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Major Requirements

As a history major, you’ll explore the human experience through European, U.S., and world history.

Combining your knowledge of history with advanced written and reasoning skills will prepare you for a range of career opportunities. Bonus? Your research-intensive senior thesis will position you as an expert in your area of interest.

Meet Your Major

In the History program, you will: 

  • Enhance your critical and reflective thinking abilities, communication skills, and understanding of the rich diversity of human cultures
  • Detail continuity and change in past societies and develop a respect for the nature of past societies
  • Explore many of history’s most pressing questions—and devise the
    research strategies to answer them
  • Develop a methodological practice of gathering, sifting, analyzing,
    ordering, synthesizing, and interpreting evidence
  • Sharpen your ability to present a historical argument that is reasoned and based on historical evidence selected, arranged, analyzed, and clearly articulated—in written and spoken form

Hands-On Learning

You’ll have the opportunity to participate in meaningful internships to help you get a job. It’s your chance to gain real-world experience in places like the Lawrence City Attorney’s office, the New England Quilt Museum, and the USS Constitution Museum. 

Career Options

Upon successful completion of the History program, you’ll be well equipped to pursue a career in historical research, education, law, or business. Positions may include:

  • Archivist
  • Government policy advisor
  • Journalist
  • Librarian
  • Museum curator
  • Researcher
  • Teacher

What can I do with an undergraduate degree in history?

What You’ll Take

All History majors take a combination of required and elective courses to satisfy the 38-credit and minimum-of-10 course requirement. To graduate with a degree in History, you must maintain a grade point average of at least 2.0 in your selected History courses. In addition, students must successfully complete two courses in the same modern foreign language at the intermediate level or its equivalent.

Required Courses

HIS 3991 Introduction to Historical Methodology
(taken spring of junior year)
HIS 4991(W) Senior Thesis (taken fall of senior year)
Premodern Survey (select one)
HIS 1119 The European Experience:  
Antiquity to the Reformation 
HIS 1130 World History to 150
Modern Survey (select one)
HIS 1120 The European Experience:
Early Modern to the Present
HIS 1131 The History of the World
After 1500
European History (select at least one)
HIS 3350      Ancient History 
HIS 3355 Barbarians and Holy Men:
The History of Late Antiquity
HIS 3360 Medieval Civilization
HIS 3370 Renaissance, Reformation
and Exploration
HIS 3376 Era of the French Revolution
and Napoleon
HIS 3378 History of Modern Britain
HIS 3380  Science, Technology, and Society
HIS 3390  Modern European Social History
HIS 3391 Women in Modern European History
HIS 3401 Nineteenth-Century Europe
HIS 3410 Twentieth-Century Europe 
HIS 3412 Hitler, Mussolini, and the Fascist
Challenge in Europe, 1900-1950 
HIS 3470 History of Imperial Russia
HIS 3471  From Lenin to Putin:  
Russia in the Twentieth Century
United States History
United States History (select at least one)
One of the following:           
  • HIS 1106 U.S. History I: From Pre-Contact through the Civil War & Reconstruction
  • HIS 1107 U.S. History II: From Reconstruction to the Present
HIS 3320 The American City
HIS 3325 History Outside the Classroom:  The Practice of Public History
HIS 3326 Building America:  
A History of American Architecture
HIS 3425  Contemporary United States History
HIS 3426  African-American History from
Slave Trade to the Present
HIS 3434 Revolutionary America, 1760-1800 
HIS 3435 The Peoples of Early America
HIS 3437  Civil War and Reconstruction
HIS 3438  History of the Early American Republic,
HIS 3525  Environmental History of North America
World History (select at least one)
HIS 3330      World History since 1945
HIS 3331 Slaves and Spice:  
A History of the Indian Ocean
HIS 3335 World Environmental History, 1300-Present
HIS 3365          The History of Muslim Communities,
HIS 3366 History of the Modern Middle East
HIS 3439 Slavery and Race in Early Modern
Atlantic World, 1400-1800
HIS 3440 Survey of Latin American History:  
From Pre-Contact to the Present 

Note: Up to eight credits of History internship (HIS 4986 and HIS 4987) can count towards the major requirements. History majors who are also Education majors may count both HIS 1106 and 1107 towards fulfillment of their major requirements.

Elective Courses

Choose three additional history electives (2000 or higher) from the list above.

More Info

Sally Shockro

Associate Professor & Chair,