About the Program

The Curriculum

The Master of Arts in American History and Government features a unique curriculum that integrates the study of the people and events of American history with the philosophies and structures of American government. Particularly for a secondary school teacher, the study of history and government naturally belong together. To fully understand the history of the United States, a student must understand the philosophical origins of republican democracy in America. Likewise, to understand the nature and function of American government, one must understand the events, people, and social movements which shaped it.

Focus on Original Historical Documents

Independence Hall

Explore the Founding in the words of those who lived it.

The program emphasizes a specific instructional strategy in each course: the reading and interpretation of original historical documents — the raw material from which we build our understanding of the past. By studying and learning through primary documents, students in the program discover history through the words of those who lived it. As social studies teachers, they learn how to apply these skills and lessons in their classrooms to help their own students develop skills of historical reasoning.

Course Delivery and Format

Designed to fit the schedule of a full-time teacher, the program’s courses are offered in two convenient formats.

Live Online Courses

Offered on an evening and weekend schedule for 8 weeks. Delivered in a live web conference format with live video and audio. Learn More.

Weeklong Summer Courses

Weeklong summer courses offered at our Ashland, Ohio campus. Immerse yourself in your studies in an academic community of fellow social studies teachers. Learn More.

It should be noted that the MAHG degree cannot be completed solely via online course work. Degree students must complete at least 16 of the required 32 credit hours through summer study at the Ashland main campus. If you are looking for a substantially online master’s program, consider our Master of Arts with a Specialization in Teaching American History and Government.

Flexible Schedules

It can be a challenge for graduate students to balance the personal and professional demands they face each day. Students in the MA degree program may take as many (up to a maximum load of 8 semester credit hours) or as few courses each semester as their time and finances allow.

Ready to work on your degree full time? Earn your MA in about two years of full-time study. Need additional time to balance the demands of work, finance, and family? Students in the degree program may take up to 10 years to complete all requirements.

Professor Steve Hayward leads a discussion of 20th century US foreign policy.

Our Faculty

The program’s unique evening, weekend, and summer schedule makes it possible for noted professors from colleges and universities around the nation to teach in the program. In addition to the faculty of Ashland University’s own Department of History and Political Science, the MA program features visiting instructors from such institutions as Pepperdine University, the United States Military Academy, Skidmore College, the United States Naval War College, Boston College, the University of Houston, the Naval Postgraduate School, the University of Virginia, Hillsdale College, the University of Dallas, and others.

Our Students

Most students in the MA program are current or prospective secondary school teachers and community college faculty with a passion for history and government. Rather than simply a way to complete certification requirements, they view graduate study as a means to becoming a more knowledgeable, more effective teacher.

MAHG professors encourage discussion. Here, students add their thoughts to the American Political Rhetoric course.

Ranging in age from 22 to 65 (with an average age of 39), the program includes teachers at all stages of their careers, from those fresh out of college to those pursuing a second master’s degree.

Geographically, our students hail from more than 40 states, from Florida to Alaska, California to Maine. By studying together during the summer and by web conference, students form a community of scholars who share their experiences and build personal and professional friendships with colleagues from across the country. No other graduate program brings such a diverse group of educators together.

It’s worth noting that while the MA program was designed with the curricular and schedule needs of teachers in mind, the program is open to and suitable for all qualified students. Whether you are a secondary school teacher, a community college instructor, a K-12 curriculum or professional development coordinator, a legislative or governmental staff member, or you work for a museum, library, or historical society, the Master of Arts in American History and Government features the rich curriculum and flexible schedule you want.

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