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History at UCM

Understanding today's complex world and seeking the best vision for tomorrow.

M.A. in History at UCM

Explore the depths of history and discover new ways to think about the past.

Social Studiesat UCM

Explore innovative techniques and proven methods for a career in education.

Africana Studies at UCM

Discover multicultural contributions throughout history and inspire change.

Anthropology at UCM

Contribute to the rich diversity of the rapidly changing world.

Thesis Information


The thesis is a substantial monograph based upon original research which uses both primary and secondary sources.  The thesis includes an original historical argument, information drawn from research to support that argument and an explanation of how the argument fits within existing historiography on the topic.  A research project of this nature is generally required for admission to a doctoral program in history.


Students should pick up a copy of the Thesis Manual from the Graduate School before they begin writing their thesis, and preferably before beginning their program of study.  The Manual explains the Graduate School's requirements for the thesis.  Students should also arrange to attend a thesis workshop through the Graduate School early in their program of study.


Students will be required to submit a thesis prospectus, to defend the thesis, and to submit a final copy of the thesis to the department for book binding.



Thesis Prospectus

The thesis prospectus is a statement of what and how the student intends to research his/her thesis. The general format for the Prospectus is available through the Blackboard site or in the Appendix. Students should check with their Thesis Advisor for additional requirements. At a minimum the prospectus should be 4-6 pages long and include:


  • Statement of research question and tentative thesis
  • Explanation of research topic including the primary sources that are the basis for the research
  • Historiographical summary of secondary source literature on the proposed topic
  • Statement of methodology, to include the theoretical and/or critical basis for the thesis, and an explanation of how the student plans to approach the topic
  • An annotated bibliography divided into two sections: secondary sources and primary sources.  This is in addition to the 4-6 pages of text.


The Thesis Committee then meets with the student to discuss any concerns, problems, or suggestions pertaining to the thesis prospectus, and the signatures of all three members are required on the thesis prospectus.  The signed prospectus must be submitted to the Graduate Advisor no later than the semester immediately following the student's comprehensive exam.



Human Subjects Approval

Approval is required for research using living subjects.  This includes oral history interviews.  For more information about Human Subjects Approval, check with your Thesis Advisor and visit the Human Subjects Institutional Review Board website.



Thesis Defense

Once the thesis written the Thesis Advisor approves calling a defense, copies of the thesis will be distributed to the Thesis Committee by the student.  The student will then defend the thesis in a meeting with the Thesis Committee, which allows the student an opportunity to explain his/her thesis and to demonstrate expertise on the topic.  This also allows the student to incorporate final corrections and suggestions from the Thesis Committee. If the student passes the defense, which requires a majority of the Thesis Committee to sign off on the thesis, then the student prepares a final copy of the thesis and submits the required paperwork to the Graduate School.


The final, clean copy of the thesis should be printed on 20lb. white paper and submitted to the Graduate Coordinator.