in a program outside of the faculty member’s academic unit must be approved for the Faculty of Graduate Studies’ Membership list as an Associate Member in the student’s home academic unit.

Note that when this is the case, normally the Associate Member would be ineligible to serve as a non-unit examining member, and would normally be ineligible to serve as an external examiner for the Associate Member’s home academic unit and for the unit for in which the person is an Associate Member.

The duties of the committee include: recommending a program of study chosen in conformity with the Faculty of Graduate Studies and academic unit’s regulations; supervision of the project, thesis or dissertation; participation in a final oral defense. The committee may conduct other forms of assessment and will recommend to the Faculty of Graduate Studies whether or not a degree be awarded to a candidate. See the Graduate Supervision Policy on the Faculty of Graduate Studies website for more information.

The MA thesis stream supervisory committee must have at least two members:

  • Member #1: The supervisor - must be from the home academic unit;
  • Member #2: Normally from within the home academic unit; may be a co-supervisor or a committee member.

Additional supervisory committee members may be added without the approval of the Dean as long as they are members of the Faculty of Graduate Studies or have had specific permission from the Dean of Graduate Studies to serve as a member.ThesisWhen you begin writing your thesis there are many resources available to you through the faculty of Graduate Studies. 

If you have questions please contact our graduate assistant.

 Proceeding to Oral DefenseBefore you defend your thesis there are a number of steps that you must take. A student may not proceed to defense until the supervisory committee approves the entire thesis and the thesis is submitted to the Faculty of Graduate Studies.  The external examiner only reads the thesis after it has been submitted to the Faculty of Graduate Studies.  The external examiner of an MA thesis is normally a member of the Faculty of Graduate Studies but not a member of the History Department.Timeline for 24-month completion:
  • September-April of your second year meet regularly with your supervisor and regularly submit chapter drafts.
  • April 15 of second year submit entire draft of thesis to supervisor.  Allow three weeks for the supervisor to read the thesis and the remainder of May to complete necessary revisions.
  • Confirm with your supervisory committee when they might be available for a possible defense date.
  • June 1 submit entire draft to committee members.  Allow three weeks for them to read the thesis.  Allow three weeks to make the required revisions.
  • July - submit request for oral examination form to the Faculty of Graduate Studies once all committee members have examined the thesis and are satisfied that it represents an examinable document for the degree requirements.  This form must be received by the Faculty of Graduate Studies 20 working days before your oral defense (not including the day of the defense).
  • August - 20 working days after submission or whenever your committee can assemble. Oral defense and examination that normally lasts one and a half to two hours.  The student begins by providing a 15-minute presentation followed by two rounds of questions.  Members of the public are invited to attend.  The examining committee determines whether the defense is acceptable and normally requires further revisions. 
  • August 31. Final day to submit the revised and complete thesis to UVicSpace.
 
Course requirements Unit Values

HSTR 500

1.5

Geographical Field Course

1.5

Topical Field Course

1.5

Geographical or Topical Field Course

1.5

Thesis (HSTR 599)

9.0

Total

15.0

Major Research Project (MRP) Stream

Admission Requirements

Subject to the admission requirements of the Faculty of Graduate Studies, admission to the MA Major Research Project stream normally requires a bachelor’s degree with a minimum overall average of B+ (6.0 GPA), or a bachelor’s degree with a minimum average of A- (7.0 GPA) in the final year’s work. Many more students apply each year than can be accommodated in the program. A candidate with background deficiencies in History may be required to register for a year as a non-degree undergraduate student before being admitted to the program.

How to apply.

Program Requirements

The MRP stream is designed to be completed within twelve months of full time study (i.e. three full-time academic semesters).  MRP students must complete HSTR 500, 6.0 additional units of graduate History courses (HSTR 501-526, HSTR 590, HSTR 591), HSTR 550 directed by their supervisor, and a major research project (HSTR 598). 

Course Requirements (Unit Values)

History graduate courses are defined as either geographical and topical, and students are required to develop a program, in consultation with their supervisor and the graduate adviser, that draws from both types. Geographical field courses are defined by territorial or regional boundaries. Topical field courses examine significant themes that cut across geographical and/or temporal boundaries, such as social, military, intellectual/cultural, family, women's, Indigenous, gender, religious, colonial, world or maritime history. 1.5 units will normally be taken in the student’s geographical field of interest. Three units will include at least 1.5 units of a topical field. At least 1.5 units must treat a geographical or thematic area outside that covered in the major research paper. The 6.0 units of graduate History courses may include only 1.5 units of field school courses.

The department will accept GMST 589 in lieu of 1.5 units of graduate History courses.

The Faculty of Graduate Studies normally allows graduate students to take 1.5 units of graduate level courses outside of their home department, subject to approval of the departmental graduate adviser.

Major Research Project

In order to prepare for the completion of the major research project, students will normally take HSTR 550, a directed reading historiographical and research methods course, with their supervisor in the last semester of study. 

Registration in HSTR 550 is conditional on the submission of a five-page project proposal and its approval by the supervisor.

The Major Research Project will normally be based on primary research and will emerge from a paper written for a graduate course. The major research paper must be 40-45 typed pages and will be written in the form of a journal article. The project will be graded by the supervisor and an additional faculty member. The second reader must be a member of the Faculty of Graduate Studies. This project will not be subject to oral defense.

Supervisor

Each student will have a supervisor nominated by the academic unit and approved by the Dean of Graduate Studies. A faculty member who wishes to be appointed as a co-supervisor for a student who is in a program outside of the faculty member’s academic unit must be approved for the Faculty of Graduate Studies’ Membership list as an Associate Member in the student’s home academic unit.

The duties of the supervisor include: recommending a program of study chosen in conformity with the Faculty of Graduate Studies and academic unit’s regulations and supervision of the project. See the document “Graduate Supervision Policy” on the Faculty of Graduate Studies website for more information.

Good Standing 

Students must remain in good standing in order to continue to register each semester. Any concerns about academic or non-academic good standing will normally be handled by a committee including the student’s supervisor and the graduate advisor. Any issues relating to supervisor/student relations will normally be adjudicated by the graduate advisor and the chair of the department. All determinations of good standing follow the procedures outlined in the Graduate Supervision policy. 

 

Course requirements Unit Values

HSTR 500

1.5

HSTR 550

1.5

Geographical Field Courses

3.0

Topical Field Course

1.5

Geographical or Topical Field Course

1.5

Major Research Paper

6.0

Total

15.0

Cultural, Social and Political Thought program

Prospective History applicants interested in the History MA thesis stream with a strong interest in theory can also apply to take an enriched course load through participation in the interdisciplinary program, Cultural, Social and Political Thought (CSPT). Those who qualify for the program are given the chance to engage with sophisticated theory that goes beyond disciplinary boundaries, in order to address key issues in cultural social and political thought.

Program Requirements for History MA students registered in Cultural, Social and Political Thought (CSPT) 

Students applying to the Cultural, Social, and Political Thought (CSPT) concentration-an interdisciplinary graduate concentration open to selected MA and PhD students in Anthropology, English, Environmental Studies, History, Political Science, and Sociology-must meet the admission requirements for the MA or PhD program. Applicants must apply online, choosing the Concentration in Cultural, Social and Political Thought (CSPT) option for History. If approved by the department, the application will be reviewed by the CSPT Admissions Committee. For full information about the program see www.uvic.ca/interdisciplinary/cspt. Students must meet the core graduating requirements of History as well as specific requirements of the CSPT Program. See also the entry for Concentration in Cultural, Social and Political Thought (CSPT). The Graduate Adviser in History should be consulted for details. Only students who have already been accepted into the MA program may be admitted to CSPT; however, acceptance to the MA program does not guarantee admission to the CSPT program.

Requirements

Course requirements Unit Values

HSTR 500

1.5

HSTR 501-591

3.0

CSPT 501

1.5

One other CSPT course at the 500 level

1.5

Thesis (HSTR 599)

9.0

Total

16.5

The MA thesis (HIST 599) must be in the field of CSPT with a supervisor who is a participating member of the concentration program.  For other information regarding the composition of the supervisory committee as well as information regarding the submission of the thesis and the oral defense, see the MA thesis stream section of the website.

How to apply

 

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