What You’ll Learn

You will acquire the skills, credentials, and connections to advance in a variety of careers, including education, museum and archival work, librarianship, journalism, and publishing.

All required courses for the certificate are available entirely online. This means that you can create a flexible academic schedule that fits your needs.

Skill Development

  • Digital curation, writing, and content strategy.
  • Text mining, topic modeling, data visualization, and mapping.
  • Digital tools for advancing teaching and learning in the humanities.

Professional networking

  • Work with a cohort through synchronous and asynchronous instruction, allowing for convenience and community building. (See How the Courses Work for details)
  • Network with fellow students, historians, and public history professionals from around the world.

How the Courses Work

Each course includes 4-5 synchronous meetings (all students join the instructor for online class meetings at a set time from different locations) as well as asynchronous activities which you can complete at a time convenient for you. Activities include readings, videos, written reflections, and projects which engage you with digital tools or concepts. Your instructor will provide individual feedback and support through comments and meetings. You and your classmates will also provide feedback to each other through meetings, discussion boards, and activities.

Duration: 12–18 months
Credit Hours: 15
Courses: Three 3-credit hour courses
Internship: One 6-credit virtual summer internship with the Smithsonian Institution
Register now!

Course Previews

HIST 680: Intro to Digital Humanities
Duration: 16 weeks
Estimated Workload: 3 hours

  • Beginnings and Definitions
  • Getting Your Humanities Digital
  • Now What? Working With Digitized Material
  • Public Facing
  • Digital Humanities Project

HIST 689: Teaching and Learning History in the Digital Age
Duration: 9 weeks
Estimated Workload: 3 hours

  • Historical Thinking
  • Visual Thinking
  • Finding and Changing

HIST 694: Digital Public History
Duration: 16 weeks
Estimated Workload: 3 hours

  • History with the Public
  • Interpretive Basics
  • Genres
  • Prototypes and Evaluation
  • Final Projects

Internship in Applied History
Duration: weeks
Estimated Workload: 6 hours

Meet the Instructors


The Department of History and Art History is a multi-disciplinary department whose purpose is to produce new knowledge about the past and to communicate it, via both traditional and digital media, to students, scholarly audiences and the broader public.
The Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media (RRCHNM) at George Mason University uses digital media and computer technology to democratize history—to incorporate multiple voices, reach diverse audiences, and encourage popular participation in presenting and preserving the past.
The Smithsonian Associates offers unparalleled access to the Smithsonian's world of knowledge through innovative and engaging programming that promotes learning, enrichment, and creativity for people of all ages.


How do I apply?

To apply, complete a GMU Graduate Application.

You will also need to submit one official transcript from all previous institutions attended, a goals statement, two letters of recommendation, and a resume. For more details, visit Mason Online.

What does is cost?

The cost is $700.00 per credit hour for all students, plus a $35 per credit hour Distance Education fee. Education Resource, New Student, and other mandatory university and course fees may apply.

What are the technical requirements?

For success in any George Mason online course, we recommend that you have:

  • a Windows or Macintosh computer with at least 2 GB of RAM
  • a computer capable of running current versions of Acrobat Reader, Flash, Java, Windows Media Player, QuickTime, and Real Media Player
  • sufficient hard disk space for the installation of any new software necessary and the storage of your classwork
  • fast and reliable broadband internet connection
  • an operating system and browser compatible with Blackboard on the myMason portal. See here for a list of supported browsers and operating systems. The course works best on the most recent versions of Chrome, Safari, Internet Explorer, or Firefox.
  • a Masonlive email username and password
  • a large screen for better visibility (optional)
  • speakers or headphones and a microphone
  • any other technical requirements outlined in your course syllabus

Note: If you are using an employer-provided computer or corporate office for class attendance, please verify with your systems administrators that you will be able to install the necessary applications and that system or corporate firewalls do not block access to any sites or media types.

Do I need a Mason email address to participate?

Yes. You will need a Mason username (also called NetID) and password in order to participate in courses at Mason. Use Patriot Pass to activate your NetID or reset a password.

Do I have to come to DC for the internship?

Students are required to attend a two-day internship orientation at the Smithsonian in Washington, DC in May. The internship itself, however, can be completed remotely.

Can I take just one course?

Yes. First, apply for non-degree graduate admission to the College of Humanities and Social Sciences. Once you are notified of your admission, contact Emily Gibson (egibso5@gmu.edu), History and Art History graduate coordinator, and let her know which course(s) you wish to take.