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Academic Programs / Liberal Arts
Director of Undergraduate Studies
952 Gladfelter Hall
Stephanie Tschanz, Administrator
The faster our lives change, the more we need to understand our past, reflect on our present, and make decisions for our future. History helps us to understand who we are and where we came from. It provides unique insights and perspectives for our personal and professional pursuits.
The History Department divides its courses between American History, European History, and non-Western History. Within each division, one can choose history courses in political, diplomatic, social, cultural, economic, gender, and ethnic history. Students should concentrate in one field of history and also be well-versed in the three main divisions.
Temple History graduates have gone into a wide range of careers; business, law, politics, education, historical preservation, and information resources are just a few of the many areas. History arms the student for a maximum amount of flexibility for career choices.
Temple students regularly participate in the intellectual life of the region through their connections to such organizations and institutions as the McNeil Center for Early American Studies, the Balch Institute for Ethnic Studies, the Pennsylvania Historical Society, the Atwater Kent Museum, and the American Philosophical Society.
The Department of History offers an Honors Program for majors with outstanding academic records. Qualified majors are invited to join Phi Alpha Theta, the History honor society. Both minors and majors participate in the Undergraduate History Association. Special Programs allow undergraduates to major in History and earn teaching certification, or to major in history and earn a Master's in Education in five years (program administered through the School of Education).
The history major consists of a step approach. Courses numbered 0800 through 1999 are introductory level; courses numbered 2000-2999 are intermediate level, and courses numbered 3000–4999 are advanced level. Courses with "9" as a second digit are honors courses and are usually restricted to honors students.
The history major requires twelve courses (36 credits). Students must take two introductory level courses, of which one is selected from courses numbered 0800–1099 and one from courses numbered 1100–1999. Three courses (9 credits) are required at the 2000 level. Three elective courses (9 credits) are required at the 3000 level. All history majors take two required writing seminars: in the Junior year, students take a 3000 level writing course and in the Senior year, they take a complimentary Capstone course at the 4000 level. All writing intensive courses end in -96, -97 or -98. Finally, students may select two history courses (6 credits) at any level.
– Within these broad requirements, students must complete a minimum of two courses in U.S. history, two courses in European history, and three courses in Asian, African, Latin American or Global/Comparative history.
– Two of the courses in any category or level must be predominantly pre-1900 in content.
– Students should take four courses that represent an area of concentration based on some geographic or thematic intellectual rationale. The area of concentration should be defined in writing and approved by a departmental advisor ideally at the start of the junior year and no later than the start of the senior year.
Summary of Degree Requirements
1. University Requirements:
2. College of Liberal Arts Requirements:
3. Foreign Language/Global Studies Requirements:
4. History Major Requirements (36 s.h.)
NOTE: These twelve courses have both level and subject matter distributions. Any given course may count in both Category A (level) and Category B (content area) and possibly Category C as well. Please see the course descriptions for more information on which category/categories are applicable.
5. General electives vary according to a student's individual program of study. Consult your academic advisor for more information.
Requirements for the Major
*Please note that the courses above also must satisfy the following content area distributional requirement: two U.S. History courses, two European History courses, and three Asian, African, Latin American or Global/Comparative History courses. Please note also that at least two of the twelve courses used to complete the major must be pre-1900 History courses.
Distinction in Major
To receive Distinction in Major, students must complete History 4934: Honors Historiography and Research Methods, and History 4997: Honors Thesis Seminar. The end product of the Honors Thesis Seminar is an Honors Thesis, which the student will present at a scholarly conference sponsored by the department. The Honors Thesis will also fulfill the History major’s thesis/capstone requirement. Students must maintain a 3.4 GPA in all history courses and a 3.4 GPA in Temple courses overall. Students who are not in the University Honors Program will require special permission to enroll in History 4934 and 4997 – see the History Honors Scholar Program Director, Jay Lockenour (firstname.lastname@example.org).
History Honors Program
To participate in the History Honors Scholar Program, you must first apply to the University Honors office. Any History major who has earned or is in the process of earning 60 credits and has roughly a 3.7 cumulative GPA can apply for the program. The application form is available on the Honors web site: www.temple.edu/honors/index.html. Students in the program take six courses (18 credits), including History 4934: Honors Historiography and Research Methods, History 4997: Honors Thesis Seminar, and four upper-level Honors electives (any department). With careful planning, these Honors courses can ALSO fulfill the requirements for the History major, so that students need not delay graduation. For example, the Honors Thesis Seminar (4997) fulfills the normal "capstone/writing" requirement, and the electives, if chosen from History offerings, will also fulfill major requirements. Students must maintain a 3.4 GPA in History and a 3.4 GPA overall. Make an appointment to meet with the Director of the History Honors Scholar Program, Jay Lockenour (email@example.com), for advice on completing the application and to discuss your intellectual interests.
A History minor is an ideal complement to other majors and programs at Temple, from medicine to journalism, from computer science to finance, from film to marketing. Students with a minor in history are required to take six (6) courses totaling eighteen (18) semester hours. Of the six courses, at least two (2) must be numbered 2000 or above and at least one courses (1) must be numbered 3000 or above.
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