To ascertain your eligibility for membership of a Professional Historians Association, and to apply, read the following information carefully before filling in the application form linked to this page.

Membership of a Professional Historians Association (PHA) in Australia requires accreditation under a National Standard. There are two categories of membership for people who practice as professional historians and another category for graduate historians. Some PHAs (WA & SA) also offer membership and accreditation for historical researchers.

The admission criteria for professional and graduate historians are listed in the National Standard for the Accreditation of Professional Historians in Australia. The admission criteria for historical researchers are listed in the National Standard for the Accreditation of Historical Researchers in Australia.

For convenience, the various combinations of academic qualifications and professional experience are also presented in tabular form in a Checklist for the PHA Accreditation Categories.

Application procedures, membership entitlements, provisions for transfer of membership, and the right of appeal against the rejection of an application for membership are described in By-Law No. 1 (Membership By-Law). All PHA members must abide by the PHA Code of Ethics.

Before applying for membership,each applicant should:

  • read By-Law No. 1 and the National Standard relevant to his/her professional status;
  • refer to the Checklist for the PHA Accreditation Categories to confirm the category he/she is eligible to enter;
  • contact a PHA for clarification if uncertain about eligibility; and,
  • obtain state or territory information about membership fees, requirements for the payment of those fees and/or any other matters pertinent to the state or territory PHA.

Category of Membership

Before sending any completed application form to the PHA, each applicant must identify the category of membership for which he/she is applying. Each application must also be supported by hard copy of documents that include:

a photocopy of the applicant's statement of academic record;
evidence of the nature and length of his/her professional work experience; and,
written references from two PHA members, unless the PHA has agreed to other arrangements that might include the applicant providing telephone numbers and other contact details for appropriate referees.

Membership in the categories of Professional Historian and Professional Historian (Associate) requires a minimum of an Honours degree in history, or its equivalent, underpinned by Bachelor level study in or allied to the discipline of history. In most instances, such membership also requires professional experience in which the accepted scholarly conventions have been used to research, document, interpret and/or educate people about the past and/or other aspects relevant to the field of history.

Membership at the Graduate Historian level requires a minimum of a Bachelor qualification in history and, in the absence of an Honours degree in history, or its equivalent, professional experience. Membership at the Graduate Historian level does not entitle individuals to describe themselves as Professional Historians - that right is reserved for the two levels of Professional Membership.

Extraordinary Applications for Membership

A person who is recognised by the profession as a professional historian but does not have the tertiary qualifications identified in the National Standard for the Accreditation of Professional Historians in Australia can apply for accreditation if his/her qualifications and experience appear to be equivalent to those identified in the National Standard. See By-Law No. 1 for details. If you wish to seek membership through an Extraordinary Application, please discuss your eligibility with the PHA in your home state or territory before requesting the relevant application form.