Graduate Program

graduate history students
FSU History graduate students showcasing work along Legacy Walk on campus.

About the Program

The Department of History at Florida State University offers students a rich intellectual environment, a dedicated and gifted faculty, unique local research resources, and numerous opportunities for professional development outside the classroom. A Carnegie Research 1 Institution, we provide training leading to the M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in a wide variety of historical fields.

Our History Graduate Student Association sponsors a graduate student conference each spring, has monthly meetings during the academic year, and organizes various social activities. The supportive atmosphere they foster comes through from providing mentors to incoming students to setting up works in progress presentations.

We have an extensive teacher training program, including the courses Teaching College History and Supervised Teaching. Other training takes place in Preparing Future Faculty sessions. In addition there is a university-wide Program for Instructional Excellence which sponsors workshops and provides for a certificate of completion (as well as offering prizes). Students typically move from grading at first to teaching their own classes after comprehensive exams.

Jen Koslow, Department Chair
Welcome from the chair

Welcome to the History Department at Florida State University. Our graduate curriculum fosters flexibility of mind. As a result, we prepare students for a broad range of careers, some of which might surprise you. Some students have chosen education as their path and served as university professors, college presidents, and public and private school teachers. Some have chosen to work in cultural resource organizations as museum professionals, historical resource managers, archivists, and historical records managers. Still, others take their skills to the private and public sectors and apply the critical thinking, researching, and writing proficiency learned here -- a set of skills in high demand -- across an endless variety of disciplines. You supply the curiosity and commitment, and we will ready you with an advanced degree that can take you anywhere.

The cap for most of our graduate classes is twelve students, so students get individualized attention. Students enter the program with an advisor and potential committee members in place, ready to take courses that count. Our faculty teach a range of geographic and chronological foci. The department also has concentrations in several topical areas: War and Society; Gender and Sexuality; Science, Technology, the Environment, and Medicine; Public History; Legal History; Native Peoples, Race, and Ethnicity.

The presence of the Institute on Napoleon and the French Revolution as well as the Institute on World War II and the Human Experience means a variety of resources on site for students interested in those fields. Faculty leadership in the Women’s Studies Program, Holocaust Institute for Educators, and Middle East Center offer additional options.

Graduate Requirements

The department offers a Master of Arts and Ph.D. in History with several options for major and minor fields of study. A minimum of 18 semester hours of undergraduate work in history is normally required as a prerequisite for the masters program and the masters program requires a minimum of 33 semester hours of graduate work. The Ph.D. requires 39 semester hours beyond the masters. 

How to Apply

Applying for the graduate program in History requires a statement of purpose, writing sample, letters of recommendation, as well as an application to the FSU graduate school.