History, Public History Concentration, M.A.

History

MTSU's MA in History, Public History Concentration offers hands-on training, renowned faculty, and career opportunities.

Home » Program » History, Public History Concentration, M.A.

History, Public History Concentration, M.A.

Are you passionate about interpreting and preserving History for public audiences? The Public History program at MTSU is the right place for you! We are the premiere graduate program for students training for careers as Public History professionals. From archives to museum management, historic preservation and cultural resource management to public archeology, oral history to digital methods, the History MA, Public History Concentration offers distinguished faculty, rigorous coursework, and unparalleled opportunities for hands-on training in the field.

History MA, Public History Concentration Highlights:

  • One-on-one mentoring from nationally recognized faculty and public history professionals
  • Research and professional development opportunities with our renowned on-campus centers and initiatives and community partners, including the Center for Historic Preservation, Albert Gore Research Center, Center for Popular Music, and Rutherford County Archives
  • Professional development opportunities in the local community, throughout Middle Tennessee, and beyond
  • Graduate assistantships and scholarships offered on a competitive basis
  • Afternoon and evening classes accommodate work and family life
  • If you live in Alabama or Mississippi, you may be able to attend MTSU at the in-state rates under the Academic Common Market Program.

To prepare students for professional practice, the program partners with a number of on-campus centers and initiatives, including the Center for Historic PreservationAlbert Gore Research CenterCenter for Popular Music, and Walker Library digital collections.

If you live in one of these states: AL MS; you may be able to attend MTSU at in-state rates under the Academic Common Market program.

Careers
Requirements
Faculty
Information
Careers
Requirements
Faculty
Information

News Briefs

Graduate says MTSU's MA program in Public History 'helped jumpstart career'

Graduate says MTSU's MA program in Public History 'helped jumpstart career'

As a graduate of MTSU's Master of Arts program in Public History, Keneisha Mosely now works as an Archives and Reference Technician at the John P. Holt Brentwood Library and as a Special Collections Assistant at the Williamson County Public Library. Mosely said during her time at MTSU she gained a lot of professional experience through assistantships and internships that have been useful in her career. "Because of the assistantships and internships, it truly helped jumpstart my career. I have experience working in historic house museums, academic and government archives, and academic and public libraries. I desire to continue my career in libraries as I get to enjoy the best of both worlds of working in archives, but also gaining library experience/skills in cataloging, collection development, user instruction, outreach and more," she said. Mosely said when you attend MTSU's program you're "really gaining a second family." She said, "The department heavily advocates for its students. They want you to succeed and will do everything they can to ensure that. The support they give is unmatched."

Zookeeper calls MTSU's MA Public History program 'fantastic'

Zookeeper calls MTSU's MA Public History program 'fantastic'

As a zookeeper at the Nashville Zoo at Grassmere, Katherine Sproul decided to get her Master of Arts in Public History after working at the Grassmere Historic Home located on the zoo's property. "I decided to attend MTSU because it's close to Nashville and has a fantastic public history program. When I first started working at the zoo, I was working with the animals and the historic house, so I wanted to learn more about public history," she explained. During her coursework, Sproul said she learned a variety of things ranging from how to do research to how to set up an exhibit. "I learned to look for different perspectives in any book that we read as a class, and to consider the background of the author and how that might bias his or her writing." Sproul added that it's important as a student to be open to "new ideas and different perspectives in the classroom. "Your classmates will have had different experiences than you have had. Whether or not you agree with them, new perspectives are very valuable. They can make you see things in a new way."

Public History alumni help museum expand access to musical understanding

story by Leah Tolbert Lyons and Matthew Hibdon As you approach the intersection of Broadway and Rep. John Lewis Way in downtown Nashville, you will see a place that has been under development for years. No, it is not the Apple Store or the newest location for Hattie B’s Hot Chicken. It is the National [ Read More ]

News Briefs

Graduate says MTSU's MA program in Public History 'helped jumpstart career'

As a graduate of MTSU's Master of Arts program in Public History, Keneisha Mosely now works as an Archives and Reference Technician at the John P. Holt Brentwood Library and as a Special Collections Assistant at the Williamson County Public Library. Mosely said during her time at MTSU she gained a lot of professional experience through assistantships and internships that have been useful in her career. "Because of the assistantships and internships, it truly helped jumpstart my career. I have experience working in historic house museums, academic and government archives, and academic and public libraries. I desire to continue my career in libraries as I get to enjoy the best of both worlds of working in archives, but also gaining library experience/skills in cataloging, collection development, user instruction, outreach and more," she said. Mosely said when you attend MTSU's program you're "really gaining a second family." She said, "The department heavily advocates for its students. They want you to succeed and will do everything they can to ensure that. The support they give is unmatched."

Zookeeper calls MTSU's MA Public History program 'fantastic'

As a zookeeper at the Nashville Zoo at Grassmere, Katherine Sproul decided to get her Master of Arts in Public History after working at the Grassmere Historic Home located on the zoo's property. "I decided to attend MTSU because it's close to Nashville and has a fantastic public history program. When I first started working at the zoo, I was working with the animals and the historic house, so I wanted to learn more about public history," she explained. During her coursework, Sproul said she learned a variety of things ranging from how to do research to how to set up an exhibit. "I learned to look for different perspectives in any book that we read as a class, and to consider the background of the author and how that might bias his or her writing." Sproul added that it's important as a student to be open to "new ideas and different perspectives in the classroom. "Your classmates will have had different experiences than you have had. Whether or not you agree with them, new perspectives are very valuable. They can make you see things in a new way."

Public History alumni help museum expand access to musical understanding

story by Leah Tolbert Lyons and Matthew Hibdon As you approach the intersection of Broadway and Rep. John Lewis Way in downtown Nashville, you will see a place that has been under development for years. No, it is not the Apple Store or the newest location for Hattie B’s Hot Chicken. It is the National [ Read More ]

Related Media

Wonder if you can afford grad school?

CAREERS

Our graduates take a wide variety of jobs in a range of exciting Public History fields.  Recent graduates hold positions at institutions such as the Tennessee State Museum, University of the South, Tennessee State Parks, New South Associates in North Carolina, and the Albert Gore Research Center.  Other graduates have gone on to pursue doctoral work, including at the University of Oklahoma and the MTSU Public History Ph.D. program.   

Public historians work in a wide range of professional settings with public audiences of all ages. Potential employers include archives, museums, historic organizations, historical societies, historic sites, private consulting firms, and historical agencies at all levels of government.

Examples of career possibilities with an advanced degree in public history include

  • Architectural historian
  • Archivist
  • Author
  • College professor/instructor
  • Consultant
  • Cultural heritage manager
  • Cultural resources manager
  • Digital librarian/cataloger
  • Historic preservation planner
  • Historian
  • Museum/collections curator or administrator
  • Oral historian
  • Public archaeologist 

American Association for State and Local History job postings

Employers of MTSU alumni include

  • Alabama Department of Archives and History
  • Advisory Council on Historic Preservation
  • American Association for State and Local History
  • Belle Meade Plantation
  • Belmont Mansion
  • East Tennessee Historical Society
  • Historic Home of T.R.R. Cobb
  • Historical Association of Catawba County, N.C.
  • History Center, Diboll, Texas
  • Huntsville (Ala.) Historic Preservation Commission
  • Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve
  • Land Trust for Tennessee
  • Manzanar National Historic Site
  • Maymont Foundation, Richmond, Va.
  • Metro Nashville Arts Commission
  • Mike Curb Archives
  • New South Associates
  • Ohio History Connection
  • President James K. Polk Ancestral Home
  • Rutherford County Archives
  • Tennessee Agricultural Museum
  • Tennessee Department of Transportation
  • Tennessee State Library and Archives
  • Thomason & Associates
  • Vicksburg (Miss.) Foundation for Historic Preservation
  • Williamson County Archives and Museum
  • War in the Pacific National Historical, Guam

REQUIREMENTS

Loading...

FACULTY

INFORMATION

Academic links

On-campus partners

For students

Public History news

Program history

The MTSU Department of History added an emphasis in historic preservation to its master'sprogram in 1976 and to its former doctorate degree in 1981. Historic preservationand the preservation of American popular music assumed a public dimension in 1984when MTSU established the Center for Historic Preservation and the Center for Popular Music, with missions that combined research and public outreach. After adding courses inmuseum studies, material culture, and archival methods, the master's program concentrationchanged its name to Public History in 1991. History faculty also developed the Albert Gore Research Center, which opened in 1993. In 2005, the department launched a new Ph.D. in Public History,the first doctoral program nationally to declare public history as the major fieldof study. Today, MTSU's Public History program partners with all three campus centersand collaborates with the Walker Library Media Studio to develop digital collections and other digital initiatives.

Financial aid links

Graduate Assistantships

To help support students pursuing graduate study, the Department of History offersa number of graduate assistantships at both the M.A. and the Ph.D. levels. These assistantshipsare awarded on a competitive basis and are renewable for up to two years for M.A.assistantships and up to three years for Ph.D. assistantships. Graduate assistantsreceive a tuition waiver plus a stipend to cover living expenses. In return, graduateassistants work a maximum of 20 hours a week during the semester on an assignmentdetermined by the History Department. These assignments include work as teaching assistants,research assistants, and other duties related to the ongoing work of the departmentand our on-campus partners. To apply for a graduate assistantship with the HistoryDepartment, complete the College of Graduate Studies' Graduate Assistantship Application, and submit it to the Department of History along with the rest of your application.

Many M.A. and Ph.D students in the History Department also work as research fellows,graduate assistants, and hourly employees for MTSU's Center for Historic Preservation. The Center has a separate application and review process for these positions. Youcan read full descriptions of these opportunities on the Center's Academic Opportunities page and download the Center's Application for Student Academic Support. The departmenturges students applying for a graduate assistantship with the History Department toapply to the Center as well.

FAQs

CONTACT US

I am TrueBLUE

Please fill in the form below and we will contact you very soon

Hidden
Hidden
Status
I am a high school:

Student and alumni success stories
Scroll to Top