Courses in this program are open to students seeking continuing education graduate credit or to students enrolled in the Master of American History and Government degree program.
The courses are intensive one-week seminars offered only in the summer, each for two semester credit hours. There are one-week sessions each summer, and students may choose to participate in one, two, three, or four sessions in any given summer.
Students may complete the degree program in three summers. By transferring eight hours from other universities and completing the thesis/capstone project during the academic year, the degree can be completed with three summers at Ashland. Students may take up to ten years to complete the program.
Each course begins on a Sunday and concludes on Friday afternoon. All students attend a Sunday evening lecture given by a professor teaching in the program that week. The syllabus and detailed list of readings will be made available well before the start of the course. Students will be required to complete reading assignments before each course begins. In some courses, students may also be required to complete writing assignments before the course begins or after it concludes. The week in residence is very intensive, and students should plan to devote the entire week to the coursework. Students are strongly encouraged to reside at Ashland University during the sessions.
For those who stay on campus, you will be housed in air-conditioned housing. Meals are in Ashland University's award-winning student dining. On-campus students have full access to the Ashland University Library, with its 300,000 volume collection and extensive on-line resources; a computer lab is available 24 hours a day, and wireless Internet is available on most of the campus. Students also have full access to Ashland University's new Recreation and Sport Sciences Center.
What makes this program distinctive
Courses Offered Only in the Summer
The courses in this program are offered during the summer as intensive week-long courses, making it convenient for social studies teachers nationwide to participate in the program. This Master's program is the only summer Master's program for history and social studies teachers in the nation.
Quality of the Faculty
One advantage of offering courses only in the summer is that full-time faculty from other universities not junior faculty, but noted scholars from colleges and universities nationwide will be able to teach in this graduate program. Almost all of the courses in the program are taught by two faculty, and both instructors are present during the entire course.
Combined History and Government Curriculum
The curriculum combines history and government courses because history teachers often teach American government. More important than this practical consideration is the fact that the study of history and government belong together. By establishing our public memory, American history as a discipline establishes the identity of our body politic. In telling us whence we have come, it inevitably helps us decide whither we should go. Thus, it affects the political decisions Americans make and have made through our political institutions, while these decisions are themselves the stuff of which history is made.
The program's emphasis on political history and government does not mean that it will ignore the kinds of history that have come to prominence over the past several decades. Indeed, to do so would make little sense. One cannot fully understand the achievement of someone like Lincoln or even the changing content of his language without understanding the social character and structure of mid-nineteenth-century Illinois and America. Our curriculum aims, therefore, to integrate what we have come to know of "the daily routines of ordinary people trying to make ends meet" into a comprehensive study of American history and government.
The courses in this program emphasize a specific instructional strategy: the use of original documents. In every class, students read and study these documents, including diaries, state papers, speeches, and letters, as well as autobiographies and works of literature and philosophy. These are the materials from which we build historical understanding. Confronting them directly is the best way to improve our understanding.
The Master of American History and Government at Ashland University will provide students with an integrated program built around the reading and discussion of original documents. In doing so, the degree program aims to give students the subject mastery and interpretive skills necessary for further study, research and scholarship in the fields of American history and government.
The Master of American History and Government was authorized by the Ohio Board of Regents and nationally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools in 2005.
About Ashland University
Ashland University in Ashland, Ohio, is a private university that offers a wide range of degrees in the liberal arts, sciences, and professions. Ashland University is home to 2,000 full-time undergraduate students.
Ashland University was founded in 1878 to offer courses in the arts and sciences and in the professions. The spirit of the founders was summed up in the 1884-85 catalog which said that the courses "would develop students intellectually, but not at the expense of the heart; that rich and poor meet on the grounds of equality; that worth, not dress is valued and respected; that economy, not extravagance, is fostered; and that a desire for usefulness, not show, is promoted." This commitment to a useful and satisfying education has continued from that time.