Requirements for the MA in Women’s History.
- 48 course credits (24 credits in the first year and 24 in the second)
- There is one required course for entering students: a yearlong seminar (10 credits) that examines historical scholarship on women and explores feminist theory and historical methodology.
- Research Methods Workshop (noncredit): This four-session workshop trains entering students in the use of key research tools and documents collections at the Sarah Lawrence library and local historical archives.
- Thesis Seminar (10 credits): Students enroll in this course during the thesis year, meeting weekly for discussion of research projects, analytical issues, and writing strategies.
- Master’s Thesis
A typical full-time program.
- Visions/Revisions: Issues in Women’s History (10 credits)
- Research seminar in history (10 credits)
- Elective seminar(s) (4 credits)
- Research Methods Workshop (noncredit)
- Thesis Seminar (10 credits)
- Independent study with thesis director (2 credits)
- Master’s Thesis
The majority of credits are earned in seminars in which students undertake conference work (independent research) in close consultation with professors. In addition to the “Visions/Revisions” course (10 credits), entering students enrolled full-time select a year-long history seminar (10 credits) in which they do conference work based in primary sources. They earn the additional 4 credits (2 per term) in elective courses that do not entail conference projects. These courses are normally seminars in the humanities or social sciences. Students may also earn elective credits through internships at historical archives, museums, or agencies concerned with women’s issues.
Students in the second year of full-time study focus on the production of a thesis, an original piece of writing based on fresh interpretation of primary sources. The curriculum for thesis students comprises both the thesis seminar (10 credits) and independent study with the thesis director (2 credits).
While most students will follow this plan, other arrangements may be available, depending on a student’s previous academic experience and individual needs. In addition, at the discretion of program faculty, students may be awarded transfer credits for graduate courses completed elsewhere.
The thesis should make a fresh contribution to scholarship on women’s or gender history. Based on research in primary sources and a mastery of relevant secondary literature, it must present an original argument grounded in historical evidence, demonstrate the author’s analytical skill and methodological rigor, and be well written.
The Women’s History Program has eight core faculty members. Their offerings vary from year to year, although the required seminar for entering students and the thesis seminar are both offered annually.