Can You Get a PhD in American History?

Are you interested in pursuing a PhD in American History? If so, you might be wondering if this is a feasible educational path for you.

In short, the answer is yes. However, there are several things to consider before embarking on this journey.

First, it’s important to understand what exactly a PhD in American History entails. This degree program focuses on the study of American history from various perspectives such as political, social, and cultural. Students will conduct extensive research and analysis of historical events and trends, and produce original works of scholarship that contribute to the field.

To be eligible for a PhD program in American History, you will typically need to have a bachelor’s degree in history or a related field with a high GPA. Some programs may also require a master’s degree in history or relevant work experience.

Once accepted into a program, students will be required to complete coursework and exams before beginning their research and dissertation writing. This process can take several years to complete.

One important thing to note is that the job market for historians can be competitive. While there is demand for historians in various industries such as education and government, it can be difficult to secure employment in academia without significant experience and publications.

If you’re still interested in pursuing a PhD in American History despite these challenges, there are several excellent programs available across the country. Here are some top programs:

Top PhD Programs in American History

1. Harvard University

Harvard University’s Department of History offers a PhD program with several areas of specialization including American history. The program emphasizes interdisciplinary studies and encourages students to explore topics beyond traditional boundaries.

2. Princeton University

Princeton University’s Department of History offers an extensive PhD program that includes coursework in multiple fields such as economic history, political history, and cultural history. Students are encouraged to pursue research interests that intersect with other disciplines.

3. University of California, Berkeley

The Department of History at UC Berkeley offers a PhD program with a focus on American history from the colonial era to the present. Students are encouraged to engage in interdisciplinary research and take advantage of the university’s extensive resources.

4. University of Chicago

The Department of History at the University of Chicago offers a PhD program that emphasizes the study of historical change over time. Students are encouraged to take courses in related fields such as anthropology and sociology.

5. Columbia University

Columbia University’s Department of History offers a PhD program that encourages students to explore topics such as race, gender, and sexuality in American history. The program also emphasizes global perspectives and transnational connections.

In conclusion, pursuing a PhD in American History is certainly possible with the right qualifications and dedication. However, it’s important to be aware of the challenges involved, including competition for employment opportunities in academia. If you’re passionate about this subject area and willing to put in the work required, then this path may be right for you.