Degree Specification Profile for the BA in History, Georgia State University

Institution: Georgia State University

Location: Atlanta, GA

Tuner: Denis Gainty

Year: 2014

Degree Name: Bachelor of Arts in History

Purpose of the Degree

Graduates of Georgia State's history programs will have the ability to analyze conflicting information and viewpoints, write clearly and communicate ideas, find reliable evidence for judgments about human actions and motives, and place particular events in a wider context or historical pattern.

Career Pathways for the Graduate

As a student in the History Department you will become familiar with a large body of historical knowledge and through this understand current society all the better. You will also gain valuable skills as a reader, discussant, writer and researcher. Because the program focuses on analytic and critical thinking, a history major will especially prepare you for a profession or further studies in education, international studies, journalism, law, politics and public policy, just to name a few.

Educational Style

Lectures and seminars, with internship and study abroad programs.

Program Competencies and Outcomes

Lower Division:

Standard One: Historical Mindedness. The student demonstrates (1) an understanding of history from a humanistic and world perspective, including an awareness of both individuals and social groups as creators of history; (2) an appreciation of the varieties of political, geographical, and cultural regions of the world; (3) a comprehension of the relationship over time between causes and consequences, change and continuity, and structure and agency in the past.

Standard Two: Multidimensional Analysis. The student demonstrates an awareness of various dimensions of history--political, social, economic, and cultural--and is able to incorporate aspects of ethnicity, gender, race, and class in the explication of these dimensions.

Standard Three: Historical Context. The student has mastered a body of knowledge in American and world history sufficiently to be able (1) to read, comprehend, recall, and discuss historical interpretation and data, and (2) to place events and the interpretation of those events in an appropriate temporal and spatial context, including a meaningful chronological order and within a larger scheme of historical evolution and appreciation of historical epochs. The body of knowledge includes such themes as demographic change and migration, social organization and change, economic organization and change, technological advance, the rise of world religions, urbanization, political evolution and state formation, intellectual and ideological development, cultural evolution and cross-cultural contact, imperialism and post colonialism, and globalization.

Standard Four: Texts. Student understands the problems of interpretation associated with the use of primary and secondary sources and are able to identify and document sources in their analyses.

Standard Five: Presentation. Student demonstrates the ability to create, organize, and support in written form an historical thesis or argument and to engage actively in group discussions which deal with issues in the field of history.

Upper Division:

Standard Six: Professional Skills. Student is able to use effectively such resources as the library, archives, and oral interviews. He/she demonstrates computer skills appropriate to the discipline. Student is able to evaluate the relative worth of different types of evidence-- (textual, material, media, oral, quantitative and statistical, and visual); to exchange information and ideas and present arguments persuasively; to evaluate and critique different historical perspectives and explanations within a conversational setting; to listen to and learn from others; and to write clearly, economically, imaginatively and persuasively about historical facts, issues, and interpretations. He/she is able to document sources properly.

Standard Seven: Historiography. The student, knowing that history is the interpretation of data, can demonstrate awareness of conflicting interpretations of the same data.

Standard Eight: Interdisciplinary Awareness. The student knows how to appreciate, critique, and use material from other fields such as geography, economics, history of art, literature, psychology, philosophy, statistics, dependant upon their area of specialization.

Standard Nine: Comparative/Global/Transnational Perspective. The student is able to compare historical developments/problems across cultural/geographical boundaries, appreciating how temporal, cultural, and spatial dimensions effect historical responses.

Standard Ten: Professional Values. Student is able to employ methods of historical research and modes of historical discourse that emphasize high standards of fidelity to evidence, tolerance of alternative approaches to obtaining, interpreting, and applying historical knowledge, and an appreciation and articulation of the indebtedness historians have to the work of others.