Graduate Catalog 2021-2022

Folk Studies, Master of Arts (069)

Department website: http://www.wku.edu/fsa


Program Coordinator

Ann K. Ferrell, ann.ferrell@wku.edu, (270) 745-5896

The study of folklore and folklife involves examination and analysis of traditional expressive culture in all its forms including verbal, musical, material, and customary. In every society, agricultural and industrial, rural and urban, folklore is a vital part of life. The discipline has close affinities with literature, anthropology, sociology, history, geography, linguistics, philosophy, ethnomusicology, and psychology.

Concentrations

  • Research Thesis
  • Public Folklore
  • Historic Preservation
  • Museum Studies

Joint Undergraduate Master's Program (JUMP)

This degree offers a Joint Undergraduate Master's Program (JUMP) which provides academically outstanding students the opportunity to complete both an undergraduate and graduate degree in approximately five years.  Contact the graduate program coordinator for additional information.

Program Admission

Adequate undergraduate preparation in a wide range of disciplines will be acceptable for admission to graduate study in folk studies. Applicants must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher. All applicants must submit three letters of reference, a statement of intent, and a writing sample to the department. Applicants must submit GRE scores.

Graduate School Admission

Please refer to the admission section of this catalog for Graduate School admission requirements.

Program Requirements (36 hours)

Thesis Research Concentration

The Thesis Research Concentration provides advanced knowledge of the theoretical and methodological aspects of folklore and folklife, preparing students to work in consultation with faculty to develop and complete a thesis project based on original research. It is designed to prepare students for careers and further research in both academic and public sector professions.

Required Courses
FLK 577Folklore Theory 13
FLK 578Folklore Fieldwork 13
FLK 569Folklore Genres 13
FLK 561Folk Arts and Technology3
FLK 571Folk Narrative3
FLK 575Folk Belief3
Select one of the following applied courses:3
Museum Procedures and Preservation Techniques
Cultural Conservation
Folklore and Education
Public Folklore
FLK 599Thesis Research and Writing6
Electives
Select 9 hours of electives with advisor approval9
Total Hours36

Public Folklore Concentration 

Firmly grounded in the theoretical and methodological aspects of the study of folklore and folklife, the Public Folklore Concentration provides students with the tools necessary for the multiple facets of careers in public and applied folklore practice as well as further graduate study. 

Required Courses
FLK 577Folklore Theory 13
FLK 578Folklore Fieldwork 13
FLK 569Folklore Genres 13
FLK 562Folklore and Education3
FLK 572Public Folklore3
Select two of the following genre courses:6
Folk Arts and Technology
Folk Narrative
Folk Belief
Select one of the following options:15
Thesis Option
Thesis Research and Writing (6 hours)
Select 9 hours of electives with advisor approval
Non-Thesis Option
Internship (at least 1 hour)
Capstone Course in Public Folklore
Select 14 hours of electives with advisor approval
Total Hours36

Historic Preservation Concentration

Firmly grounded in the theoretical and methodological aspects of the study of folklore and folklife, the Historic Preservation Concentration provides students with the tools necessary for careers in a wide range of historic preservation and cultural conservation theory and practice, as well as further graduate study. 

Required Courses
FLK 577Folklore Theory 13
FLK 578Folklore Fieldwork 13
FLK 569Folklore Genres 13
FLK 464GVernacular Architecture3
FLK 560Cultural Conservation3
Select two of the following genre courses:6
Folk Arts and Technology
Folk Narrative
Folk Belief
Select at least one of the following:3
Museum Procedures and Preservation Techniques
American Architectural History
Oral History
Select one of the following options:12
Thesis Option
Thesis Research and Writing (6 hours)
Select 6 hours of electives with advisor approval
Non-Thesis Option
Internship (at least 1 hour)
Capstone Course in Historic Preservation
Select 11 hours of electives with advisor approval
Total Hours36

Museum Studies Concentration

Firmly grounded in the theoretical and methodological aspects of the study of folklore and folklife, the Museum Studies Concentration provides students with the tools necessary for careers in museums as well as further graduate study.

Required Courses:
FLK 577Folklore Theory 13
FLK 578Folklore Fieldwork 13
FLK 569Folklore Genres 13
FLK 470GMuseum Procedures and Preservation Techniques3
FLK 562Folklore and Education3
Select two of the following genre courses:6
Folk Arts and Technology
Folk Narrative
Folk Belief
Select at least one of the following:3
Cultural Conservation
Public Folklore
Special Problems
Select one of the following options:12
Thesis Option
Thesis Research and Writing (6 hours)
Select 6 hours of electives with advisor approval
Non-Thesis Option
Internship (1-3 hours)
Capstone in Museum Studies
Select 11 hours of electives with advisor approval
Total Hours36

All students must pass a comprehensive examination based on course work and a program reading list.  Students completing a thesis will defend their final thesis.  Students who do not complete a thesis will submit and defend a portfolio of professional-level work.