Degree Offered

  • Bachelor of Arts

Program Objectives and Goals

The Department of History offers courses focusing on a variety of world regions and time periods.  Degree requirements insure that majors obtain an acquaintance with the history of several such regions and periods and develop skills in research and writing.  Majors and non-majors may qualify for membership in Phi Alpha Theta, the national history honorary.

Students who earn a degree in the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences must complete the University requirements, the College requirements for their specific degree program, and their major requirements.


All students have the possibility of earning one or more minors; follow the link for a list of all available minors and their requirements. Please note that students may not earn a minor in their major field.

Certificate of Global Engagement

Students in the Eberly College, regardless of their major, can earn a Certificate of Global Engagement. Completion of the Certificate demonstrates the student’s knowledge of diverse cultures, as well as the ability to communicate and interact effectively with people of different cultural backgrounds.  Students will be required to apply their knowledge of contemporary issues and global social contexts to their course work and their broader citizenship.  For details regarding Certificate requirements, please visit the Eberly College page.

Career Prospects

The bachelor of arts with a major in history is designed to prepare students for careers in teaching, business, and government, and for graduate work in history, law, and related social sciences and humanities.

Admission Requirements

Students who meet University admission requirements and are in good standing may be directly admitted to the history major.

Benchmark Expectations

Students must maintain a 2.0 GPA overall and a minimum of a 2.00 GPA in History every semester (with a 2.2 in HIST required for graduation). All majors must meet with their History adviser every semester.  Students who do not meet these benchmarks may be removed from their major.

Click here to view the Suggested Plan of Study

General Education FOUNDATIONS

Please use this link to view a list of courses that meet each GEF requirement.

NOTE: Some major requirements will fulfill specific GEF requirements. Please see the curriculum requirements listed below for details on which GEFs you will need to select.

General Education Foundations
F1 - Composition & Rhetoric3-6
Introduction to Composition and Rhetoric
and Composition, Rhetoric, and Research
Accelerated Academic Writing
F2A/F2B - Science & Technology4-6
F3 - Math & Quantitative Skills3-4
F4 - Society & Connections3
F5 - Human Inquiry & the Past3
F6 - The Arts & Creativity3
F7 - Global Studies & Diversity3
F8 - Focus (may be satisfied by completion of a minor, double major, or dual degree)9
Total Hours31-37

Please note that not all of the GEF courses are offered at all campuses. Students should consult with their advisor or academic department regarding the GEF course offerings available at their campus.

Degree Requirements

Students must complete WVU General Education Foundations requirements, College B.A. requirements, major requirements, and electives to total a minimum of 120 hours. For complete details on these requirements,visit the B.A. Degrees tab on the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences page

Departmental Requirements for the B.A. in History

Students wishing to graduate with a degree in History must complete a total of thirty-three to thirty-six hours of history courses (for the B.A. 42 credit rule, please see B.A. link above).  Students must abide by the following rules:

Curriculum Requirements

First-Year Seminar
GEF Requirements: hours may vary
ECAS B.A. Requirements12
Fine Arts Requirement
Foreign Language
Global Studies & Diversity Requirement
Introductory History Courses 12
Practicing History (Practicing History )
Select three courses:
Western Civilization: Antiquity to 1600
Western Civilization: 1600 to Present
Latin America: Past and Present
The Middle East
East Asia: An Introduction
Growth of the American Nation to 1865
Making of Modern America: 1865 to the Present
World History to 1500
World History Since 1500
History Concentration18
Select two of the following regions and then select nine hours from each of the chosen categories, with at least nine hours at the 300 or 400 level
United States
Modern Military History
West Virginia
History of the American Revolution: 1763-1790
Antebellum America: 1781-1861
The United States: 1865-1918
Recent America: The United States since 1918
American Indian History
1920s America
United States Cultural History: 1819-1893
America in the 1960's
The Vietnam War
Hollywood and History
Introduction to Public History
Seventeenth Century Colonial America
Eighteenth Century America
History of American Women
African-American History-1900
African-American Since 1900
Civil War and Reconstruction
The Coming of the United States Civil War
The Gilded Age in US History
The United States from McKinley to the New Deal, 1896 to 1933
United States History: New Deal to Great Society
World War II in America
American Foreign Relations to 1941
American Foreign Relations 1941 to Present
American Economic History to 1865
American Economic History Since 1865
The Old South
The New South
United States Civil Rights Movement
Appalachian Regional History
The City in American History
Working Class America
Introduction to Historic Preservation
History of Ancient Times: Stone Age to the Fall of Rome
Introduction to Medieval Europe
Renaissance and Reformation
Absolutism & Enlightenment
Revolutionary Europe
Twentieth Century Europe
Modern Military History
The Mediterranean 1200-1800
History of Russia to 1917
History of Russia: 1900-Present
History of Modern Germany
The Holocaust (The Holocaust)
Greece and Rome
History of Sacred Places
France from 1450 to 1750
France Since 1815
German Central Europe, 1648-1900
Twentieth Century German Central Europe
History of Italy, 1200-1800
History of Italy since 1800
Women, Gender, and Kinship in Premodern Europe
Greece: From Troy to Alexander
The French Wars of Religion
World War II in Europe
Rome: From Romulus to Zenobia
Eastern Europe Since 1945
Revolutionary Russia: 1900-1953
USSR and After: 1953 to Present
Hitler and the Third Reich
Twentieth-Century Germany from Weimar to Bonn
History of Fascism
Britain 1455-1603
Eighteenth Century Britain: 1715-1832
History of the Alps
Africa, Asia, and Latin America
History of Ancient Times: Stone Age to the Fall of Rome
Gandhi and Beyond: Modern History of South Asia
Latin America: Culture, Conquest, Colonization
Latin America: Reform and Revolution
Peasants to Agribusiness: History and Problems of Modern Agriculture
History of Sacred Places
Greece and Rome
Pre-Colonial Africa
Colonial Africa and Independence
Modern China
Modern Japan
The Aztec, Maya, and Inca
The Vietnam War
Greece: From Troy to Alexander
Rome: From Romulus to Zenobia
East Africa to 1895
East Africa Since 1895
West Africa to 1885
West Africa from 1885
Women in Colonial Latin America
Non-Western History Requirement3
Select one of the following, may overlap with another course taken
At least one course in the African/ Asian/ Latin American list above
World History to 1500
World History Since 1500
Capstone Experience3
Historical Research-Capstone
Minor Concentration (fulfills the F8 requirement)15
Select one:
Departmental Concentration: please select fifteen hours of the same subject outside of the History Department; at least nine hours must be at the 300 or 400 level.
General Electives31
Number of electives may vary depending on overlap
Total Hours120

Suggested Plan of Study

The plan below illustrates a plan of study with a formal minor.

First Year
HIST 1911ENGL 101 (GEF 1)3
GEF 24GEF 33
HIST 2003GEF 43
HIST Intro Course 13HIST Intro Course 23
Foreign Language 1013Foreign Language 1023
General Elective1 
 15 15
Second Year
ENGL 102 (GEF 1)3ECAS Fine Arts Requirement (GEF 6)3
GEF 53Foreign Language 2043
Foreign Language 2033HIST Concentration Area 13
ECAS Gobal Studies & Diversity Requirement (GEF 7)3Minor Course 13
HIST Intro Course 33General Elective3
 15 15
Third Year
HIST Concentration Area 13HIST Concentration Area 23
HIST Concentration Area 13HIST Concentration Area 23
Minor Course 23Minor Course 33
General Elective3General Elective3
General Elective3General Elective3
 15 15
Fourth Year
HIST Concentration Area 23HIST 484 (Capstone and Writing)3
HIST Non-Western3Minor Course 53
Minor Course 43General Elective3
General Elective3General Elective3
General Elective3General Elective3
 15 15
Total credit hours: 120

Major Learning Outcomes


Upon successful completion of the B.A. degree, History majors will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate general knowledge of the facts, concepts, and approaches of history.
  2. Critically analyze and assess primary sources.
  3. Critically analyze and assess secondary sources.
  4. Conduct original historical research and report results in writing.
  5. Produce historical essays that are coherent, grammatically correct, and use proper historical documentation.
  6. Demonstrate ability to successfully present work in an oral presentation.

History Minor 


A grade of C or higher must be earned in all minor courses
Select two of the following:
Western Civilization: Antiquity to 1600
Western Civilization: 1600 to Present
Latin America: Past and Present
The Middle East
East Asia: An Introduction
North America: Past and Present
Growth of the American Nation to 1865
Making of Modern America: 1865 to the Present
World History to 1500
World History Since 1500
Select nine additional hours from courses at the 300- or 400-level
Total Hours15

HIST 101. Western Civilization: Antiquity to 1600. 3 Hours.

(HIST 101 does not have to precede HIST 102.) A survey of the major developments in Western civilization beginning with the ancient Mediterranean world and concluding with Reformation Europe.

HIST 102. Western Civilization: 1600 to Present. 3 Hours.

(HIST 102 may precede HIST 101.) A survey of major developments in Western civilization from 1600 to the present with attention to Europe's emerging industrial society and changing role in world affairs.

HIST 104. Latin America: Past and Present. 3 Hours.

Introduction to Latin American history, stressing the relationship between the past and present. Special emphasis is given to economic problems, political development, and social change in modern Latin America.

HIST 105. The Middle East. 3 Hours.

History of the Middle East from the rise of Islam (610 C.E.) to Twentieth Century. Special attention given to religion, gender issues, political developments, economic problems, relations with the West, cultural patterns and changes in the modern era.

HIST 106. East Asia: An Introduction. 3 Hours.

Focuses on modern China, Japan, and Korea. Consideration of important problems facing each nation today together with the cultural and historical developments which help explain contemporary affairs in East Asia.

HIST 108. North America: Past and Present. 3 Hours.

Introduction to the history of Canada, Mexico, and the United States, emphasizing selected social, economic, and political developments and how they have influenced the present.

HIST 152. Growth of the American Nation to 1865. 3 Hours.

(HIST 152 does not have to precede HIST 153.) Examines the basic political, economic, and social forces in formation and development of the United States before 1865. Emphasis on national development from independence through the Civil War.

HIST 153. Making of Modern America: 1865 to the Present. 3 Hours.

(HIST 153 may precede HIST 152.) Continues the examination of basic political, economic, and social forces in the development of the United States since the Civil War.

HIST 179. World History to 1500. 3 Hours.

Comparative history of Africa, Asia, and Europe from earliest times until 1500. Political, economic, social, and religious developments with emphasis on patterns of authority, the individual, nature, and society.

HIST 180. World History Since 1500. 0-3 Hours.

Comparative history of Africa, Asia, and Europe 1500 to the present. Political, economic, and social developments with emphasis on patterns of authority, the individual, nature, society, and the impact of the West.

HIST 191. First-Year Seminar. 1-3 Hours.

Engages students in active learning strategies that enable effective transition to college life at WVU. Students will explore school, college and university programs, policies and services relevant to academic success. Provides active learning activities that enable effective transition to the academic environment. Students examine school, college and university programs, policies and services.

HIST 198. History Fundamentals. 1 Hour.

This course introduces students to the fundamental skills necessary to successfully pursue the study of History. The course focuses on reading historical literature, expressing historical ideas in written and oral forms, note taking, time management, test taking, and study skills.

HIST 199. Orientation to History. 1,2 Hour.

Orientation to degree programs and requirements, departmental resources, curriculum options, student responsibilities and opportunities.

HIST 200. Practicing History. 3 Hours.

Students will acquire the skills to be an effective historian, including critically reading and analyzing primary and secondary sources, learning the basics of historiography, and creating an independent research topic. Students will write an original research paper and present their findings to the class.

HIST 201. History of Ancient Times: Stone Age to the Fall of Rome. 3 Hours.

Ancient civilizations of the Near East and the Mediterranean.

HIST 202. History of Modern Legal Thought. 3 Hours.

Surveys the history of modern European and American legal thought focusing on the central problem of jurisprudence, “what is law?” and examines how thinkers have answered the question in the modern period, with a particular emphasis on the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

HIST 203. Introduction to Medieval Europe. 3 Hours.

Treats the emergence of the distinctive culture of Western Europe from the Fall of Rome to the Renaissance, considering the transformation and interaction of politics, economics, society, religion, and ideas.

HIST 204. Renaissance and Reformation. 3 Hours.

Medieval antecedents; humanism and the new learning; renaissance art; Machiavellian politics; demographic and social trends; Luther and Calvin, Radical reformers, Council of Trent; popular culture; wars of religion.

HIST 205. Absolutism & Enlightenment. 3 Hours.

Europe from 1600-1800. End of religious wars; emergence of absolutism; nobility and court life; mercantilism; expansion; theological and philosophical crisis; empiricism and scientific revolution; philosophes and Enlightenment; French Revolution.

HIST 207. Revolutionary Europe. 3 Hours.

Traces the development of European history from the reign of Louis XV to the end of the Franco-Prussian War. Political and social history emphasized.

HIST 209. Twentieth Century Europe. 3 Hours.

Traces the major political, economic, and social developments of Europe from World War I to the present.

HIST 210. Modern Military History. 3 Hours.

Military history from the American Revolution to the present, stressing the evolution of warfare with particular attention to strategy, tactics, weaponry and the consequences of war.

HIST 211. The Mediterranean 1200-1800. 3 Hours.

Interactions between societies surrounding the Mediterranean (Christians, Muslims, and Jews from Europe, the Ottoman Empire, Egypt, the Maghrib) from the late Abbasids to Napoleon. Trade, warfare, family life, and religion.

HIST 217. History of Russia to 1917. 3 Hours.

Medieval Russia and the development of autocracy; imperial expansion and serfdom; response to the West from Peter I to Alexander II; Great reforms, economic transformations, revolutionary movement; complex of crises after 1900.

HIST 218. History of Russia: 1900-Present. 3 Hours.

Revolution and reform to 1914; World War, 1917 revolutions; NEP and Stalinism to 1939; World War II and postwar Stalinism; reform under Khrushchev and Brezhnev; Gorbachev and dissolution of USSR; post-Soviet trauma.

HIST 220. The Holocaust. 3 Hours.

The origins and development of Nazi genocide against European Jews, focusing on the experience of the victims, the motives of the killers, and the inaction of bystanders.

HIST 221. History of Modern Germany. 3 Hours.

Overview of German history emphasizing eighteenth through the twentieth centuries. Special attention focuses on the development of nationalism, state-building, political culture and continuity in German history.

HIST 225. Gandhi and Beyond: Modern History of South Asia. 3 Hours.

History of India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh from the early modern period to the present; traditional background, Muslim conquests, British Raj, nationalist and independence movements, partitions, independent states, and current issues.

HIST 241. Latin America: Culture, Conquest, Colonization. 3 Hours.

History of the formative period of Latin America, emphasizing the social and economic interaction between Indians, Europeans, and blacks from the conquest to the wars for independence in the early nineteenth century.

HIST 242. Latin America: Reform and Revolution. 3 Hours.

History of modern Latin America, concentrating on the durability of nineteenth-century social, economic, and political institutions, and the twentieth-century reformist and revolutionary attempts to change those institutions.

HIST 250. West Virginia. 3 Hours.

Historical foundations and development of West Virginia, with particular emphasis upon the growth of the government, the economy, and the traditions of the state.

HIST 256. History of the American Revolution: 1763-1790. 3 Hours.

The immediate origins and long-range consequences of the movement for independence from Great Britain; includes the 1775-1790 controversy over the charter of new state and federal governments.

HIST 257. Antebellum America: 1781-1861. 3 Hours.

(Completion of HIST 152 is advised.) American history from the Revolution to the Civil War is examined in detail, with particular attention to the key personalities of the era, the development of political parties, the movement westward, the beginnings of industrialization, and the sectional struggles that culminated in war.

HIST 259. The United States: 1865-1918. 3 Hours.

Development of the United States during the most intensive phase of American industrialization; special emphasis on ideas of selected Americans on how to cope with the increase in poverty and social malaise which accompanied economic development; attention is also given to the roots of American imperialism.

HIST 261. Recent America: The United States since 1918. 3 Hours.

(Primarily for non-History majors.) The 1920's, the New Deal, World War II, and a survey of developments since World War II.

HIST 264. American Indian History. 3 Hours.

Surveys the history of Native peoples of what is now the United States, from pre-contact to the present. Ethnohistorical approach emphasizes cultural development as well as interactions with European and American peoples and policies.

HIST 276. Twentieth Century American Foreign Relations. 3 Hours.

A survey of U.S. foreign relations. Topics include security, economic, political and cultural aspects of U.S. foreign relations.

HIST 277. Revolutions in Science and Technology. 3 Hours.

Examines particular periods of intensified change in science and technology, to develop general understanding of scientific and technical change. Episodes may include the Scientific, Industrial, Darwinian, or other revolutions.

HIST 281. Peasants to Agribusiness: History and Problems of Modern Agriculture. 3 Hours.

Surveys the modernization of world agriculture from 17th century Europe to the Green Revolution, and its economic, social, and political consequences. (Alternate years.).

HIST 293. Special Topics. 1-6 Hours.

PR: Consent. Investigation of topics not covered in regularly scheduled courses.

HIST 300. Greece and Rome. 3 Hours.

Covers the Minoan and Mycenaean civilizations, Archaic and Classical Greece, Alexander the great and the Hellenistic Age, the Roman Republic, the Etruscan and Carthaginian states, and the rise of the Roman Empire.

HIST 301. The Great Depression. 3 Hours.

Analyzes the causes of the Great Depression in the United States and ways in which it transformed American life, culture, and institutions.

HIST 304. History of Sacred Places. 3 Hours.

Begins by analyzing the meaning of sacred and then proceeds to a comparative historical, religious, and political discussion of selected sacred places.

HIST 313. France from 1450 to 1750. 3 Hours.

French history from Charles VII to Louis XV, Italian wars, religious conflict, absolutism, economic and commercial developments, philosophes. Focus on the evolution of national political and cultural unity between the Renaissance and Enlightenment.

HIST 314. France Since 1815. 3 Hours.

French history from the French Revolution to the present. Emphasizes the development of a modern industrial society, nineteenth-century revolutions, the impact of the World Wars, and France's role in new Europe.

HIST 317. German Central Europe, 1648-1900. 3 Hours.

Explores empires, states and nations in Central Europe; it includes the Habsburg Monarchy and Holy Roman Empire following the devastation of 30 years of War, Enlightenment, State- building, Industrialization and Nation-building to the Great War.

HIST 318. Twentieth Century German Central Europe. 3 Hours.

Explores the two World Wars, Holocaust, the Cold War, National Socialist, Communist, and Democratic regimes and Austria as well as the reunification of Germany following Revolutions of 1989.

HIST 319. Myth and Culture in Pre-colonial Africa. 3 Hours.

Pre-colonial history of Africa from its earliest beginning to the mid-nineteenth century. Examines aspects of the diverse social, cultural, economic, and political institutions of pre-colonial Africa, including: the peopling of Africa, interactions between people and their environment, social organization and cultural practices, and traditional and non-traditional belief systems.

HIST 320. Pre-Colonial Africa. 3 Hours.

History of Africa, earliest times to mid-nineteenth century. Focus on population and interaction, state formation, trade in sub-Saharan Africa, and on impact of external influences such as Christianity and Islam.

HIST 321. Colonial Africa and Independence. 3 Hours.

History of Africa from the middle of the nineteenth century to the 1960s. Political and economic trends will form major focus.

HIST 325. Modern China. 3 Hours.

Introduction to modern China (since 1839) with attention to China's Confucian heritage; the Chinese effort to modernize in the face of Western diplomatic and economic pressure; specific attention to China's nationalist and communist revolutionary traditions.

HIST 326. Modern Japan. 3 Hours.

Japan since 1868, development of earlier institutions and ideas, especially Tokugawa Era (1600-1868); nineteenth- and twentieth-century economic change and its social, political and diplomatic implications.

HIST 330. History of Italy, 1200-1800. 3 Hours.

Medieval communes and principalities, humanism and the Renaissance, Habsburg-Valois wars on the peninsula, Baroque and scientific court culture, seventeenth-century crisis, state-building and absolutism, Enlightenment and Napoleonic invasion.

HIST 331. History of Italy since 1800. 3 Hours.

Napoleonic occupation, regional states, Risorgimento, liberal democracy, emigration, industrialization, World War I, Mussolini and Fascism, postwar reconstruction, cinema,, partyocracy, images of Italy, 1900s reforms.

HIST 346. Women, Gender, and Kinship in Premodern Europe. 3 Hours.

Traces key shifts in the theory and practice of European family structure, gender roles, marriage, demography, inheritance, household labor, property holding, and child-rearing from 500BC to 1700.

HIST 350. The Aztec, Maya, and Inca. 3 Hours.

Survey of political, religious, and social structures of the Aztec, Maya and Inca civilizations; exploring their origins, daily lives, cultural productions, understanding of the universe, and perspectives on Europeans.

HIST 353. 1920s America. 3 Hours.

Analyzes the social, economic, political, and technical changes that transformed life and culture in the United States during the 1920s.

HIST 358. United States Cultural History: 1819-1893. 3 Hours.

Examines the cultural panics about identity and sensibility produced by capitalism, slavery, war and urbanization in the nineteenth-century United States.

HIST 360. America in the 1960's. 3 Hours.

Examines the social, cultural, political and economic events and outcomes of the 1960s, including the civil rights movement, political economy, new left, counterculture, Great Society, rights movements, and the conservative ascendancy.

HIST 365. The Vietnam War. 3 Hours.

United States participation in the 1946-1975 fighting in Indochina. United States involvement in the political and military conflict, and the impact of the war on the United States.

HIST 370. Latin America and the World. 3 Hours.

Introduces students to different ways of thinking about Latin America’s relationship with the world and how it has changed over time. Given the United States’ historic impact on Latin America’s relationship with the world, the course focuses on the legacy of intra-hemispheric relations on Latin America alongside Latin America’s impact on the wider world.

HIST 375. Hollywood and History. 3 Hours.

Examines twentieth century American culture, politics, and society through film. It explores the relationship between film and history using films as primary sources for understanding the past.

HIST 393. Special Topics. 1-6 Hours.

PR: Consent. Investigation of topics not covered in regularly scheduled courses.

HIST 402. Greece: From Troy to Alexander. 3 Hours.

Formation of Greek civilization, including social and economic factors, culture, interactions with barbarians, the Persian invasions, the Greek conquest of an Asian empire, citizenship, sex, gender, and warfare.

HIST 403. Rome: From Romulus to Zenobia. 3 Hours.

Formation of Roman civilization, including cultural transformations, conquest of Italy and the Mediterranean, the fall of the Republic, the entertainment and sport industry, the rise of Christianity.

HIST 409. Field Methods in Historic Preservation. 3 Hours.

Outlines professional historic preservation fundamentals associated with inquiry, documentation and analysis. A variety of research approaches expose students to both primary and secondary sources that are typically utilized when conducting reconnaissance or intensive level historic surveys or in preparing HABS/HAER or NRHP documentation.

HIST 412. Introduction to Public History. 3 Hours.

Introduction to a wide range of career possibilities for historians in areas such as archives, historical societies, editing projects, museums, business, libraries, and historic preservation. Lectures, guest speakers, field trips, individual projects.

HIST 414. The Great War, 1914-1918. 3 Hours.

Focuses primarily on the First World War in Europe and the Middle East while mindful of its global contexts and implications. In addition to the diplomatic, political and military history of the war, the course addresses the war on various home fronts and the vast territories that came under Central Power and Allied occupation.

HIST 415. Early Modern Law & Society. 3 Hours.

Examines the ways in which laws and legal practice structured social relations in Europe between the Middle Ages and the French Revolution, focusing on the historical development of legal ideas, the relation of law to political authority and governance, and how various social actors used law to pursue their interests.

HIST 416. The French Wars of Religion. 3 Hours.

Detailed analysis of the tangled roots of this conflict (1562-1629), the salient events of the period, and their long-term impact. Popular culture, military developments, theology, and court politics.

HIST 417. World War II in Europe. 3 Hours.

Impact of World War II on political culture and moral fabric; emphasis on themes of invasion, occupation, collaboration, resistance, survival, and retribution. (Alternate years).

HIST 418. Eastern Europe Since 1945. 3 Hours.

The social, economic, intellectual, cultural, and political history of Eastern Europe since the Second World War. Special emphasis on the causes of the East European revolutions of 1989 and the problems of post-communist transition. (Offered every third semester.).

HIST 419. Revolutionary Russia: 1900-1953. 3 Hours.

Crisis of late Imperial Russia, Silver Age, World War I, 1917 revolutions; Civil War, renewed empire, crisis of 1921; NEP, policy debates, succession; Stalinism to 1939; World War II, post war Stalinism; initial repudiation of Stalin.

HIST 420. USSR and After: 1953 to Present. 3 Hours.

Crisis of late Stalinism; Khrushchev, destalinization, reforms; Brezhnev, stabilization, militarization, corruption, stagnation; Gorbachev, perestroika, glasnost, disintegration; Yeltsin, shock therapy, criminalization, decline.

HIST 421. Hitler and the Third Reich. 3 Hours.

Myths and realities of Hitler's public and personal life; emphasis on rise to power, party, ideology, and propaganda techniques; position and policies as Fuehrer.

HIST 422. Twentieth-Century Germany from Weimar to Bonn. 3 Hours.

The Weimar Republic, the Third Reich, and the two German states created after World War II.

HIST 423. History of Fascism. 3 Hours.

Examines history of fascism in interwar Europe and postwar neo-fascism, using scholarship, art, propaganda, and film. Topics include origins, regime culture, the totalitarian state, and violence.

HIST 424. Britain 1455-1603. 3 Hours.

England from Richard II to Elizabeth I, covering developments in politics, religion and society, ranging from the War of the Roses and the plague to Protestantism and Shakespeare.

HIST 427. East Africa to 1895. 3 Hours.

East Africa from earliest times to the beginning of European control. Population movement and interaction, development of varying types of policy, revolutionary change, and the European scramble for East Africa form the major focus.

HIST 428. East Africa Since 1895. 3 Hours.

History of colonial rule and movement to independence in East Africa. Political, economic, and social changes will be examined with particular emphasis on the rise and triumph of African nationalism.

HIST 430. Living and Dying in Medieval Europe. 3 Hours.

Social and cultural examination of medieval Europe from 500 to 1500. Course themes include diet, relationships, labor, health and the body, material culture, and violence and law.

HIST 432. Eighteenth Century Britain: 1715-1832. 3 Hours.

The Age of Aristocracy, the political, social, religious, economic, and intellectual impact of the Industrial, Agricultural, American, and French revolutions.

HIST 433. West Africa to 1885. 3 Hours.

West Africa from the earliest times to the imposition of colonial rule. Examines social, economic, political developments and interactions, and European scramble for West Africa. (Alternate years).

HIST 434. West Africa from 1885. 3 Hours.

Abolition of the transatlantic slave trade, imposition of colonial rule, colonial economic, social and administrative systems, the rise and triumph of African nationalism, West Africa since independence.

HIST 435. History of Chinese Thought. 3 Hours.

Explores the inception and development of the major traditions of social and political thought in China. Focuses on how certain political ideas and social practices arose in the Bronze Age and developed and interacted over millennia to inform all areas of life in premodern China.

HIST 437. Africa in World History. 3 Hours.

The course aims to reposition Africa and Africans in world history by recognizing their centrality and contributions to our modern heritage. It explores indigenous developments in Africa and cross-continental interactions between the continent and Asia, the Americas, Europe and Oceania that underscore the role of Africans in shaping their own history and influencing global interdependence.

HIST 438. Women in Colonial Latin America. 3 Hours.

Explores women's roles in the formation of Latin America examining how womenin the colonial era challenged gender norms, contributed to, and subverted colonial society.

HIST 439. History of Modern Mexico. 3 Hours.

Focusing on the 19th and 20th centuries, this course explores the peoples and cultures of Mexico from conquest to the present, including Spanish colonial period, Independence wars, early Republic, Mexican-American War, Revolution, Golden Age, and post-NAFTA period.

HIST 440. Mexican Law from Montezuma to El Chapo. 3 Hours.

An examination of the legal history of Mexico since the arrival of Spaniards in the early sixteenth century, exploring development of a Mexican legal culture that blended indigenous conceptions of the law with the Spanish legal framework, derived from both Roman and ecclesiastical traditions.

HIST 441. Seventeenth Century Colonial America. 3 Hours.

The establishment of England's American colonies and their development during a century of political, social, religious, and economic change and the interaction between events in Old and New Worlds. (Alternate years).

HIST 442. Eighteenth Century America. 3 Hours.

The social, political, and economic maturation of England's American colonies, the move toward independence, and the establishment of government at state and federal levels. (Alternate years).

HIST 445. History of American Women. 3 Hours.

Examination of the history of American women from 1607 to the present with emphasis on working conditions, women's rights, development of feminism, women's role in wartime, women in the family.

HIST 451. African-American History-1900. 3 Hours.

African background, the slave trade and evolution of slavery in the New World. The attack on slavery and its destruction.

HIST 452. African-American Since 1900. 3 Hours.

Reconstruction, the age of reaction and racism, black migration, black nationalism, blacks in the world wars, and desegregation.

HIST 453. Civil War and Reconstruction. 3 Hours.

Causes as well as constitutional and diplomatic aspects of the Civil War; the role of American black in slavery, in war, and in freedom; and the economic and political aspects of Congressional Reconstruction.

HIST 454. The Coming of the United States Civil War. 3 Hours.

Analyzes social and economic transformations in the early American republic through an examination of the ideological heritage of the Revolution, capitalism, slavery, reform movements, immigration, popular culture, and political conflict before the Civil War.

HIST 456. The Gilded Age in US History. 3 Hours.

Examines responses of the American people and institutions to opportunities and problems of the late nineteenth century. Emphasis on rise of big business; labor organization; immigration; regular, reform, and radical politics; disappearance of the frontier; farm crisis; and origins of imperialism.

HIST 457. The United States from McKinley to the New Deal, 1896 to 1933. 3 Hours.

American national history from William McKinley to Franklin D. Roosevelt. Particular attention is given to great changes in American life after 1896; national political, economic, social, and cultural development; the Progressive Era in American politics; and alterations in American foreign relations resulting from the Spanish-American War and World War I.

HIST 459. United States History: New Deal to Great Society. 3 Hours.

Covers New Deal; World War II; Cold War, with emphasis on American social, political, technological, and cultural developments; United States domestic problems and foreign relations from 1945 to 1968.

HIST 460. World War II in America. 3 Hours.

Examines the American experience in World War II with an emphasis on the economic, social, and political impact of war on American society.

HIST 463. American Foreign Relations to 1941. 3 Hours.

American's foreign policy and involvement in international relations from the eighteenth century to the beginning of World War II.

HIST 464. American Foreign Relations 1941 to Present. 3 Hours.

America's foreign policy and growing involvement in international relations including the U.S. role in World War II, the Korean War and Vietnam.

HIST 466. American Economic History to 1865. 3 Hours.

Origins and development of American business, agricultural, and labor institutions, problems, and policies, from 1600 to 1865; influence of economic factors upon American history during this period.

HIST 467. American Economic History Since 1865. 3 Hours.

Scope similar to HIST 466.

HIST 468. The Old South. 3 Hours.

(For advanced undergraduate and graduate students.) History of the South exploring peculiar differences that led to an attempt to establish a separate nation. The geographical limitation permits a detailed study of economic and social forces within the context of the larger national history.

HIST 469. The New South. 3 Hours.

Integration of the South into the nation after the Civil War. Emphasis on southern attitudes toward industrialization, commercial agriculture, organized labor, and African-Americans. Special attention to the southern literary renaissance and conservative and progressive politics of the southern people.

HIST 470. United States Civil Rights Movement. 3 Hours.

Examines the recent scholarship, music, film and oral history of the 1950s-60s US Civil Rights Movement, examining its New Deal roots, post-Vietnam War legacies and the nature of American identity, citizenship, and political culture.

HIST 473. Appalachian Regional History. 3 Hours.

Historical survey of Central Appalachia's three phases of development: traditional society of the nineteenth century, the transformation of a mountain society by industrialization at the turn of the twentieth century, and contemporary Appalachia.

HIST 474. The City in American History. 3 Hours.

A survey of urban history in the United States, including the colonial period, with emphasis on the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, focusing on physical development of cities (planning, transportation, architecture, suburbanization) and social history.

HIST 477. Working Class America. 3 Hours.

This course is designed to introduce students to issues surrounding the American working class. It will explore changes in the modes of production, the impact of labor migrations, the emergence of working-class organizations, and the political and social ideologies of working people. Particular attention will be given to the impact of racial, ethnic and gender-based conflict on the emergence of working-class movements. Students will be encouraged to interpret historical material in the context of current workplace relations.

HIST 480. History of the Alps. 3 Hours.

Examines the peoples, lands, culture, and politics of the Alpine arc (France, Switzerland, Italy, Austria, Germany, and Slovenia) in comparative perspective. Mountain democracy, commerce, banditry, transportation, tourism, and mining.

HIST 484. Historical Research-Capstone. 3 Hours.

PR: History major or consent. Capstone course which introduces historical research techniques. Completion and presentation of major research paper required.

HIST 489. Introduction to Historic Preservation. 3 Hours.

Introduction to historic preservation issues, including law, economics, not-for-profit organizations, site interpretation, architectural history, industrial archeology federal programs, downtown revitalization, and landmarks commissions.

HIST 490. Teaching Practicum. 1-3 Hours.

PR: Consent. Teaching practice as a tutor or assistant.

HIST 491. Professional Field Experience. 1-18 Hours.

PR: Consent. (May be repeated up to a maximum of 18 hours.) Prearranged experiential learning program, to be planned, supervised, and evaluated for credit by faculty and field supervisors. Involves temporary placement with public or private enterprise for professional competence development.

HIST 492. Directed Study. 1-3 Hours.

Directed study, reading, and/or research.

HIST 493. Special Topics. 1-6 Hours.

PR: Consent. Investigation of topics not covered in regularly scheduled courses.

HIST 494. Seminar. 1-3 Hours.

PR: Consent. Presentation and discussion of topics of mutual concern to students and faculty.

HIST 495. Independent Study. 1-6 Hours.

HIST 495. Independent Study. 1-6 hr. Faculty supervised study of topics not available through regular course offerings.

HIST 496. Senior Thesis. 1-3 Hours.

PR: Consent.

HIST 497. Research. 1-6 Hours.

Independent research projects.

HIST 498. Honors. 1-3 Hours.

PR: Students in Honors Program and consent by the honors director. Independent reading, study or research.



  • Joseph Hodge - Ph.D. (Queen's University at Kingston)
    Modern Britain, British empire, decolonization, international development, Africa

Associate Chair

  • Kate Staples - Ph.D. (University of Minnesota)
    Medieval, gender, England, material culture


  • Katherine Aaslestad - Ph.D. (University of Illinois)
    Modern Europe, Germany, cultural
  • Robert E. Blobaum - Ph.D. (University of Nebraska)
    Eberly Family Distinguished Professor, modern Central and Eastern Europe
  • William I. Brustein - Ph.D. (University of Washington)
    European fascism, European political and religious extremism, comparative anti-Semitism
  • Elizabeth Fones-Wolf - Ph.D. (University of Massachusetts)
    20th-century U.S., social and economic
  • Kenneth Fones-Wolf - Ph.D. (Temple University): Stuart and Joyce Robbins Distinguished Chair in History
    U.S. labor, Appalachia, immigration, religion
  • Robert M. Maxon - Ph.D. (Syracuse University)
    East Africa, colonial Kenya
  • Matthew A. Vester - Ph.D. (University of California)
    Early modern Europe, Italy

Associate Professors

  • Joshua Arthurs - Ph.D.(University of Chicago)
    Modern Europe, Italy, cultural
  • Melissa Bingmann - Ph.D. (Arizona State University)
    Public history, 20th-century U.S.
  • Tyler Boulware - Ph.D. (University of South Carolina)
    Early American, frontier, Native America
  • Joseph Hodge - Ph.D. (Queen’s University at Kingston)
    Modern Britian, British Empire, decolonization, international development, Africa
  • Brian Luskey - Ph.D. (Emory University)
    19th-century U.S., social and cultural
  • Tamba E. M'bayo - Ph.D. (Michigan State University)
    West Africa, colonial and postcolonial, African diaspora and Pan-Africanism
  • James Siekmeier - Ph.D. (Cornell University)
    U.S. diplomatic, modern Latin America
  • Jason Phillips - Ph.D. (Rice University)
    Civil war and reconstruction, southern history, 19th-century U.S.
  • Kate Staples - Ph.D. (University of Minnesota)
    Medieval, gender, England, material culture
  • Mark Tauger - Ph.D. (UCLA)
    20th-century Russia/USSR, historiography, world/comparative

Assistant Professors

  • Krystal Frazier - Ph.D. (Rutgers University)
    African American, oral history
  • William Gorby - Ph.D. (WVU)
    West Virginia, Appalachia
  • Macabe Keliher - Ph.D. (Harvard)
    Premodern and modern China, East Asia, legal, Chinese intellectual
  • Michele Stephens - Ph.D. (University of Oklahoma)
    Latin America, indigenous peoples, race and gender


  • Jenny Boulware - M.A. (University of South Carolina)
    Public history
  • Carletta Bush - Ph.D. (WVU)
    Modern U.S.

Emeritus Faculty

  • William S. Arnett
    Associate Professor
  • Jack Hammersmith
  • Barbara J. Howe
    Associate Professor
  • Elizabeth K. Hudson
    Associate Professor
  • Emory L. Kemp
  • Ronald L. Lewis
    Professor, Stuart and Joyce Robbins Chair
  • Mary Lou Lustig
  • Stephen C. McCluskey
  • A. Michal McMahon
    Associate Professor
  • John C. Super