2023-24 Catalogs

125 Jesse Hall
Columbia, MO 65211
Map and directions »
Phone numbers and e-mail »

MA in Atlantic History and Politics

The Kinder Institute on Constitutional Democracy and MU College of Arts & Science's one-year, 30-credit hour MA in Atlantic History & Politics immerses students in an interdisciplinary examination of the connections and conflicts that have defined the histories of the diverse peoples of the Atlantic basin, including the Americas, Africa, and Europe.  Courses that students can apply to the degree likewise cover a broad sweep of time, from the dawn of European empires, through the age of revolutions, into the more recent "American century."  The MA situates the development of modern nation-states, including the United States, in relation to the broader exchange of ideas, goods, and power across the Atlantic world, and in addition to subject-specific knowledge, students will leave the program with refined faculties of critical thinking, crisp writing, and verbal agility, traits coveted by employers in a wide range of professions. The degree begins each July with a month of study at Corpus Christi College, University of Oxford, and continues with candidates taking graduate coursework at the University of Missouri during the fall and spring semesters. 

Degree Requirements

The curriculum for the MA in Atlantic History and Politics includes the following requirements:

  • Nine hours of coursework completed at University of Oxford
  • A three-credit hour interdisciplinary seminar taken during the fall semester of students' academic year on campus
  • Six credit hours of discipline-specific training in the Departments of History and Political Science
  • An experiential, professional development seminar sponsored by the Kinder Institute 
  • Nine hours of graduate-level, elective coursework in History, Political Science, Public Affairs, Black Studies, and other relevant departments

All courses in the MA must be taken at the 7000-level or above, and at least 24 credit hours must be earned through 8000- or 9000-level courses.  30 credit hours of coursework are required to complete the degree, and students must be in residence at MU for the fall and spring semesters of the MA.  See below for additional elective credit requirements. 

Core Requirements21
I. Oxford Study Abroad (all courses listed are required)9
CNST_DEM 8041The Making of the Atlantic World3
CNST_DEM 8042From the Age of Revolutions to the Age of Nation-States, 1760-1900 3
CNST_DEM 8050Britain and the World 3
II. Fall and Spring On-Campus Required Courses12
CNST_DEM 8045Atlantic History and Politics 3
HIST 8480Historiography3
POL_SC 9120Voting and Elections3
or POL_SC 9140 American Political Institutions
or POL_SC 9175 Evolution of American Legislatures, 1619 to the Present
or POL_SC 9220 Constitutional Law: Institutions and Powers
CNST_DEM 8060Kinder Institute Colloquia 3
Elective Credit9
Elective credit can come from any graduate-level course in the Departments of Political Science, History, Public Affairs, or Black Studies and must include a minimum of three credit hours taken at the 8000- or 9000-level. Students are able to petition the degree director to have three credit hours of graduate coursework from another relevant department apply toward completion of the MA. At least three credit hours of elective coursework must focus on topics outside of the United States and modern Britain. Per approval, up to three hours of course credit can also be earned by students who arrange their own internship or work placement position at an institution or organization that aligns with the degree's scholarly focus.

Thesis Requirements

In lieu of a thesis, students will produce an article-length, discipline-appropriate paper through any 8000- or 9000-level, research-intensive course associated with the MA curriculum and be assessed on the MA's study abroad component.  All assessments will be subject to the MU Graduate School's committee and defense requirements.

Additional Degree Options

Dual Degree JD/MA

The Kinder Institute on Constitutional Democracy and the School of Law offer an integrated program in which students may obtain both an MA degree in Atlantic History & Politics and a JD degree from the School of Law. Although an MA degree in Atlantic History & Politics normally requires one year plus one summer of study, and a JD requires three years, many students will be able to complete the program in three years plus two summers. Students also have the option of completing the program in 3.5 years.

The program outlined here meets requirements for the JD degree with 83 hours of law credit, and 6 elective credit hours in Atlantic History & Politics, for a total of 89 credit hours. Requirements for the MA degree in Atlantic History & Politics are met with 24 credit hours of courses in the Kinder Institute, the Department of History, and the Department of Political Science and 6 elective credit hours within the School of Law. The detailed program of study in Atlantic History & Politics is subject to approval by the student’s advisor in the Kinder Institute on Constitutional Democracy and by the Director of Graduate Studies at the Kinder Institute on Constitutional Democracy.

Applicants to the Dual Degree Program must submit formal applications for admission to the School of Law and to the Kinder Institute on Constitutional Democracy, accompanied by a statement requesting permission to pursue the Dual Degree Program. Students must meet the requirements for admission to both programs.


For general questions about the MA in Atlantic History and Politics, contact:

Prof. Robert Stephen Gray Fletcher, Program Director
(573) 882-0534

Back to Top