Graduate Program

grad students at a historic site learning about the site - outside by the James RiverThe VCU Department of History has provided a dynamic program for graduate study since 1994. Its flexibility, award-winning faculty, and urban research environment provide multiple scholarly and public history opportunities for a diverse student body. The department’s placement record exemplifies its success.

The department’s flexibility gives students a multitude of options. It offers two graduate programs, including one intended to prepare students for professional work in this expanding field, and offering a solid grounding in the academic study of history. M.A. students have the option to write a thesis, a substantial work under the direction of a faculty advisor that adds to scholarly knowledge, or to sit for an oral exam. Graduate students may attend on a part- or full-time basis, and classes are offered in the late afternoon and evenings to accommodate work schedules.

Our students enjoy small classes, and work closely with faculty to develop their course of study. Our students, recruited nationally and internationally, come with a variety of life experiences and career goals. Any given class may include teachers, public historians, military officers, government officials, and future academics, making for a stimulating learning environment. Students are encouraged to apply for financial aid, and the History Graduate Student Association is an active group offering students academic and social opportunities.

Located on an urban campus between Richmond’s vibrant downtown and the historic Fan district, the program is uniquely situated to take advantage of multiple research and internship opportunities. The Library of Virginia, Virginia Museum of History and Culture, Virginia War Memorial, and the Maggie L. Walker National Historic Site are all within walking distance from campus. More than fifty museums, archives, historic sites, and other institutions in the Richmond area provide special opportunities for a broad-range of hands-on experience in the field. VCU's Science, Technology, and Society program is based in the History Department, and the medical school's Tompkins-McCaw library offers research opportunities in that field.

Please also see the faculty directory, the graduate regulations, placement and all the other information on this site. If you have questions, please feel free to contact our Director of Graduate Studies, Emilie Raymond at, or 804-828-9809.