The William P. Clements Department of History at Southern Methodist University offers innovative graduate study in transnational history. The courses of study explore the human historical experience in American, global, and comparative perspectives, with individualized specializations in transnational themes, such as borderlands, nationalism, democracy, gender, and capitalism. The department emphasizes advanced work on the southwestern United States, the West, Native Americans, ethnic Mexicans, U.S. presidents, and colonial history. But students may pursue other individualized specializations in coherent global fields of study, approved by the Graduate Committee and mentored by appropriate faculty.
The Department of History is home to two centers that sustain and enrich its core offerings through research colloquia, visiting postdoctoral fellows, and scholarly lectures. The Clements Center for Southwest Studies has long been the nation’s leading venue for research in the history of the Southwest in a transnational perspective. And since 2012, the Center for Presidential History promotes critical inquiry into the study of the rich history of U.S. politics and government in both domestic and foreign affairs.
SMU, a nationally ranked private university, is home to top flight research facilities, including the DeGolyer Library, which is devoted to the history of the Southwest, the history of business, and the history of science and technology; the Bridwell Library, which provides a wealth of resources for the study of religious history; and the George W. Bush Presidential Library, one of four presidential research libraries within easy reach of Dallas.
For students with interdisciplinary interests, the Underwood Law Library supports the study of legal history, including that of international law. The Women’s and Gender Studies Program offers a graduate certificate that can be earned together with the Ph.D. in history. Naturally, the Dedman College Interdisciplinary Institute especially addresses the needs of students with multidisciplinary and global interests.