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Major Requirements

Specific Requirements for All History Majors

Minimum Credits
Residency Requirements
HIST 290, Historian’s Craft
Field Requirements
Research Paper (HIST 407)
Language Requirements
Minimum GPA
Advising and Declaring History Major

Checklist

This printable requirements checklist is available to help students to track their progress towards a history degree.


Minimum Credits

Note: New undergraduate requirements became effective fall term 2021

Requirements for majors declared fall 2021 or later:

  • 49 total graded credits in history courses, all for letter grades
  • 33 of these must be in upper-division courses (300- or 400-level)
  • 21 of the upper-division credits but must be in 400-level courses, including HIST 407
  • HIST 407 research seminar is a required course
  • No more than 8 credits may be in HIST 405 (Reading and Conference)
  • HIST 290 is a required course. This should be taken early in the major but is not intended for first-year students. See below.

Lower-division courses should include HIST 290 (Historian’s Craft) and three 100- or 200-level courses at four credits each. A standard plan of upper-division courses would include three 300-level courses, each worth four credits; a minimum of four 400-level courses, each worth four credits; and one HIST 407 research seminar worth five credits.

Majors Declared Prior to Fall 2021

Minimum Requirements:

  • 45 graded credits in history courses, all for letter grades
  • 33 of these must be in upper-division courses (300- or 400-level)
  • 21 of these must be in 400-level courses
  • No more than 8 credits may be in HIST 405 (Reading and Conference)
  • Recommended—HIST 290 (Historian’s Craft), which should be taken early in the major but is not intended for first-year students. See below.

A standard plan of three lower-division courses (which could include HIST 290) and two or three 100- or 200-level courses at four credits each. A standard plan of upper-division courses would include three 300-level courses, each worth four credits; a minimum of four 400-level courses, each worth 4 credits; and one 407 research seminar worth 5 credits.


Residency Requirements

The following course requirements must be completed at the University of Oregon:

  • 21 credits in upper-division courses, including at least three courses numbered 408–499.
  • All courses taken to fulfill the research paper requirement

Courses in UO-sponsored study abroad programs do count toward residency requirements. Courses in non-UO-sponsored study abroad programs do not count toward residency requirements.


HIST 290, Historian’s Craft

HIST 290 is a required course, intended to introduce majors to the kinds of historical reasoning, research, and writing skills that will help them succeed in advanced history courses. It is intended to be taken fairly early in the major, before students have accumulated a lot of upper-division coursework. However, it is not intended for first-year students. Students will get the most out of HIST 290 if they have already experienced two or three history courses below the 400 level at UO. HIST 290 counts as a lower-division course.


Field Requirements

  • 8 upper-division credits in pre-1800 history. See the list of courses meeting this requirement.
  • 8 upper-division credits each in three fields selected from the following list:

Africa and Middle East
Asia
Europe
Latin America
United States
World

Courses taken to fulfill the pre-1800 requirement may be double-counted toward the field requirement.


Research Paper (HIST 407)

All history majors are required to write a research paper in a HIST 407 seminar course.

Instructor approval is required before enrolling in a HIST 407 seminar. Students should email the instructor one term prior to when the course is offered, expressing their interest in the class and describing any previous coursework or background related to the course. Please seek approval for only one seminar, rather than getting added to multiple approval lists.

Students should plan ahead to find a seminar aligned with their interests and to secure a seat in the class. Consulting with department advisors in advance is strongly recommended.

Multiple seminar courses on various topics are offered in fall, winter, and spring terms. Seminars are not offered in summer. See the Courses webpage for a tentative list of forthcoming seminars. A list of past HIST 407 seminars is also available with sample syllabi to provide example of possible topics and expected workload. Note that, for any given topic, there is no guarantee that the same course will be offered again.

In exceptional circumstances, a term paper written in a HIST 408 colloquium or a 400-level course may be expanded into a research paper. Prior approval is required. Students seeking this alternative option must contact department advisors.


Language Requirement

All history majors must complete two years of a second language regardless of their degree choice (BA or BS).

Students must demonstrate proficiency in a second language either by completing (with a C-/P or better) at least the third term of the second year of another language or by examination, showing competence equivalent to that attained at the end of two years of college study.

Courses to fulfill the language requirement may be taken at the University of Oregon, in an overseas program, or by transfer from another college or university.


Minimum GPA

A grade point average (GPA) of 2.5 or higher is required in history courses taken at the University of Oregon.

A mid-C grade or better is required in courses taken to fulfill the research paper requirement.

A letter grade of C- or better is required in all courses taken to fulfill the upper-division pre-1800 history and field requirements.


Advising and Declaring History Major

Prospective majors are encouraged to meet with history department advisors or a university academic advisor from Tykeson Hall. Students can declare a major in history by submitting an online declaration form.

If they have not already done so, newly declared majors should promptly meet with history department advisors to formulate a course plan for completing the major.

Contact history department advisors at HistoryAdvising@uoregon.edu. Include your 95# in your email.