Resources for Graduate Students

Graduate Students have long been an essential part of the Association's membership, and currently comprise almost 15 percent of our membership. The Association provides subsidized  membership  to graduate students, discounted registration at the annual meeting, and  research grants  to support their work. The AHA also offers discounted membership to early career professionals for the first three years after leaving the student membership category. 

The permanent Graduate and Early Career Committee (GECC) provides a voice within the Association for graduate students and historians early in their careers, and serves as a venue to discuss issues of concern and interest to students and early career professionals.

The AHA's Advisory Committee on Disability is establishing a mentoring program in which graduate students doing work in disability or related historical fields will be matched with established faculty mentors. Click here to apply to be a mentor or mentee.

This page provides links to the most popular resources the Association has prepared or found for graduate students at every stage in their studies and for early career professionals. 


Admissions & Acceptance

  1. Application and Decision Process
  2. Navigating the Graduate Admissions Process by Michael H. Creswell 
  3. The Trials and Tribulations of Applying to Graduate School by John King and Andrew McMichael
  4. Financial Questions to Consider Before Starting Graduate School (PDF)

Course Work

  1. Coursework (PDF)

Foreign Language Study

  1. Guide to Foreign Language Study for Graduate Students

Master's Degree

  1. Retrieving the Master’s Degree from the Dustbin of History, prepared by Philip M. Katz for the AHA's Committee on Committee on the Master’s Degree in History
  2. Function of the Master’s Degree in Teaching History by Helen Grady
  3. The MA and a Career in Historic Preservation by Daniel Vivian

Preparing for Comprehensive Exams: Oral and Written

  1. Preparation Tips for Comprehensive Exams (PDF), prepared by the Committee for Graduate Students
  2. Tips for Oral Qualifying Exams (PDF) by Margaret Mih Tillman

Funding/Grant Writing

  1. Guide to Preparing Fellowship Applications by Aaron Hale-Dorrell and Jennifer Schaefer; approved by GECC 
  2. Calendar - Opportunities for Research Grants and Fellowships
  3. AHA Research Grants

Conceptualizing a Dissertation

  1. Searchable database of Doctoral History Dissertations at Canadian and U.S. History Programs
  2. Dissertation Proposal Stages (PDF), prepared by the Committee for Graduate Students

Conducting Research

  1. AHA Guide to Archival Research: approved by GECC; adapted by Elizabeth Lundeen and Adam J. Pratt from:
  2. Taking a Byte Out of the Archives: Making Technology Work for You by Kirklin Bateman, Sheila Brennan, Douglas Mudd, and Paula Petrik 
  3. Zotero: Social and Semantic Computing for Historical Scholarship by Daniel J. Cohen

Organizing & Writing a Dissertation

  1. From Concept to Completion: A Dissertation-Writing Guide for History Students by the AHA Graduate and Early Career Committee
  2. Practical Advice for Writing Your Dissertation, Book, or Article by Liena Vayzman
  3. From Notes to Narrative: The Art of Crafting a Dissertation or Monograph
  4. Statement on Electronic Publication of Theses and Dissertations
  5. Statement on Policies Regarding the Option to Embargo Completed History PhD Dissertations
  6. Guidelines for the Dissertation Process

Networking & Conferences

  1. AHA Annual Meeting
  2. H-Grad
  3. Planning a Graduate Student Conference by Andrew L. Johns and Kenneth A Osgood
  4. Guide to Getting the Most Out of Conferences and Professional Meetings (PDF)
  5. Conference Rules by Linda Kerber
    • Conference Rules, 1: Everything You Need to Know about Presenting a Scholarly Paper in Public
    • Conference Rules, 2: Everything you need to know about introducing speakers and running a panel discussion
    • Conference Rules, 3: Everything you need to know about your role as a commentator or member of the audience


  1. Teaching History at a Community College by Emily Sohmer Tai 
  2. Getting Started by Terry Seip
  3. A Recipe for a Successful Lecture by Peter Filene
  4. Teaching in High-Intensity Mode by Rudolph M. Bell
  5. AHA Teaching Resources


  1. Publishing History


  1. Where Historians Work
  2. The Many Careers of History PhDs: New Report Documents Diverse Employment Outcomes
  3. Career Diversity for Historians
  4. No More Plan B: A Very Modest Proposal for Graduate Programs in History 
  5. Preparing for the Academic Job Market
  6. Gender and Success in Academia: More from the Historians’ Career Paths Survey
  7. Negotiating Academic Job Offers
  8. Public History Employer Report and Survey
  9. Practical Advice on Getting a Public History Job
  10. Applying for Jobs at Foreign Universities
  11. Career Paths