Master of Arts in Public History

Wayne State's Master of Arts in Public History (M.A.P.H.) prepares students to interpret the past for public audiences in diverse settings and professions. Public historians work in museums, historical societies, libraries and archives, public policy institutes, parks and recreation departments, tourism, historic preservation and cultural resource management, nonprofit and for-profit organizations, at all levels of government and as historical consultants.

About the program

There is no better place to study public history than in the heart of Detroit, where our program partners with cultural institutions to provide internships and other hands-on opportunities for our students. We now offer courses both at our Midtown campus and online, making earning your master's degree more accessible than ever. Note: M.A.P.H. cannot be earned entirely online; students may choose to take only in-person courses or a combination of in-person and online courses.

Our students include mid-career professionals who seek credentials for career advancement, recent college graduates eager to put their history degrees to work in public service, and secondary school teachers who want to gain experience in project-based or community-engaged learning. We have designed our curriculum to be flexible to meet the needs of a diverse student body with a range of interests and with different scheduling needs.

Master of Arts in Public History program requirements and curriculum

Students choose one of two paths to the degree:

  • Develop an individualized topical or professional specialization, in consultation with the advisor, consisting of three relevant courses (9 to 12 credits).
  • Concurrently earn one of the following graduate certificates relevant to public history careers: Nonprofit Management (three additional credits), Archival Administration (six additional credits), or Museum Practice (six additional credits); students may double-count 9 credits toward the MAPH and a graduate certificate.

Students often elect to pursue a Joint Master of Arts in Public History and Library and Information Science concurrently with their master's in public history. Doing so expands career opportunities after graduation.

Public History Electives:  

View all requirements

Contact 💬

Karen Marrero, history graduate director

Career insights

This tool provides a broad overview of how major selection can lead to careers and is provided without any implied promise of employment. Some careers will require further education, skills, or competencies. Actual salaries may vary significantly between similar employers and could change by graduation, as could employment opportunities and job titles.