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Ph.D. in History


Students in the doctoral program may focus primarily on the histories of Africa, America, Europe, and modern Latin America, with secondary fields in any of these areas as well as East Asia and the Middle East.

Minimum Total Credit Hours: 54

Course Requirements

In addition to the Graduate School requirements for the Ph.D., the doctoral program in history includes the following specific requirements and regulations:

Foreign Language Requirement: Students must meet a minimum requirement of proficiency in one foreign language. The requirement may be met by either of the following methods:

  1. Attainment of a passing grade of B or better in a fourth-semester (202-level) language course taught at the University of Mississippi. An equivalent course that has been completed within three calendar years prior to enrollment in the graduate program will satisfy this requirement.

  2. Attainment of a passing grade on a departmentally administered translation exam or certification from another history department that the student has passed an equivalent translation exam within three calendar years prior to enrollment in the graduate program.

In certain fields a second language may be required. Students whose native language is not English are excused from the foreign language requirement.

Course Work: Ph.D. students should pursue a rationally structured course program, to be designed on an individual basis in close consultation with the Graduate Advisory Committee. In addition to Graduate School requirements, the following departmental course requirements must be met. Students who have not previously taken a graduate-level bibliography/methods course must take His 550 as soon as it is offered. Before they may petition to take the comprehensive examination, all Ph.D. students must take at least one 700-level research seminar, Professionalization and Colloquium II (His 602), at least two 600-level courses, and at least 6 hours of graduate course work in each of their minor fields. Students are strongly urged to take more than the prescribed minimum of course work. Upon consultation with the Graduate Advisory Committee, students may take 3 to 12 hours of graduate-level courses related to one or more of their fields outside the department. Up to 12 hours of such outside course work may be taken in one discipline to constitute a minor field outside the department.

Comprehensive Examinations: Ph.D. students are required to take written examinations in each of their two minor fields and a combined written and oral examination in their major field. The written and oral examinations for the minor fields and the major field are to be prepared, conducted, and evaluated by a committee of at least two faculty members in each case. The examination committees are appointed by the Graduate Advisory Committee in consultation with the student, the dissertation director, and the department chair. If one of the minor fields is outside the department, the examination committee in that field is to be composed of two faculty members from the outside department(s) and one faculty member from the Department of History. A student who fails a comprehensive examination is allowed to retake the examination one time. Comprehensive examinations will be offered two or three times per year at designated times. These times will be publicized and made available to all graduate students and faculty.

Ph.D. Dissertation: Ph.D. students should select a faculty member in the department who is willing to direct a dissertation in their major field no later than the end of their third semester. The dissertation director in consultation with the student and the Graduate Advisory Committee will select two additional faculty members within the department and one faculty member from another department willing to serve as readers and members of a dissertation committee. The dissertation director will be the student's primary adviser and liaison with the Graduate Advisory Committee, and together with the other two members of the dissertation committee pass judgment on the dissertation.

Final Oral Examination: The final oral examination is directed primarily to the defense of the dissertation.

Other Academic Requirements

Advisers: Each graduate student is expected to select an adviser in the intended research area (or area of specialization), who is willing to act in that capacity, not later than the end of the second semester in the program. That adviser will consult with the student on the student’s schedule. Students also shall be advised and have their schedules approved by the department’s Graduate Advisory Committee.

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