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Featured Institutional Member: Middle Tennessee State University Public History Program

Middle Tennessee State University, located 30 miles southeast of Nashville, offers oral history as a concentration in the Public History Program. MTSU was in the first wave of American universities to embrace the study of public history, initiating an M.A. concentration in 1976 and a Ph.D. in Public History in 2005. Today, the graduate program offers concentrations in several fields of practice: oral history, historic preservation, museum management, archival management, and public archaeology.

MTSU’s Public History Program is grounded in the discipline of history. Students receive an education that integrates historical methods and scholarship with professional development and practical experience. Those pursuing an oral history concentration receive instruction in theory and methods as well as extensive field training.

Oral history courses are taught by Dr. Martha Norkunas, who is active in the Oral History Association. Dr. Norkunas’s research and teaching specialties include the intersection of history and memory in personal narratives; the construction of race, class, and gender in life history narratives; individual and collective memory; and active listening.

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