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 mission of the History Department is to reflect and reinforce the disciplinary standards set by the American Historical Association by providing History majors opportunities to develop historical knowledge and the skills necessary to evaluate, interpret, and argue historical and diverse perspectives in order to inform active citizenship.
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 and Student Learning 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
History in the Professions: Pre-Law Specialization
For information contact Brian F. Carso, JD, PhD
The pre-law specialization was developed in accordance with the Association of American Law Schools, which recommends that prospective law students have a broad liberal arts background. The program provides sound preparation for the Law School Admission Test and the graduate study of law.
Additional courses required for pre-law specialization:
The courses listed above would take the place of free electives listed in the sample study plan for the history major, found in the History BA section of the catalog. Students should consult their academic advisor for the timing of these and/or a more detailed plan of study for this specialization.