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Majoring in History

Why Major in History

Studying the past -- whether it’s near or distant, foreign or familiar -- is fascinating. And understanding the past enhances your ability to understand the present. As a History Major at the University of Oklahoma, you will work closely with a faculty distinguished for both its teaching and research. The research, analytical, and writing skills that you develop as a History major will help you advance in a wide range of careers. In fact, most of our majors do not become professional historians. Instead, they pursue careers in fields such as law, public service, business, journalism, information management, military service, or even medicine. Others use their historical expertise and knowledge of other cultures more directly as teachers, museum curators, public historians, workers in non-profit agencies, or Peace Corps volunteers. Some even go on to graduate school to become professional historians.  For those students entering the field of education, the OU Rainbolt College of Education has a scholarship fund to assist with student debt. For more information, see Debt-Free Teachers.

How to Major in History

The History Department allows majors to tailor their upper-division coursework to reflect their historical interests. As a major, you will choose from two tracks: The Traditional Major offers a variety of geographic, chronological, and thematic perspectives. The Field of Concentration major allows you to focus on a particular region (like the U.S. or Asia) or theme (like Women's and Gender History or History of War, Revolution, and Diplomacy). Whichever track you choose, you will progress through three small seminars designed to teach you the skills that are central to our discipline: HIST 2573 (History Sleuth); HIST 3573 (The Junior Colloquium); and HIST 4973 (The Senior Capstone). Because each of these courses builds on its predecessor, you are strongly encouraged to take them in order.

If you have any questions about majoring or minoring in history, please contact our Director of Undergraduate Studies, Dr. Adam Malka