Best Online Master’s in History Programs

Start your career by earning an online master's in history. A degree from one of these top schools can prepare you for a research or teaching position.
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Students who excel in social sciences, enjoy reading and writing, and possess an affinity for learning about historical events and culture may want to earn a master's in history. This degree qualifies graduates for multiple career paths.

This page covers program requirements, common coursework, concentrations, admission procedures, and potential jobs. It also showcases the top 10 history masters programs at accredited universities in the U.S.

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Professionals who hold a master's in history can pursue careers as archivists, curators, or conservators. These professionals typically work in museums, historical sites, educational services, or government. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects a 19% increase in job opportunities for these experts between 2020 and 2030.

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What Can I Expect From an Online Master's in History Program?

An online master's in history allows students to critically examine the past and explore how historical narratives develop over time. Foundational courses include historiography, historical methods, and theory. An online master's in history often includes a thesis or applied research option.

Universities may allow history majors to customize their degree. Students may choose to study the field generally or focus on a specific historical era or subject. For example, aspiring K-12 history teachers may concentrate on content taught at the elementary or secondary level.

While this degree prepares students for advanced roles in the field, many professionals choose to earn a doctorate to distinguish themselves from other job candidates or to qualify for teaching roles in higher education.

Best Accredited Online Master's in History Programs of 2022

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#1 Best Online Master’s in History Programs

Liberty University

  • Lynchburg, VA
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

 100% Online | Self-Paced Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit

In State | $565

Out of State | $565

Credits to Graduate

36

Liberty's online master's in history provides students with a glimpse into the past. This degree can prepare graduates to pursue a Ph.D., teach history, work as an historian, or serve as a museum curator.

In alignment with its Christian mission, Liberty integrates a biblical perspective. Students take American Christian heritage, along with courses in historiography and historical methods. Degree-seekers may write a thesis if they choose.

Admission requires a bachelor's degree with a minimum 3.0 GPA.

Average Tuition
In-state
$15,417
Out-of-state
$15,417
Retention Rate
81%
Admission Rate
51%
Students Enrolled
85,586
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
92% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
#2 Best Online Master’s in History Programs

Louisiana Tech University

  • Ruston, LA
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

 100% Online | Self-Paced Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit

In State | $1,075.00

Out of State | Varies

Credits to Graduate

30-33

Located in Ruston, Louisiana Tech provides an online master's in history to prepare secondary social studies teachers. Graduates may also apply to Ph.D. programs in history.

This degree offers both thesis and non-thesis options. Thesis students complete 30 credits, including a research course and a thesis defense. Non-thesis students complete 33 credits and submit at least two substantial research papers.

Applicants must hold an undergraduate minor or 21 credits in history, along with acceptable GRE scores.

Average Tuition
In-state
$6,400
Out-of-state
$13,141
Retention Rate
80%
Admission Rate
64%
Students Enrolled
11,510
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
17% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
#3 Best Online Master’s in History Programs

University of Louisiana at Monroe

  • Monroe, LA
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

 100% Online

Avg. Cost per Credit

In State | $500

Out of State | $500

Credits to Graduate

30

ULM offers an online master's in history focused on law, citizenship, and public policy. Students take a research methods course and 27 elective credits. Options include East Central Europe since 1400; the old South; and voodoo, hoodoo, and culture. 

Applicants need a bachelor's degree with a 3.0 GPA or better and 18 credits in the social sciences or humanities (at least half of them in history). Once admitted, enrollees complete a 10-page book review, honors thesis, or research paper.

Average Tuition
In-state
$5,788
Out-of-state
$17,888
Retention Rate
73%
Admission Rate
80%
Students Enrolled
8,673
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
43% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
#4 Best Online Master’s in History Programs

Indiana University-South Bend

  • South Bend, IN
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

 100% Online | Self-Paced Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit

In State | $320

Out of State | $450

Credits to Graduate

30

IU South Bend's online master's in history equips students with historical knowledge and critical-thinking and writing skills. Graduates may work as researchers, journalists, or museum curators.

This degree offers eight areas of special focus, including early America, European history, and African history. The curriculum also requires nine core credits and 12 major credits. Students complete the program by undertaking an original research project. 

Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree with a minimum GPA of 3.0.

Average Tuition
In-state
$6,895
Out-of-state
$19,346
Retention Rate
68%
Admission Rate
78%
Students Enrolled
5,092
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
48% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission
#5 Best Online Master’s in History Programs

Florida International University

  • Miami, FL
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

 100% Online

Avg. Cost per Credit

In State | $500

Out of State | $500

Credits to Graduate

30

Located in Miami, FIU provides an online master's in history to help prepare students for careers in law, government, or academia.

Students enroll in a course in historical methods. They also choose one of five cultural areas of concentration — Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, or the United States. The program concludes with a two-semester research seminar. 

Applicants need a 3.25 GPA in their upper-level undergraduate coursework along with at least 12 credits in history. 

Average Tuition
In-state
$4,721
Out-of-state
$16,529
Retention Rate
89%
Admission Rate
58%
Students Enrolled
58,711
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
68% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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#6 Best Online Master’s in History Programs

Eastern Washington University

  • Cheney, WA
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

 100% Online

Avg. Cost per Credit

In State | $275

Out of State | $275

Credits to Graduate

45

Located in Cheney, Washington, EWU offers an online master's in history for aspiring writers, curators, teachers, and historians. The program features seven start dates throughout the year, and courses last for six weeks. 

Students enroll in nine courses, including British history, public history, and Latin American history. The degree concludes with a capstone course called portfolio and professional development for historians.

Applicants need a bachelor's degree with an approved major and a GPA of 3.0 or better.

Average Tuition
In-state
$6,543
Out-of-state
$24,074
Retention Rate
70%
Admission Rate
96%
Students Enrolled
12,410
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
31% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities
#7 Best Online Master’s in History Programs

University of Nebraska at Kearney

  • Kearney, NE
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

 100% Online | Self-Paced Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit

In State | $315

Out of State | $504

Credits to Graduate

36

Students in UNK's online master's in history can prepare for careers as researchers, museum curators, instructors, or historians. This program offers thesis, non-thesis, and public history options.

Courses include America interpreted, digital history, and readings in American history. Learners may also participate in an internship. To graduate, students must maintain a 3.0 GPA. Applicants need an undergraduate degree with at least 18 credits in history and a minimum GPA of 3.25 for admission.

Average Tuition
In-state
$6,090
Out-of-state
$13,290
Retention Rate
77%
Admission Rate
85%
Students Enrolled
6,279
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
65% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission
#8 Best Online Master’s in History Programs

Southern New Hampshire University

  • Manchester, NH
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

 100% Online | Self-Paced Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit

In State | $627

Out of State | $627

Credits to Graduate

33

Located in Manchester, New Hampshire, SNHU offers an online master's in history. This 15-month program equips learners with skills in research, analysis, and presentation.

Courses include historiography, comparative history and research, and historical lenses and scholarship. Students may complete the program with a capstone in their chosen area of specialization — American, public, or military history.

Applicants need a minimum 2.75 undergraduate GPA and must submit a 500-600 word statement of interest.

Average Tuition
In-state
$30,756
Out-of-state
$30,756
Retention Rate
65%
Admission Rate
88%
Students Enrolled
113,514
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
94% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes New England Commission on Higher Education
#9 Best Online Master’s in History Programs

University of North Carolina Wilmington

  • Wilmington, NC
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

 Hybrid 

Avg. Cost per Credit

In State | $295

Out of State | $1,063

Credits to Graduate

30

UNCW offers an online master's in history for professional educators. This degree admits new degree-seekers from varied educational backgrounds each fall.

Students do not major in a particular geographic or thematic area. Instead, they study U.S., European, and global history with their cohort. Courses include ancient Mediterranean, the modern Middle East, and in the shadow of the bomb: everyday life in Cold War America. 

This two-year program requires two one-week intensives on campus. Applicants do not need to submit GRE scores.

Average Tuition
In-state
$4,443
Out-of-state
$18,508
Retention Rate
86%
Admission Rate
65%
Students Enrolled
17,499
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
49% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
#10 Best Online Master’s in History Programs

Indiana University-Kokomo

  • Kokomo, IN
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

 100% Online | Self-Paced Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit

In State | $317

Out of State | $468

Credits to Graduate

30

Students at IU Kokomo can pursue a master of arts for teachers in history. 

The program requires one core course, 15 credits of electives, and 12 credits of education courses. Five areas of focus include historical methodology, early America, the 19th century, modern U.S. history, and comparative history.

Applicants to this online master's in history need a bachelor's degree in any field. Prospective students must also complete two courses from IU Kokomo's graduate certificate in history with a 3.0 GPA.

Average Tuition
In-state
$6,895
Out-of-state
$19,346
Retention Rate
64%
Admission Rate
74%
Students Enrolled
3,164
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
46% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

What Courses Will I Take in an Online Master's in History Program?

Historical Methods

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Historical methods courses examine modern approaches to studying the past and professionalism within the field. Assignments may provide flexibility, allowing students to focus on their own areas of interest. This writing-intensive course may require weekly essays, research proposals, and/or a research portfolio component.

Seminar in American History

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A seminar in American history includes hands-on research and writing on events such as the Great Depression, WWII, and the civil rights movement. Professors typically allow students to choose their own topics for assignments. Course objectives include selecting useful primary sources, responding to criticism, and drafting publishable work.

Seminar in Global History

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A seminar in global history introduces students to modern and ancient movements and events across the world. This course emphasizes reading, research, writing, and critical thinking. Final assignments typically include a research proposal and a high-quality research paper. This course also encourages student collaboration and debate.

Introduction to Historiography

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Introduction to historiography courses present key concepts and challenges modern historians face. This course requires intensive reading, writing, and research. Students engage with philosophical and theoretical works that analyze how the field has evolved. Course objectives include developing independent intellectual agendas, honing critical reading and writing skills, and discerning future historiographic trends.

History of Islamic Societies

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This course surveys the Middle East from pre-Islamic years through Ottoman rule. Among other topics, students may consider the plurality of cultures that make up the region and the intellectual and spiritual formation of Muslims, along with the civilization's literary works, art, warfare, and trade.

Related Master's in History Degree Concentrations

American History

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A concentration in American history examines pertinent topics regarding the establishment and development of the U.S., its people, the land, and its global presence. This concentration prepares graduates for multiple roles, including K-12 teaching positions in secondary schools.

Public History

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Public history emphasizes teaching historical lessons in non-school settings, such as museums and historic sites. Students gain the knowledge and skills to broaden public awareness regarding the value of studying history using methods like public colloquia and digital media. This concentration often requires an internship.

European History

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Students examine Europe's historical, political, economic, and global influence from its inception to current day. Courses may include German nationalism and state formation, Russian and Soviet history, Irish history, and Reformation and Renaissance history. This concentration requires extensive research.

World History

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Students examine historical connections between people from multiple regions, cultures, and states. Areas of study may include constitutionalism, economic networks, slavery, environmental exchange, migration, exchanges and diffusion of disease, and diaspora.

Museum Studies

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Students interested in studying art and artifacts can supplement a master's in history with a specialization in museum studies. This concentration explores collections, exhibitions, and historic preservation. Students also gain experience with revenue generation, proposal writing, and fundraising.

Related Programs That Might Interest You

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

What Are the Admission Requirements for an Online Master's in History Program?

  • Check

    Official Transcripts From Bachelor's Degree

    Students considering a master's in history need to submit official transcripts from an accredited bachelor's program. Students without sufficient prerequisite undergraduate credits may need to complete additional coursework before gaining admission.

  • Check

    Letters of Recommendation

    Colleges and universities may require letters of recommendation to confirm a student's work ethic and academic performance. Students can ask former professors, academic counselors, and/or employers for these letters.

  • Check

    Graduate Record Examination

    Colleges and universities may require students to complete the GRE to determine their potential for success. An increasing number of online programs do not require the GRE, and other universities allow students to choose whether they want to submit their scores. Students with a low GPA should submit GRE scores to increase their chances of admission.

  • Check

    Research Paper

    A master's in history emphasizes reading, research, and writing. History graduate programs may require students to submit a research paper that examines an issue in-depth, using primary and secondary sources. Universities may include a page limit and/or minimum page requirement.

  • Check

    Test of English as a Foreign Language

    The TOEFL exam evaluates international students' mastery of the English language and ability to study at a college level. The TOEFL contains four sections: speaking, listening, reading, and writing. International students must complete this exam in four hours.


What Can I Do With an Online Master's in History?

Students who earn a master's in history may become historians. However, to teach in many university settings, you need a doctorate. Therefore, many graduates go on to earn their Ph.D.

History graduates may also become K-12 history teachers. This role requires a teaching license. Students who did not earn a teaching license in their bachelor's program may need to complete additional coursework.

Graduates may also work in libraries, archives, museums, and other historic settings.


Related Careers

Frequently Asked Questions About Online Master's in History Programs

What can I do with a master's degree in history?

Professionals may work in colleges and universities, K-12 schools, museums, and historical sites. Federal and state governments, hospitals, and scientific establishments also offer opportunities for history professionals.

How long does it take to get a master's degree in history?

On average, students can earn their degree in two years of full-time attendance. Part-time students should anticipate earning their degree in three or four years. Programs may offer accelerated options that allow students to graduate sooner. Students should also note that additional concentration areas may extend the length of their program.

How much does it cost to get a master's degree in history?

The cost of a master's in history varies. Online programs may offer lower tuition rates than on-campus programs. However, students should also factor in out-of-state costs if they hold residency in another state. Choosing a private college or public university can also influence tuition rates.

How much can I earn with a master's degree in history?

Students should identify what role interests them to determine an average salary. The cost of living may also influence earning potential. Researching state-specific information can help students uncover accurate average salaries, as well.

What master's degree can I get with a BA in history?

Students who hold a bachelor's degree in history often go on to earn a master's degree in history. However, students considering another field may want to make a list of transferable skills. For instance, history majors often excel in research, reading, and writing. These skills would help a student considering law school.

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BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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