Publication Date

December 1, 2012

Perspectives Section

AHA Activities, News

Have you ever wondered, as you worked with intense focus on an essay, how nice it would be if you could, without trudging through the snow to the library, trace the historical evolution of an English word and the mutations of its meaning and usage across centuries or decades? If you are an AHA member and have Internet access, wonder no more. All members have immediate access now to the online version of theOxford English Dictionary, that authoritative fount of all semantic and etymological wisdom for the English language. With meanings of 600,000 words traced historically, and with 3 million sentences illustrating usage, theOED is a veritable linguistic cornucopia. AHA members need only to log in to themember services page to look up theOED‘s etymologies, definitions, examples, or just simply browse through the dictionary. TheOED online now includes the Historical Thesaurus, a taxonomic index to the OED that groups together words with a similar sense and arranges them according to usage chronology. Danger alert! Both these invaluable resources can be addictive—and not just for word buffs!

Now, if we did manage to bring you back to this article, we can tell you about yet another new benefit for AHA members, especially relevant to those who are about to enter the profession. AHA membership now provides access to premium content on the "Versatile PhD" web site, which provides a host of useful resources and tools to PhDs and ABDs seeking careers outside academe. Login on the AHA members log in page, and access all these and more: A thriving, supportive web-based community where you can participate in discussion forums and network with PhDs and ABDs outside the academy; a bank of successful resumes and cover letters used by humanities and social science PhDs and ABDs to get their first position outside the traditional academy; compelling first-person narratives written by successful humanities and social science PhDs and ABDs who have gone on to jobs in the wider world, describing how their careers developed after grad school and where they are today; panel discussions with versatile PhDs working in fields that are not normally perceived as destinations for them. It is worth noting that the Versatile PhD web site is a confidential resource. No one needs to know that you have been using the web site.

It may be worth recalling here that in addition to these new benefits, AHA members can avail of many more services and resources. These include access to the current issue of the American Historical Review and its entire back volume set; ability to search through the AHA’s comprehensive online directory of history departments and organizations, as well as the online directory of members; access to the online listing of grants, fellowships, and prizes of interest to historians; and immediate access to Choice Reviews Online (with the facility to sign up for RSS feeds on selected topics). AHA members also get discounts through the Scholar Saver Program to subscriptions to scholarly journals and other resources.

Being a member not only means belonging to the premier association of historians, it also means having access to all these additional benefits!

Based in part on the blog post of November 13, 2012, on AHA Today by Nike Nivar.

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