Undergraduate

Welcome to the Undergraduate Program in History

Social Science Research Building,	Architectural Drawing 4.University of Chicago Library, Special Collections Research Center

For decades the University of Chicago has been a leader in the study of history, through its pioneering civilizations studies programs, its intensive research-based undergraduate curriculum, and its training of academic historians as both researchers and teachers. Seminar-style instruction at the University of Chicago promotes a careful study of primary texts to provide a strong intellectual foundation for historical research.

Majoring in history will not only enable you to become a consumer of academic knowledge, it will also prepare you to become a producer of knowledge. Undergraduate history courses first train you to explore large-scale social, cultural, and political processes by defining concrete, researchable questions. Subsequently, as a history major you will be taught how to locate the primary and secondary sources necessary to posit answers to these large questions. Finally, faculty will assist you in transforming your research into elegant historical arguments that shed light on the multiple ways in which our world, our very reality, has transformed over time. History is excellent preparation for a wide field of endeavors—from law, government, and public policy to the arts and business.

History is a versatile field that accommodates various perspectives and, in keeping with the University of Chicago tradition, history students incorporate a number of other disciplines into their study. Many students complement their history course work with electives in fields such as anthropology, classics, English, languages, law, philosophy, political science, religious studies, and sociology. The University of Chicago has pioneered a curriculum of civilizations studies that promotes a careful study of primary texts to provide a strong intellectual foundation for historical research. For decades, the University of Chicago has been a leader in the study of history, pioneering the Readings in Western Civilization series, used by historians world wide.