History Department

Graduate Program

Graduate Student Handbook

This page is designed for students entering or currently enrolled in the M.A. program in Historical Resources Management at Idaho State University. It lists information on important stages to keep in mind as one progresses through the program, common forms, suggested equipment for students, and links of interest in historical GIS, digital history, and graduate education at ISU.


First Semester
  • Meet with your advisor or graduate program director to discuss research focus (thesis or non-thesis) and identify committee members.
  • Use HIST 6610 and other courses to help shape the scope, scale, historiography, and major questions of your research.
Second Semester
  • Hold regular meetings with your advisor to discuss your research, outside of regular coursework.
  • Begin identifying possible internship opportunities.
  • Decide whether to pursue the thesis or non-thesis option.

Third Semester

  • Students planning to write a thesis must submit a thesis proposal to the student's committee and hold a meeting to discuss the proposal and gain committee approval no later than the first month of the semester prior to graduation.
  • Complete Program of Study, including approval by the Graduate School (no later than semester prior to graduation).
Final Semester
  • Follow all graduation guidelines, as required by the Graduate School, including application for graduation
  • Complete required internship either prior to or during this semester. Students may complete the internship during their final summer semester, following thesis defense or exams the preceding spring.
  • Students completing a thesis must enroll in thesis credits and arrange with committee for defense prior to Graduate School deadlines. Follow the Graduate School's "Instructions for Preparing Theses." Note that thesis defenses are usually not possible during a summer semester.
  • Non-thesis students must complete written and oral exams prior to Graduate School deadlines. Note that examinations are usually not possible during a summer semester.



Our program deals with cutting-edge technology requiring students to have access to capable hardware and software systems. Some hardware is available on campus; however, the History Department recommends a laptop with the following hardware configurations as a minimum for students in the GIS track:

Some software, such as a temporary student license to ArcGIS, is available. Ask department chair of program director for further information.