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UC Davis AH Master's


RomeSweetRome
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Hi guys! Anyone have any insight or comments about the UC Davis Master's program? Trying to decide between it (funded) and a non-funded program with much more name recognition. Mainly doing a Masters to gain experience while I decide if I want to push for a PhD, or turn toward museum education. I study ancient art if that helps, but I'd love to hear any info you might have!

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  • 11 months later...
Guest tarsila89

I though I'd respond to this older post for any future applicants that might become interested. 

I received my MA from UC Davis and I have only good things to say of the program. It's fully funded (full tuition remission plus great stipends / TAships. I did 75% TA or Readerships at every quarter and basically made more money than when I was working full time in a museum). Also the health insurance is really good (trust me, I had a baby while on the program). The program is small and all the professors end up knowing each of the students very well. It's a very relaxed, friendly atmosphere, with the students helping each other and collaborating often. You don't have that competitive atmosphere that other programs seem to inspire. In terms of the professors, some of the newer hires - Professor Talinn Grigor and Professor Alexandra Sofroniew - are the students' favorites; they are engaging, extremely helpful, knowledgable and willing to allow you to research topics that might be non traditional and even outside their research scope, but still they'll advise you. They are also bringing new and exciting courses to the program. Overall you're allowed to follow any research interest you have. Davis is a peaceful city, and the campus is beautiful, lots of open space. The libraries are great, and the UC system has a good sharing program between all their libraries. The MA students have a grad room with exclusive study space, lockers and kitchen, which is more than I've seen in other schools. 

The negatives might be that Davis is a little isolated and too quiet for some people's taste - I thought it was a good environment to focus on your studies. In terms of Art History facilities,  the main building is a bit old, but the classrooms have up-to-date equipment. Also the quarter system has its draw backs, everything goes by fast and you have to be able to write seminar papers quite quickly. I got used to it and now enjoy the pace. 

 

Hopefully this will help someone looking into the program. Good luck!

Edited by tarsila89
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  • 1 month later...
On 3/2/2019 at 8:22 PM, Guest tarsila89 said:

I though I'd respond to this older post for any future applicants that might become interested. 

I received my MA from UC Davis and I have only good things to say of the program. It's fully funded (full tuition remission plus great stipends / TAships. I did 75% TA or Readerships at every quarter and basically made more money than when I was working full time in a museum). Also the health insurance is really good (trust me, I had a baby while on the program). The program is small and all the professors end up knowing each of the students very well. It's a very relaxed, friendly atmosphere, with the students helping each other and collaborating often. You don't have that competitive atmosphere that other programs seem to inspire. In terms of the professors, some of the newer hires - Professor Talinn Grigor and Professor Alexandra Sofroniew - are the students' favorites; they are engaging, extremely helpful, knowledgable and willing to allow you to research topics that might be non traditional and even outside their research scope, but still they'll advise you. They are also bringing new and exciting courses to the program. Overall you're allowed to follow any research interest you have. Davis is a peaceful city, and the campus is beautiful, lots of open space. The libraries are great, and the UC system has a good sharing program between all their libraries. The MA students have a grad room with exclusive study space, lockers and kitchen, which is more than I've seen in other schools. 

The negatives might be that Davis is a little isolated and too quiet for some people's taste - I thought it was a good environment to focus on your studies. In terms of Art History facilities,  the main building is a bit old, but the classrooms have up-to-date equipment. Also the quarter system has its draw backs, everything goes by fast and you have to be able to write seminar papers quite quickly. I got used to it and now enjoy the pace. 

 

Hopefully this will help someone looking into the program. Good luck!

Thank you a lot on this feedback, it is very useful! 😄

I'd just add that although it seems a bit isolated, one can easily access the San Francisco Bay Area by AMTRAK (around 50$ return ticket).

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