No. The program doesn't require any particular undergraduate degree. We welcome students from all backgrounds. Students who have been out of school a while, or who didn't major in history as an undergraduate may find the Department's Content Boot Camp helpful. This is a course that provides content lectures on important subjects in both American and European history. The Department also has a Writing Boot Camp to help students brush up and review with basic writing skills. In addition, all students should purchase copies of both American and Western Civilization textbooks (contact Dr. Blum for recommendations), and read through these prior to starting the program.
Although the number of required hours is the same for both tracks, there are some differences. Students in the thesis track will develop and write an original project, based on primary sources, called a thesis. The thesis is approximately 100 pages in length, and is supervised by a Thesis Advisor and a committee of scholars. Thesis track students take only 1 comprehensive exam, in their secondary field. They also have to demonstrate reading proficiency in a foreign language, chosen in consultation with the Graduate Program Director and the Thesis Advisor. Overall, this track is for students who want to continue their graduate research with a Ph.D.
Non-thesis track students want to continue their interest in history, but don't want to continue graduate work with the Ph.D. They take comprehensive exams in both their primary and secondary fields (3 questions total) at the end of their program.