History Honors Program

The History Department offers a special program of study, the History Honors Proram (HHP), for the most talented and motivated history majors. Students are invited to apply in in October of the junior year; the program begins in the spring of the junior year. Students planning to study abroad in the spring of the junior year are eligible to participate in the program.

A student in the History Honors Program will take eleven three-credit upper-division History courses to satisfy both the Honors program and the Standard History Major requirements. In addition to taking the introductory gateway courses (HIST 33000- History Workshop) and a variety of courses emphasizing geographical and chronological breadth, the student will also take two special Honors seminars. Instead of completing a departmental seminar, the student will research and write a year-long senior thesis, receiving three credits in each semester of the senior year. Each History Honors student will select an area of concentration tailored to his/her thesis topic and will take two additional courses in this field to complete the program.

Benefits of the Honors Program

The History Honors Program, particularly the writing of a senior thesis, offers a special opportunity for select history majors to pursue their intellectual interests in a sustained and independent fashion, and working closely with an individual faculty member of one’s choice in researching, organizing, and producing that thesis should be a uniquely enriching academic experience.

The Honors thesis itself will be a major piece of historical research and writing, an accomplishment in its own right as well as excellent preparation for future graduate school papers or other research projects. Completion of the Honors Program will also send a strong signal of achievement to committees granting fellowships and scholarships at the graduate level, and the thesis might mark the beginning of a later research project on the same topic in graduate school or law school.


Eleven courses, including:

1 History Workshop: HIST 33000
The "gateway course” for the standard major, the History Workshop must be taken the semester following the major declaration.

4 Breadth Courses
One course from four of the following six breadths. One course of the four must contain substantial material on the period before 1500.

  • African/Asian/Middle Eastern history
  • Ancient/Medieval European history (to 1500)
  • Modern European history (after 1500)
  • United States history
  • Latin American history
  • Special

2 Concentration Area Courses
An area of concentration must be chosen by the beginning of the senior year, with the guidance and approval of the major’s departmental advisor.

2 Honors Seminars: HIST 53001 and HIST 53002

2 Semesters of Honors Thesis Credits: HIST 58003 Fall and HIST 58004 Spring

History Honors Program Guidelines