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Salem, Massachusetts, home to world-renowned museums, cultural institutions, archives, and diverse architecture, is an ideal setting to study the connections between local and world history. The department takes a global approach to studying the past while making links to the city’s rich maritime history and local institutions such as the Peabody Essex Museum, the House of the Seven Gables, and the Salem Witch House.

History is a dynamic course of study that trains students to be inventive and capable thinkers, researchers, writers, and communicators. History students conduct research, analyze data, identify reliable and untrustworthy sources of information, write reports, articulate policy positions, and explain the depths of contemporary problems by pointing to their foundational histories. These skills equip them to excel in education, law, museum work, government, business, and public policy. 

Areas of concentration include public history, pre-legal/business history, history education, and Holocaust and Genocide Studies. Faculty experts offer a breadth of courses in United States, Latin American, European, African, and Asian history in the ancient, medieval and modern periods.

Degree Programs

  • History

    BA
    Undergraduate

    Majoring in history will enable you to study the past while preparing for the future. History, which illuminates both the diversity and commonality of human experience over time and places, is essential to understanding the forces that have produced our world and that continue to shape its development. Our faculty and advisors will work closely with you to tailor your education to your interests and goals so that you can both take full advantage of the History Department’s rich and extensive course offerings and succeed academically within your degree program.  In the process of studying history, you will acquire valuable skills that will prepare you for a variety of careers.

  • History, Middle/High School Teacher Prep

    BA/M.Ed
    Combined Undergraduate + Graduate

    If you see yourself as a middle or high school history teacher, the dual degree 4+1 program is the way to get there. Major in history and minor in education to reach your teaching goals.

    Apply now
  • History

    Minor
    Undergraduate

    Students who elect to minor in history take 15-18 hours in history courses. The extensive range of elective courses offered by the department enables each student to develop a plan of study that reflects personal interests and goals. Each student will be assigned a departmental faculty advisor, as needed.

  • Applied History, Pre-Legal/Business

    Concentration
    Undergraduate

    The history major is well trained in conducting research, weighing evidence, processing information, crunching data, writing policy reports, and making oral presentations. Students interested in law school, business, or public policy can focus on these skills by taking a selection of courses in legal and business history. Internships available.

  • Applied History, Public History

    Concentration
    Undergraduate

    Taking history out of the classroom and into public discourse, public history teaches students how to be collaborative practicing researchers, interpreters of historical sites, and presenters of a living history. Students will have the opportunity to develop skill sets in the following areas: collecting and curating materials; creating and interpreting cultural heritage sites, events, and memorials; and contributing historical evidence to the design and production of cultural exhibits. Internships available.

  • European History

    Concentration
    Undergraduate

    This concentration offers students the opportunity to develop a specialization in European history. The department offers a breadth of courses in ancient, medieval and modern Europe, including classes in holocaust and genocide studies. The history department has faculty expertise in in Greece, Rome, Byzantium, Germany, France, England, Ireland, Russia, and the Balkans.

  • United States History

    Concentration
    Undergraduate

    This concentration offers students the opportunity to develop a specialization in United States history. The department offers a breadth of courses in U.S. History, including Colonial America, The American Revolution, The Civil War, the Gilded Age and the Progressive Era, the Great Depression and the New Deal, the World Wars, The Vietnam War, Women’s History, African American History and the 1960s.

  • Africa, Asia, and Latin America

    Concentration
    Undergraduate

    This concentration offers students the opportunity to specialize in global studies beyond United States and European history. The department offers courses on the history of China, Japan, India and Pakistan, Latin America and the Caribbean, Ancient and Modern Africa, and transnational courses on colonialism, global politics, trade, and the environment.

  • History

    MA
    Graduate

    The master of arts in history provides students with the opportunity to explore a wide range of historical fields and methodologies. After fulfilling the requirements in the major geographical areas of historical study, students may concentrate in more specific regional and chronological fields. Given Salem’s prominent role in English settlement and colonization, the China Trade, and industrialization, as well as the ongoing legacy of the Witch Trials of 1692, our region provides abundant resources to support research in every period of the American past.

    Learn more about the MA in History.

  • History, Middle/High School Teacher Prep

    MAT
    Graduate

    The master of arts in teaching history is designed for liberal arts graduates who wish to begin preparation for teaching history at the secondary level or practicing teachers who desire to expand their understanding of the educational process while increasing their formal education in history.

  • Public History

    Certificate
    Graduate

    Taking history out of the classroom and into public discourse, the graduate certificate in public history teaches students how to be collaborative practicing researchers, interpreters of historical sites, and presenters of a living history. Students will have the opportunity to develop skill sets in the following areas: collecting and curating materials; creating and interpreting cultural heritage sites, events, and memorials; and contributing historical evidence to the design and production of cultural exhibits.

    Learn more about the Certificate in Public History.

  • Holocaust and Genocide Studies

    Certificate
    Graduate

    Grounded in a deep commitment to cutting-edge research and pedagogy of human rights, the graduate certificate in holocaust and genocide Studies offers students with a unique opportunity to explore graduate level scholarship in the growing field of Holocaust and comparative genocide studies. This program encompasses multiple learning opportunities including intensive seminars with leading scholars in the field, community-based work with survivors and refugees in the US and abroad, international study and travel institutes, and research and internship opportunities through affiliation with the Salem State Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies

News, Events and Programs

Title

Contact Us

Andrew Darien, PhD, department chair
Bethany Jay, PhD, graduate program coordinator
Brad Austin, PhD, secondary education coordinator
Analee Solis, department administrator

view the history directory

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