The entrance to the Department of History’s office in Sidney Smith Hall
 

MA Field in Contemporary International History

The MA Field in Contemporary International History focuses on the historical roots of contemporary international issues. It emphasizes the development of research and analytical skills that enrich decision-making in an increasingly interconnected global environment. The Field offers rigorous academic training in international history while considering policy and contemporary relevance. It could serve as a foundation for PhD work in History/International Relations or for explorations of career opportunities in government, international organizations, NGOs, media, business and finance, law, and the cultural sector.

NOTE: students applying to work in this Field should supply the documents requested of all MA applicants (see Preparing Your Application under Application Information) but should select "International Relations" as one of their fields when applying to the School of Graduate Studies application system and indicate in their statement of interest that they are applying to the "Contemporary International History Field".

Field Pathway

Students in the MA-CIH will complete:

  1. 5 half courses (including HIS1997H and the CIH-MA Field core course)
  2. Language requirement
  3. Research project (2000 paper)
  4. CIH Research Assistantship
  5. Students are expected to actively participate in the intellectual community of the Bill Graham Centre for Contemporary International History, including regular attendance at workshops and events.

Courses

The MA Field in Contemporary International History is designed to be taken on a full-time basis over 12 months. It is possible to complete it on a part time basis as well. All courses are offered during the Fall and Winter semesters of the university academic year.

MA-CIH students are required to take 5 half courses (2.5 FCE) during the 12 months of the program. These 5 half courses will be comprised of:

  • HIS1997H The Practice of History
  • the required core course in Contemporary International History
  • Students will then draw the remaining 1.5 FCE from a list of approved offerings in the History Department and allied departments. You may focus your choices in order to develop a regional or thematic specialization.
  • Two of the half-courses (or one full course) may be taken outside the department with the permission of the graduate coordinator.

You must achieve a B average in your coursework to fulfill the requirements.

HIS2000 Paper

Students will carry out an independent research project under faculty supervision which is known as the HIS2000 Paper. This constitutes a research paper of about 25-30 pages based on original research with primary and secondary sources. Students in the CIH Field will normally choose topics focused on policy relevance and applicability to future career pathways.

Language Requirement

Students will be expected to demonstrate competence in one foreign language other than English which is relevant to their research area.

Important Notes for CIH Applicants

Students applying to work in this Field should supply the usual documents requested of all MA applicants (see Preparing Your Application under Application Information) but should select "Contemporary International History" as one of their fields when applying to the School of Graduate Studies application system and indicate in their statement of interest that they are applying to the "Contemporary International History Field".

When preparing application documents for the CIH Field, note the following:

Statement of interest

Applicants to the MA Field in Contemporary International History should tailor their statement of interest to the nature of the Field. In 500 words, describe your general area of historical investigation and your specific research interests. An ideal proposal will outline a research topic, describe how you have or will obtain the training to carry it out, and consider the contemporary relevance of the topic. Applicants are not required to have an undergraduate degree in Contemporary International History, but you should describe how your research interests intersect with the aims of the CIH field and faculty. You need to articulate a feasible program of study with the understanding that it may evolve as you progress through the program. Many of our students end up working on a research topic different from the originally proposed one.

Writing sample

You will be asked to upload a sample of academic writing: maximum 3,000 words, including footnotes, bibliography, etc. The writing sample should be applicant's very best paper. The ideal is to submit an essay that would demonstrate your potential as an emerging historian. DO NOT EXCEED THE MAXIMUM WORD LIMIT. It is acceptable to provide an excerpt of a paper including a short paragraph to explain the assignment and what was cut for length.