Master of Arts in Teaching History (M.A.T.)

The M.A.T. in History program is designed primarily for elementary and secondary teachers of history and social studies. The M.A.T. degree does not, however, lead to a Nevada public schools teaching certificate for grades K-12; such certification is available at UNR only through the College of Education. Most students in the M.A.T. program already have received this certification. 

No competence in a foreign language is required for completion of the M.A.T. program. The M.A.T. program does not require a thesis.

General Information and Requirements

Applicants to the M.A.T. program must hold the baccalaureate degree from an accredited four-year college or university, with a major or a 24-semester-credit minor in history, education (history or social-studies emphasis), or a closely related discipline. A cumulative grade point average of 2.75 (unless the applicant has demonstrated unusual promise during his or her junior and senior years), a statement of purpose, and at least one letter of recommendation are also required for admission to Graduate Standing in History. Applicants must have at least one year's teaching experience or its equivalent at the primary and/or secondary level before the semester in which they seek to enter the M.A.T. program. The GRE examination is not required for M.A.T. applicants. 

  1. Review the requirements for admission found Here.
  2. Before applying to the MAT program we suggest that you contact the Graduate Director of the History Department to ascertain if you meet minimum qualifications for admission and to determine if your goals for study and research can potentially be realized at UNR.  Call the Department at 775 784 6855 for contact information.
  3. Application to the MAT Program is made online and ALL of the materials can be accessed Here
    1. Complete the basic information.
    2. Follow the instruction for submitting:
      1. Official copies of your complete Transcripts of all college and university work.
      2. A Statement of Purpose (uploaded to the online application) that describes
      3. Your employment as a secondary teacher
      4. Your goals for advanced study.
      5. Two Letters of Recommendation.
  4. Deadline is March 1 for matriculation in the Fall semester.


 International Students:

International prospective students must also submit the following no later than the degree application deadlines below:

                                           International Student Appliication Materials:

                                                   Financial Data Form 

                                                   Send these materials to:  

                                                   International Admissions/074

                                                   University of Nevada, Reno

                                                    Reno, Nevada 89557 USA

Deadline is March 1 for matriculation in the Fall semester.

General Requirements

  • 1. Time Limit. All requirements must be satisfied during the six calendar years immediately preceding the granting of the degree.
  • 2. Grades. A graduate student in the Department of History will not be granted credit toward the degree for any course (including transfer courses) in which the final grade is below a "B" (3.0).
  • 3. Course Expectations. A term paper or its equivalent (essays and other written assignments, lesson/unit plans, etc., as specified by the instructor) will be required in each course taken for graduate credit in the Department of History.
  • 4. Continuous Registration. By Graduate School regulations, graduate students must maintain continuous registration of at least three graduate credits per semester to remain active in the pursuit of a degree. This means that students studying for comprehensive exams or writing theses must (even if they are not in residence) register for at least three graduate credit hours each semester (summers excluded) until they graduate. Failure to enroll in at least three credits per semester -- or to request an official Leave of Absence-- will result in a student's being dropped from Graduate Standing; the Department may subsequently decide whether or not to readmit the student.
    • Students who wish to interrupt study must apply for a leave of absence which must be approved by the History Department and by the Graduate Dean.  The form can be accessed Here
  • 5. Residence. By Graduate School requirements, at least 23 of a student's credits must be earned in on-campus courses at the University.
  • 6. Paperwork. The student is responsible for a knowledge of the degree requirements and for the timely submission of all Graduate School forms. Early in their graduate careers, students should become familiar with the most important of these forms: the Program of Study, the Notice of Completion, and the Application for Graduation.

*Before proceeding beyond nine credits of Graduate Study, the student must have accomplished the following:

  • 7. Proseminar. All candidates for the M.A. in History are required to take History 600 (Proseminar), ordinarily during the first fall semester of enrollment. The proseminar provides an introduction to the members of the Department and the examination fields offered, to the requirements of the graduate program in History, and to the graduate study of history.
  • 8. Fields of Concentration. With the approval of the Graduate Advisor, the student must select two fields of concentration (leading to comprehensive course work and reading covering a broad spectrum of historical material) from the list of M.A.T. Fields. No more than one field may be selected from Group III. In one field, comprehensive work leads to a three-hour examination; in the other field, comprehensive work is evidenced in a teaching unit plan with extensive annotated bibliography of scholarship on the topic (see below).
  • 9. Graduate Committee/Initial Meeting. Each student in the M.A.T. program will have a faculty advisory committee, composed of three members. Two should be members of the History faculty, who will supervise the student’s examination field and curriculum unit field; one of these serves as chair of the committee. The third should a faculty member from outside the Department of History. All committee members must be members of the Graduate Faculty. Once the student’s committee has been determined, a meeting of the student and his or her committee takes place. At this meeting, the student discusses his or her proposed fields of study, and the faculty members recommend courses that will prepare the student for the examination or the unit plan in those fields.

After beginning the M.A.T. program but before taking the comprehensive examination, the student must accomplish the following:

  • 10. Specific Course Work Requirements. The M.A.T. degree requires a total of 32 credits, which should include the following:
History 600 (Proseminar) 1 credit
Historiography: two seminars 6 credits

24 credits in additional graduate-level courses, as follows:

graduate-level history courses at least 12 credits
College of Liberal Arts graduate-level courses outside History, approved by the Graduate Advisor. at least 3 credits
graduate-level courses in the College of Education, to be approved by the Graduate Advisor at least 6 credits

Comprehensive work as follows:

History 795 (Comprehensive Examination) 1 credit

Or other courses approved by the History Graduate Director.

  • 11. 700-level Requirement. Of the courses above, at least 15 credits must be in 700-level courses. The historiography requirement and comprehensive examinations (History 795) count toward fulfilling this requirement.
  • 12. Independent Study/Readings.  Students are expected to take nine credits in the field in which they will take the comprehensive examination, including at least one 3-credit independent readings course with the faculty member supervising that field (see #12 below). Students are also expected to take nine credits in the field in which they will prepare their teaching unit plan. In some cases, a course will contribute toward both fields.
  • 13. Changes in Committee Members/Examination Fields. A student may change his or her examination fields or committee members only with the approval of the Graduate Advisor. Such changes may require the student to take additional courses.
  • 14. Program of Study Form/Meeting. In consultation with the Graduate Director and the committee members, the student completes the "Advisory-Examining Committee/Program of Study" before completion of 24 credits. The student should list all courses that he or she has taken and plans to take en route to the degree, including comprehensive examinations (History 795). 

    To complete the Program of Study form, the student arranges a meeting to be attended by all members of his or her committee, including the Graduate Director. At this meeting, the student explains how the fields have taken shape through the course work. Committee members review the Program of Study form to ensure that it includes all courses necessary for the chosen fields and satisfies all requirements of the program. At this meeting, the committee members also determine which, if any, of the student's credits completed as a Graduate Special student or in graduate courses outside the University of Nevada, Reno may count toward the total degree requirements. 

    If the Program of Study is deemed complete and satisfactory, the faculty members sign the form, which is then forwarded to the Graduate School for official approval and filing. Copies should be retained by the student and placed in the student's file in the Department. Once signed by the Graduate Dean, a copy will be returned to the Department.

  • 15. Transfer Credits. Credit completed as a Graduate Special student or in graduate courses outside the University of Nevada, Reno may or may not count toward the total degree requirements, at the discretion of the student's graduate committee. In no event may more than nine credits earned as a graduate special student or outside the University (or combination thereof) be applied to the degree. 

    After the Program of Study meeting, if credits from non-UNR courses are to be counted toward the degree, the student should submit the "Graduate Transfer Evaluation Request"  to the Graduate Directory for processing. The Graduate School staff checks to be certain that the transfer courses were offered for graduate-level credit and computes the equivalent number of semester hours (if the courses were taken on a quarter basis).

  • 16. Students must purchase and complete an online Application for Graduation in the semester when they wish to graduate. Deadlines will be listed on the Graduate School Website. (There is no longer a policy allowing graduation applications to "roll over" to a subsequent semester.)  

    The application for graduation provides a final list of all courses the student has taken in order to complete the program. If that list in any way deviates from the one on the Program of Study form, the student must attach a "Change in Program of Study" form detailing the changes. If the student's committee has changed, he or she must attach the "Change of Advisory Committee" form.

Comprehensive Work:

  • 17. Description. In one of the student's two fields of concentration, he or she must pass a comprehensive examination, based upon nine credits of course work -- at least three credits of which should consist of an independent-reading course (History 703 or 705) with the supervising faculty member. The comprehensive examination is a three-hour written exam. Previous comprehensive examinations are kept on file in the Department of History, where students may consult them. 

    In the other field of concentration, the student must develop a teaching unit plan (3-4 weeks of a primary or secondary class curriculum). This unit plan should be based upon substantial readings in historical scholarship and relevant pedagogical scholarship, should reference appropriate state, county, and national history curriculum standards, and should contain a historiographical essay and an annotated bibliography of relevant scholarship.

  • 18. Reading Lists. In the examination field, the student is responsible for a reading list drawn in part from the readings in the courses taken. The independent study with the supervising faculty member should occur toward the end of the student's course work, so that the faculty member can prescribe readings to address gaps in prior work. Reading lists for the M.A.T. comprehensive examination consists of twenty to thirty books or their equivalent (where three or four articles are the equivalent of a book).
  • 19. Schedule. Students should take the comprehensive examination in the semester when they complete their course work. Examinations are administered within a one-week period, generally around the thirteenth week of the semester. The teaching unit plan is due at the beginning of the week of comprehensive examinations.
  • 20. Evaluation. All comprehensive examinations are read by at least two members of the Department of History. The Department may permit the student to arrange for re-examination in case of failure. After a student's examination has been evaluated, readers' reports will be made available to him or her. 

    The teaching unit plan will also be evaluated by two members of the faculty, generally one from the Department of History and one from a related College of Liberal Arts department or the College of Education. The readers will either approve or recommend revisions to the unit plan.

  • 21. Credits. Comprehensive work (examination and unit plan) is considered together as History 795, which counts for one credit. 
  • 22. Final Oral Presentation. After the readers have approved the student’s teaching unit plan, he or she will give a presentation of approximately twenty minutes in a meeting lasting about one hour. The presentation should demonstrate engagement with the historiography of the subject matter and awareness of contemporary methods of studying and teaching that subject matter. The presentation is a public event, to which the History faculty and graduate students are invited. Upon passage of the presentation and acceptance of the unit plan, the committee members sign the "Master's Degree -- Notice of Completion". Deadlines for submitting this form are published on the Graduate School's website and in each semester's course schedule. It is the student's responsibility to plan his or her work so as to meet these various deadlines.

Note: Chronological and geographical fields are aligned with the Washoe County School District history standards. The lists of courses here is not comprehensive: additional courses may count toward particular fields, with the permission of the Graduate Advisor.

Group I: Chronological fields (covering both World and US)

1200-1750 (Standard 5): History 611, 639, 642, 654, 684a, 682, 690, 694a, 710, 711
1700-1865 (Standard 6): History 601, 610, 604, 632, 607a, 611, 612, 613, 617b, 639, 642, 661, 662, 663, 665a, 684a, 684b, 685, 690b, 691, 692, 694a, 721
1860-1945 (Standards 7 and 8): History 601, 605, 607b, 608, 610, 615c, 627a, 632, 639, 642, 650a, 655, 663, 664, 688, 690a, 694b, 722
1920-present (Standards 8, 9, and 10): History 601, 604, 607b, 609, 610, 616b, 627a, 632, 639, 642, 650a, 655, 664, 665b, 688, 690a, 694b, 722

Note: Several topical courses may or may not be appropriate to one or more chronological fields; the student should consult with the Graduate Advisor and the instructor to ascertain whether these courses fulfill the requirements in a specific field. These courses include History 606, 627, 680, 680a, 687, 694c, 698, 712, 713, 714, 724, 740. Relevant courses from other departments in Arts & Science and Education may be included, with the approval of the Graduate Advisor and the History faculty member supervising the field.

Group II: Geographical fields
World 1700-1865 (Standard 6): History 627a, 639, 642, 661, 662, 663, 665a, 684a, 690, 690b, 694a
World 1860-present (Standards 7-10): History 627a, 639, 642, 650a, 663, 664, 665b, 690a, 694b
US 1200-1865 (Standards 5 and 6): History 601, 603, 604, 605, 607a, 609, 611, 612, 613, 655, 684b, 721
US 1860-present (Standards 7-10): History 601, 604, 607b, 609, 610, 615c, 616b, 632, 655, 688, 690b, 722
Nevada and the West (Standards 6-10): History 617a, 617b, 617c, 618, 688, 725

Note: Several topical courses may or may not be appropriate to one or more chronological fields; the student should consult with the Graduate Director to ascertain whether these courses fulfill the requirements in a specific field. These courses include History 606, 627, 680, 681, 687, 694, 695, 712, 713, 714, 724, 740. Relevant courses from other departments in Arts & Science and Education may be included, with the approval of the Graduate Advisor and the History faculty member supervising the field.

Group III: Topical interdisciplinary fields

To determine appropriate courses, consult with the Graduate Advisor and the faculty member supervising the field.

Dangerous Ideas and Prescribed Beliefs: 
intellectual, religious, and cultural history; history of medicine and science 
related courses in Philosophy, English, Art, Music, Education, etc.
Daily Struggles and Patterns of Social Life: 
social history, gender and ethnic studies related courses in Sociology, Anthropology, Geography, Women's Studies, Education, etc.
Power and Politics, War and Money: 
political, military, diplomatic, and economic history related courses in Political Science, Economics, Education, etc.
Expressions of Self and Encounters with Others: 
cultural history; diversity and multi-cultural issues related courses in Geography, Anthropology, English, Theater, Art, Education, Psychology, etc.