College of Arts and Sciences
Degree BA, History
Department Chair Christopher A. Stevens, PhD
Allan W. Austin, Professor of History and Government, BA, MA Bowling Green State University; PhD University of Cincinnati
Jennifer M. Black, Assistant Professor of History and Government, BA, MA Western Michigan University; PhD University of Southern California
Brian F. Carso, Jr., Associate Professor of History and Government, BA, MA University of Rochester; JD State University of NY at Buffalo, School of Law; PhD Boston University
Donald O. Fries, Professor Emeritus of History and Government, BA, MA, University of Michigan; PhD Michigan State University
Thomas Hajkowski, Associate Professor of History and Government, BA Seton Hall University; MA Villanova University, PhD Northwestern University
Louis Maganzin, Professor Emeritus of History and Government, BA St. Bonaventure; MA, PhD Georgetown University
Rebecca Padot, Assistant Professor of History and Government, BA Eastern University; MGA, MPA Fels Institute of Government, University of Pennsylvania; MA , PhD University of Pennsylvania
Christopher A. Stevens, Associate Professor of History and Government, BA University of Massachusetts-Amherst; MA University of Delaware; PhD Brandeis University
David C. Wright, Jr., Professor of History and Government, BA Kenyon College; MA, PhD University of Wisconsin-Madison
The History major at Misericordia University is based on the disciplinary standards set by the American Historical Association, which states that:
“History is the study of the human past as it is constructed and interpreted with human artifacts, written evidence, and oral traditions. It requires empathy for historical actors, respect for interpretive debate, and the skillful use of an evolving set of practices and tools.
As an inquiry into human experience, history demands that we consider the diversity of human experience across time and place.
As a public pursuit, history requires effective communication to make the past accessible; it informs and preserves collective memory; it is essential to active citizenship.
As a discipline, history requires a deliberative stance towards the past; the sophisticated use of information, evidence, and argumentation; and the ability to identify and explain continuity and change over time. Its professional ethics and standards demand peer review, citation, and acceptance of the provisional nature of knowledge.”
Incoming first-year students seeking admission as history majors must meet the general and specific admissions requirements of the university as stated in this catalog. In cases where the student does not fully meet them, a personal interview is required.
Continuation as a history major requires that the student maintain a minimum of a 2.0 or “C” average in the major and a similar total grade point average. A student on academic probation for two consecutive semesters will be dismissed from the major.
Transfer students must complete all the history requirements as listed in the sequence of courses in this catalog.
Internships for history majors are encouraged. Majors who desire to pursue internships must receive prior approval of the department chair and the advisor.
To receive a recommendation for graduate study or law school, the student must maintain the minimum of a “B” in the major, specialization, and total grade point average.
Program Goals and Outcomes
- Develop historical knowledge.
- Recognize and explain historical processes, continuity, and change.
- Develop a body of historical knowledge with breadth of time and place—as well as depth of detail—in order to discern context.
- Examine global communities and cultures, and their interaction in history.
- Evaluate and employ historical methods.
- Recognize history as an interpretive account of the human past—one that historians create in the present from surviving evidence.
- Collect, question, organize, synthesize, and interpret a variety of historical sources.
- Practice ethical historical inquiry through proper acknowledgement of sources.
- Recognize the provisional nature of historical knowledge
- Describe past events from multiple perspectives.
- Identify, summarize, appraise, and synthesize other scholars’ historical arguments.
- Evaluate historical arguments, explaining how they were constructed and might be improved.
- Create historical arguments and narratives.
- Generate substantive, open-ended questions about the past and employ research strategies to answer them.
- Craft well-supported historical narratives, arguments, and reports of research findings.
- Synthesize research with existing narratives, making an original argument.
- Use historical perspective to inform active citizenship
- Historicize contemporary issues by correlating them to the past.
- Practice civil discourse and respect for diverse perspectives.
All history majors are required to complete the following courses:
Advanced U.S. History Electives
Advanced European History Electives
Advanced Non-Western History Electives
Secondary Education Citizenship Certification
Please also refer to Teacher Education Programs section for other important information.
The secondary education program in History (HIS/SECED) is designed to prepare teachers of history and the other social studies for Grades 7-12. The program emphasizes studies in history with a number of courses in political science, geography, sociology, and anthropology. A unique aspect of the HIS/SECED program is that it prepares teachers to effectively deal with students with disabilities who are likely to be included in their classes. It is approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education and leads to a PA Instructional I certificate. The University’s recommendation and the successful completion of other requirements established by the state, including meeting the pass scores specified by PDE on the required battery of certification tests, qualify graduates for a PA Instructional I certificate. Pennsylvania has signed an Interstate Agreement through the National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification which facilitates certification in other states. States’ requirements vary; graduates should determine what they have to do to become certified in a state other than Pennsylvania.
Pre-service teachers in the HIS/SECED program must successfully complete the University’s liberal arts Core Curriculum, a content major in History, and series of Teacher Education Department courses. HIS/SECED majors must satisfactorily complete a series of field/practicum experiences that begin during the first year and continue every semester until graduation. By graduation, our pre-service teachers will have spent approximately 750 hours in community classrooms. During students’ final semester, they must complete two seven-week student teaching assignments (two separate placements).
Students in the History/Secondary Education have two academic advisors. The TED advisor is responsible for advising related to Education courses and field/practicum experiences. The content area advisor is responsible for advising related to the University Core and content major requirements. Each semester, students must meet with both advisors prior to registration to facilitate course selection and receive approval to register. The student is ultimately responsible for the selection and registration of courses.
The Secondary Education Program in Citizenship is designed to prepare students to become secondary school social studies teachers, including equipping them with the skills to identify and assist students with learning disabilities. The emphasis is on history, along with a number of courses in political science, geography, sociology, anthropology, and economics. This program has been continually refined to keep pace with developments in the field of education. Fully approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, this program leads to a teaching certificate valid in Pennsylvania (grades 7–12) and transferable to many other states.