Graduate Catalog 2012-2013
Program Coordinator: Assistant Professor Samira Haj
Marchi Hall (2N), Room 2026
The Irish playwright Oscar Wilde once wrote that, "Any fool can make history, but it takes genius to write it." For students who wish to develop a genius for writing about the past, The Master's Degree in history at the College of Staten Island provides opportunities for personal growth and career development. The program meets the highest intellectual and professional standards of the historical discipline, offering training in the analytic and communications skills demanded by all the professions.
Whether graduate students are interested in the master’s degree to satisfy curiosity about the past, or as a preliminary step toward doctoral study, they will benefit from an explanation of the histories of Africa, Asia, Europe, and North and South America; they also will learn to recognize historical questions and to apply the methods historians have developed to analyze and describe critical human events.
The program is also suited to teachers in the social sciences with initial certification who wish to deepen their knowledge of history as they complete the master’s degree qualification demanded for professional certification. Careers in cultural institutions are also open to students with the professional training in historical research provided by the master’s program.
Graduates of the Master’s program in History at the College of Staten Island will acquire an overview of global history and a focus on a geographic area of specialization. The curriculum requires coursework distributed across four of the department’s five fields of concentration: History of Africa and the Middle East, History of Asia, History of Europe, History of Latin America and the Caribbean, and History of the United States. Students will explore one of these areas of concentration, and will complete a significant work of historical scholarship, a master’s thesis under the supervision of a thesis director. Students desiring recommendation for doctoral work will demonstrate competence in at last one foreign language.
For matriculated status:
For non-matriculated status:
Non-matriculated graduate students and graduate students in the Education program or other graduate programs, at the discretion of the MA in History program coordinator, may enroll in the program’s offerings on a space-available basis after matriculated History MA program students have been accommodated.
In special cases, master’s students may take an advanced undergraduate history course or a 600-level history course, with appropriate additional work, for degree credit, but only by special arrangement and with the prior permission of the program coordinator. Undergraduate students may, with the permission of the program coordinator, take graduate courses for credit toward their undergraduate degree or the master’s degree.
Students must have a minimum grade point average of 3.0 to be retained in a graduate program. Students will be able, but not required, to complete the MA Program in four semesters. Some students, particularly those who continue to work full-time while completing the degree, will find it difficult to complete all of the requirements in four semesters. This is normal in most history MA programs, and students should not be discouraged by the demanding pace of CSI's program.
The MA in History requires 32 graduate credits at the 700-level, with all graduate courses designated at four credits, for a total of eight courses. Students must take at least one course in each of four of the program’s five areas of concentration, the Historical Methods course (HST 701), and the two thesis seminars (HST 798 and HST 799).
Students with initial certification in Adolescence Education (social studies) who wish to obtain professional certification will complete a program of 36 credits. They will take HST 798 (4 credits) and HST 799 (4 credits). In addition, they will take EDS 691 Advanced Studies in Teaching Secondary School Social Studies (3 credits) and an independent study course (1 credit) in the Department of Education in the same semester in which they enroll in HST 799 (Thesis Tutorial Seminar). For further information about these certification requirements, consult the Office of Teacher Certification Services of the New York City Department of Education at 212.420.1830.
Areas of concentration
History of Africa and the Middle East
History of Asia
History of Europe
History of Latin America and the Caribbean
History of the United States
The Faculty of the Department of History has established the following standards for an acceptable History MA thesis:
(Thesis students should consult the statement of guidelines for thesis submission to the CSI Library, maintained by the MA in History program).
Probationary Admission to Program
In some cases (such as when Probationary a student applies after the application closing date, with a lower-than-expected GPA, an undergraduate major other than History, or other issues), the MA committee may admit students to the program on a probationary basis. In these cases, the standing of the student will be re-evaluated by the committee at the end of the student's first semester in the program, at which point the probation may be lifted or the student will be informed that he or she may not continue in the program.
Dismissal from the Program
When students engage in acts of academic dishonesty or fail to maintain a 3.0 GPA or the MA committee may elect to place a student on probation or to dismiss a student from the MA Program. The probationary period lasts for at least one semester. During that time, the MA committee will determine whether students have made satisfactory progress toward correcting the situation that has resulted in the probationary status. If the committee determines that such progress exists, then the probation may be lifted; if not, the students will be informed that they many not continue in the program.