Program Requirements

Students who complete the major requirements for a bachelor of arts (BA) in history will gain an understanding of world civilizations and their development over time that will encourage them to actively engage in their own world through disciplined reflection on significant people, events, and dynamics.

Major Requirements (BA)

Course descriptions for all HIST courses are available at the bottom of this page.

36 semester hours (sh) of major courses:

  • Required history courses (20 sh) — HIST 2120, 4010, choose three from 2110, 2230, 2240, 2250, 2260
  • History electives (16 sh) — choose courses at the 3000 level distributed generally or in an area of concentration chosen from Ancient and Medieval, Africa, Middle East, Modern Europe, or United States.

Humanities Co-Requirement:

History majors (as well as those in the other humanities disciplines) are required to enhance the learning experiences in their major by taking elective courses in the disciplines of philosophy, English, and art (at least one course in each). History students must also take one course in either politics and government or sociology. Students are encouraged to consult with their advisors for suggestions about particular courses.


History majors must present senior seminar research at a department conference, as well as a major portfolio, prior to graduation. Students with a double major or those in the secondary education teaching certificate course of study are exempt from the humanities co-requirement. Departmental honors in history are available to students who apply no later than spring semester of their third year, and then earn 8 sh of HIST 4000 in addition to the credit required for the major.

Minor Requirements

20 semester hours (sh)

  • One of the following (4 sh): HIST 2110, 2120
  • One of the following (4 sh): HIST 2230, 2240, 2250, 2260
  • Three courses numbered 3000 or above, chosen from at least two geographical areas

Course Descriptions

Click on the links below for course descriptions of all history courses. For a complete list of all North Park's programs and course offerings, review the academic catalog.

HIST 1000 – Global Themes in History

HIST 2110 – United States to 1877
Development of a Western civilization on the American seaboard from colonial beginnings to 1877.

HIST 2120 – United States Since 1877
Development of an industrial and urban society and its political, economic, social, and intellectual significance; emergence as a world power.

HIST 2200 – World History to 1500

HIST 2210 – World History Since 1500

HIST 2230 – The Mediterranean World
An introduction to the cultures, historical developments and global interactions of the Ancient World, from the establishment of sedentary societies through the fourth century C.E. For students who entered prior to fall 2013.

HIST 2250 – The Atlantic World
An introduction to the cultures and historical developments of the major world civilizations and their global interactions from ca. 1500 C.E. to ca. 1800 C.E.

HIST 2260 – The Modern World
An introduction to the cultures and historical developments of the major world regions and their global interactions in the nineteenth, twentieth, and twenty-first centuries.

HIST 3130 – History of Rome The Days of Cicero
A study of the Roman world and its political, institutional and cultural transformations from its origins through the fifth century. The course will focus in particular on the intercultural dynamics of the Empire.

HIST 3140 – Society and Culture in the Middle Ages
An inquiry into the development of the institutional, cultural, and intellectual life of Europe from ca. 300 to ca. 1450. The course will be interdisciplinary in character.

HIST 3150 – Religion in the Middle Ages
An examination of the religious culture, institutions, and thought of medieval Europe and the Mediterranean, with particular attention to Christian, Muslim, and Jewish interaction.

HIST 3190 – Topics in Ancient and Medieval History
Intensive exploration of a particular theme within the area of Ancient and Medieval history. Emphasis on developing the requisite skills for historical inquiry.

HIST 3210 – African History I
African history from earliest times to 1880. Themes include population movements, trade, state formation, slavery, and the African response to the nineteenth century revolutions.

HIST 3220 – African History II
African history since 1880. Themes include imperialism and the partition of Africa, the establishment of colonial rule and the African response, national liberation movements, and independent Africa.

HIST 3230 – Ancient Civilization of Africa
Early civilizations of the Nile Valley; ancient Egypt; Nubia; Kush; Ajsum; civilization of North Africa; the Phoenecians; the Greeks and Romans in North Africa; the Sahara in classical antiquity; early Christian era in Africa; the historiography of the east coast; peoples and cultures of east, central, and Southern Africa.

HIST 3240 – Themes in North African History
The history of ancient peoples of the Maghrib; foreign invaders; development of the Trans-Saharan trade; international trade; the imperialist scramble; establishment of colonial rule and the struggle for independence; Northeastern Africa: Egypt, the Sudan, and Ethiopia.

HIST 3260 – Imperialism and Nationalism in Africa
Examination of the nature of European Imperialism and Nationalism in Africa with emphasis on European conquest; conquest and occupation; imperialist exploitation and domination; origins and development of nationalism; triumph of the nationalist liberation movements; legacies of colonialism, nationalism and issues of development in the post-independence era.

HIST 3290 – Topics in African History
Intensive exploration of a particular theme within the history of Africa. Emphasis on developing the requisite skills for historical inquiry.

HIST 3310 – Middle East to 1453
An inquiry into the political, cultural, religious, and institutional development of the Middle East from Constantine and the establishment of Byzantium through the rise of the Ottoman Turks.

HIST 3320 – Ottoman Empire
Examination of the complex imperial culture, politics, institutions, and intellectual life of the Ottoman Empire and its interaction with other Middle Eastern and European powers, from 1453 to 1921. The course will focus in particular on the intercultural and interreligious dynamics of the Ottoman world.

HIST 3391 – Topics in Middle Eastern History
Intensive exploration of a particular theme within the history of the Middle East. Emphasis on developing the requisite skills for historical inquiry.

HIST 3415 – The Reformation Era
An inquiry into the movements to reform the Christian Church in Western Europe in sixteenth and seventeenth centuries with special emphasis on Protestantism, Christian Humanism, and Catholic Reformation.

HIST 3421 – Scientific Revolution and Enlightenment
An inquiry into the Scientific Revolution, the Enlightenment, and the evangelical Awakening of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.

HIST 3431 – The Rise of the State 1550-1789
The sovereign national state is one of the unique developments of Western Civilization. This course will trace its development from the Wars of the Religion to the French Revolution.

HIST 3440 – Secularization in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries
This course will trace the increasingly secular character of Western society from the French Revolution to the Eve of World War I. Topics will include Darwin and Evolution, Einstein and Relativity and Marx and Communism.

HIST 3450 – Twentieth Century Germany
A study of Germany from World War I to its reunification in the 1990's, focusing on Weimar and Nazi eras.

HIST 3460 – Russia, Soviet Union, and Eastern Europe
The Russian political, social, and cultural tradition; the revolutions of 1917 and the emergence of Leninism and Stalinism; World War II, the eastern European empire, and the Cold War; stagnation under Brezhnev and reform and revolution in both eastern Europe and the Soviet Union in the Gorbachev era.

HIST 3491 – Topics in Modern European History
Intensive exploration of a particular theme within the history modern Europe. Emphasis on developing the requisite skills for historical inquiry.

HIST 3515 – The 1960's and American Culture
American social, cultural, and political history during the 1960's, including 1950's culture, popular politics, the Vietnam War, the Civil Rights Movement, Youth Protest, the Counter Culture, Multiculturalism, Feminism and Gay Activism.

HIST 3521 – Immigration and Ethnicity in United States History
Analysis of the immigration waves that have shaped the American population from the colonial era to the present, including causes of migration; shifting attitudes toward immigrants; immigration policy; economic and social adjustment of newcomers; ideologies of the Melting Pot vs. cultural pluralism.

HIST 3531 – Industrialization and Urbanization in Nineteenth Century America
America's transformation from a geographically compact agrarian republic to an urban, industrial, transcontinental empire. Topics include American nationalism, slavery, the growth of capitalism, urban poverty during the Gilded Age, popular literature and politics.

HIST 3540 – American Religious History
Covers the history of American religions from the Puritan era to the present. The focus of the course will be the history of American Christianity, but will also include the development of uniquely American and world religions. Topics include Puritanism, Evangelicalism, Revivalism and Reform, Mormonism, the Civil War, fundamentalism, Pentecostalism, Immigrant religion, Roman Catholicism, Feminism, African-American voices, and the rise of the Religious Right.

HIST 3591 – Topics in U.S. History
Intensive exploration of a particular theme within the history of the United States. Emphasis on developing the requisite skills for historical inquiry.

HIST 4000 – Department Honors in History
Honors independent study. The student produces a paper at honors level. It must be at least B quality to receive honors credit. Presentation of the paper at a Spring Honors Symposium is required.

HIST 4010 – Capstone Seminar
Capstone seminar in advanced historical research of a major integrative theme. Explicit focus on the sources of history, research methods, trends in historiography, and philosophies of history. Major paper required incorporating insights derived from the course.

HIST 4910 – Independent Study in History
Intensive independent study of a topic chosen in consultation with an instructor in the Department of History.

HIST 4970 – Internship in History
Please refer to internship requirements and guidelines in another section of this catalog

Program requirements