History (MA Program)

*Applicable Supervisors:
Theodore Binnema, Professor and Chair
Jonathan Swainger, Professor
Jacqueline Holler, Associate Professor
Dana Wessell Lightfoot, Assistant Professor
Benjamin Bryce, Assistant Professor

Website: http://www.unbc.ca/history

The Department of History offers the opportunity for graduate study leading to the MA degree. The program’s regional specifications are Canada, Britain and its empire, and the Iberian world. Gender, legal, environmental, and indigenous histories are particular areas of strength. Students will be accepted subject to the availability of an appropriate supervisor.

The MA program comprises two streams. Thesis students complete 15 credit hours of graduate coursework and a 100-page thesis based on original research. Project students complete 18 credit hours of coursework and a substantial project.

Upon admission to the MA program, each student is assigned a supervisor who is responsible for the student's program and progress. There are two components to the MA program: course work and thesis/project. Students are normally expected to complete their course work in two semesters, and the total program in four semesters.


In addition to the admission application requirements outlined in Section 1.0 of the Graduate Academic Calendar, applicants must also supply a sample of written work (thesis or paper) as part of their application.
Application deadlines are found in this calendar under "Semester Dates" or online at www.unbc.ca/calendar/graduate, and also under "Semester Dates." The History MA Program accepts students for the September and January Semesters.

For additional information about graduate admissions or to download application materials, go to the Graduate Programs website at www.unbc.ca/graduateprograms.


Candidates for the MA degree must satisfy the following requirements.

Course Work

Each student will be required to write a thesis or project.


HIST 750-15 MA Thesis
Thesis students are expected to take five graduate courses for 15 credit hours. Courses will be thematic in approach, and students will, in consultation with their supervisor, select from the list of courses below, with the exception of HIST 700-3 and HIST 745-3 which are compulsory. Students may take one of their courses in a related program.

Students are expected to decide on their thesis topic, sources, and approach as part of HIST 745-3, which is normally taken in their second semester. The thesis must be based on original research, and demonstrate an understanding of historical writing and practice, as well as independent, critical thought.


HIST 749-12 Graduate Project

Project students are required to pass six graduate courses (18 credit hours). Students must select courses from the list below, with the exception of HIST 700-3 and HIST 745-3 , which are compulsory. Students may take two of their courses in a related program.

The project is an alternative to a thesis. Candidates must defend the project before a committee of academic and community examiners. The criteria for examination stipulate that the project must be substantial, must have practical application, and must include actual implementation or an implementation plan.

Required Courses

HIST 700-3 Seminar in Historical Methodology and Research
Historical Methods and Approaches

Elective Courses

HIST 701-3 Themes in the History of Gender
HIST 702-3 Themes in Native History
HIST 704-3 Themes in Environmental History
HIST 705-3 Themes in the History of International Relations
Themes in Cultural History 
Themes in Social History 
Themes in Legal History
HIST 799-3 Independent Study