Applying to the History Graduate Program

Candidates requesting consideration for admission to the M.A. or Ph.D. program in History must complete the online application through the MSU The Graduate School's website, pay the application fee, and must be prepared to submit (upload) the following materials:

  • Official undergraduate transcripts (and M.A. transcripts if applying for Ph.D. program). Required from all universities attended. Un-official transcripts can be uploaded by the student during this online application process, however MSU must receive official transcripts directly from the university(s) attended. Electronic transcripts can be sent to:
    • Applicants who are undergraduate alumni of MSU do not need to submit official transcripts.
    • Official transcripts can be mailed to:
      The Graduate School
      PO BOX 172580
      Bozeman, MT 59717
  • Statement of Purpose. The statement should addresses the applicant’s areas of intended study and the applicant’s qualifications for graduate-level work.
  • Writing Sample. Submission of a writing sample, preferably a sample of the student's work from a history related course.
  • Three (3) professional references. During this online process, applicants will be asked to provide information about their references. The electronic process will prompt each reference to submit a signed reference letter.  
  • The GRE is not required, but scores will be reviewed if submitted.
  • International students: in addition to the above, international applicants will be required to submit the following*:
    • English proficiency scores (at or above):  TOEFL [80] or IELTS [level 7], necessary for applicants who are not U.S. citizens and not from countries where English is the official language. This requirement is waived if the applicant has earned an undergraduate or graduate degree from an institution in the U.S.
    • Evidence of financial support
    • Proof of funds (if self-funded)
    • Copy of applicant’s passport
    • Degree certificates as well as an English translation for all non-English academic transcripts and credentials. Photocopies can be used to initiate the application process, however official transcripts/credentials are still required upon admission

Note: Incomplete applications cannot be considered.

Application Deadlines

Preference will be given to applications submitted before January 31st for admittance in the upcoming Fall semester. Applications received after March 31st will be reviewed on a case by case basis. For applicants wishing to be considered for a Fall teaching assistantship, the application deadline is January 31st.

For a Spring admit, the application deadline is November 1st. Those wishing to be considered for a Spring teaching assistantship, the application deadline is October 1st

Application Guidelines

The faculty consider the Statement of Purpose and the writing sample to be among the most important parts of the application. The letter should describe your preparation for the program, academic interests, and professional goals. The most useful statements are those that present an intellectual portrait of the applicant, an account of the issues the applicant now finds engaging, and the program of study the candidate envisions for him/herself at MSU. The writing sample should be a substantial essay, ideally a seminar paper or senior thesis, that demonstrates the candidate's potential for advanced work in the discipline. This will be uploaded during your application process.

Information regarding Graduate Assistantships.

Contact Information

For more information about the Department of History, Philosophy and Religious Studies graduate programs, please contact Dr. Michael Reidy, Director of Graduate Studies, at or call the main History Department office: (406) 994-4395.