College of Arts and Sciences, Department of History
John Roach Center for the Liberal Arts (JRC) 413, (651) 962-5730
Cory (chair), Blaakman, Cavert, Klejment, Nagy, Schrunk, Woytanowitz, Williard, Zimmerman
Department Web Site: http://www.stthomas.edu/history/
The Department of History offers a wide variety of courses dealing with the principal periods and topics of American, European, and World history, as well as selected non-European/non-U.S. fields such as East Asia, Latin America, the Atlantic World, and the Middle East. All history courses are designed to increase students' knowledge about how human agency and contingency, patterns of continuity and change, and the interactions of cultures affect our understanding of history. Thus, students not only learn historical content, but they also develop the habits of mind needed for the critical investigation and appreciation of history.
Among our regular offerings are 100-level courses that fulfill the Historical Studies component of the core curriculum. The learning objectives for these courses are:
- To teach basic methods of historical inquiry and analysis of sources;
- To increase knowledge of the history of the modern world and its origins;
- To raise awareness of diversity within human history and the importance of intercultural learning;
- To address issues related to the professional ethics of historians and the ethical use of historical materials.
The organizing theme of these courses is “Contact and Change,” which affords students an opportunity to examine two of the principal challenges facing historians: accounting for change and understanding people and societies separated from us by space and time.
The History Department also offers a history major and a minor. Students may pursue the history major by itself or paired with another major or minor to prepare for careers in education, business, law, communications, government, and library, museum, or archival work. The history major also prepares students for graduate work in History or in other history-related academic disciplines. Interested students may also select individual history courses as electives that complement and enhance another major. History pairs especially well with majors or minors in Political Science, International Studies, Education, Justice and Peace Studies, Art History, English, Modern and Classical Languages, American Culture and Difference, Communication and Journalism, and Legal Studies. Students who pursue liberal arts majors like History are also eligible for the Renaissance program.
The history major consists of a combination of 100-, 200-, and 300-level courses and a 400-level capstone seminar. Because the 100-level courses are survey courses, they provide our majors and minors with a broad base of knowledge in a relatively long period of history and in a large geographic area. Students also learn basic critical thinking skills and close reading of primary source materials and secondary texts.
Likewise, the 200-level courses are survey courses, but they are somewhat more narrowly defined and require more in-depth reading and writing assignments than the 100-level courses. Basic critical thinking skills and close reading of primary source materials and secondary texts are reinforced at this level, and students begin to acquire a few more skills in historical research, evaluating historical evidence, and crafting arguments in support of or against particular interpretations of historical events.
The 300-level history courses focus on a specific historical period or event or a particular methodological approach to doing history. In terms of skill development, these courses ask students not only to employ evidence in support of historical interpretations but also to think critically about the relationship between varying types of evidence, to engage in prevalent debates within fields of historical scholarship, and to evaluate historical questions themselves for their utility and manageability.
In the 400-level capstone seminar, students employ the knowledge they have acquired throughout their course of studies and the skills necessary to the discipline of History to research, write, and present a significant research project of their own. The 400-level capstone seminar is required for the history major but is optional for the history minor.
The learning objectives for the history major can be found at http://www.stthomas.edu/history/majors/default.html under "Curricular Overview."
History Honor Society
A campus chapter of Phi Alpha Theta, the national honor society in history, was established at St. Thomas in 1950. Candidates must have completed at least three courses in history and maintained a GPA of at least 3.1 in their history courses and a GPA of 3.0 overall to qualify.
Major in History
Forty-four credits (11 courses) complete the major, no more than twelve credits (3 courses) of which may be at the 100-level and at least sixteen credits (4 courses) of which must be numbered HIST 300 or above.
Transfer students: At least twenty-four (24) of the total credits needed for the history major must be taken at the University of St. Thomas or in a St. Thomas approved study abroad program. 200- and 300-level transfer courses require the approval of the department chair in order to be counted toward the major. The capstone seminar (HIST 463, 464, or 465) must be taken at St. Thomas.
1. Select 8 credits from two of the following areas:
Four credits of World History:
- HIST 111 Origins of the Modern World to 1550 (4 credits)
- HIST 112 The History of the Modern World since 1550 (4 credits)
- HIST 115 The World Since 1900 (4 credits)
Four credits of American History:
- HIST 113 Early America in Global Perspective (4 credits)
- HIST 114 The Modern U.S. in Global Perspective (4 credits)
- HIST 116 African American History in Global Perspective (4 credits)
Four credits of non-Western History:
- HIST 118 The Middle East and North Africa in Global Perspective (4 credits)
- HIST 119 East Asian Civilizations in Global Perspective (4 credits)
No more than three 100-level History courses may be applied to the major.
2. Select at least four credits from each of the following areas:
Ancient and Medieval World:
- HIST 203 Ancient Egypt and the Near East (4 credits)
- HIST 205 The Ancient Greek World (4 credits)
- HIST 208 History of the Roman World (4 credits)
- HIST 310 The Making of Europe: Middle Ages to 1000 (4 credits)
- HIST 311 The Dawn of a New Era: Europe from 1000 to 1450 (4 credits)
- HIST 386 Historical Archaeology (4 credits)
Europe since 1450:
- HIST 222 Early Modern Europe, 1450-1750 (4 credits)
- HIST 223 Survey of Irish History: Celtic Ireland to 1972 (4 credits)
- HIST 225 The Making of Modern Europe, 1750 to 1914 (4 credits)
- HIST 226 Modern Europe since 1914 (4 credits)
- HIST 322 Tudor and Stuart Britain, 1485-1714 (4 credits)
- HIST 324 Britain Since 1815 (4 credits)
- HIST 328 The French Revolution and Napoleonic Era (4 credits)
- HIST 333 East-Central Europe: From Monarchy to the European Union (4 credits)
The Americas and Their Colonial Antecedents:
- HIST 210 Modern Latin America, 1800 to the Present (4 credits)
- HIST 262 American Colonial History (4 credits)
- HIST 266 Minnesota History (4 credits)
- HIST 268 History of Women in the United States (4 credits)
- HIST 353 History of the American Revolution (4 credits)
- HIST 355 The Civil War Era (4 credits)
- HIST 358 Twentieth-Century United States (4 credits)
- HIST 365 U.S. Constitutional History (4 credits)
- HIST 366 History of the American Catholic Church (4 credits)
- HIST 371 History of U.S. Foreign Policy (4 credits)
- HIST 372 Vietnam and the United States (4 credits)
The Non-Western World:
- HIST 240 Foundations of Chinese Civilization (4 credits)
- HIST 241 The History of Modern China (4 credits)
- HIST 244 Modern East Asia (4 credits)
- HIST 253 Cities of the Middle East (4 credits)
- HIST 348 Japan: History Through Literature (4 credits)
- HIST 349 History of the Ottoman Empire (1300-1922) (4 credits)
At least twelve credits (3 courses) must be numbered HIST 300-399 or above. A student may choose to take a second capstone seminar to complete four credits (1 course) of this requirement, but this should only be done in consultation with his/her major advisor.
3. Plus four credits from among the following:
- HIST 463 Capstone Seminar in European History (4 credits)
- HIST 464 Capstone Seminar in Non-Western History (4 credits)
- HIST 465 Capstone Seminar in History of the Americas (4 credits)
Middle Level Teaching Endorsement in Social Studies (5-8)
Co-major in Social Studies (5-12) and a Co-major in Secondary Education
Minor in History
- Twenty credits (5 courses) in history, no more than eight credits (2 courses) of which may be at the HIST 100-level and at least four credits (1 course) of which must be numbered HIST 300 or above. Selection of the specific courses to fulfill the requirements should be done in consultation with a member of the department faculty.
Transfer students: At least twelve credits (3 courses) of the total needed for the history minor must be taken at the University of St. Thomas or in a St. Thomas approved study abroad program. 200- and 300-level transfer courses require the approval of the department chair in order to be counted toward the minor.