The Department of History seeks to develop in its students an appreciation for the richness, diversity and complexities of human history. In the course of their studies, students are exposed to a wide range of different historical periods and geographic regions, including courses on the history of America, Latin America, Europe, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia. The requirements of the major and minor ensure that students are exposed to a broad spectrum of human historical experience, including the history of peoples whose cultures, experiences, and mentalités are substantially different from their own. The department also offers students various opportunities to explore particular historical problems or questions in depth and engage in original historical research. Thus, the department endeavors not only to help students further develop their analytical and rhetorical abilities, but to formulate historically informed arguments. Students also have the opportunity to reflect on history as a discipline and the nature and uses of historical evidence in seminars on methodology, practice, and theory.
The department encourages a close working relationship between students and faculty in both introductory survey courses as well as advanced seminars. We also hold monthly lunches as a way of bringing students and faculty together in an informal setting. The Phi Alpha Theta history honorary society is active in organizing meetings, hosting film nights, and facilitating contacts between majors.