What Can You Do with a History Master’s?

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Updated: March 20, 2024, Reading time: 8 minutes

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You might be stuck on the career options after graduation and worried about their growth in the coming years. Having a master’s in history opens doors to careers where you can inquire, explore, discover, research, and even impart historical knowledge. 

Yet, if you’re still questioning “What can you do with a history master’s?” you’re in the right place. We’ve explored the ins and outs of this program to give you a deeper insight into the career opportunities, requirements, and specializations. So, let’s begin!   

What Can You Do with a History Master’s?

Luckily, a history master’s program sets you up for a brighter future than a bachelor’s degree alone. For instance, it includes an in-depth thesis project showing future employers your strong technical abilities and diligence.

A woman in a hat admires rock art

To simplify it, we have rounded up some possible career paths where a master’s in history can help you stand out. Metrics like annual income, minimum required education, and growth will further help you pick a career that aligns with your future goals. 


Job Overview 

Historians research, study, and interpret the past to deeply examine historical records to understand the present and predict the future. This helps them better grasp how human societies work and evolve over time. 

As a historian, you may work in museums, archives, government agencies, research firms, or consulting agencies – dependently or independently. 

Job Description 

According to the BLS, you may perform the following tasks as a historian: 

Museum Curator 

Job Overview 

Museum Curators monitor the collection, storage, and display of artifacts with scientific or cultural significance. To be a successful curator, you need to possess a strong knowledge of art history and the ability to analyze various forms of art. From children to maritime museums, curators can realize their passion for preservation. 

Additionally, the promising 10% growth rate and annual pay of up to $78,489 make it a rewarding career path for history enthusiasts. 

Elderly woman taking a file from a file cabinet

Job Description 

According to the BLS, the core responsibilities of a museum curator include: 


Job Overview 

As true guardians of the historical legacy, Archivists are responsible for preserving key documents and records. They are repeatedly in search of new materials to enrich their archives and set policies for public access to these materials. Archivists most commonly work in museums and join hands with technicians for successful exhibitions. 

While the qualifications to become an archivist mainly depend on your employer, a master’s degree in history can make you stand out as a strong candidate. 

Job Description 

According to the BLS, Archivists typically carry out the following roles: 


Job Overview 

Lawyers, known as attorneys, mainly manage their clients’ image in the courtroom and battle legal cases on their behalf. They serve dual roles as advisors and advocates on disputes between individuals or organizations. A skilled lawyer must know current legal principles and understand why they exist and where they originate. 

The mean annual income of $103,341 indicates that a lawyer is a great profession to step into if you have a history master. 

Art students drawing the statues inside a museum

Job Description 

According to the BLS, the basic duties of a lawyer include: 

History Professor 

Job Overview 

If you love teaching and wish to help students interpret their past to see how it shapes the future, you’re destined to be a History Professor. History Professors share their history insights at college or university levels. Nonetheless, various factors like the college’s location, degree level, and experience may determine your salary

The good news is that there’s a growing demand for History Professors. 

Job Description 

A history professor undertakes the following tasks: 

Natural Sciences Manager 

Job Overview 

Natural Sciences Managers look after technicians and scientists performing laboratory tests. While a master’s in history may not be the prerequisite, it offers an edge when applying for a Natural Sciences Manager job. For instance, in roles where research, analytical, and critical thinking skills are required, an advanced degree in history stands out.  

Two men walking down a city street

On top of that, the 5% growth projection makes it a lucrative opportunity after completion of your history master’s. 

Job Description 

According to the BLS, as a natural sciences manager, the individual needs to perform the following key duties: 

Admission Requirements for a History Master’s Program

While the admission requirements for the program vary at each university, most institutes require the following documents: 

Note: Make sure to carefully review the application requirements and instructions for each program to provide necessary documents timely. 

Once you’re at the graduate level, you can choose from a myriad of history specializations. Although specializations may depend on the institute, you can pick one that best aligns with your career goals and aspirations.

A woman in a hat gazes at a breathtaking canyon

To put this into perspective, let’s say you aim to teach high school courses on ancient civilizations like the Ottoman Empire and the Middle East. In this case, you may want to specialize in Ottoman and Middle Eastern History. 

Some popular history specializations include: 

Is a Master’s Degree in History Worth It? 

A master’s in history provides a deep understanding of the past, providing a competitive edge in the job market. Most of the jobs after graduation in history have positive growth trends over the next decade. However, it’s worth noting that the tuition for this advanced-level degree comes with a high price tag. 

How Difficult Is It to Get a History Master’s Degree? 

Earning a master’s degree in history may be hard for some individuals due to its academic rigor and demanding commitments. With more expectations and an increased workload, it’s relatively tricky. However, it is achievable with time, effort, and dedication.

What Are the Different Types of History Master’s Degrees?

Typically, there are two types of history master’s degrees: a master’s of Arts in History and a master’s of Science in History. The former suits future historians and curators, while the latter works well for prospective policy analysts and consultants. 


Now that you know the perks of enrolling in a history master’s degree, it’s time to begin exploring your career aspirations. With more jobs, career progression, specialized expertise, and more confidence, the degree brings more benefits than just academics. For the best results, pick a specialization that aligns with your goals. 

We’re certain of one thing—your search for more information on picking the best graduate degree or school landed you here. Let our experts help guide your through the decision making process with thoughtful content written by experts.