History majors receive a broad education in historical knowledge and develop critical skills in research, analysis and writing. Students of history learn to interpret a rich variety of sources and to develop a deep understanding of change and continuity with the past. Studying history means becoming actively engaged in the on-going process of questioning older historical assumptions and shaping new interpretations.
The Bachelor of Arts in History covers the foundations of Western, World, and American civilizations. As part of the program, majors take a seminar in their sophomore year that provides training in the analysis of historical documents. In the fall semester of their senior year, they take the “capstone” course in which they hone their research skills and produce a well-argued historical essay.
The B.A. in History provides excellent preparation for careers in many fields, including education, museums, government, politics, and business. History is often chosen as a major by students who plan to enter a profession such as law, business administration, librarianship, journalism or public policy. Graduate programs in these fields give preference to students who have acquired an informed perspective on human problems and who have developed skills in the analysis and communication of complex ideas. A history major is the best preparation for studying history at the graduate level.