Suffragettes at marches from various time frames

Graduate Program

Why Choose Our Program?

In the History MA Program at SDSU you work with leading scholars in international and American political, cultural, and social history from ancient times to the Cold War era. The program offers opportunities to do research, including archival work at the local, national, and international level. Our students win awards and funding.  They work closely with faculty in their writing, research, and in presenting their work at conferences and workshops. View recently completed theses in History.

Academic and Professional Opportunities

At SDSU, students can prepare for a variety of professional paths, including research, teaching, employment in state service, or continuing their academic career.  

Each spring history master’s students present at the SDSU Student Symposium (S3), often winning awards and cash prizes. Our students also have the opportunity to work in archives, using primary sources locally, throughout the country, and internationally.  Recently, students have consulted holdings at SDSU’s Special Collections, the San Diego History Center, San Diego’s Lambda Archive, the Nixon Library, the University of the Pacific, Smith College, Mexico’s National Archive, and the University of Social Sciences and Humanities in Hanoi, Vietnam.  Many have won competitive travel grants for out-of-town research.

Funding and Employment Opportunities

Our students win grants such as the Master’s Research Scholarships, which provides $10,000 to support the students’ research, scholarship, and creative activity, or the Presidential Graduate Fellowship. The students are selected based on their promise and commitment to scholarship. 

Students are given opportunities for hands-on teaching experience through the graduate assistantship which we offer on a regular basis. We also employ students as graduate assistants to professors working on various research projects.  

Learn more about funding opportunities for our graduate students.

Concentration for War and Society

Students interested in diplomacy, military history, and the relationships between war and society can complete our concentration in War and Society Studies. The concentration examines the causes, conduct, and costs of war from a historical perspective thus enabling critical public policymaking and informed citizenship. Offered in conjunction with the Center for War and Society (CWS), For more information, see the center's page for the concentration.

Certificate in Public History

We also offer a Graduate Certificate in Public History. This 12-credit certificate  allows students to engage with critical analysis of public history practices, including oral history, digital history, historic preservation, archival practice, museum studies, public interpretation, and non-profit management. For questions and further information about the Public HIstory Certificate please contact Professor David Cline ([email protected]).

Alumni Placements

Alumni from our program have been accepted into law school and Ph.D. programs, often with substantial funding packages, at some of the most prestigious universities in and outside of the country.  These include:

  • UC - San Diego
  • UC -Los Angeles
  • UC - Irvine
  • University of Michigan
  • Yale University
  • University of Notre Dame
  • Northwestern University


  • University of Melbourne
  • University of Virginia
  • Brown University

Other alumni have gone on to careers in teaching at schools throughout California and around the country at the following institutions, among others:

  • San Diego State University
  • CSU-San Marcos
  • UC-San Diego
  • Grossmont College
  • Southwestern College
  • Cuyamaca College
  • Palomar College
  • Mesa College

They have also found employment throughout the country at such places as:

  • Texas Christian University (TX)
  • University of Miami (FL)
  • Georgetown University (Washington, DC)
  • Georgia Gwinnett College (GA)
  • Asuntuck Community College (CT)
  • Bellevue University (NE) 

Alumni have also pursued careers in public history, finding employment at such institutions as:

  • Children’s Museum of San Diego
  • San Diego Museum of Man
  • San Diego Natural History Museum
  • San Diego History Center
  • San Diego Old Town Historic Park
  • Nebraska State Historical Society
  • William Jefferson Clinton Presidential Library

For news and updates, please visit our Student & Alumni Achievements page or Facebook page.


Apply to Our Program

Important Links


Graduate Adviser
Dr. Annika Frieberg
Office: AL 576
Email: [email protected]