The History major consists of 11 courses in which the curriculum is cross-cultural, transnational, and comparative, allowing students to gain a global perspective. TCNJ’s signature course, “Craft of History” explores a variety of approaches to the study of history by discovering how the interpretations, writing, and purposes of history have changed over time. We will study and apply various methods used by historians to gather information and draw conclusions. Rather than understanding history merely as “what happened” we will come to understand history as a dynamic relationship between the present and the past, in which people debate and disagree over the meanings and interpretations of historic events.
In order to develop a familiarity with different parts of the world and different moments in the past, students majoring in history must complete three 300/400 level courses covering different geographical regions and two courses in the pre-modern (pre-1500) era.
Students will also complete two Reading Seminars and a Senior Capstone. Seminars are have limited enrollments (15-18) and are taught by faculty members on topics relating to their current research. Readings Seminars involve directed readings, short papers, and oral presentations.History faculty work with students to customize their Senior Capstone seminar to study in depth topics of their choosing and to write major research papers based on both primary and secondary sources. Students may apply to undertake an Honors capstone during their senior year. Students writing an Honors capstone enroll in a special Research Seminar that emphasizes historiography and historical methods.
Every major program at the College has set standards for allowing students to remain in that program, to transfer within the College from one program to another, and to graduate from a program. The following are the standards for history programs. Minimum grades are noted in parentheses:
- Retention in the program requires a C or better in HIS 210 Craft of History.
- Transfer into the program from another program within the College requires a C or better in HIS 210 Craft of History.
- Graduation requires a GPA of 2.0, in history courses and overall, for students in History Liberal Arts (HISA). Students seeking secondary education certification (HIST) need a GPA of 3.0 overall.