Contact a Humanities Office or Academic unit.
Find your course outlines.

Graduate Application Process

Graduate Chair: Dr. Tracy McDonald

Administrative Coordinator: Debbie Lobban

Completed applications consisting of the following:

  • How to Apply
  • Departmental Application Form  (This is equivalent to the required study plan.)
    Once you’ve completed your Departmental Application Form, save it as a PDF and upload as an attachment to your online application. You can also send it as an attachment via email to: or
  • 2 (two) Confidential Reports from referees most familiar with your academic studies
    (These can be found on McMaster University Graduate Studies Online Application – the online application process.)
  • Transcripts from all post-secondary academic institutions attended (When applying online your transcripts are listed under “Academic History Checklist”.)
  • Writing Sample (for Ph.D. Applications only)The above should be submitted by 1 February for consideration by our graduate studies committee for admission and funding (September admission only). Transcripts and confidential report forms should be sent directly to the Department under separate cover.  We will still be considering applications after the February 1 deadline.

Department of History, Graduate Admissions
Chester New Hall, Room 619
McMaster University
1280 Main St. W.
Hamilton, ON L8S 4L9


The MA program is a 12 month program which may be pursued either by courses and project or by courses and thesis. Candidates electing to follow the first route will complete 6 half courses of reading and research seminars, one of which is Historiography, plus the MA project course, History 797*, a major research paper based on one of the seminars taken earlier in the year. Candidates choosing the MA by thesis route will complete 4 half courses of reading and research seminars, one of which is Historiography, and a thesis.

The PhD program involves the completion of 2 minor fields by course work and one major field by September 15th of the second year of doctoral study. Thereafter candidates will devote their full time to research and writing their doctoral thesis. The Department offers doctoral supervision in 6 major fields of study: British History, Canadian History, Twentieth-Century European History, Gender History, War & Society, and History of Health and Medicine (pending approval from the Ontario Council on Graduate Studies). Minor fields represent the full range of the Department’s interests. Applicants to the PhD program should include a sample of their written work with their application.