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EIU Master of Arts in Historical Administration

Applications are no longer being accepted at this time. We greatly apologize for the inconvenience. Please feel free to contact Dr. Nora Pat Small, Interim History Department Chair, with any questions or concerns,

The EIU history department introduced the Historical Administration option to its Master of Arts program in 1975. Since then it has been preparing students academically and technically to serve as professionals in museums and historical agencies. Students are introduced to the problems, philosophies, ethics, and techniques of preserving, interpreting, and administering the American heritage.

The HA curriculum combines the research orientation of a traditional cultural history program with an interdisciplinary approach to American material culture and includes a variety of hands-on activities. Each year classes work with various program partners on an assortment of projects. The on-campus academic year is followed by a six-month internship with an established historical institution or organization.

Some graduate assistantships are available each year. Prospective students invited to interviews are given an opportunity to complete graduate assistantship applications at that time. Graduate assistants have various duties, depending on their particular assignments.

The History Department also offers an M.A. in History.

Why Choose EIU for Historical Administration

Actively Engaged

Historical Administration students begin and end their academic year with study trips that take us behind-the-scenes in museums and historic sites. During the academic year, students write grants; research, design and build an exhibit; and conduct applied projects in archives and collections housed in campus, community, and state museums and sites.

Interpreting the Past

As a program we interpret and curate the past through our annual exhibit, scholarly research and writing, public programming, digitization projects, and museum education projects. Faculty are actively engaged in interpreting and curating the past through their fields of research and through involvement in professional organizations.

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Capstone Experience

Following the academic year, students complete a six-month internship at a museum of their choice. HA students complete a special project under the supervision of a museum professional, extending and reinforcing the knowledge and experience gained through their course work.


Historical Administration Program alumni are employed at museums and historic sites throughout the United States and beyond, in virtually every area of the field. You'll find them at corporate archives, National Park Service sites, Smithsonian museums, university museums, the National Archives, county historical societies, living history sites, arts councils, and more.

  • Italy
  • Indonesia

First Choice Graduate Program

Historical Administration has earned the honorable designation as a "First Choice" program at Eastern Illinois University.

firstchoiceprogram Graduate programs achieving the distinction of "First Choice" have applied for and been subjected to rigorous review from EIU's Council on Graduate Studies — with oversight from The Graduate School — to ensure they meet the highest standards of scholarly excellence as evidenced through sustained achievement of criteria developed and adopted by the council in 2006.

Criteria for designation as a First Choice program can be accessed by clicking here. You can also click here to see a listing of all graduate programs currently carrying the First Choice distinction.

Related Pages

Department of History

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