History Major - Undergraduate Degree Program | Briar Cliff University

History Program

Degree Type: Bachelor of Arts
Program(s) Offered: Major (History or History Law-Track), Minor, Teaching Endorsement

History is trillions of different threads just waiting to be unraveled, each one connecting our past and present to what’s ahead. Exploring history at Briar Cliff is an adventure; one that will make you stand out in the career you decide to pursue: as a lawyer, writer, librarian, teacher, businessperson — or even as a politician. Along the way, you'll uncover and discover things you never knew about humankind — and yourself!

What's your history passion?

The Medieval Renaissance. The Civil Rights Movement. Rock N’ Roll. Whichever niche of history fascinates you, immerse yourself in it, search for clues, build your thesis, then give us your take. It's all part of the senior capstone project — your chance to slice off your own piece of history and examine it through a lens no one else ever has!

Along the way, you’ll find a home base for research in the Bishop Mueller Library, brimming with more than 100,000 print and electronic resources. You’ll also get on a first-name basis with our renowned and published faculty, including a Fulbright Scholar and Charles H. Watts Memorial Fellow.

Land a hands-on internship.

Each year, the Sioux City Public Museum offers a paid internship in museum studies to a BCU history major. It’s a chance to be trained in historical preservation, archival management and museum instruction — and, you’ll get class credit for it! Other history majors intern at local law offices or work at city libraries.

See the world.

There’s no better way to get a grasp of world history than to see where it happened for yourself. Each year, history majors have the chance to embark on historical travel opportunities in the U.S. and abroad. We’ve journeyed to London, Paris, Rome, Munich, the Swiss Alps — sometimes, all in the same trip! 

Interested in teaching?

Pick up a history teaching endorsement, and turn your passion for history and social studies into a student teaching opportunity in an elementary or high school classroom.

Interested in law?

Due to its emphasis on critical thinking, writing, and speaking skills, History is a popular major for students pursuing a career in law. For those who also seek targeted coursework in legal studies, the department offers a History-Law track designed specifically for those who intend to apply for law school.

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History Program Courses

HIST 110 - An Introduction to World Civilizations

This survey will study the various patterns of world civilizations, beginning with ancient societies. The course will focus mainly on their social and cultural influences, trans-cultural interactions, and the impact of these societies on the present. Read more »

HIST 113 - Western Civilization I

This survey traces the origins of important movements in early Western Civilization from the Greeks to the Romans, developments in Judaism and Christianity and feudal Europe up to the Renaissance and Reformation. Read more »

HIST 114 - Western Civilization II

This survey traces the origins of important movements in early Western Civilization from the Scientific Revolution and Age of Absolutism through French Revolution, Napoleonic Wars, and German unification to World War I. Read more »

HIST 203 - Historical Inquiry

Historical Inquiry is for students considering a major or minor in history or related field. The main purpose of the course is to investigate what it means to be a historian. This course explores the nature, uses, and methodologies of historical inquiry as well as the various career options available for those interested in History. Read more »

HIST 231 - American History to 1877

A survey of the history of the American people from the colonial period to the end of the Civil War. Read more »

HIST 232 - U.S. History Since 1877

A survey of the history of the American people from the South's reconstruction to the present. Read more »

HIST 337 - Twentieth Century World History

This survey seeks to find the causes and effects of current world problems and crises. Special emphasis will be placed on countries and events that are focal points in world affairs today. These include the nation-state and minorities, radical communist, fascists, and religious ideologies, de-colonization, modernization and Westernization. Read more »

HIST 351 - Studies in American History I

This course explores great issues/themes in American history from European discovery to the outbreak of the Civil War (e.g. Puritanism, the American Revolution, slavery). The course teaches students to understand these issues/themes within the broader historical context of the era as well as develop their written and verbal skills. Read more »

HIST 352 - Studies in American History II

The course explores great issues/themes in American history from the Civil War through the onset of the Great Depression (e.g. The Frontier West, Progressivism, The Roaring 1920s). The course places each issue/theme within a broader historical context and encourages students to develop written and verbal skills. Read more »

HIST 353 - Studies in American History III

This course explores great issues/themes in American history from the Great Depression through the present (e.g. World War II, the Cold War, the Civil Rights Movement, etc.). The course places these issues/themes within the broader historical context and works to develop students' written and verbal skills. Read more »

HIST 470 - Senior Thesis

The senior thesis represents the "capstone" of the history degree, the last step in a student's undergraduate education at Briar Cliff. In the course of the seminar, you will select a topic, organize a bibliography, conduct research and write a thesis. Read more »

WRTG 159 - Contemporary Argument and Research

In this class, students will explore current events and discuss their own reasoned perspectives on contemporary issues. Read more »

Additional Program Requirements

 For additional requirements and curriculum information, download the latest University academic catalog.

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