History Department Curriculum
The most current History Program Requirements can be found in the Undergraduate Catalog.
The History Major
You may choose a general major in history (minimum 18 credits beyond the 5 required courses) or a departmental concentration focusing on a specific area of historical study.
Introductory courses required for both the general major and the concentration areas establish a foundation in the primary concepts and methods of historical analysis. These include:
- Western Civilization: Europe and the World Since 1500 (two courses)
- The United States Since the Colonial Era (two courses)
- Modern Japan or Modern China (one course)
The department concentrations are divided into four broad areas:
North American Studies
This area of concentration invites you to develop your analytical skills by examining the significance of America's successes and failures in both domestic and foreign policies. It provides a solid foundation for graduate study or American government service.
This concentration emphasizes the homeland of Western civilization. Though European powers no longer dominate the world, the culture of Europe is still enormously influential. The purpose of this concentration is to make you aware of the richness and variety of the European tradition and its influence on the rest of the world. Particular emphasis is given to the concept of Europe, which includes a community of nations related by common bonds extending to the borders of Asia.
Strategic, Military, and Diplomatic Studies
This program introduces you to the principal issues that have shaped the history of foreign relations and global affairs through the study of policies, strategies, wars, and ideologies that have produced the most profound conflict and compromise in human history. Designed for the general history major, it is especially useful if you are interested in pursuing graduate or legal studies or careers in government, defense or foreign service occupations.
Why study the history of Asia? In the first place, we are at the dawn of what some predict will be the "Pacific Century," when Asian countries may exert more power and influence that they have for centuries. History courses in the Asian concentration are thus an excellent preparation not only for teaching, but also for a variety of careers, such as business, politics, and the law. Many Europeans and Americans have also been driven by intellectual curiosity to examine the traditions and cultures of the Asian world, and thereby acquire a fresh perspective on their own lives and times.