Prospective Students

Why Study History at the UW?

The University of Washington History Department currently enrolls more than 50 scholars pursuing MA and PhD degrees in a wide range of fields.  Ours is in the top third of History PhD programs nationwide, and benefits from a large and vibrant university community and a location in beautiful Seattle.   Our graduate students and faculty are award-winning scholars and teachers, active in the historical profession nationally and globally, and engaged in digital scholarship, public and applied history, and interdisciplinary collaborations.  

As you consider the UW, we encourage you to contact prospective faculty advisors to tell them about your interest and learn if they will be taking on new graduate students.  A full list of faculty and their divisions can be found here.  In your application, you also will need to propose fields of study (two at the MA level, and four for the PhD).  A list of fields offered by our faculty can be found here. 

Your application for admission is also your application for funding.  Our students customarily receive financial support from the History Department or other units (including tuition, insurance, nine-month stipend) that takes the form of a combination of fellowships and service appointments (teaching, research, and staff assistantships).  Overall, the level of multi-year funding in our program is high.  In addition, students are eligible and encouraged to apply for outside sources of funding, and in the past have had an excellent track record of winning competitive university and national fellowships. 

The UW History Department encourages applicants to the Graduate Program in History to apply also for Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) Fellowships, if they are eligible. The FLAS is a competitive fellowship intended to support foreign language training and is a means to fund new and continuing UW graduate students. FLAS Fellowships are offered in several modern languages and generally provide tuition and a stipend.  US Citizens and Permanent Residents are eligible to apply.  For information about the FLAS Fellowships including eligibility requirements, deadlines and application procedures, go to:
The FLAS application process is administered by the UW's Jackson School of International Studies and is entirely separate from History's graduate admissions process. Receipt of a FLAS Fellowship does not guarantee you admission to the History Graduate Program.






During spring and summer 2017, the UW History Department will be updating the information on its website in preparation for the Autumn 2018 graduate admissions cycle.  These updates will include information about the teaching and research interests of our faculty and the graduate fields of study that they supervise, as well as the instructions and materials needed to apply for our graduate program for Autumn 2018 admission.  Please read the updated graduate application information on our website carefully before you submit your application materials. 

We will be accepting graduate applications for Autumn 2018 admission starting in late summer 2017; our graduate application deadline is December 1.




The University of Washington History Department will not be accepting graduate applications during autumn 2016, for graduate study commencing during the 2017-2018 academic year.
The History Department has a relatively large cohort of graduate students currently enrolled and fully-funded on five year packages.  In the wake of University budget reductions for the current fiscal year and in light of our ongoing commitment to supporting all admitted graduate students with five-year funding packages, we have decided to pause graduate admissions for one year and resume accepting applications  in autumn 2017, for graduate study starting in the 2018-2019 academic year.
If you have any questions about our decision to pause graduate admissions and not accept applications for graduate study for the 2017-2018 academic year, or any other questions about our graduate program, please contact the Department’s Director of Graduate Studies, Professor Purnima Dhavan (pdhavan @

The History Department admits new students each Autumn.   The admissions process is managed online through the UW Graduate School. Applicants should submit ALL materials via the electronic application process; do not mail any hardcopy materials directly to the History Department.  Have ETS send official GRE scores directly to the University of Washington (institution code 4854).  Applicants should check the status of their graduate application via the electronic application.

Applicants with a BA only, or an MA in a field other than History, must apply for admission into our MA program.  Applicants who will have completed an MA in History are eligible to apply for our PhD program.  If you will have a completed MA in a closely related field, you may note on your application that you would like to be considered for admission into the PhD program.  

The History Department does not defer offers of graduate admission to a later quarter or a later year.

Further information about application criteria, required materials, and other FAQs about the process can be found here.