BA in History


History is the study of past worlds and how they have changed over time. It is a way of thinking about how and why past environments, societies, governments, and beliefs were different from and similar to our own. 

History is not about memorizing lists of names and dates; it is instead about finding clues about the past and following those clues to craft true stories about ourselves and others. History is also about understanding the connections between past and present.


  • History gives insight! As humans, we can understand our current situation by studying the conflicts, ideas, and relationships that shaped global societies over time. 
  • Our students learn how to write effectively, how to do research, and how to think through complex problems. 
  •  Our History and Classics Undergraduate Society holds study sessions, history movie nights, and historical board game nights. Our undergraduates even publish their own research in their student-run journal, Constellations. 
  •  Employers are keen to hire folks able to uncover hidden information, draw connections between different kinds of evidence, and communicate those discoveries. Those are precisely the skills you develop in History courses. 
  •  Our History professors are passionate and creative teachers, eager to help you explore and understand the past and to develop your skills as researchers, thinkers, and communicators


There is a lot of flexibility in the History major. You need to take between ★30 and ★48 at the 200-level or higher.

History 290: Introduction to History as a Discipline. It’s best to take HIST 290 during your second year.

Two courses at the 300 level and two at the 400 level. Our 400-level courses are seminars that involve discussion and historical research. 

Be sure to check out our History Honors program, too! 

It’s a great idea also to study a language other than English, and to start that study early in your degree.

Link to the U of A Calendar


An undergraduate degree in History will prepare you to do research, think, askquestions, and communicate your ideas – skills that will take you in many different personal, intellectual and career directions. History graduates are particularly well equipped for careers in:

ADVOCACY: lawyers, politicians, public servants, employment in Foundations and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs)

COMMUNICATION: broadcasters, film and television producers, journalists, writers,  and editors

EDUCATION: school teachers, university professors, directors of historic sites and museums

INFORMATION MANAGEMENT and RESEARCH: archivists, librarians, contract historians or investigators



For advice about the History Major, contact Section Director Shannon Stunden Bower or Undergrad Chair Jaymie Heilman

For advice about the Honors History program, contact History Honors advisor John Kitchen


For information on the graduate History programs, please click here.