Current Students

The Department of History is one of the largest and most diverse departments at the University of North Alabama. The department offers a Master of Arts degree in history as well as a Master of Arts degree in Public History.

Our students are taught by outstanding teachers and scholars. The Department of History boasts numerous faculty with awards for their research and teaching. We are a department of active scholars and gifted teachers.  Our areas of expertise range from the United States and Latin America to Europe and Asia; from diplomatic, political, and military history, to religious, intellectual, social and cultural history; from American government and public administration to comparative government and international relations; from philosophy and religion to legal studies. Whatever your interests, you can likely explore them with us.

We are proud of our graduate students. They excel in school and beyond.  As students, they are active in our discipline, routinely participating in Study Abroad, presenting their research at prestigious conferences, and serving in our community. As graduates, they have been accepted into prestigious Ph.D. programs, served as outstanding educators, and demonstrated to the public the value of history.

We hope you will join their dynamic number through pursuit of graduate study at the University of North Alabama. 

First Semester

Your admission will be confirmed by letter of acceptance. Do not discard this letter! It contains the information you need to log into Portal, the University’s main academic web page. Through Portal you access University Email. It is imperative that you check it regularly, even if you use another email address. The official method of communication at UNA is the University email, and it is the only email faculty and staff have for you. If you don’t check it regularly, you will miss important and critical information.

After you receive your acceptance letter, you should first look at the Plan of Study (found here on the department’s webpage) and the class schedule.

You will need to consider which option you will take—thesis or non-thesis.  This does not need to be decided immediately, but you should begin thinking about it, and consult the Graduate Coordinator and other departmental faculty as you make your decision.

The Office of Student Engagement holds a New Student Orientation a few days before classes begin in Fall and Spring Semesters. You are not required to attend, but it is a good idea to do so as you will receive useful information, like where to obtain a University ID Card, information on parking, student health services, and the like. If you are on an on-line only student, this is likely of lesser importance to you

Course texts are available at the University Bookstore as well as local bookstores, but you will likely find cheaper options available online.

Internet Courses are offered through the Canvas platform.  To log into Canvas, you will use your Portal ID and password (found in your acceptance letter). 

All online courses become available the first day of class. Some faculty choose to allow their classes to “go live” earlier, but that is only at their discretion. 

Continuing Semesters

As you approach your second semester, you will again need to make decisions about coursework. You are not required to get approval or a PIN from the Graduate Coordinator, but you should feel free to contact her with any questions or concerns you have.  Registration is done through Portal.  Registration for Graduate Students normally opens in early November and early April.

A currently enrolled student who opts to “sit out” either fall or spring term becomes inactive and must be readmitted to the University. While this readmission process is relatively easy, it can have an impact on your degree progress, as you are then required to adhere to the curriculum in the most recent version of the catalog.

Additionally, you should begin thinking about your Research Literacy Requirement. This can be satisfied through completion of a foreign language reading knowledge exam, administered by the Department of Foreign Languages. The exam requires students to translate a passage with the aid of a dictionary.  There are other options available to students that can be tailored to suit individual student needs, such as a GIS course or a statistics course.

At least two semesters before your anticipated graduation date, you should apply for graduation. If it is necessary to revise graduation date, you must submit a Graduation Application Change Form. It is advisable to do this sooner, rather than later as exceptions to application for graduation requirement are not generally made. For more information, contact the Office of the Registrar at

Thesis vs. Non-Thesis Option

It is best to make this decision no later than your second semester (if you are a full-time student). You are provided with the option so as to pick what best suits your needs and goals. You should discuss this with your faculty and the Graduate Coordinator.

Non-Thesis Option

Thesis Option