This blog will detail my grad school research and progress: studying for and retaking the GRE, looking at different graduate schools, the application process, and eventually the (hopefully) good news.
Sunday, January 4, 2009
University of Iowa
Faculty: 1. Linda Kerber: US Women's History, Legal & Intellectual History 2. Johanna Schoen: 20th Century American Women's History of Sexuality, Women & Medicine 3. Leslie Schwalm: Slavery, Civil War, & Reconstruction, Women & African-American History, Southern History, 19th Century US History
Application Requirements: 1. GRE scores 2. Writing sample 3. Statement of Purpose 4. 3 Letters of Recommendation 5. Transcript 6. Application for Graduate Awards form
Deadline: December 1st-late December.
Students who have an M.A. in History from another university may apply directly to our Ph.D. program during the annual admissions cycle. The Ph.D. degree requires 72 credits of graduate course work (including the credits obtained for the M.A. degree), comprehensive examinations in three fields of history (distributed between two of our major divisions, as listed above) and completion of a doctoral dissertation under the direction of a member of the department.
Applicants with an M.A. from another university may transfer up to 30 credit hours of graduate credit from their Master's program, if the credits are accepted by the University of Iowa's transcript service. This is the number of credit hours that students must complete for an M.A. degree in our program. Doctoral students thus need to complete an additional 42 hours of graduate credit for the Ph.D.
In addition to the course requirements, the comprehensive examinations and the dissertation, individual faculty may require their students to master one or more languages, to demonstrate proficiency in particular research methods (quantitative analysis, paleography) or to develop other skills as necessary for their fields of study and dissertation projects.
Funding: Iowa Fellowships: Funding from these sources come in multi-year packages, which usually include an initial year of fellowship support, followed by 2-3 years of teaching, and a 4th year of fellowship funding. Research Assistantship & the Graduate Instructorship: applicants to our program must fill out the "Application for Graduate Awards" included with the Graduate Admissions material in order to be considered for funding from these sources.
Research Assistantships: Stipend: $16k + instate tuition. We find that serving as an RA helps incoming students to get to know History faculty while adjusting to the Department and to Iowa City.
Graduate Instructor: Stipend: $17,500 + in-state tuition 1st assignment: discussion leader for sections of a survey course in which a faculty member delivers lectures to a large class. Such courses may have 200-300 students enrolled, & these large groups are divided into discussion sections of 22 students each. The GI meets with these students every week to go over course material and to discuss the assigned readings. The GI is usually responsible for grading the writing assignments & examinations for his or her sections, as well. Teaching discussion sections prepares GIs for their next teaching assignment
2nd assignment: GIs teach their own courses within our "Issues in Human History" curriculum. We have defined a number of "Issues," such as "20th Century Crisis" and "Gender in History," which have general course descriptions. Half of the content of each Issues course must be about non-U.S. material. Within these general guidelines, GI design their own sections of the issue they have chosen. They write the syllabus, choose the course texts, create the assignments and do all of the grading. Under the overall direction of a faculty supervisor, who is there to help with problems, to provide support and to ensure high-quality teaching, our GIs have excellent opportunities to grow as teachers of college level courses.
I'm a historian-in-training working on southern women's history. Right now, I'm in the middle of writing my master's thesis on the early period of woman suffrage in Alabama.
I've moved 16 times in my life. I've got friends from one side of the Atlantic to the other. History is one of the few things I don't think I could ever give up. Books are probably my favorite physical possession and coffee is my ambrosia. I never intended to end up in Mobile but I came back because this is where my credits are.
Among the lessons I've learned: I feel less alone by myself than in a crowd of people, friends are fleeting-the ones that stick around are worth keeping, relationships shouldn't be used as a buffer for loneliness or as a reason for happiness, family-for better or worse- will always be family, and a pretty spring day can cure just about any ill if you let it.