For questions related to academic advising, course selection, and fulfillment of degree requirements, see an advisor to get started.
The graduate programs in history offer advanced education for qualified students who wish to develop the analytical and research skills appropriate to the study of history.
Tips for getting admitted into graduate school
- Grades matter. Do not expect to get into a good graduate school with a 2.25 GPA. If you think that you want to pursue a graduate degree, make certain to keep your GPA up. If that means taking fewer courses for a longer period of time, it's worth it
- Don't be a stranger. Every school will expect you to provide academic letters of recommendation. These are academic letters – not letters from your supervisor at work or letters from your friends and neighbors. The purpose of academic letters is to have a professor that you have already worked with evaluate your suitability for graduate studies. That means while you are in your undergraduate program, you should get to know your professors so that they can adequately evaluate your work
- Save your term papers. Every school will expect you to provide a sample of your writing. Choose a paper that you did well on. If your professor wrote on your paper, make certain to provide a non-marked version to your future school. You might also consider rewriting sections that your professor criticized.
- Think about your career goals. How are you planning to use your history degree? Are you going out for an advanced degree so that you can get a tenure-track professorship? Are you planning to stay local and possibly considering community colleges? Thinking about teaching high school students? (That would likely require a degree with a college of education)
- Think about your future department. At the undergraduate level, it is not so critical that your studies are focused. At Wayne State, we want you to develop a broad background in history so that you are well versed in several different areas. As a graduate student – especially when you go on to the doctorate – it is critical to bring your studies into focus. Next, choose a school that has more than one historian working in that area, so that you can hear more than one point of view of the relevant scholarship
- Think about your personal statement as your professional introduction. Remember that graduate admissions is competitive – you will want to present yourself as a serious candidate for the degree. Talk about your career goals and how this degree will further those goals. Discuss the area of history that you want to study and what subtopic inside of that broad area drives your curiosity. Save the chatty talk about when you fell in love with the study of history, or who your was your most influential instructor, for later. Right now, you are one of a pack of applicants, and you need to shine as a future scholar