Strengthen your research and writing skills; learn to think critically; and prepare for a future in politics, law, journalism, or education by pursuing a bachelor's degree in history.
Like other liberal arts degrees, a Bachelor of Arts in history from University of Maryland Global Campus offers a solid base of critical thinking on which to build a career or further graduate study.
As one of the very first schools to offer an online degree program in history, UMGC brings you nearly two decades of experience in teaching history in an online environment. Plus, if you're based in the Washington, D.C., area, you'll have myriad opportunities to find internships and part-time and full-time jobs in the field at public and federal institutions. Our alumni have gone on to work for such agencies as the National Archives and the National Park Service.
These program requirements are for students who enroll in the 2019–2020 academic year. For prior year academic requirements, visit the catalog archive in the Current Students section.
This program is also available as a minor.
Students who complete this program may be eligible to reduce their total coursework for the Master of Arts in Teaching by 12 credits.
About the History Bachelor's Degree
In the history curriculum, you can study a range of historical eras and geographical areas, including China, the Middle East, wartime Europe, and the United States. You'll also dig into research and writing, learning how to lay the groundwork for and eventually complete a substantial original historical research project suitable for presentation or publication.
What You'll Learn
Through your coursework, you will learn how to
- Research, interpret, and present historical knowledge
- Write and speak clearly and appropriately about historical information for diverse audiences
- Engage in history as a moral and ethical practice, recognizing a wide range of backgrounds and perspectives
- Apply historical precedents to contemporary life and develop self-reflection
- Achieve a deep understanding of the different peoples, events, and cultures that have shaped human civilization
In past projects, students have had the opportunity to
- Interpret current events and ideas in a historical context
- Focus on the ways in which race, class, ethnicity, and gender have shaped the varied experiences of U.S. citizens
- Examine the art, religion, and literature of civilizations of various time periods and locations
- Study World War II and other major conflicts from a variety of perspectives
- Research, write about, and present the results of a project on a chosen topic
History Bachelor's Degree Requirements
Our curriculum is designed with input from employers, industry experts, and scholars. You'll learn theories combined with real-world applications and practical skills you can apply on the job right away.
Courses in the Major
This program requires 33 credits of coursework in the major.
- HIST 115 or HIST 141
- HIST 116 or HIST 142
- HIST 156
- HIST 157
- HIST 289
- HIST 309
- HIST 495
- Upper-level HIST courses (12 credits): Focused study in either U.S. history or world history recommended; see Degree Focus tab
Choose from one of these recommended groups of classes or mix and match to align with your career goals and interests.
U.S. History Focus
- HIST 316L
- HIST 365
- HIST 377
- HIST 461
World History Focus
- HIST 326
- HIST 337
- HIST 392
- HIST 480
This program requires 46 credits of minor and/or elective coursework. We recommend EDTP 500 and EDTP 535 if you are qualified to take those courses and are planning to enter the Master of Arts in Teaching program. Note the prerequisites for these courses and contact an advisor before registering.
General Education Requirements
This program requires 41 credits of general education coursework.
Research and Computing Literacy
- PACE 111C or other PACE 111 course
(to be taken in first 6 credits)
- LIBS 150, CAPL 398A, or other general education elective
- CMST 301 or another computing course appropriate to the major
- WRTG 111 or other writing course
- WRTG 112
- SPCH 100 or other communication, writing, or speech course
- WRTG 391 or other advanced upper-level writing course
- MATH 105 or other approved math or statistics course
Arts and Humanities
- HIST 125 or other arts and humanities course
- HUMN 100 or other arts and humanities course
Behavioral and Social Sciences
- ECON 103 or other behavioral and social sciences course
- BEHS 103 or other behavioral and social sciences course
Biological and Physical Sciences
- One of the following pairs of lecture and laboratory courses in the same session:
- BIOL 101 and BIOL 102
- NSCI 100 and NSCI 101
- Other paired science lecture and laboratory courses taken in the same session
- GEOL 100 or other science lecture course
Since some recommended courses fulfill more than one requirement, substituting courses for those listed may require you to take additional courses to meet degree requirements. Consult an advisor whenever taking advantage of other options. Please also see more information on alternate courses (where allowable) to fulfill general education requirements.
Overall Bachelor's Degree Requirements
In addition to the general education requirements and the major, minor, and elective requirements, the overall requirements listed below apply to all bachelor's degrees.
- You must complete a minimum of 120 credits.
- You must maintain a minimum grade point average of 2.0 overall and a minimum grade of C for any class applied to the academic major or minor.
- Within the 120 credits required, the following coursework must be taken through UMGC:
- 30 credits (normally the final 30)
- Half of the required number of credits within both the major and the minor
- 15 credits at the upper level (earned in classes numbered 300 to 499), preferably within the major or minor
- At least 45 credits must be upper level and include at least half of the credits required for the major. The remaining upper-level credits can be earned in any part of the curriculum.
- At least half the required number of credits for any academic major or minor must be earned through graded coursework. Credit earned by examination, portfolio assessment, or noncollegiate training does not count as graded coursework.
Double majors: You can earn a dual major upon completion of all requirements for both majors, including the required minimum number of credits for each major and all related requirements for both majors. The same class cannot be used to fulfill requirements for more than one major. Certain restrictions (including use of credit and acceptable combinations of majors) apply for double majors. You cannot major in two programs with excessive overlap of required coursework. Contact an admissions advisor before selecting a double major.
Second bachelor's degree: To earn a second bachelor's degree, you must complete at least 30 credits through UMGC after completing the first degree. The combined credit in both degrees must add up to at least 150 credits. You must complete all requirements for the major. All prerequisites apply. If any of these requirements were satisfied in the previous degree, the remainder necessary to complete the minimum 30 credits of new classes should be satisfied with classes related to your major. You may not earn a second bachelor's degree in general studies and may not obtain a second associate's degree within the second bachelor's degree. Contact an admissions advisor before pursuing a second bachelor's degree.
Electives: Electives can be taken in any academic discipline. No more than 21 credits can consist of vocational or technical credit. Pass/fail credit, up to a maximum of 18 credits, can be applied toward electives only.
This program is designed to help prepare you for a future in politics, law, journalism, or education. It is appropriate for you if you have an interest in teaching history or social studies; working in public history archives, historic sites, museums, and galleries; or pursuing graduate-level study in history or law and public policy.
Student Clubs and Organizations
Type: Student organization
Available To: Undergraduate and Graduate
The History Student Society brings together students, alumni, faculty, and staff who have a shared interest in history and provides them with a space to exchange ideas, plan and host activities, and help fellow members advance into the field.
Type: Honor society
Available To: Undergraduate
Phi Alpha Theta is a nationally recognized honor society that brings together students and faculty who are interested in the field of history.
Type: Honor society
Available To: Undergraduate
Pi Gamma Mu is the international honor society that recognizes outstanding scholarship in the social sciences at UMGC. Students interested in anthropology, criminal justice, economics, gerontology, history, political science, social psychology, sociology, and women's studies may qualify for membership. The society recently named UMGC's Maryland Theta chapter to its Roll of Distinction, the highest honor that the society grants.
About the Faculty
Our world-class faculty members combine academic credentials with a wealth of experience in the field.
Our faculty work or have worked at organizations including
- Public and nonprofit historical agencies
- History Associates consulting firm