Application to the Ph.D. Program and for an Assistantship
Note that there are two separate applications, one for admission (https://banssbprod.memphis.edu/pls/PROD/bwskalog.P_DispLoginNon) and another for the assistantship (http://www.memphis.edu/history/pdfs/assistap.pdf). Both applications require some of the same materials, but you need only send each
item once. Make sure that your recommendations primarily address your academic qualifications
and not just your character or competence and reliability as an assistant. They should
also evaluate your previous graduate, not undergraduate, work.
For admission: In most cases, the Graduate Admissions Committee evaluates all applicants for a given
semester at the same time. The deadline to submit all required application materials
is January 15 for summer or fall semester admission, the same date that the separate
assistantship application is due, and September 15 for spring semester admission.
We may agree to consider applications that arrive at other times, but we give preference
to those submitted by the above deadlines. If you apply too late or do not yet meet
all the requirements, you can still register for a time as a non-degree student (see
above, under Application Procedures).
However, we will never consider an application that arrives after the Graduate School
deadlines for fall, spring, and summer semester admission: July 1, December 1, May
1 (domestic applicants) and May 1, September 1, February 1 (foreign applicants).
New students applying for the Ph.D. program must be admitted to the Graduate School.
You should send or have sent all transcripts, test scores, and fees directly to Graduate
Admissions, The University of Memphis, 100 Wilder Tower, Memphis, TN 38152, not to
the Department of History. Note that when the Graduate School tells you that your
application is complete, it is referring only to the materials that they require you
to send to it, not what the department requires in addition.
You should send any other supporting materials, such as letters of recommendation,
writing samples, or personal statements, directly to the Department of History. We
prefer for all materials sent to the Department of History (as opposed to the Graduate
School), whether for admission or for an assistantship, to be in electronic form (docx,
doc, rtf, or pdf). Letters of recommendation are confidential, so they are acceptable
only if they come directly from the professor, either signed and on department letterhead
or from the professor’s college e-mail account. Please send these materials to our
graduate secretary, Karen Jackett, at firstname.lastname@example.org. You should send paper documents to her at 219 Mitchell Hall, Memphis, TN 38152-3450.
Three weeks after all the material has been sent to the department, whether for the
application or the assistantship, please e-mail Karen Jackett to confirm that we have
A typical application takes four to eight weeks to process after we receive all the
materials; the Department of History's Admissions Committee and other appropriate
faculty review all applications before making a recommendation about admission to
the Graduate School.
Note that it often takes a frustrating amount of time for test scores, transcripts,
and letters of recommendation to arrive, so arrange for them early. If you apply too
late or do not yet meet all the requirements, you can still register for a time as
a non-degree student (see above, under Application Procedures).
All credentials become the property of the university, which will not forward or return
them. We will maintain your credentials in an active file for at least one year.
If you are admitted, but do not register for the term for which you are admitted,
or fail to register for every Fall and Spring term, the Graduate School will require
you to fill out a short on-line readmissions application before beginning or resuming
your study. Get the form at https://banssbprod.memphis.edu/pls/PROD/bwskalog.P_DispLoginNon.
For assistantship: To apply for an assistantship for the following academic year, send your application
to the Department of History by January 15, using the same guidelines as for the admissions
application above. Send unofficial transcripts and test scores to the department only
if they have not arrived at the Graduate School. You may use the three letters of
recommendation for admission for the assistantship as well, although you may wish
to send additional letters addressing your suitability for an assistantship. We normally
make decisions about graduate assistantships for the following academic year by April
Normally, Ph.D. students apply for a teaching assistantship.
All credentials become the property of the Department of History, which will not forward
or return them. We will maintain your credentials in an active file for at least one
As full-time students, assistants at the Ph.D. level are expected to pass their comprehensive
exam by the beginning of their seventh Fall/Spring semester. Those who do not will
not be able to renew their assistantships, except under exceptional circumstances.