Chicana-Chicano Studies

Master of Arts Degree Requirements

A total of 33 units are necessary to graduate from the Masters program in Chicana and Chicano Studies. In particular, students are required to take 30 units of course work and 3 units for the thesis or graduate project. A 3.0 grade point average or higher is required for all coursework in the program. The university provides students seven years from the date students are admitted to complete the requirements for this degree.

It is important to note that most 500 level courses are offered once a week in the late afternoon (4:20-6:50pm) and/or evening (7-9:50pm). Some courses may be offered Saturday mornings.

Year 1

All students are required to take the following courses in their first year of the program:

Year 1, 2, & 3

Students are required to take six elective courses (18 units).  Four of the six elective courses (12 units) must be 500-level courses in Chicana/o Studies.  The remaining two elective courses (6 units) must be approved 400- and 500-level courses in Chicana/o Studies or may be taken outside of the department with prior approval of the coordinator.

The following is a list of current upper division electives in Chicano Studies:

Year 2 or 3

The final requirement to complete your master's is known as a Culminating Experience, which in our department takes the form of either a thesis, creative project with a thesis, or a comprehensive exam. A description of each is below.

1. Thesis Project. A thesis is an original scholarly contribution to the field of Chicana and Chicano studies. Students that choose to complete a thesis must enroll in CHS 698. A thesis must:

a. Answer an original research question

b. Have a theoretical framework

c. Include a clear methods section

d. Contain original analysis of primary sources and/or collect and interpret original data

2. Comprehensive Exam. The comprehensive exam, CHS 697, has for sections that include a research proposal, annotated bibliography, the development of a syllabus, and a timed exam.  This option is only offered in the Spring and students must declare intent to enroll in CHS 697 by the 6th week of the Fall semester prior to enrollment.

3. Creative Project. The graduate project is an art or creative project which blends art/craft and political discourse and/or use of art for social or political and cultural purposes.  Students must have previous art/creative experience to qualify to do the creative project, must submit a creative portfolio in order to pursue this option, and enroll in CHS 698.

It is critical that you work with Graduate Student Services during the semester that you are enrolled in ChS 698. They will provide you with deadlines for thesis or project review and the final date the university will accept your final product. It is your responsibility to be aware of these dates and to meet all university deadlines regarding your thesis or graduate project.

If the thesis or graduate project is not completed as anticipated and an additional semester is needed graduate students can enroll in the Culminating Experience with department approval. This option allows students to remain enrolled in the university and provides library privileges, but not health center services and has no unit value. The fee is $265 and is paid to the College of Extended Learning. In order to enroll, a student must have: (1) applied for graduation (or, if previously applied for graduation, file a date change form with Admission and Records, $8 fee); (2) classified standing, and (3) filed a formal program with the Graduate Studies Office. Enrollment is required in the semester the degree is awarded.

Time Limit for Completion

Students must complete requirements for the degree within seven calendar years from the date they were admitted. Courses that were completed seven years prior to the final date of completion of the thesis must be petitioned by the faculty who taught the course(s). A maximum of nine "overage" units taken in residency at CSUN only may be validated in this manner. Although the university allows seven years , Chicana and Chicano Studies does not encourage more than two or three years to complete the M.A. degree. Beginning Fall 2012, Chicana and Chicano Studies will NOT consider approving more than nine "overage" units.