Department of History

The Department of History introduces students to the richness and complexity of the human experience through a curriculum that covers all major geographic areas and time periods, and emphasizes both the unity of that experience and the diversity resulting from such factors as cultural, social, and gender differences. We seek to develop not only a knowledge of the past, but also an appreciation of history as an intellectual discipline that employs a wide variety of scholarly methodologies in its effort to understand that past. Students are taught to think and work as historians: to read critically and analytically both primary and secondary sources, to appreciate the complexity of historical issues and multiplicity of historical views, and to investigate a historical question or problem and communicate the results of that investigation. Through this broad preparation, history majors acquire essential knowledge and critical skills, which provide valuable assets for a wide spectrum of professions and occupations as well as the fundamental basis for advanced study. Program objectives for a B.A. in History are: (a) a fundamental knowledge of the past, including key historical events, ideas, figures, movements, and periods; (b) an awareness of the diversity of historical experiences over time and space; (c) the ability to recognize, locate, analyze critically, and utilize primary and secondary sources; (d) the ability to recognize and evaluate differing historical interpretations and methodologies; (e) the ability to research a topic thoroughly using both primary and secondary sources, and to present a clear and well-written historical argument based on that research; (f) express a high degree of satisfaction with the quality of the education received in that program.

History Major (B.A.)

A. University General Education Program (41 hours)

See Graduation from the University for the University General Education Program requirements.

B. College and Degree (B.A.) Requirements (6-9 hours)

The College and Bachelor of Arts requirements are in addition to the University General Education Program requirements.

C. The Major (33 hours)


Majors must complete 33 semester hours in history courses. Of the 33 hours, at least 9 hours must be from HIST 1110, 1120, 2010, and 2020; and at least 21 hours must be in upper-division courses. Of the 21 upper-division hours required, at least 6 must be taken outside of the European and United States fields and a maximum of 18 may be taken in any one field (African, Ancient, Asian, European, Latin American, Middle Eastern, United States).

D. Electives

Electives may be chosen to bring the total number of hours to 120.

E. Honors Program

History majors who have attained junior standing, successfully completed six semester hours of lower division history, and maintained a grade point average of at least 3.25 in overall studies and in history courses taken, are eligible for admission to the honors program in history. Students admitted to the program must take 15 hours of honors work, at least 9 of which must be taken in upper division history courses after admission to the departmental program. These 9 hours must include HIST 4012 and 4996. The remaining 3 hours may be taken as an additional semester of HIST 4012 or in an upper-division history course with an honors contract that outlines additional honors-level requirements. Those who successfully complete the program and the regular B.A. requirements will have their degree conferred "With Honors in History." The student's diploma and the record at the University of Memphis will be similarly endorsed. A detailed description of the program, together with application forms for admission, may be obtained in the History Department office.

History Minor


Minors must complete 21 semester hours in history courses. Of the 21 hours, at least 9 hours must be from HIST 1110, 1120, 2010, and 2020; and at least 9 hours must be in upper- division courses.

Typical 4-Year History Sequence

Freshman Year

ENGL 1010 3 ENGL 1020 3
MATH* 3-4 Elective 3
HIST LD*** 3 HIST LD*** 3
Foreign Language/B.A.** 3 Foreign Language/B.A.** 3
Elective 3 Social/Behavioral Sciences* 3
Semester Totals 15-16 hrs   15 hrs

Sophomore Year

ENGL 2201 or 2202 3 COMM 2381 3
HIST LD*** 3 Elecitve 3
Natural Science*           4 Natural Science* 4
Fine Arts 3 Social/Behavioral Sciences*      3
Elective 3 UD elective 3
Semester Totals 16 hrs   16 hrs

Junior Year

UD Elective                 3 Humanities/Fine Arts                 3
Elective 3 Elective 3
Elective 3 UD HIST 3
UD HIST 3 UD elective 3
Semester Totals 15 hrs   15 hrs

Senior Year

UD HIST                     3 UD elective 3
UD elective 3 UD elective                            3
UD elective 3 Elective 4
Elective 3    
Semester Totals 15 hrs   13 hrs

Total Hours: 120

Total Hours Required for Graduation: 120

*Must satisfy University General Education Program Requirement

** This plan assumes you are starting your language courses at the intermediate (2010/2020) level required for the degree. If you need to start your language sequence at an earlier level, please account for that and plug those courses into the plan. This will require that you remove one to two "elective" slots and replace them with the necessary language courses.

***HIST LD – choose 3 from HIST 1110, 1120, 2010, or 2020