Declaring a History Major
DECLARATION, OBJECTIVES AND DEFINITION OF THE MAJOR
The objectives of the History major have both a general educational aspect and an aspect that is more narrowly professional. On one level, work in the major develops skills of research, analysis, and expression; on another level, it introduces the student to some of the major civilizations that human beings have created during the past three thousand years; on still another level, majoring in History confronts students with specific problems of interpreting the past--the conflict of opinions among historians and the difficulties of reconstructing past societies from their sources.
In view of the variety of departmental offerings, no specific combination of courses can be considered the ideal program. If you choose History as a major you have, in effect, to design your own mix of courses to meet these objectives. The department offers a few guidelines, even fewer requirements, and the services of a departmental adviser. Still, most of the choice is up to you; it should reflect your particular interests, abilities and career plans.
Sophomore Year Declaration. After you declare your major, you will receive an e-mail from the History department administrative assistant to set up a very brief meeting with the department chair to give you your adviser assignment and to answer any questions. We do NOT require any sort of essay or explanation about why you want to become a History major, but it is useful to complete and bring this simple form listing courses you have already taken and your main areas of interest to the advising-assignment meeting. It shows where you are at this stage of your History major and helps to determine who the most helpful advisor might be for you. The department tries to match you with an adviser who shares your interests. If you would like, please review our faculty list to help you to determine the professor who you feel might be your best advising fit. If you already have an adviser preference, please tell the chair at your meeting. Once you have your advising assignment from the chair, you are officially considered a History major.