Majors and Minors
Amy Leonard, Director of Undergraduate Studies
What are the major requirements?
In order for History majors to develop both breadth and depth in their historical knowledge, they take at least four classes in any one world region of their choice, and at least three classes in the history of other parts of the world. Moreover, History majors take at least three seminar classes (numbered 300-499) which allow them to deepen their knowledge of particular areas and themes, and to improve their ability to formulate research questions and to write substantive papers. All our seminar classes count also for the College’s Integrated Writing requirement for History majors. Please see detailed guidelines on the major.
How do I declare a history major?
To declare the major, you must first meet with the Director of Undergraduate Studies (Professor Amy Leonard). Once you have gone over the requirements and chosen a faculty advisor, you can fill out the change of program form to finish the process.
What is the role of the major advisor?
Once you declare a major, the main practical difference is that your course requests for future semesters will need approval from your major advisor before they go to the College deans. Your advisor can of course also provide advice on course choices, plans of study, study abroad, post-graduation options, etc. The Director of Undergraduate Studies is also a good reference for advice on all these issues.
How does the University’s “Integrated Writing” requirement work within the History major?
All our 300-499 courses are in seminar format, and feature intense class discussion and substantial reading and writing assignments, and as such they will allow students to deepen their understanding both of particular world regions and historical eras, and of the discipline of history as a whole. In particular, these courses will help hone students’ research and writing skills: in a variety of assignment formats, students will develop their own research questions, seek and describe relevant evidence (textual and otherwise), engage the work of other scholars, and improve their skill in articulating and presenting their own arguments. History majors are required to take three of these courses and thus will repeatedly encounter and practice various forms of historical writing and develop their own voice as historically-conscious analytical writers. Therefore, all History courses numbered at 300-499 fulfill the College’s requirement for one “Integrated Writing” course in each student’s major.
Can I get credit for courses taken abroad?
Yes. The major allows up to four courses to be transferred, from abroad or from other universities, both in summer and semester programs. Usually, you will need a syllabus for the course or courses you took away from Georgetown to petition to receive credit toward the major. Please consult the Director of Undergraduate Studies for further information.
Is it possible to combine History with other disciplines?
Yes. It is easy to combine the History major with another major, or with two minor, or with a certificate in area studies or other fields. While College rules prevent students from double-counting elective courses, the major leaves plenty of space in students’ schedule that combining History with other disciplines is perfectly manageable, and indeed many of our majors complete a second major. Please consult your advisor, your dean, or the Director of Undergraduate Studies for advice.
Can I get credit for an internship?
Yes, under specific parameters, which you can see here.
Is there an Honors Program?
Yes! Learn more about our Honors Program here.
Is there a History Minor?
The History Minor consists of 18 credits. At least three credits (one course) must be numbered 300 or above and no more than six credits (two courses) may be from the 001-099 level.
You can declare the minor by filling out a change of program form; you do not need approval from the DUS.
What research opportunities are available to History major?
Research is present in all our courses, from our introductory courses to our Honors program. We aim to help all our students develop their research skills: formulating their own analytical questions, locating and describing relevant sources, and articulating their own original arguments. In most of our courses, students also engage critically with the work of other scholars. In our upper-level courses, and especially in our Honors program, students develop substantial individual research projects. Many of our Faculty work with History majors through GUROP (Georgetown Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program); some of our majors also develop individual research projects for which they have obtained Raines or Kalorama Fellowships (at times, these projects have then formed the basis for Senior Honors theses).
From whom can I request more information about the History major and minor?
All faculty members in the Department will be happy to talk with you about the major in history. The Director of Undergraduate Studies, Professor Amy Leonard, coordinates the major program as a whole. Her office is 612 in ICC and she welcomes all visitors. Click here to make an appointment.
You may also contact a current History major: