Publication Date

September 1, 2000

Perspectives Section


The Carnegie Corporation of New York, one of the nation's largest foundations, has given the AHA a grant of $346,300 to support a three-year project to study various aspects of graduate education in history.

The AHA's Committee on Graduate Education (CGE) launched the project to assess how the discipline is defined and how future faculty are trained in departments of history across the United States. Such an assessment is a necessary prerequisite for adapting history education to current needs and changing demographic and intellectual conditions, and for revitalizing undergraduate teaching.

The CGE will use the Carnegie grant to assist in surveying the current state of graduate education in history, identifying best practices, developing guidelines, and widely disseminating-through reports and other publications-recommendations that will help prepare the history profession to meet its academic and public responsibilities in the coming decade (see the article by Thomas Bender in this issue of Perspectives Online for details of the CGE’s plans).

Although the AHA is concerned with the fate of history education at all levels, it is focusing on graduate education for this large-scale study because it is in the graduate schools-as sites of research and sites of teacher training-that the content of history education is formed. The future of undergraduate education is shaped to a large extent by the interests, professional identity, and knowledge that historians acquire in their graduate experience.

The CGE is chaired by Colin Palmer of Princeton University. Thomas Bender of New York University is the secretary. The other members of the committee are Constance Berman (Univ. of Iowa); Ramon Gutierrez (Univ. of California at San Diego); Nadine Ishitani Hata (El Camino Comm. Coll.), representing the Teaching Division; Lynn Hunt (UCLA); Theresa Mah (Bowling Green State Univ), representing the AHA Task Force on Graduate Education; Ernest Simmons (graduate student, Univ. of California at Berkeley); Kristin Stapleton (Univ. of Kentucky).

Details about the CGE and its work can be obtained from Miriam Hauss, AHA, 400 A St., SE, Washington, DC 20003-3889. E-mail:

The Carnegie Corporation of New York ( was created by Andrew Carnegie in 1911 to promote “the advancement and diffusion of knowledge and understanding.” As a grant-making foundation, the Corporation seeks to carry out Carnegie’s vision of philanthropy, which, he said, should aim “to do real and permanent good in this world.”

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