Graduate Programs

The American Studies Department offers a terminal master’s degree that full-time students typically take two years to complete. Students may also complete the program on a part-time basis. We are invested in seeing our master’s students reach their academic and professional goals.  Program graduates have gone on to new jobs or career advancement in a wide variety of fields, including teaching, government, public service, and nonprofit social work.  Many of our students also come with the intention to apply to PhD programs, and some of our recent graduates have been accepted into doctoral programs at Yale, Brown, Rutgers, Boston University, Northeastern, and the University of Maryland. Because we are not attached to a PhD program, all our energy and assistantships are directed to our master’s students, who do not have to compete with doctoral students for our time or funding. We are a tight-knit, small program with extensive interactions between faculty and grad students, and we put a lot of energy into building a supportive and intellectually engaging community within our graduate program. Click here for more information about the graduate program including faculty, courses, and program requirements.

How to Apply

Applicants must satisfy general admissions requirements, including a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0 in appropriate courses.  They must submit

  1. official transcripts of previous work
  2. three letters of recommendation
  3. a statement of purpose
  4. a writing sample demonstrating analytic ability in fields relevant to American Studies
  5. foreign students:  TOEFL scores are required

Optional, but highly recommended: GRE aptitude scores

In cases in which an applicant has been out of school for many years and does not have some or all of these documents readily accessible, please speak with the American Studies Graduate Program Director about your application.

Transfer Students: You may transfer up to two courses taken as a non-degree student to count towards your degree in American Studies once you are admitted to full standing in the program.

Admissions Deadlines

June 1  (for fall admission)
October 1 (Foreign students only for spring admission)
November 1  (for spring admission)

To find out more about how to apply to our program, please visit the University of Massachusetts Boston's Graduate Admissions page. We also invite you to contact the American Studies Graduate Program Director, Jeffrey Melnick, to learn more about the program and the application process.

Giving to UMass Boston

Support the American Studies Department with a gift to the UMass Boston Fund.