Types of History Majors & Programs Available in College

The Types of History Majors & Programs Available in College

History majors are quite popular and more popular than you might think. Every year, more than 32,000 history degrees are awarded in the United States alone. A history major is based on the study of the past that includes the collection, recording, and analysis of both evidence and theories about past events. Students take courses in historical research methods, studies of specific periods, historiography, and others.

But, of course, history majors and programs are not homogeneous. There are different types of these programs, and you may want to review them carefully before committing yourself to any of them. We review these different types for you to have a better idea of the differences and pros and cons. Keep reading to find out more.

Associate’s Degree in History

It takes two years to complete the Associate’s Degree in History program. This program covers U.S. history, including all the political, socio-economic, cultural, and other factors that have shaped the historical context and development. Students learn how to analyze and interpret historical texts and data. All major events, such as the world wars, American military history, the Civil War, and others, are covered.

Class-based lectures are combined with individual and group projects. Capstone projects are also included. With this degree, you can expect to find a job as a research assistant or archivist.

Bachelor’s Degree in History

Bachelor’s takes up to four years to complete. There are two types of Bachelor’s programs, the Bachelor of Arts in History and the Bachelor of Science. The former is rooted in liberal arts and humanities, while the latter focuses on analyzing the past. 

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The degree program covers the usual subjects. Tutors can add some specialized courses too. Most colleges have internship and professional development opportunities. Graduates can expect to work as curators, records managers, or document editors.

Master’s Degree in History

Master’s Degree in History is a two-year program. It offers more nuanced and higher-level methodologies in historical research. Students must be well-versed in the analysis and interpretation of historical evidence and research materials. You should expect lots of writing assignments.

In addition to the expected themes and events, the curriculum also covers religious history, historiography, and other topics. Graduates go on to pursue doctoral studies or take up the jobs of teacher, librarian, museum administrator, and the like.

Doctorate Degree in History

Doctoral studies can take between 5 and 9 years. The degree program requires original research skills and the ability to take on long-term academic projects. Clearly, the program requires advanced writing and analytical skills. 

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Students are expected to find and read a lot of profile literature, analyze it, and incorporate findings into their own dissertations. You should also be prepared for a long and tiring academic journey, which may include lots of ups and downs. When complete, the degree can get you the job of a historian, consultant, or interpreter of historical manuscripts.

Certificate in History

The duration of the program varies, depending on program credits. The certificate programs can be undergraduate or graduate, and both are based on general overviews of historical topics. Unlike the others, this is also the most flexible program, letting students pursue their own interests. 

This means they can choose the subjects of their liking. Often, the certificate program is undertaken by teachers who want to upgrade their qualifications. Graduates go on to work as writers, editors, or corporate historians.

Final Thoughts

History majors and programs are quite popular these days. There are different types of history majors students can take depending on their academic status, education level, and long-term aspirations. The degree and certificate programs are designed to cater to the needs of history students seeking different objectives. Once you are clear about what your long-term goals are, you can select one of the reviewed programs to advance your objectives.

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Mark Wooten is an experienced writer and education specialist. He enjoys reviewing a broad range of college programs and majors and sharing the summary of his reviews online. Mark’s objective reviews and helpful tips are popular among high school and college students. They enjoy his articles for their objectivity, rigour, and crisp analysis.

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