R. Scott Moore, Chair
History is a critical study of the past that examines how societies have been shaped by cultural, political, social, and economic influences across time and space. Degree programs offered by the History Department are the bachelor of arts degree program in history, and the bachelor of science in education degree program in social studies education, concentrating in history. The Social Studies Education program prepares students to teach at the junior- and senior-high school levels. The Bachelor of Arts program includes a number of specializations that prepare students for careers in law, government service, public history, and broad business opportunities
History is the study of change in human societies over time, and thus it is of broad applicability. The many careers in teaching and in Public History (including work in museums, archives and the park service) attest to the continued importance of history to communities everywhere. Governments, non-government organizations and businesses all value the understanding of social change and the research skills the study of history is based on. All of us are living through the process of historical change and studying the discipline of history is the best way to understand these changes.
All students complete a set of skills and foundation courses where they develop the skills of research, analysis, and presentation that are essential to history and are introduced to the broad outlines of the history of the peoples of the United States and the world. During sophomore year B.A. students, in consultation with their advisor, choose a specialization based on their future career plans.
Public History Specialization
The BA in History Public History Specialization is designed for students interested in interpreting and creating history. Students can take courses in archival studies, digital history, museum studies, and oral history. Through these types of courses, public history students develop practical skills that will help them secure employment in libraries, museums, archives, national parks, heritage sites, media, and corporations. Furthermore, this specialization prepares students for graduate study in more specialized fields such as historic preservation, information sciences, library and archival science, material culture conservation, and museum curation.
Public Service Specialization
The BA in History Public Service Specialization prepares students for careers focused on helping others, from their local neighborhood to global communities. This broad field covers a range of occupations (Government, Nonprofits, and NGOs) all united by providing individuals an opportunity to make an impact. This specialization combines History’s emphasis on critical thinking and communication skills (both oral and written) with skills from courses selected by the student and their advisor as an area of focused interest.
Private Sector Specialization
The BA in History Private Sector Specialization is designed to prepare students for job opportunities in today’s global economy. History’s focus on learning to recognize cause and effect, to distinguish change over time, to understand the value of context, and to appreciate the complexity of the human experience are essential skills in the marketplace. These skills transition well to a host of occupations in a variety of fields.
The BA in History Pre-Law Specialization is aimed for students planning to pursue a legal career. History’s emphasis on research, analyzing evidence, and using this evidence to produce a convincing argument is valuable preparation for a legal career.
The BA in History Individualized Specialization is designed by the student in consultation with their advisor. It is particularly suited to those students pursuing a double major or planning to attend graduate school. All students in the Individualized specialization are required to complete the departmental honors program, a double major, minor, or certificate.
Requirements for the bachelor of arts degree program in history are 41 credits in history. Requirements for the bachelor of science in education degree program in social studies, concentrating on history, are a minimum of 30 credits in history within the 57 credits required for social studies certification.