The Curriculum

A liberal arts graduate program designed for secondary school social studies teachers

The typical social studies teacher has received training in the methods of effective teacher and classroom management as an undergraduate in a college of education. But, few were able to spend significant time studying the substance of what they teach on a daily basis. Today’s teachers have taken few courses on the actual topics they teach each day, topics like the American founding, the causes and effects of the Civil War, or the role of the progressive movement in shaping the modern United States.

The higher education marketplace is crowded with master’s program options in educational methods at local universities and distance learning. But, there are few options for teachers who want to study the people, events, and ideas that shaped the United States, or the the origins and structure of the American political system. A teacher interested in pursuing a degree in history or political science would likely be forced to give up working and relocate in order to pursue such studies full time.  For most teachers, this is impractical or impossible.

Ashland University’s Master of Arts program in American History and Government (MAHG) was designed to address the need of social studies teachers for rigorous graduate-level study in the content of history and government. Offered on a unique schedule of weeklong summer seminars in a traditional classroom setting and live, interactive web-based videoconference courses, each course in the program focuses on the study and interpretation of the materials from which we build our understanding of the past: original historical documents.

The Master of Arts in American History and Government (MAHG) requires a total of 32 semester credit hours, including a 12-hour required core and 20 hours of elective credit. Students have a choice of three summative project options: a traditional thesis; a capstone project; or, a comprehensive exam.

Courses are available as Weeklong Summer courses at our Ashland, Ohio campus during June and July, and as Live Online courses on various schedules year round. Degree-seeking students in the MAHG program must take at least 16 of the 32 required semester credit hours via on-campus Weeklong Summer courses. The remaining 16 hours may be taken away from campus via Live Online courses, up to 6 semester hours of transfer credit from other institutions, and credit earned for AHG 670, AHG 690, AHG 691, or AHG 692.

Core Courses

Designed to provide the student with a survey of the major events and ideas which shaped the modern United States, the full 12 semester hour core is required of all students.

 Course Number  Course Title  Hours  Prerequisites
 AHG 501  The American Revolution  2  None
 AHG 502  The American Founding  2  None
 AHG 503  Sectionalism and Civil War  2  None
 AHG 504  Civil War and Reconstruction  2  None
 AHG 505  The Progressive Era  2  None
 AHG 510  Great American Texts  2  None


Rounding out the program, all students must earn 20 hours of elective credit.

 Course Number  Course Title  Hours  Prerequisites
 AHG 601  Sources of the American Regime  2  None
 AHG 602  European Discovery and Settlement  2  None
 AHG 603  Colonial America  2  None
 AHG 604  The Early Republic  2  None
 AHG 605  The Age of Enterprise  2  None
 AHG 606  America between World Wars  2  None
 AHG 607  America during the Cold War  2  None
 AHG 610  American Foreign Policy  2  None
 AHG 611  The American Way of War  2  AHG 610
 AHG 620  The Reform Tradition in America  2  AHG 503, 505, or 607
 AHG 621  Race and Equality in America  2  None
 AHG 622  Religion in American History and Politics  2  None
 AHG 623  Gender and Equality in America  2  None
 AHG 630  American Statesmen  2  None
 AHG 631  American Political Rhetoric  2  AHG 630, 632, or 633
 AHG 632  The American Presidency I, Washington to Lincoln  2  None
 AHG 633  The American Presidency II, Johnson to Present  2  None
 AHG 640  The Congress  2  None
 AHG 641  The Supreme Court  2  None
 AHG 642  Political Parties  2  None
 AHG 660  Topics in American History and Government  2  None
 AHG 670  Directed Study  2  None
 AHG 690  Research Methods  2  Completed 20 Hours
 AHG 691  Thesis  4  AHG 690
 AHG 692  Capstone Project  4  AHG 690
 AHG 693  Comprehensive Examination  2  Permission



The Problem

National tests make it clear that America is losing its memory as more and more of our children receive an inadequate education in history.

View Feature

Why Ashbrook?

The Ashbrook Center’s programs have already helped thousands of teachers improve how they teach their students about America.

View Feature

Our Faculty

Ashbrook features the best historians and political scientists from universities around the nation.

View Feature


Most social studies teachers receive plenty of instruction in how to teach, but not nearly enough in what to teach.

View Feature

Online Programs

Using video-conferencing software, the Ashbrook Center is now able to reach more teachers than ever before.

View Feature

Request More Info

Find out more about what you can do to help Ashbrook change America!

View Feature is a project of the Ashbrook Center at Ashland University

401 College Avenue | Ashland, Ohio 44805 (419) 289-5411 | (877) 289-5411 (Toll Free)