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UMass Lowell will resume on-campus instruction, research and campus life for Fall 2020. View the plan for more info.

Graduate Program

Full time Part time BA to MA

The Master of Arts degree in history educates students in the essential skills of analysis, comprehension, critical thinking and public speaking. It develops the ability to analyze large quantities of data, to identify patterns and trends and to write a clear narrative that explains those results. Such skills apply to a wide range of careers, including teaching, gallery and museum work; archive management; government and public service; business and legal research; and consulting.

The M.A. in history is designed for those who: 

  1. hold a teaching license and are seeking professional licensure; 
  2. work or want to work in history organizations, museums and galleries; 
  3. are preparing for doctoral studies in history or 
  4. seek the additional intellectual challenge of graduate work in history. 

Students may attend part-or full-time, with classes offered in the late afternoon or early evening to accommodate those who are working during the day. 

The master’s degree program requires 30 credits of coursework. Graduate courses explore social and cultural history, global history, migration and immigration and archival science. There are three ways to fulfill the required credits:

  • Option 1: 10 three-credit graduate courses.
  • Option 2: nine three-credit graduate courses and a three-credit project or internship with an area historical society or organization.
  • Option 3: eight three-credit graduate courses and a six-credit thesis.

For more information including course listings and degree pathways, visit the Graduate Catalog.

Bachelor's-to-Master's Option

UMass Lowell students who wish to be Bachelor's-to-Master's candidates may apply to the program and waive the GRE test so long as they have a minimum cumulative grade-point average of 3.0 for all previous course work. Application is typically submitted during the student’s second semester of their junior year. B.A./M.A. admission is based on having an overall GPA of 3.0 or better; two letters of recommendation from UMass Lowell History Department faculty; and a personal statement that describes the student’s interest in a History Master’s degree.
  • Submitted online application
  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university
  • An undergraduate grade point average of 3.0 or better, which may be waived if students have substantive work experience in the field, including successful classroom teaching
  • Official score from the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) - GREs are waived for UMass Lowell B.A./M.A students in history, UMass Lowell alumni with a minimum 3.0 GPA who apply within five years of graduation and applicants with a master’s degree from an accredited U.S. college or university
  • 3 letters of recommendation
  • A personal statement
  • A curriculum vitae summarizing education and work experience
  • $50 application fee
  • The department’s Graduate Admissions Committee may request an interview

International Applicants

  • Students for whom English is not a national language must submit a Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) score or an International English Language Testing System (IELTS) score.
  • English proficiency testing
    • TOEFL minimum 79
    • IELTS minimum 6.5

See the Graduate Catalog for additional requirements of the program. 

Visit Graduate Admissions for more information.

In-state

Cost Per Credit: $842.21*
Total Tuition (based on 30 credits): $25,266*

Out-of-state/International Students

Cost Per Credit: $1,496.66*
Total Tuition (based on 30 credits): $44,900*

*These estimated graduate charges are for the 2019-2020 academic year. These prices are subject to change by vote of the UMass Board of Trustees.

Financing

For more information on tuition and financing, visit Costs & Aid for Graduate Programs.

Why Choose the Master of Arts in History Program at UMass Lowell?

Prof. Robert Forrant with looks on as students discuss what makes up an ideal city Photo by Katharine Webster

Faculty

The department faculty include prize-winning professors who publish actively in their respective fields and who regularly receive external grants. Faculty work closely with the Tsongas Industrial History Center and Lowell National Historical Park to design and deliver workshops for teachers and exhibitions for the community. Graduate students can engage with these to apply their classroom skills to real-world projects.

Two female grad students work on their laptops

Flexible Curriculum

Students in the M.A. program choose to take one, two or three courses per semester, with individual instruction also available to graduate students through directed studies or a supervised internship at a partner organization. Graduate courses can be taken in related graduate programs such as public administration, peace and conflict studies, and global studies.

Park visitors wait as a yellow trolley tour arrives in Lowell Photo by Lowell National Park

Location

Lowell and the Merrimack Valley are the birthplace of the American Industrial Revolution and offer a unique opportunity to study the intersection of immigration, labor and environment. The historic city possesses rich archives and a compelling story, and has a strong relationship with UMass Lowell.

Bradley Sherwood helps a child weave on a loom at summer camp at the Tsongas Industrial History Center

Internships, Archives & Experiential Learning

Opportunities exist to conduct research and find internships at institutions throughout Middlesex County, including Center for Lowell History, Lowell National Historical Park, Lawrence History Center, the National Archives and Records Administration in Waltham and local historical societies.

Meet Our Students

Kady Phelps '17, '18 History

Kady Phelps came to UMass Lowell to major in education, but history caught up with her. She earned her master’s degree in history and the Excellence in Students Cultural Heritage Award for her work on an exhibit about Portuguese immigration to Lowell.

I feel really blessed to be in Massachusetts and here in Lowell in particular, with all the history.