History

The Department of History offers both a major and a minor in History.

Major in History

History majors are required to complete at least eleven, but no more than fourteen, semester courses in history: normally the two College core courses, and at least nine semester courses in history electives (courses numbered 100 and above) chosen with the approval of the Department. Students exempted from the core requirement, but without advanced standing, are still required to take eleven history courses (see the section on core requirements for specifics).  A new 1-credit portfolio workshop course (HIST 400) will be required starting with the Class of 2018 for all History majors except those completing the Senior Honors Seminar; majors will take this course in their senior year.  In this course, students will reflect upon the skills learned during the major, select and examine examples of their best writing, and practice how best to present their own accomplishments as they approach graduation.

The major includes both geographic and level distribution requirements.  To ensure that there is breadth and depth in a student's selection of courses, History majors must take a minimum of four electives in one world region; if their world region of concentration is a non-western one (those listed on the Department’s web site as Group A: Africa; Asia; Latin America; Middle East), then they need at least three electives drawn from those offered in the western regions (those listed on the Department’s web site as Group B: Europe; Russia/Eastern Europe; U.S./North America); the reverse applies if the main region of concentration is a western one. Several comparative or global courses can be counted for one of several regions.

In addition to geographic distribution, History majors must take at least three history courses numbered 300 or above (please note that courses numbered 500+ are graduate courses and may only be taken with permission of instructor or the Director of Undergraduate Studies). At least one of these courses numbered 300 or above must be in the world region of concentration in which each major is taking at least four courses. All our 300-499 courses are in seminar format, and feature intense class discussion and substantial reading and writing assignments, and as such they will allow students to deepen their understanding both of particular world regions and historical eras, and of the discipline of history as a whole.

As students in the College, History majors are required to demonstrate foreign language proficiency through the intermediate level. The Department encourages study abroad and is flexible in facilitating the transfer of credit for bona fide history courses.

Students interested in majoring in History register with the Director of Undergraduate Studies in the Department, normally during their sophomore year, and receive approval to add the major. The Director of Undergraduate Studies will help each new major select an advisor.

Seminar Classes and Integrated Writing

All History seminar courses will help hone students’ writing skills: by taking three of these courses students will repeatedly encounter and practice various forms of historical writing and develop their own voice as historically-conscious analytical writers. Therefore, all History courses numbered at 300-499 fulfill the College’s requirement for one “Integrated Writing” course in each student’s major. Moreover, because these courses represent a signature feature of the major, they cannot be transferred, and History majors must take these three courses at Georgetown.  Tutorial arrangements are also ordinarily numbered in this range.

History Honors

The Department of History encourages potentially excellent students to participate in its Honors Program.  Admission to the History Honors Program is by invitation of the Department and is decided in February/March of each year.  Interested junior History majors may also contact the Department’s Director of Undergraduate Studies.  Ordinarily, the minimum requirement for admission to the Program is a ranking in the top one-third of each Class and a GPA of 3.67 in the major.  Students need to maintain the GPA of 3.67 in the major to receive History Honors at graduation.  Students who are accepted into this Program take a two-semester Senior Honors Seminar, for which they produce a distinguished piece of research.  This Seminar (HIST 408-409) fulfills the requirement for two courses numbered 300 or above.

Independent Study and Internships

Students with a 3.5 average or better in their History courses may enroll in an independent study or an internship in History under the supervision of a faculty member who has some expertise in the area in which the student wants to concentrate.

The independent study elective can be fashioned as either a reading or a research tutorial. The internship elective includes both the internship and a supplementary reading or research project.

All applications for independent study and internships must have the approval of the Director of Undergraduate Studies. It is advisable that students consult with the Director early when planning for one of these options.

Required Courses

  • 11 Semesters of History, normally including:
  • 2 semesters of core courses (see the section on core requirements for specifics).
  • A total of 9 History electives (100 or above) of which at least 3 must be 300 or above and which meet the Department’s regional distribution requirement as outlined above.
  • A 1-credit workshop course in senior year (JIST 400; this requirement will start with the Class of 2018).

Minor in History

Eighteen hours of History courses, of which at least three (one course) must be 300 or above, and no more than six credits from the 001-099 level, are required for the History Minor.

Accelerated A.B. or BSFS/Master of Arts in Global, International and Comparative History (MAGIC) Degree Program in History

Students enrolled in this program take up to four graduate History seminars in their senior year, two of which can be double-counted towards their undergraduate requirements. In addition, SFS International History majors may choose between Hist 305 and Hist 504, rather than taking both.  Students in the accelerated program can complete the requirements of the MAGIC degree in as little as two semesters (and no more than three semesters) following their graduation from the College or SFS.

Application for the program should be made either in the second semester of the applicant’s junior year or in the first semester of the senior year. For further information, please see the MAGIC website at: http://history.georgetown.edu/ma/.

For further inquiries, please contact the MAGIC Director in the History Department at McKittrick@georgetown.edu.

(For course listings for History see http://courses.georgetown.edu)