The History Workshop (HIST 33000)
The Major in History begins with the History Workshop (HIST 33000), an introductory seminar in which new majors learn why and how historians study the past. They also begin the process of becoming historians themselves by analyzing primary sources, developing original historical narratives, and debating perspectives and conclusions through regular discussion with their peers. Throughout the semester, they meet members of the history faculty and learn about the research, internship, and service opportunities available to History majors at the University.
The History Workshop provides new students with the foundational skills and tools necessary to succeed in the major; it therefore should be taken as soon as a student has declared the major (and must be taken before the senior year).
To gain breadth of historical knowledge, the history major will also take a variety of courses emphasizing different geographical areas, chronological periods, and thematic approaches to studying the past. Note that students must take one course classified as Global History, and three courses from these five regional categories.
- Africa and the Middle East
- Latin America
- North America
The heart of the undergraduate history major is the concentration, because each major selects a concentration in either a region or a theme.
Students on the regional track can select a concentration in one of our five regional breadth categories (Africa and the Middle East, Asia, Europe, Latin America, and North America).
Students on the thematic track may choose a concentration that is not defined by a place, but rather by a particular topic of interest, such as Economic and Business History, Global Empires, War and Society, Gender and Sexuality, Political History, and so forth. Students interested in defining a thematic concentration should consult with the Director of Undergraduate Studies
The Department Seminar
Department Seminars afford History students the opportunity to explore a topic in depth through primary research or synthetic consideration of scholarly literature. Students in these writing intensive courses can expect to produce at least 20 pages of work over the course of the semester. That writing may be primarily contained in a single final research paper or longer review essay, or broken up into shorter papers over the semester. Department Seminars emphasize collegial, discussion-based learning in the classroom. Seminar students are expected to engage with course material at a high level, and to participate regularly during class meetings. Students should leave the class with an appreciation of how historians conceptualize, research, and communicate their work. They will gain this appreciation by practicing different aspects of the craft themselves and sharing what they learn with other students.
Department seminars should generally be taken in the junior and senior year. However, students considering an honors thesis are encouraged to take a department seminar in the spring of the sophomore or fall of the junior year.
Students with a 3.7 cumulative grade point average in the History Major are encouraged to consider participating in the History Honors Program (HHP). The HHP offers motivated, intellectually inquisitive majors the opportunity to conduct original research and write a year-long senior thesis of 40 to 80 pp. under the supervision of a faculty member. It also features two honors seminars taught by an experienced faculty member, both of which encourage students to further develop their abilities to think, write, and talk about the past and its significance.
Honors Program Course Sequence
- Junior Spring
- HIST 53001 (Honors Methodology; course waived for those studying abroad).
- Senior Fall
- HIST 53002 (Honors Colloquium; mandatory)
- HIST 58003 (Honors Thesis; mandatory; 3-credit independent course)
- Senior Spring
- HIST 58004 (Honors Thesis; mandatory)
The History Workshop (HIST 33000)
The History Workshop is the Department’s introduction to the discipline of History at the University level. The course teaches students to think like historians—to weigh historical evidence, evaluate historical arguments, and understand the nature of historical debate.
Students may take any major-level courses in History to fulfill their four-course elective component. One of the four electives must contain a research component, and students may fulfill the research requirement by taking a Departmental Seminar (a class with a 43XXX number) or by taking another regular Department offering that includes a research paper.
No more than one elective course may be taken abroad, and no more than one course may be taken at the 10000 level, including History University Seminars.
Minor in Economic and Business History
The Minor in Economic and Business History allows undergraduates across the University to gain vital historical perspective on complexities of the global age. The program draws upon the expertise of History faculty across time periods and global regions, encompassing the histories of business, labor, development, finance, capitalism, and economic thought. Elective courses will examine a wide range of topics and contexts. A capstone course, Economy and Business in History (History 30049), introduces students to the core approaches and ideas of the field, and offers the opportunity for an in-depth research project.
-History 30049: Economy and Business in History
-4 open electives with the HTBE attribute
HIST 30590: World Economic History
HIST 30644: Consuming America
HIST 30094: Modern India and Pakistan
HIST 30025: Financial Markets in Global History
HIST 30154: China’s Economic History, 1800 to Present
HIST 30061: Modern Africa
HIST 30625: Business in America
HIST 30636: Gender@Work
HIST 30618 US Labor History, 1776 to 1945
HIST 30983: History of Food
HIST 30390: Christianity, Commerce and Consumerism
HIST 30606 US Gilded Age/Progressive Era