Entry requirements

Applicants for this course should have achieved a UK High 2:1 Honours degree, or international equivalent.

Months of entry


Course content

American history at the University of Cambridge is a dynamic field which covers the history of what is now the United States, from the colonial period to the modern era. The MPhil in American History enables students to develop expertise in this ever-expanding field of historical scholarship.

The MPhil in American History combines taught and research elements over a nine-month full-time programme. The taught elements include three modules, as well as training workshops and seminars. All students will also complete a substantial piece of independent research (a dissertation of 15,000–20,000 words).

Throughout the course, students will be supervised by a dedicated member of staff, who will guide their research towards the completion of a dissertation on a subject chosen and developed by the student.

Cambridge graduates in American history have taken up posts in universities and academic-related spheres of work around the world. The MPhil in American History provides a point of entry into this rich tradition. However, the MPhil has also provided an excellent basis on which to proceed to a career in other, non-academic professions.

Learning Outcomes

Students on the MPhil in American History will be provided with an in-depth study of some of the key areas of research in American history. All students will be assigned a supervisor who will guide them through the requirements of the course and, most crucially, the dissertation.

In this manner, all students are provided with the historiographical knowledge and analytical skills necessary to understand and evaluate existing research and to pursue research in their own fields of intellectual interest. Through individual supervisions and small-group classes, students are introduced to the more specialised and intensive nature of research required at a postgraduate level.

By the end of the programme, students will have:

  • knowledge of key debates and trends in American history and historiography
  • greater understanding of issues, events, and people in American history
  • skills in presenting work in both oral and written form
  • advanced research and writing skills at postgraduate level

Information for international students


Fees and funding

There are no specific funding opportunities advertised for this course, though students in the Faculty of History have enjoyed disproportionate success in the University’s highly competitive central funding competitions, including Gates, Cambridge Trust, and AHRC.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MPhil
    full time
    9 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details