Student PicAreas of Study

Students pursuing a doctoral degree are expected to prepare themselves in three fields of history. At least two of the three fields must be in the student's major area of concentration (European, U.S., or other history). The third field must be in an area not included in the first two fields; e.g., if the major area is European history the third area must be in U.S. or other non-European history. If the major area is U.S. history the third area must be in European or other non-U.S. history. For some students, a field in a discipline other than history is an appropriate choice. Students who wish to follow this course should petition the Graduate Committee before the end of the second semester.

U.S. History, including early North America and U.S. South

The graduate program offers major and minor fields in U.S. history with strengths in nineteenth-century U.S. history, missionary studies, early North America, slavery, race, and Southern history—a field enhanced by the presence of the Journal of Southern History and the Papers of Jefferson Davis on campus. Students pursuing U.S. history as a major field will be expected to demonstrate reading competence in one language in addition the language of research.

Faculty: Boles, Byrd, Goetz, Matusow, McDaniel, Sidbury

U.S. and the World

The graduate program offers major and minor fields in the study of the U.S. and the World.  This field encompasses both U.S. foreign relations as well as the transnational encounters of Americans abroad.  This field expects students to demonstrate reading competence in one language in addition the language of research.  Students pursuing U.S. and the World as a major field will be expected to demonstrate reading competence in one language in addition the language of research.  This field is enhanced by the presence of James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy on campus, which focuses on U.S. foreign policy.

Faculty: Byrd, Makdisi, Matusow, McDaniel 

Atlantic World

The graduate program offers major and minor fields in the study of the history of the Atlantic World.  Students pursuing Atlantic World history as a major field will be expected to demonstrate reading competence in one language in addition the language of research.

Faculty: Byrd, Cox, Goetz, de Luna, McDaniel, Metcalf, Sidbury, Ward

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Transnational Asia and Middle East

The graduate program offers major and minor fields in the study of   transnational Asia and the Middle East.  Students can specialize in either the history of the Middle East or transnational Asia.  These offerings are enhanced by the presence of Rice University’s Chao Center for Asian Studies and its interdisciplinary journal positions: east asia cultures critique, as well as the presence of James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy on campus, which focuses on U.S. foreign policy. Students in this field are expected to arrive at Rice with some knowledge of the language of research or should make plans to acquire it soon after arrival.

Faculty: Barlow, Makdisi, , Smith, Ward

Latin America and the Caribbean

The graduate program offers major and minor fields in Latin American and Caribbean history and is intended for students interested in Brazil, the  Caribbean, or Mexico. Students may complement their graduate work at Rice with courses at the University of Houston or abroad. Students pursuing Latin American and Caribbean history as a major field will be expected to have two languages, usually drawn from Spanish, Portuguese, or French. For those interested in Brazil, the Center for the Study of Languages offers beginning and intermediate Portuguese. The minor field in Latin American and Caribbean history requires reading ability in one language and is an excellent addition for the students training as U.S., Atlantic World, World History, or U. S. in the World historians.

Faculty: Byrd, Cox, Goetz, Lopez-Alonzo, Metcalf

Additional Field Offerings

Several faculty in the department offer coursework and exam fields to graduate students, even though they do not necessarily direct dissertations in these areas.  Please contact the faculty directly for more information.  The areas are: World history, African history, modern Britain, modern Germany, and modern Europe among others. 

Faculty: Caldwell, Cohen, de Luna, Mody, Ward, Wildenthal, Wiener, Zammito

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