Last updated: March 21, 2014 @ 12:04PM


Master of Arts in History

Dean Douglas Kneale
Faculty of Humanities

Associate Dean
Carol Merriam
Faculty of Humanities

Core Faculty

Robert Dimand (Economics), Rosemary Hale (Centre for Medieval and Renaissance Studies), Jack N. Lightstone (History), R. Andrew McDonald (History),Carmela Patrias (History), John Sainsbury (History), Elizabeth Sauer (English), David Schimmelpenninck (History).

Associate Professors
John Bonnett (History), Michael Driedger (History and Liberal Arts), Tami Friedman (History), Kevin Kee (History), Renée Lafferty (History and Canadian Studies). Maureen Lux (History), Jane McLeod (History), Dan Malleck (Community Health Sciences), Behnaz Mirzai (History), Elizabeth Neswald (History), Olantunji Ojo (History), Daniel Samson (History), Mark Spencer (History), Maria Del Carmen Suescun Pozas (History), Elizabeth Vlossak (History), Ning Wang (History), Murray Wickett (History).

Assistant Professors
Gregor Kranjc (History).

Graduate Program Director
Dr. Maureen Lux

Administrative Assistant
Dinah Martin
(905) 688-5550, ext. 4321

Program Description
The Master of Arts in History provides students with training in the various fields of history through course work and research experience. Our program has no specified fields of concentration, but offers a high-quality, general Master's degree in History consistent with the excellence and dedication of the faculty who teach it. The program emphasizes themes, rather than on regions or timeframes. Those themes are Imperialism, Gender History, Intellectual History, Revolutions, Labour Systems, Migration/Ethnicity/Identity, History of Science and Medicine, and History and Computing. The program develops students' critical analysis of both primary and secondary sources, allows them the opportunity to explore historiography and methodology, and encourages them to engage in vibrant debates in their study of history. A Co-op stream allows students to apply and to stretch their skills with work placements, while also enriching their research and communication skills.

Admission Requirements
Successful completion of an Honours Bachelor's degree, or equivalent, in History with an average of not less than 75%. Students with a co-major in History or a closely-related discipline will be considered, although such students may be required to take additional undergraduate courses.

The Graduate Admissions Committee will review all applications and recommend admission for a limited number of suitable candidates.

Part-time study is available.

Degree Requirements (Standard Stream)
Most students pursue the Major Research Paper. The thesis stream is by invitation only, on the recommendation of the Graduate Committee.

All students in the major research paper stream will take Historiography and Historical Method (HIST 5F01), four half-course electives (HIST 5V00-HIST 5V79), and the major research paper (HIST 5F80). Students invited to the thesis stream will take Historiography and Historical Method (HIST 5F01), two half-course electives (HIST 5V00-HIST 5V89), and the thesis (HIST 5F90). Each student enrolled in HIST 5F90 must defend his/her thesis at a public oral examination. Under exceptional circumstances, students in either the major research paper stream or the thesis stream may be permitted to substitute a directed reading course (taken as HIST 5P80), or a course offered by another graduate program, in lieu of one of their elective courses.

The major research paper stream is designed to normally be completed in twelve months (three terms). The thesis stream is designed to normally be completed in twenty months (five terms). The completion time for part-time students will vary with the candidate's circumstances.

Degree Requirements (Co-op Stream)

Program requirements for the Co-op stream are identical to that of the standard stream with the following exceptions: All Co-op students write a Major Research Paper (MRP). The thesis option is not open to Co-op students. Students in the Co-op stream take work-placements in their third and fourth terms. Students will also take work-placement seminars (HIST 5N90), comprised of lectures, presentations and industry specific information, for two hours each week prior to the first co-op work term. Attendance is mandatory. Thus, one course, which standard stream students would take second term, will be delayed until the final (fifth) term).

All Co-op students will take Historiography and Historical Method (HIST 5F01), four half-course electives (HIST 5V00-HIST 5V79), two work placements (HIST 5N01 and 5N02), and the major research paper (HIST 5F80). Under exceptional circumstances, students may be permitted to substitute a directed reading course (taken as HIST 5P80), or a course offered by another graduate program, in lieu of one of their elective courses. The work placement is normally eight months, though two four-month placements may be approved; in either case, students must register for and pass both work placement courses (HIST 5N01 and HIST 5N02).

In addition to the current fees for courses in academic study terms, Co-op students are assessed an administrative fee (see the Schedule of Fees).

Course Descriptions

Students must check to ensure that prerequisites are met. Students may be deregistered, at the request of the instructor, from any course for which prerequisites and/or restrictions have not been met.
Historiography and Historical Method
Examines debates about the nature of history and provides an overview of contemporary historiographic controversies. A wide variety of methodologies and theoretical perspectives will be explored with an eye to assessing the practical applications of each for the study of history and for the students' own research projects.

Major Research Paper
A major research project (of approximately 35 pages), the topic of which shall be chosen by the student in consultation with the Supervisory Committee. The major research paper must demonstrate the student's ability to conduct original research with primary sources and a mastery of relevant historiography.

MA Thesis
An extended research project (of approximately 80-100 pages) which meets the conditions specified in the description for HIST 5F80 but involves a higher level of research and a fuller treatment of the selected subject. The thesis will be examined by an external reader and will have a public defense.

Work Placement I
Work Placement (4 months) with an approved employer.

Work Placement II
Work Placement (4 months) with an approved employer, followed by a report on the work term.

Work Placement Training and Development
Framework for the development of learning objectives by students for individual work terms. Includes orientation to the Co-op experience, goal setting, resume preparation and interview skills preparation.

Self and Other in the Visual Field
(also offered as SCLA 5P78)
Vision, visuality, techniques of visual presentation, and technologies of display in the study of human interaction in colonial, post-colonial, and neo-colonial situations. Commensurate domains for multi-disciplinary analysis of visual and written texts and interpretive frameworks and methodologies for the study of the dynamics of power.

Directed Reading in History
Directed individual or group reading in a specified area of historical study.
Restriction: permission of the Graduate Program Director.

HIST 5V00-5V09
Themes in the history of imperialism.

2014-2015: Empire
Examines empires in the modern world. Focuses on 19th and 20th centuries, with some attention to earlier empires. Considers both the overseas (Britain, France, Spain, Netherlands, etc.) and continental (China, Turkey, Russia, Austria, etc.) versions. Selected topics include nationalism, ideology, culture, economics, colonial warfare, decolonisation and the historiography. Concludes with a discussion of post-imperial multinational groups.

HIST 5V10-5V19
Themes in the history of gender.

2014-2015: Gender and Nationalism
Historical relationship between gender, nation-building processes, national identity formation, citizenship, and memory, Modern case studies explore intersection with region, empire, race, and class.

HIST 5V20-5V29
Intellectual History
Themes in the history of ideas.

HIST 5V30-5V39
Themes in the history of revolutions.

HIST 5V40-5V49
Labour Systems
Themes in the history of labour.

2014-2015: Women and Work in US History
Women's participation in the US labour force from the preindustrial era to the present, including the changing nature and value of women's work; its relationship to household production and family dynamics; impact on national economic development; contribution to labour and feminist movements; and the influence on the welfare state.

HIST 5V50-5V59
Themes in the history of migration, ethnicity, and/or identity.

2014-2015:Immigration and Minorities in North American History
Approaches and methodologies of American and Canadian scholars of immigration. Topics include the causes of migration; state policy; immigrants in the labour force; racialization; ethnicity; and the impact of class and gender on immigrant community building and integration.

HIST 5V60-5V69
History of Science and/or Medicine
Themes in the history of science and/or medicine.

HIST 5V70-5V79
History and Computing
Themes in history and computing.