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The Bachelor of Arts in History program is designed to help students see themselves and their society from different times and places, while displaying an informed perspective and a mature view of human nature. The study of history prepares students to use knowledge of the past, of human diversity and complexity, of contingency and of continuity, in order to consider the limits and possibilities of human choices in the modern world. Students develop skills of analysis, including the ability to understand context, to understand change and continuity over time, and to draw conclusions from diffuse, fragmentary and biased sources. The history major prepares students for the choices and responsibilities they will encounter as participants in a free polity and as agents in a global society, while also developing skills in reading, writing, research and analysis useful in diverse professional fields.

Students may pursue interests in American or non-American history, but they are required to have a strong base in both areas. Advanced students are encouraged to undertake an independent study project under the guidance of a faculty member and to study abroad in a country of the student’s choosing. A minor in history is also available.

Topics of Study

  • United States history
  • European history
  • Asian history
  • Middle Eastern and Islamic history
  • African History
  • Latin American and Caribbean history
  • Cultural history
  • History of gender and sexuality
  • Public history and museum studies
  • Military history

Career Opportunities

The history student's critical thinking, research and writing skills are valued in many different fields. The history major is excellent preparation for graduate study and careers in law, teaching, museum work and public history, library science and information management, public administration, business, non-governmental organizations, consulting, military service, non-fiction writing and foreign service.

Experiential Learning Opportunities

The history program provides numerous opportunities for students to get hands-on, real-world learning experience. History majors participate in internships at local museums, historic sites and government archives. In addition to internships, students participate in faculty-led research projects, study-abroad trips, presentations at professional conferences, fieldwork and independent studies. Finally, select students are able to work individually on advanced research and writing projects with their professors.

Minor in Law, Justice and Advocacy

Students interested in the history degree as preparation for law school may also wish to consider combining the history major with a minor in law, justice and advocacy. The LJA minor provides students with the opportunity to complete a substantive study of law at the undergraduate level. The program is administered jointly by the Department of Government, History and Sociology and the Department of Criminology.


History majors also benefit from taking courses in geography, which they may use to partially fulfill graduation requirements for coursework in the social sciences.

On-Campus Association