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History thesis plans

Plan A -Thesis

The two Plan A programs require the research and writing of a full-scale thesis. Anyone intending to do research or enter another program for a doctoral degree should follow Plan A.

Of the 30 semester credit hours required beyond the bachelor's degree, six hours must be in thesis research. Students must take three 3-credit seminars: Hist 6000 Historical Methods and Research, Hist 6010 History and Theory, and Hist 6030 Research Seminar. Students interning in an archive, museum, scholarly journal, or working as a teaching intern in an upper-division undergraduate course may apply a maximum of four internship credits toward the degree.

The remainder of the 30 hours may be taken as electives in history or related graduate courses relevant to the student's program. Courses taken outside the department must be approved by the student's graduate committee.

Upon arrival at USU, students are urged to meet with the Director of Graduate Studies for the department who will direct them to one or more faculty members who have interests in the student's chosen field. Through consultations with their graduate thesis advisor first-year students will form a thesis committee and draw up a course of study. By the end of the first year, most students will have submitted to their committee a proposal for the thesis, which they will write under the close supervision of the head of their thesis committee.

The oral defense of the thesis usually takes place in the Spring semester of the second year. Following the defense, students must submit their thesis to the School of Graduate Studies for approval by the thesis coordinator.

Plan B - Non-Thesis

A non-thesis master's program can help a student attain employment in many areas, but is not recommended for students planning to secure a doctorate.

The Plan B program consists of 30 credit hours beyond the bachelor's degree. The course requirements are identical to those of the Plan A except that only three thesis credit hours are permitted.

Students completing the Plan B program do not write a full-scale thesis. Instead, they produce a research paper of around 30 pages and submit a portfolio of their graduate writing that includes two additional and distinct pieces of work. Students defend their Plan B research paper and writing portfolio before their major professor and the members of the supervisory committee. Final approval of the Plan B rests with the department rather than the graduate school.