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History Department

Graduate Studies


History, M.A.

The master of arts degree can be a terminal degree or an introduction in research and reading before pursuing the Ph.D., usually completed in two years.

History, Ph.D.


The History Department offers the Ph.D. degree to students interested in research and teaching.


Graduate Funding Opportunities

Graduate students in the History Department are eligible for a variety of funding packages to support their coursework, living expenses and research costs. Some funds are dispersed by the department’s graduate committee, while many other funding opportunities are available through the Maxwell School and its affiliated institutes.

Graduate Assistantships

This is the most common form of aid, and has a contractual obligation which requires the recipient to assist one of the department’s professors by teaching discussion sections of a large lecture course. M.A. funding packages ordinarily consist of two one-year teaching assistantships. Ph.D. funding packages usually contain five one-year teaching assistantships.

The Hotchkiss Graduate Scholarships

Awarded jointly by the History Department and the Maxwell dean’s office. One or two annual awards are made (approximately $4,000) for travel scholarships to graduate students in history who have completed all of their requirements, comprehensive exams, and are "all but dissertation" (ABD) and not receiving any other financial aid from the department.

Summer Research Grants

The department awards additional funding to students making good progress to support preparatory research at the pre-dissertation stage, ongoing dissertation research or unique learning opportunities (such as summer workshops and language training) that go beyond the standard program of study. These include grants for domestic and international projects.

Cissie Fairchilds Fund for Graduate Student Research Travel

Named in honor of the late Professor Cissie Fairchilds, a distinguished historian and beloved mentor of graduate students, this fund supports expenses incurred by graduate students who travel for archival and library research.

University Funding

Students can consult Jill Ferguson in the Maxwell dean’s office to explore outside grants and fellowships that might be available related to their areas of interest. An overview of resources and funding opportunities provided through the Maxwell School is available via Answers.

Outside Funding

Students are encouraged to consult the American Historical Association (AHA) for more information about grants, fellowships, awards and prizes. This resource is available online for AHA members through their website. Students are urged to consult the webpages and contact archivists at any archives to which they are interested in traveling for research. Many archives offer travel grants to encourage scholars to use their materials.

The Scholar Exchange Program

Graduate students at Syracuse University are able to augment their coursework by taking classes at either Cornell University or the University of Rochester through this program, run by the graduate school.

Please visit the graduate school website for more information on applications, deadlines and required approvals needed.

Scholar Exchange Program
PhD graduation ceremony with Dean Van Slyke

Future Professoriate Program

The Future Professoriate Program (FPP) aims to foster a sense of community among graduate students while allowing them to hone skills related to teaching, research and professional identity development. The purpose of the FPP is to help graduate students develop professionally by means of workshops, annual in-house conferences and a mentored independent teaching experience. Students who complete these activities and produce a teaching portfolio can receive the University’s Certificate in University Teaching. These endeavors are seen as complements to the training in scholarship and teaching that are regular parts of graduate education.

History Department
145 Eggers Hall