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Master of Humanities and Master of Social Sciences Programs

Requirements for All Students

Important Details for All Students

Please Read Very Carefully. You are responsible for adhering to the requirements of your degree program.

Master of Social Science:
There are 3 required courses:
1. SSCI 5020-3 Elements of Social Thought (Fall)
Must be taken during your first year in the program.
2. SSCI 5013-3 Philosophical Problems in the Social Sciences and Humanities (Spring)
Must be taken during your first year in the program.
3. SSCI 5023-3 Research Perspectives (Spring)
Guides you through the proposal process and prepares you for writing a
thesis or project. Take this course after you have completed 27-30 credit
Master of Humanities:
For the general MH degree, all students must complete 36-credit hours, including 3 core
required course.
1. HUMN 5025: Methods and Texts of the Humanities. (Offered in Fall Only)
Must be taken during your first year in the program.
2. Mid-program Seminar (any graduate level HUMN course)
3. HUMN 5924: Directed Readings and Research in the Humanities. (Offered in Spring Only)
Taken only after 21-24 credit hours of coursework have been completed for the degree.

PLEASE NOTE: MH students may take MSS requirements as electives, and vice-versa.

After completing at least 27 credit hours, all MSS and MH students who intend to write a Thesis (6 credit hours) or a Project (3 credit hours) are required to:

  1. Ask three faculty members to serve on their Thesis or Project Committee;
  2. Present their Thesis or Project Proposal to the committee for approval. The project or thesis proposal should be 10-15 pages in length and should meet the following criteria:
    • It contains a well-formulated thesis (claim) that explains the subject of the thesis or project;
    • It summarizes the thesis or project; and
    • It includes a bibliography of primary and secondary sources.
  3. Once your proposal has been accepted by ALL members of your committee, you can Register for Thesis or Project hours and begin writing your thesis or project.


Thesis: A rigorous scholarly paper, typically 60-100 pages in length, a thesis is subject to Graduate School guidelines and review.

Project: If it consists of a paper alone, it is typically about 25-50 pages in length. If a project includes a literary or artistic creation, an educational curriculum, a report or analysis of an internship, etc., it must be accompanied by a scholarly paper of at least 20 pages. A project is subject to review at the program level.

ALL STUDENTS are required to sit for an oral examination administered by three faculty members, one of whom must serve as chair. The oral exam focuses on the student's thesis or project and is done after the student finishes a final draft of the thesis or project. The examination committee is the student's project of thesis committee. The student is responsible for arranging a date and reserving a room for the exam. Please see Graduate School Deadlines for all dates.

Preparing to Graduate

Once you have completed all required credit hours, it will be time to prepare for graduation. During the semester you expect to defend your thesis or project, arrange your oral exam, and graduate, you must:

  1. Contact an MHMSS Director or Associate Director to obtain the necessary forms no later than the first week of the semester you wish to graduate.
  2. Fill out the forms.
  3. Obtain the signature of the Program Director on each of the forms.
  4. Deliver the forms to Jessica Halliday in the Graduate School Dean's Office located in the Lawrence Street Center, Suite 1251 by the deadline.

To avoid delaying your graduation an extra semester:

You may obtain the required forms prior to the semester you wish to graduate. It is your responsibility to be aware of the deadlines and procedures established for graduation.

For further information, see the MHMSS Important Documents page and contact your advisor.