Historical Studies

School of Arts and Humanities

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The Historical Studies curriculum offers courses that acquaint students with the various methods of historical study, provide them with a broad understanding of the major themes of human history, and give them the opportunity to propose and implement their own research projects. Designed to help students develop careful, thoughtful self-expression, particularly in written form, the curriculum is composed of courses of increasing difficulty, progressing from introductory and intermediate courses to seminars and finally to the Thesis Seminar, in which each student writes a senior thesis. The History Seminar serves as a forum for students to discuss their individual research interests and experiences with their colleagues.


Admission to the program is by approval of the program faculty. Students seeking admission should contact the Program Coordinator no earlier than the final term of the freshman year and no later than the first term of the junior year. Failure to do so may make it impossible to complete the major within the standard 128-credit graduation requirement and could, therefore, require additional terms of study. Historical study requires considerable proficiency in reading and writing skills. If students are below the college reading and writing level, the program will require them to remedy their deficiencies.


In addition to the University's 64-credit General Studies requirement to qualify for the B.A. degree in Historical Studies, students must satisfactorily complete 64 credits in program and cognate courses as follows:

I. Program courses. A minimum of 40 credits (Required Courses)
(10    4-hour courses) in History program courses as follows:

A.    HIST 2129 Introduction to the Study of History (Required Course). This course is a mandatory requirement before enrollment in any 4000-level courses. Designed for freshman and transfer students in their first semester of the program.

B.    At least one course at the 1000-3000 level in each of the following four categories: One and only one course at the 3000 level may satisfy a category B requirement while simultaneously satisfying a category C requirement (see C below).
• Mediterranean/Ancient
• Atlantic/American
• Indian Ocean/Asian
• European

C. Students are required to complete four upper-division courses. Two of these must be from among the following Advanced Seminars in History:
• HIST 4655 Advanced History Seminar: Power
• HIST 4656 Advanced History Seminar: Identity
• HIST 4657 Advanced History Seminar: Nature
• HIST 4658 Advanced History Seminar: Belief

The remaining two upper-level courses can be 3000- (in any subfield) or 4000-level (additional ASH courses, internships, or independent studies). 

D. The following two-course sequence culminating in the Senior History Thesis:
• HIST 4690 Historical Methods
• HIST 4691 Thesis Seminar

II. Cognate courses. A minimum of 24 credits as cognate courses taken in disciplines related to Historical Studies, such as literature, philosophy, religion, political science or art history.

III. Foreign language requirement. Proficiency in a foreign language through the Intermediate II level. In most cases this will require 16 credit hours of a foreign language (two Beginning courses and two Intermediate courses). Students who enter Stockton with foreign language competency should consult with their preceptor or the Program Coordinator regarding this requirement. Successful participation in an approved study abroad program in a non-English-speaking country for at least one semester or at least six weeks during the summer may be substituted for all or part of the foreign language requirement.

A minimum grade of C is required in all courses counted toward the 64 program and cognate credits required for graduation.



This concentration is for students seeking a Historical Studies degree with certification for Secondary Education. Degree completion requires a minimum of 130-140 credit hours. Students in this concentration must satisfy all Historical Studies program and Teacher Education program requirements (see the Academic Bulletin for complete requirements for teacher licensure). All students in this concentration should consult a HIST and an EDUC preceptor for guidance.


Qualified Historical Studies majors are eligible for automatic admission into the MA or Certificate in American Studies at Stockton, the MA and MAT degree programs in the Federated History Department of Rutgers, Newark/NJIT, and the MA degree program in History at Rutgers, Camden. Qualified majors may also earn graduate credits while completing their undergraduate BA in Historical Studies. Students may contact the Program Coordinator for more information.


The program offers a minor for students who are majoring in another field, but who have an interest in history or wish to fulfill the History course requirements for Social Studies teaching certification. For the minor, students are required to complete five HIST courses with a grade of C or better. To ensure breadth, students must include at least one course in each of the following three areas: American, European, and non-European; HIST 2129 Introduction to the Study of History may be used in lieu of one of these three areas. To ensure depth, no more than three courses should be at the 1000 or 2000 level, with at least two courses at the 3000 or 4000 level. One 3000-level 4-credit independent study may be substituted for one 3000-level 4-credit course. Students should consult with a HIST faculty member to ensure that these requirements are met.


Students pursuing degrees in historical studies may prepare themselves for careers in teaching, law, journalism, library science, computers, government, civil service, administration, and the ministry. A history degree can also lead to opportunities in art institutes, galleries, museums, local and state historical associations, and to archival work with libraries, private organizations, and government agencies. Majors who wish to pursue graduate study in history should inform their program preceptors of their plans as early as possible and should be aware that a reading proficiency of at least one foreign language is required by most graduate schools. Preparation in basic computer methods is necessary for study at the graduate level in social, economic, or modern political history.