College of Liberal Arts & Sciences
  • Home
  • Academics
  • Degrees
  • History Undergraduate Degrees
  • BA/BGS
  • Curriculum

History Undergraduate Degrees

Requirements for the Major

The Department of History is organized into 10 fields of study. For the purposes of the undergraduate major, these fields are divided into two categories, reflecting a Western or non-Western orientation.

Category I

  • Ancient
  • History of Science
  • Medieval
  • Modern Western Europe
  • Russia/Eastern Europe
  • United States

Category II

  • Africa
  • East Asia
  • Latin America
  • Middle East
  • Native America

The minimum requirement for a major in history consists of 30 credit hours representing both Categories I and II, as follows:

  1. HIST 301 The Historian's Craft
  2. Five courses (15 hours) in either Category I or Category II
  3. Three courses (9 hours) from the other Category
  4. HIST 696 Seminar
  5. 24 hours numbered 300-699  (i.e., no more than 2 courses numbered 100-299)

Exceptions to any of the above requirements must be by petition to the Director of Undergraduate Studies.

Only two courses are required for all majors: History 301 (Historical Methods), ideally taken as soon as the student decides to major in history, and must be taken before a student can register for the other required course, History 696 (Senior Research Seminar). HIST 696 is normally taken during the senior year. Students with at least a 3.5 grade-point average in history and a 3.25 cumulative grade-point average may also apply to complete a 2-semester Honors Thesis class (HIST 498 and HIST 490) instead of HIST 696. We urge every major to work closely with an advisor to develop a coherent course of study that reflects his or her intellectual interests.

Special Field

You may construct your own special field of concentration outside of the fields listed above in consultation with a major adviser. Such special fields may be topical - for example, in women's history or military history - or they may be chronological. You should consult with a departmental major adviser to construct an integrated and coherent program of study. 

Calendar of Events
KU Today
Home to 50+ departments, centers, and programs, the School of the Arts, and the School of Public Affairs and Administration
KU offers courses in 40 languages
No. 1 ranking in city management and urban policy —U.S. News and World Report
One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
44 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.
23rd nationwide for service to veterans —"Best for Vets," Military Times