The Ph.D. program in history at the University of California, Santa Cruz, emphasizes an interdisciplinary and cross-cultural approach to historical studies. We offer a rigorous program of instruction and independent work that trains students in the techniques of original historical research and equips them to teach university-level courses in history. Given the restricted professional opportunities currently available to historians, we only admit those highly motivated students who are most qualified to pursue advanced studies in history. We also only admit those applicants who can best benefit from the specific strengths of our faculty.
Just as the work of most professional historians centers around research and teaching, training in these areas constitutes the two essential poles of the graduate program in history.
Fields of Concentration
In preparing graduate students for research and teaching at the university level, the department offers training in four geographically defined fields: U.S. history, European history since 1500, East Asian history since 1600, and World History since 1500. U.S., European, and East Asian history are defined as primary fields of concentration; each graduate student is required to choose one. Students of U.S. history may incorporate Latin American history in their course work. Every year the faculty in each field offer introductory readings seminars and classes on more specific topics. Each Ph.D. student also prepares a second teaching field different from the primary field and can choose from among U.S., European, East Asian, and World History. Ph.D. students may also petition the Graduate Committee to prepare a second teaching field in African or Latin American history. The graduate director must receive this petition no later than the fourth week of the fall quarter of a student's second year.