Thesis Option

Students who chose the thesis option will complete six hours of HI 695 Thesis, and HI 699 Thesis Defense.

If you pursue the thesis track, you must first work through the following steps before you are approved to register for thesis hours.

Step 1: The student prepares a one-page proposal of the thesis topic and major historical questions to be probed along with a bibliography of primary and secondary sources (to include no less than 15 secondary sources), and submits it to the faculty member they would like to have as thesis director. The student is encouraged to discuss the proposal with the faculty member as soon as possible.

Step 2: After the would-be thesis advisor approves the topic and bibliography, the student writes a significant historiographical paper on the topic (15-20 pages), and completes an annotated bibliography. The student then submits that paper and annotated bibliography to the advisor for approval.  If the advisor does not approve the proposal, the student could revise/resubmit, or start over with a different advisor.

Step 3: Following the advisor’s approval, the student would approach their second and third readers, and submit the one-page proposal, annotated bibliography, and paper to the second and third readers before they agree to serve.

Once the committee has been finalized (the advisor and both readers agree to serve and sign the “Thesis Proposal Form”, and the form is submitted to the Coordinator of Graduate Studies), the student could register for thesis hours. You will register for thesis hours by submitting to our Senior Administrative Assistant, Ms. Jeanne Baughman (, a completed copy of the “Graduate Permit & Registration Form” requesting HI 695 Thesis Hours. This form may be submitted in person in the department office or via email from your University email account.

As you approach completion of your thesis, you should submit to our Senior Administrative Assistant, Ms. Jeanne Baughman (, a completed copy of the “Graduate Permit & Registration Form” requesting registration in HI 699 Thesis Defense. This may be submitted in person in the department office or via email from your University email account. When registration closes, we are unable to register you for Thesis Defense and that WILL delay your graduation.  You should not expect to complete your Thesis Defense in the summer as faculty are not generally available. Only in extraordinary circumstances will exceptions be granted and that is at the discretion of the faculty.

Important Note: It is your responsibility to contact your committee and schedule your defense (day and time). Ms. Baughman will work with you to find a location.  The Deadline to defend your thesis is by the Friday of the 11th week of the semester. You should provide your thesis to all committee members (a hard copy, not an electronic file unless you have made prior arrangements with the committee members) no later than ten class days before the defense. Failure to complete your thesis by the deadline will not constitute a reason for moving the deadline. Exceptions will only be granted in the most extraordinary of circumstances and that is solely at the discretion of and with the unanimous consent of all committee members.

Thesis Preparation Guidelines

Your thesis should be prepared in accordance with the following guidelines and the template found here. When in doubt, consult the most recent edition of the Chicago Manual of Style.

Margins: One inch all around AND .5 inch left gutter.

Spacing: Text should be double-spaced.  Front matter and Works Cited should be spaced as seen in the example.

Page numbers: Bottom centered. Lowercase Roman numerals for front matter, Arabic for the text and back matter.

You must provide the department with two printed copies, each with signed signature pages. These should be printed on high quality (20 lb weight, acid free) white paper in black ink.

Feel free to speak with the Graduate Director about any concerns or questions you may have.  And do this sooner rather than later. Incorrectly prepared manuscripts will affect your ability to graduate.

Thesis Template

Thesis Proposal

Thesis Defense

Thesis Completion

Program of Study-History

Program of Study- Public History, Historical Preservation

Program of Study- Public History, Historical Administration

Graduate Permit & Registration Form

NOTE: Save the Permit & Registration Form to your computer before filling it in; save again after it is completed. Email completed form to your advisor.