TO MAJOR IN HISTORY, students must complete 33 credits of courses (at least 18 at Rutgers). Students must take the department’s two core courses (6 credits): 50:509:299 Perspectives in History (which students should take as soon as they can), and a Senior Seminar 50:509:480 or 50:509:481, the department’s capstone course. (NB: The senior seminar will not be required after September 1, 2013. History majors will simply be required to take one additional upper-division course in its stead. See specific requirements on attachments below.)
Perspectives in History is designed to teach the following skills: 1. how to analyze primary sources; 2. how to read secondary sources in a critical manner; 3. how to cite sources properly; 4. how to write to the expectations of the discipline of history; 5. how to construct an historical argument; 6. how to evaluate the integrity, reliability, and usefulness of disparate sources; and 7. how to conduct independent research.
Of the remaining 27 credits (30 after September 1, 2013) for the history major, a maximum of 12 credits may be 100- and 200- level courses, but no more than 6 credits can be counted from Western Civilization I and II (510:101 and 510:102) and Development of US I and II (512:201 and 512:202); 15 credits (18 after September 1, 2013) must be courses at the 300 to 400 level. There is also a distribution requirement for these credits: no fewer than 3 credits must be from each geographical area of 510 (European history), 512 (American history), and 516 (African, Asian, Latin American, and comparative history). History internships and courses offered in the university’s Honors College may also count toward the major, with the department chair’s permission.
If students wish, they may take more than 33 credits of history. Of special interest, especially to those considering graduate school work, is the 400-level Advanced Seminars offered each semester. Students who would like to immerse themselves in reading and research should also consider finding a faculty member to supervise their work in the department’s honors course in history (509:495), to be taken in addition to the 33 credits demanded of the major.
Those students seeking certification in teaching should be aware that a requirement is to take a course from a selection dealing with human and intercultural relations. Several history courses may be counted for this purpose and for the history major.
Grades lower than C do not count toward fulfillment of the history major requirement.
All History majors should be sure to meet with Laurie Bernstein, department chair, to discuss their course of study. All students with any questions about our course offerings, majoring in history, or about transferring credit received for history courses taken at other schools, should also contact Dr. Bernstein and/or drop in and visit us in our offices at 429 Cooper Street.
Courses may be counted toward both Major and General Requirements. However, no course may fulfill two categories of General Requirements. (If you use any course for both Major and General Requirements, be sure to count the credits only ONCE toward the degree total.)