HISTORY COMPS OVERVIEW:
1) Junior majors will meet with the Comps tsarina once in Spring term to discuss the comps process, and when they return in the fall as Seniors, there is one lunch meeting early in the term to clarify expectations and answer any questions.
Class of 2014 Juniors: please mark your calendars:
- Spring Juniors Meeting: Tuesday, May 7, 2013 at Common Time, 12-1 (please note date change), Leighton 202. Mandatory Junior Majors Meeting. History Comps will be explained and all questions will be answered by Professor Igra, Comps Tsarina 2013-14. Pizza and beverages will be provided.
- Fall Seniors Meeting: Thursday, September 19, 2013, Common Time, 12-1, Leighton 202, Mandatory Senior Majors Meeting, fall term comps instructional meeting with Professor Igra, pizza and beverages again!
2) Fall & Winter ~ History Senior majors submit a brief (five-page) research proposal in Fall term; and take two classes in Winter term. During the Fall and/or over winter break, once your proposal has been accepted, please compose the first 10-14 pages of a first rough draft of your project to bring to class the first day of winter term. This need not be a polished draft, it is merely a starting point for the work you plan to do winter term.
3) Spring ~ Voluntary Comps Panels. Our Comps Panels are completely optional, and are offered to provide our History majors an opportunity to share their projects and comps experiences with fellow majors, friends and family in a public forum.
- 2013 Voluntary Comps Panel: Tuesday, May 7, 2013, 5:00-6:00 p.m., Leighton 304, volunteer participant details forthcoming (yes, it does take place on same day as our Junior comps lunch meeting, the day after Spring mid-term break, to give our participants the extra day off to polish their 10-minute presentations).
1. Senior Research Proposal (five-page descriptive statement of your comps plans, to be completed with your adviser's assistance), during the fall term by History senior majors. Satisfactory completion of this first requirement of the History comps process depends upon approval of your proposal by your faculty adviser and the department. Your senior research proposal is a five-page statement specifying the significance of your topic, focal questions of your paper, and an outline of the kinds of sources you anticipate using. You should describe sources and questions as concretely as possible at this point, even though you may refine your formulation considerably after further research and reflection. You should locate your project in the relevant literature: How have other historians approached your topic? Are there clear divisions among different schools of thought? Include a bibliography at the end of your proposal. Please list the courses you have taken that pertain to your topic. Please also submit your tentative class schedule for winter term.
Please note: We will not accept projects for which you do not have sufficient background and coursework. If your project grows out of your research paper in a 395, state explicitly the ways in which the comps paper will differ significantly from the 395 paper. By the fourth week of fall term (the week of Sept 30) you must have discussed a draft of your proposal with your content adviser. Normally, proposals require multiple drafts; please allow yourself adequate time for revisions.
Please discuss your project with your content adviser (need not be the same person as your History department adviser) before you submit it, and he or she should initial it.
Once your proposals have been submitted, Professor Igra will review them. Once she has done this we will let you know if your proposal has been accepted or not. If it is not accepted, you will be informed by e-mail what needs to be done so it can be accepted.
When there is more than one Comps group, after comps proposals have been accepted, they are carefully divided into groups by the Comps Tsar/inas and we will inform you which History 398 section you have been assigned to and need to register for winter term. In 2013-14, there is one Comps group, so this step will not take place.
ALL senior research proposals must be reviewed, accepted and signed by your content adviser and submitted with your tentative class schedule by (or before) noon on Friday, October 11, 2013, in Leighton 210. Any off-campus seniors need to consult with the Comps tsarina or department chair before fall term begins, and are required to meet the same October 11th comps proposal submission deadline.
WINTER TERM - Register for two courses.
398. Advanced Historical Writing. This course is designed to support History majors in developing advanced skills in historical research and writing. Through a combination of class discussion, small group work, and one-on-one interactions with the professor, majors learn the process of constructing sophisticated, well-documented, and well-written historical arguments within the context of an extended project of their own design. They also learn and practice strategies for engaging critically with contemporary scholarship and effective techniques of peer review and the oral presentation of research. Concurrent enrollment in History 400 is required. Please bring your first 10-14 rough draft pages to class on the first day of winter term. Winter, 5,6c, Professor Annette Igra. 6 credits, S/CR/NC.
400. Integrative Exercise. Completion and defense of your substantial (approximately 35-40 page) original research paper, written in consultation with a faculty content adviser. Concurrent enrollment in History 398 required. Staff. Winter. 6 credits, S/CR/NC. Due by (or before) noon on Wednesday, March 7, 2014 in Leighton 210.
Please direct questions about Comps to Professor Susannah Ottaway (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Professor Annette Igra.
Voluntary (and completely optional!) Comps Panel to present and share your comps experiences with your fellow majors, family and friends. The History Department caters these celebratory panels.
Please remember that you need IRB approval before you can begin any oral history comps projects or other types of human subject research: https://apps.carleton.edu/governance/institutional_review_board/
"Practical Advice for Writing Your Dissertation, Book, or Article," by Liena Vayzman, AHA Perspectives, http://www.historians.org/Perspectives/issues/2006/0612/0612gra1.cfm
Money for Research: https://www.carleton.edu/campus/DoC/priv/forms/pdf/StudentFundRequest.pdf
Past Distinction Comps Papers