Majors must take a minimum of 10 courses and may take a maximum of 14 courses. Advanced Placement credits do not count toward that total.
First-year students interested in majoring in history are encouraged to take Montserrat courses taught by members of the department. A sequence of two such Montserrat courses counts as one course toward the history major. First-year students are also encouraged to enroll in 100-level history courses. Students should take at least one college-level history course prior to enrolling in HIST 200, The Historian’s Craft, which is ordinarily taken in the second year.
History majors must complete the following requirements:
- At least five courses for the major must be numbered 201 or higher, including two courses numbered 300 or higher.
- All majors are required to take The Historian’s Craft (HIST 200.) This course is normally taken in the sophomore year, after the student has completed at least one college-level history course; no seniors will be admitted to it. Historian’s Craft is a prerequisite for all advanced courses at the 300 or 400 level. Non-majors without Historian’s Craft must receive permission from the instructor to enroll in advanced courses.
- All majors must take at least two Pre-Modern/Pre-Industrial courses.
- Thematic Concentration: All majors must select one of the following six themes as a field of concentration within the major:
- Colonialism and Empire
- Gender in Public and Private Life
- Race and Ethnicity
- Religion and Society
- Resistance, Revolution and Reaction
- War and Memory
With the assistance of a faculty advisor in the department, each student submits a rationale and a course plan during the fall semester of the junior year (PDF). The course plan must include four courses that can be clustered within the chosen theme. One of these four courses may be at the 100 level; one of these four must be at the 300 or 400 level. The theme must incorporate more than one geographic area. The Historian’s Craft course cannot be included in one’s thematic concentration.
- All majors must complete a Capstone Project. This project must be completed during the senior year, in the student’s Thematic Concentration, within a 300- or 400- level course. The Capstone Project is a summative research project of significant length. The specific nature of the Capstone Project is at the discretion of the instructor of the course.
- Fourth-year majors will not be admitted to 100-level courses, except with special permission from the department chair.
- Transfer students and students who study away may receive credit toward the major for up to four history courses if they are away for a year or up to two history courses if they are away for a semester. Courses taken elsewhere must be approved by the history department for credit toward the major.
Advanced Placement Credit
As described above, students with AP credit in history earn placement in the history curriculum but AP credit does not count toward the number of courses required for the major. Students in the Class of 2018 with Advanced Placement scores of 4 or 5 in History may qualify to enroll in 200-level courses during their first year.
The Department of History offers the opportunity for fourth-year students to be nominated for the History Honors Program. Students aspiring to graduate with Honors in History are required to take a minimum of two advanced courses (at the 300 or 400 level) — one of which must be a 400-level seminar — and, in addition, to work closely with a member of the history faculty on a research thesis during their senior year. The program offers the intellectual rewards of independent research and original writing, and provides recognition for outstanding achievement by students in the major.
Pre-Modern/Pre-industrial History Courses
HIST 101 Age of Exploration
HIST 101 Travel Writing in Africa
HIST 101 Travel Narratives & African History
HIST 101 Neplanta: First Peoples of the Americas
HIST 103 Perspectives on Asia I: “Traditional” East Asia
HIST 106 Origins of Japanese Culture
HIST 109 Ancient Near East and Greece
HIST 110 Rome: Republic and Empire
HIST 111 Rise of the Christian West to AD100
HIST 112 Emerging Europe 1000-1500
HIST 113 Europe: Renaissance to Napoleon 1500-1815
HIST 124 Religion & Society
HIST 126 Colonial Societies of Latin America
HIST 196 African Colonial Lives
HIST 197 Early Africa to 1800
HIST 199 America's Colony
HIST 199 Outsiders in Pre-modern Europe
HIST 201 Colonial America
HIST 202 Age of the American Revolution
HIST 210 Early American Lives
HIST 231 Medieval England to 1216
HIST 232 Medieval Lives
HIST 233 Medieval France: War and Chivalry
HIST 234 Medieval Spain
HIST 236 Renaissance Europe
HIST 237 The Reformation
HIST 239 Louis XIV’s France 1560-1715
HIST 245 Imperial Russia: Between East and West
HIST 251 Colonial Ireland and India
HIST 271 American Indian History I: The Indian's New World
HIST 275 U.S. - Mexican Border
HIST 277 Afro-Latin America
HIST 281 Imperial China
HIST 293 Ottoman Empire I
HIST 299 Renaissance Italy
HIST 299 Revolutionary America
HIST 299 Muslim Africa
HIST 299 Europe's First Global Age
HIST 299 Science & Religion in Western World
HIST 305 America's First Global Age
HIST 317 Pain & Suffering: US History
HIST 320 Crafted by War: England 1216-1485
HIST 352 Rebels and Radical Thinkers
HIST 399 Joan of Arc & Medieval Warfare
HIST 401 Islam and Science
HIST 401 Popular Culture in Latin America