History at UCI does not look like a high school survey; instead of memorizing names and dates, you learn to think critically about important issues of contemporary relevance. You can explore a wide range of subjects and skills in larger lectures and small classes featuring close interaction with outstanding scholars and teachers.
The History Department offers approximately 80 different undergraduate courses each year. A combination of lecture classes and limited-enrollment seminars, History courses cover two thousand years of human experience in Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Americas. The faculty approach these areas from a variety of disciplinary perspectives: Cultural, Economic, Environmental, Ethnic, Gender, Intellectual, Labor, Political, Social, and Urban history. Majors can opt to carry out advanced research projects or apply their skills of historical analysis in real-world settings through the department’s yearly Advanced Research Seminar or History Internship program.
The study of History teaches different ways to think critically about the past, present and future of the world. The department welcomes incoming freshmen as majors but also actively encourages other students to join the department. Transfer students have found UCI’s history department a welcome home. Transfer students benefit from course transfer arrangements with community colleges and the department’s enrollment preferences for in-coming transfer students. Pairing a UCI degree in science, engineering, or social sciences with a major or minor in history can lead to a variety of employment and graduate school opportunities. The student-run History Club welcomes all undergraduates interested in history.
Some of our graduates have gone on to pursue advanced degrees in History at the nation’s top programs. Others have undertaken graduate work in other academic fields in the Humanities, or gone on to careers in fields such as law or business. A Los Angeles Times op-ed piece in May 2016 notes that “the study of History opens a variety of career paths, and teaches the nuanced analytical skills that will be in demand throughout careers undertaken in the first half of the twenty-first century.” Those interested in post-undergraduate opportunities for History students should consult Careers for History Majors, a web site compiled by the American Historical Association.