The Department of History offers doctoral degrees in African, American, and European history. The PhD program is distinguished by the strength of its faculty and by its commitment to training students broadly and as a community. Through guided steps of coursework, preparation for the comprehensive oral examination, archival research, and dissertation writing, students learn to develop and execute original research designs leading to scholarly publications that make original and important contributions to the historical discipline. At the same time, the department also prepares students to become the next generation of effective history teachers, able to instruct on a wide range of topics. To that end, all incoming doctoral students together take a core of classes in African, American, and European historiographies to learn about histories and methodologies outside their chosen field. PhD students also serve as Teaching Fellows in a wide range of lecture courses, acquiring professional and pedagogical skills under the guidance of faculty mentors. The department’s graduates have become professors at research universities, colleges, and community colleges, and staff members at research libraries, museums, and archives.

There are six components to the PhD program. In the first two years, students are asked to complete their coursework: specific courses, major research papers, and language examinations. By the end of their third year, students must pass a qualifying oral examination and submit a dissertation prospectus. After they have completed their dissertation, they engage in a dissertation defense.

See the below for a general timeline of these requirements. For more information about each, see the following pages: