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Carolyn Johnston
Elie Wiesel Professor of Humane Letters

Eckerd College
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St. Petersburg, FL 33711

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History

History

Major

HISTORY

History is one of the central disciplines in a liberal education. As broad as human experience, it provides a context for the understanding of literature, art, philosophy, and the sciences. Akin to both the Humanities and Social Sciences, history gives attention to the individual and to society as a whole, revealing the vast range of human experiences, the extraordinary variety of human institutions, and the inevitability of change. The study of history builds skills and knowledge that are indispensable for any career: clarity in writing and speaking; effective use of evidence and argument; the ability to perform independent research; and an awareness of cultural differences and commonalities. It is thus excellent preparation for a wide variety of fields--law, teaching, business, public service, journalism, and even medicine.

Students who complete this major are expected to be able to:

  • demonstrate an understanding of key events, trends, and debates in American, European, and World History.
  • display an awareness of historical methods and historiography generally, and knowledge of the historiography of at least one field with some thoroughness. This includes the ability to think historically with regard to issues such as causation, cultural diffusion, the role of the individual in history, geographic and demographic influences in history, and gender and minority issues in the past, citing examples from both the Western tradition and the wider global experience.
  • engage in a variety of types of scholarly writing such as book and film reviews, annotated bibliographies, and historical essays.
  • show a basic level of information literacy. This includes the ability to locate, evaluate, use, and and properly cite bibliographical information from both print and electronic sources.
  • express themselves clearly, including demonstarting a basic competency in the content, organization, delivery, and style of both formal and informal oral presentations.

History majors are required to take a minimum of 10 total history courses and must complete either a thesis or a comprehensive exam in their senior year. The 10 history courses must include the following five core courses:

    AM 201H American Civilization
    HI 202H The European Experience
    HI 206H Making History
    HI 232G World History to Columbus
    HI 233G Global History in the Modern World

Of the remaining five history electives counting toward the major, no more than three should come from any one of the following fields: American History, European/Ancient History, and Asian/World History. Seniors wishing to write a thesis must consult with a sponsor by the Spring semester of their junior year. Those wishing to take a comprehensive exam will enroll in HI 498 History Comprehensive Exam during the Fall semester of their senior year. Although not required for the major, a separate composition course is strongly recommended, especially for freshmen and sophomores with little background in research and argumentative writing.

Descriptions of the following additional courses which count toward the history major and minor are found in the respective disciplinary listings:

AH 203A Arts of the Silk Road
AM 307H Rebels with a Cause
AM 308H Becoming Visible
AM 314E Environment in American Thought
AM 324H Organized Crime in America
AM 338H The Harlem Renaissance
AM 339H The Great Depression and American Life
CL 203H Women and Gender in the Ancient World
CL 242H Ancient Greek History
CL 243H The Roman Republic
CL 244H The Roman Empire
EA 201G East Asian Traditions
EA 310G Modern China
EA 311G Modern Japan
EA 312G History of Southeast Asia
EA 313G Modern Korea
PL 349G Native American Thought
RE 105G Religion in Global History
WG 410 Research Seminar: Women and Gender

A minor in history consists of a minimum of six history courses, which must include HI 206H Making History and any two of the following survey courses:

    AM 201H American Civilization
    HI 202H The European Experience
    HI 232G World History to Columbus
    HI 233G Global History in the Modern World
Of the remaining three history electives counting toward the minor, no more than two should come from any one of the following fields: American History, European/Ancient History, and Asian/World History.

Life After Eckerd

History is probably the most flexible and far ranging of all the Humanities disciplines. It is excellent preparation for a wide variety of fields - law, teaching, business, public service, journalism, and even medicine. Increasingly, both the private sector and graduate schools are looking for applicants who have broad interests and backgrounds, rather than narrow field specialization.

The Eckerd Difference

Daria Hall "Eckerd has helped me grow and blossom as a person. I have learned to manage the good and bad and still excel in life. Eckerd is all about unique experiences." - Daria Hall, History major