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Department of History
Sensenbrenner Hall, 202A
1103 W. Wisconsin Avenue
Milwaukee, WI 53233
The Department of History offers qualified graduate students opportunities as teaching and research assistants, research fellows, and teaching fellows. Full assistantships provide academic-year stipends and 18 credits of tuition scholarship for each academic year. All applicants to the program, both MA and PhD students, are considered for financial aid. In addition, senior Ph.D. students are occasionally awarded Casper Teaching Fellowships to teach upper division undergraduate courses.
Assistantships, fellowships, and scholarships
Assistantships, fellowships, and scholarships are granted by academic year and subject to the Graduate School’s regulations. Continuing students must re-apply each year by February 15 for financial aid for the following academic year. They may do so by filling out the Application for Financial Aid for Current Students on the Graduate School Web site.
Any student with full funding from the History Department or Marquette University is expected to participate regularly in the intellectual life of the Department including attendance at Orientation, all sponsored lectures and workshops, as well as at academic events coordinated by the HGSO.
The Department also offers some tuition scholarships to students who are enrolled in at least 6 credits/semester. Students with these scholarships are expected to earn at least a 3.0 each semester. Other applications for tuition scholarships are considered on an individual basis.
Research and teaching assistantships
RAs and TAs are expected to work an average of twenty hours/week during the periods the University is in session. If an academic week is shorter than usual—e.g. fall break or Easter/Thanksgiving recess—then students should expect to work four hours for each day classes meet. All graduate assistants must submit a weekly time sheet.
Research Assistants are assigned by the Department Chair to work with different professors during the course of a semester. They are required to submit weekly time sheets showing that they have worked an average of four hours for each day that classes are in session. If they complete a task ahead of schedule they must notify the professor as well as the DGS. RA responsibilities begin with the first day of class and continue through the end of exam week. RAs should expect their supervising faculty to provide any necessary training needed or to allow for their work hours to gain that training (e.g. in specific research databases, apps, or other skills). If RAs have questions and concerns about their jobs, including their relationships with their supervising professors or anything related to their roles as an RA, they should speak first to their supervising professors. If the problem continues, they should speak to the Director of Graduate Studies. As in all personnel matters, the Department Chair is the ultimate source of responsibility and appeal.
Teaching Assistants also gain professional experience. TAs are assigned to a specific faculty member, usually to support an introductory survey course. If their teaching assignments do not regularly fill the twenty-hour/week requirement, they should complete their hours with RA work either for their supervising professor or for another faculty member to be assigned by the Department Chair.
In the event that TAs have questions and concerns about their jobs, including their relationships with their supervising professors, about other TAs—about anything related to their roles as Teaching Assistants—they should speak first to their supervising professors. If the problem continues, they should speak to the Director of Graduate Studies. As in all personnel matters, the Department Chair is the ultimate source of responsibility and appeal.
TAs need to remain in town and available until final grades are submitted for the class (prior permission is needed if you need to leave earlier). After the official end of the semester, they should be available by email in the case of questions about grades or appeals.
For a complete discussion of Teaching Assistantships, see "Rights and Responsibilities of Supervising Professors and Teaching Assistants".
TAs and supervising faculty relationship
The relationship between TAs and supervising faculty is one of mutual responsibility. For a complete overview of the responsibilities and expectations for Supervising Professors and Teaching Assistants, see, "Rights and Responsibilities of Supervising Professors and Teaching Assistants".
Assistantships, fellowships, and scholarships are granted by academic year. Continuing students must re-apply each year by February 15 for financial aid for the following academic year. They may do so by filling out the "Application for Financial Aid for Current Students," which can be obtained from the graduate school or downloaded from the Graduate School Web site. Continuing students who have not previously held a TA or RA must also submit to the DGS two letters of recommendation from faculty members.
Ph.D. students and teaching/research fellowships
Ph.D. students who wish to apply for Teaching Fellowships or Research Fellowships (Smith, Schmitt, Raynor) must be nominated by the department. Internal application forms will be available in mid-October and will be due in mid-November; nominations for Research Fellowships are due in the graduate school by early December. Teaching Fellows will be appointed by the Department by the end of the fall semester.
Teaching fellows and internships for doctoral students
Teaching Fellows are generally doctoral students who have completed their DQEs. As a teaching fellow, the student spends one semester teaching two sections of an introductory survey course in their field (usually HIST 1101 or HIST 1002). The other semester should be dedicated to focused research and writing, although the student is expected to remain active in Departmental life unless s/he is out of town on a research trip.
Doctoral students may spend one year of an assistantship working as both an RA and an intern in different University offices where they can develop additional skills that will help them on the job market. Examples of placements include the University Writing Lab, Phi Alpha Theta assistant adviser, and Digital Media Studio.
Employment outside the history department
The Department of History follows the Graduate School’s policy on external employment:
Students with full assistantships are not allowed to accept additional employment for pay during their award terms. The Graduate School, under the following conditions, may give special permission:
The employment is required by serious financial need.
The request is accompanied by evidence that the assistant's academic work and
quality of service will not be affected adversely.
The request is approved by the assistant's department.
Requests to allow additional employment must be in writing. Include the number of extra hours of work and time period involved, and include an endorsement from the department chair or director of graduate studies. Failure to do so may result in an automatic denial without appeal. Students with partial assistantships generally are granted permission for outside employment, but they too must follow the above request procedure.
Because assistantships are designed to allow their holders to develop skills related to becoming a professional historian, the Department considers any request for external employment with due reflection. Preferably students seeking an exemption will be either doctoral students who have advanced to candidacy or second year MA students intent on pursuing a career outside traditional academia. Specifically, the DGS will draft a letter supporting the request for external employment if the first two conditions are met. Support will be limited to no more than 5-7 additional hours per week. TAs and RAs are strongly cautioned, however, that their academic and assistantship responsibilities must come first including meeting all deadlines for their supervising professors. Failure to do so will result in withdrawal of support for external employment. Moreover, the Department strongly recommends that the employment either support alternative career pathways or be sufficiently flexible to allow a focus on academic responsibilities.
University policy prohibits students with teaching or research assistantships or research fellowships from working in other jobs while classes are in session.