Study History on the Coast of Maine

Dive into the greatest story of all time — the story of humanity. Experience the thrilling chapters of the human chronicle come to life as you earn your Bachelor of Arts in History. Discover how people made sense of their world and how their experiences, actions, and beliefs help us to make sense of ours. At UNE, you will chart a course through the past while developing 21st-century skills that prepare you for an exciting future.

Why UNE for your B.A. in History

Whether you’re working side-by-side with your professors as a research assistant or embarking on your own historical investigations, at UNE you’ll be making history in no time.

  • Take advantage of UNE’s impressive archival collections
  • Enjoy small class sizes and close working relationships
  • Travel the globe to places of historical interest
  • Polish your skills — and your resume — with intriguing internships
  • Join the unique HuMed program to prepare for medical school while pursuing your passion for history
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I only applied to two schools, but I knew that UNE was for me. Its small campus, and even smaller History Department, made me feel more individual and not just a faceless student. I really feel at home here...
History

What will you study? History Degree Curriculum Overview

B.A. in History Courses

There are many ways you can navigate the History major. The following are just some examples of the exciting courses that you can take:

  • History of Drugs in the Americas
  • War Letters
  • Sex and the City
  • Drink! A History of Liquid Refreshment
  • Holocaust in History and Memory
  • Terrorism in Latin America
  • Latin American History Through Film

Curriculum

CAS Core Requirements Credits
Total 42–46
Program Required Courses Credits
HIS 150 – Telling Tales of the Past 3
HIS 290 – History Hands on Topics or HIS 291 – War Letters or HIS 292 – Mourning the Dead or HIS 295 – Medicine and the Media 3
HIS 222 – U.S. History: Contact-Civil War 3
HIS 223 – U.S. History: Reconst-Present 3
HIS 395 – What Really Happened? 3
Choose One (1) History Track 21
Total 36
Open Elective Courses (as needed to reach 120 credits) Variable
Minimum Required Total Credits 120

History Track Options

History Track Credits
LIL 420 – Arts & Humanities Capstone 3
Twelve (12) credits of elective courses from List A with at least six (6) credits at 300/400 level 12
Six (6) credits of elective courses from List A or List B 6
History Education Track Credits
PSC 101 – Intro to American Politics 3
PSC 210 – Constitutional Law 3
LIL 420 – Arts & Humanities Capstone or EDU 498 – Secondary Internship & Seminar 3
Six (6) credits of 300/400 level elective courses from List A 6
Six (6) credits of elective courses from List A or List B 6

Elective Course Options

List A Elective Courses Credits
HIS 106 – Women, Health, and History 3
HIS 199 – Expl: Topics in History 3
HIS 204 – Growing Up Female 3
HIS 230 – From Togas to Black Rats 3
HIS 231 – Reformations, Revolutions 3
HIS 240 – Latin Amer His I: Colonial Lat 3
HIS 241 – Latin Amer His II: Modern Latin 3
HIS 250 – American Women’s History I 3
HIS 251 – American Women’s History II 3
HIS 266 – Hist of Drugs in the Americas 3
HIS 276 – History Human Trad I 3
HIS 278 – Human Traditions 3
HIS 280 – History Internship 3
HIS 290 – History Hands On Topics 3
HIS 291 – War Letters 3
HIS 292 – Mourning the Dead 3
HIS 299 – History Topics 3
HIS 312 – College Girls 3
HIS 318 – Histories of London 3
HIS 337 – Topics in Women’s History 3
HIS 341 – Bestsellers & the Big Bad City 3
HIS 343 – Modern Tourism 3
HIS 344 – Postwar: Europe After WWII 3
HIS 349 – Hist of Gender/Sexuality in LA 3
HIS 351 – History of Modern Mexico 3
HIS 370 – Slaves/Citiz: Afr in New World 3
HIS 397 – History Independent Study 1–12
HIS 399 – Topics in History 3
HIS 400 – Topics in History 3
HIS 404 – Directed Readings in History 3
HIS 410 – Advanced Humanities Seminar 3
HIS 420 – History Internship 3
HIS 497 – History Independent Study 1–12
ARH 210 – Art History Survey I 3
ARH 211 – Art History Survey II 3
ARH 260 – Renaissance & Baroque Art 3
ARH 270 – Art in the Modern World 3
ARH 333 – Moroccan Theatre/Social Ch 3
List B Elective Courses Credits
CMM 135 – Evolution of Television 3
CMM 170 – Evolution of Documentary Film 3
EDU 438 – Teaching Sec Social Studies 3
EDU 498 – Secondary Internship & Seminar 12
ENG 216 – Criminals, Idiots & Minors 3
ENG 220 – History of the English Language 3
ENG 412 – Humanities Seminar: Slavery 3
LIL 120 – Intro to Arts & Humanities Sem 3
MUS 220 – History of Jazz 3
WGST 276 – Women in the Ancient World 3
WGST 278 – Women in the Modern Worlds 3
WRT 317 – Proposal and Grant Writing 3

To learn more about the program see the Academic Catalog.

Changes were made to this program in an addendum to the 2022/23 academic calendar. Please see the 2022–2023 Catalog Addendum (PDF) for the most recent information. As always, it is recommended that students seek the guidance of Academic Advisors for course and program planning. In this way, you will be able to access all the most up-to-date information available.

Secondary Education Certificate

If your goal is to be a middle school or high school social studies teacher, we offer the secondary education courses you need to meet the standards for State of Maine certification (grades 7-12) upon graduation.

Pre-Law Emphasis

If you are considering law school, you should consult with faculty in the History program to design an appropriate course of study. The Pre-Law Emphasis ensures that you develop a foundation in the liberal arts that will prepare you for law school and success in the legal profession.

Honors Program

We offer qualified students the option of graduating with Honors. This includes significant research, scholarship or creative activity under the direction of a faculty member. Interested students should consult with their advisor.

UNE History Students Create War Letter Exhibit

UNE undergraduate history students debuted an exhibit titled, “Write Again Soon: Letters from World War II,” at the Biddeford Campus’ Jack S. Ketchum Library. The exhibit features images and letters from World War II, with interpretive text researched and written by students. The exhibit brings to life stories found within the collection, remembering those who lived through war and honoring their sacrifice.

Career Paths for History Majors

The skillset you develop as a History major includes critical thinking, communication skills, the ability to adopt different perspectives, and life skills acquired from internships and faculty/peer relationships. You might be surprised where these skills take you.

Our graduates have pursued many fascinating professions, including

  • Businessperson
  • Doctor
  • Lawyer
  • Archivist
  • Teacher
  • Artist
  • Museum Professional
  • Published Author

Career Advising for B.A. in History Students

Whether you have a specific career goal in mind or a vague idea of the field that interests you, Career Advising is here to help you plan your next step.

History Facilities

Libraries

Our two libraries — the Ketchum Library on the Biddeford Campus and the Abplanalp Library on the Portland Campus — offer more than 135,000 print volumes, more than 375,000 e-books, and 80,000 full-text journals. As a student researcher, you have the opportunity to display your work in highly-visible exhibit space. 

Maine Women Writers Collection

As a History student, you have the opportunity to explore our Maine Women Writers Collection, which is housed in the Abplanalp Library. This one-of-a-kind collection provides a unique perspective into the literary, cultural, and social history of Maine and New England women.

Bush Legacy Collection

Our George and Barbara Bush Center presents another treasure trove of rare historic documents and artifacts. The Bush Legacy Collection houses materials related to the life of George H.W. Bush, the 41st president of the United States, focusing on his family’s New England heritage.

The Randall J. Cushing Collection

The Bush Center also houses other collections of historic significance, like The Randall J. Cushing Collection of World War I and World War II Letters, which is a compilation of correspondences sent home from various soldiers to their loved ones between 1914 and 1963.

Experiential Learning in the Bachelor's Degree in History Program

The History major emphasizes hands-on, real-world learning, providing you with experiences that will set you apart in numerous professional fields. You may curate a museum exhibit, conduct an independent study, or learn how to handle old documents and artifacts. At UNE, you don’t just learn history — you do history.

Research Opportunities for History Majors

  • Become a research assistant
  • Engage in your own scholarship
  • Develop skills applicable to virtually any field

Find out more about opportunities for undergraduate student research and scholarship, including the LASKA Scholarship, a $2,000 scholarship funded by the New England History Teachers Association.

Internships for History Majors

  • Explore career options
  • Network with professionals
  • Gain valuable learning/work experience in the field
  • Intern near campus during the academic year or in your hometown over the summer

Internship sites include

  • Libraries 
  • Museums
  • Politicians’ Offices
  • Multinational Corporations
  • Historical Societies
  • Law Offices

For more information email the Academic and Career Advising Center at advising@une.edu.

Beyond the History Classroom

Clubs and Organizations

As a History student, you have the opportunity to participate in student organizations geared toward people with a passion similar to your own, including the History Club, and — if you have a 3.1 GPA or higher in history courses and a 3.0 GPA overall — Phi Alpha Theta, the national history honors society.

History Student of the Year

This award is presented each spring to the most outstanding History major or minor, by faculty vote.

The Human Nature Project

The Human Nature Project is a UNE initiative to foster research and education into the interdisciplinary nexus of cognitive science and evolutionary studies. Cognitive science studies the mind and its processes. Evolutionary psychology aims to understand the human mind and behavior in the context of its biological origins. The Human Nature Project provides a platform for sustained dialog between these disciplines.

Apply Today

Ready to begin your future in UNE’s B.A. in History degree program? Get started today.

Bachelor of Arts in History FAQ

What can you do with a history degree?

As a history major, you'll gain valuable skills like critical thinking, effective communication, seeing things from various viewpoints, and practical skills from internships and connections with faculty and peers. These skills can lead you to a variety of career opportunities including:

  • Teacher – Earning a bachelor's degree in history and then completing a teacher preparation program prepares you for a career as a secondary history teacher. UNE offers the secondary education courses you need to meet the standards for State of Maine certification (grades 7-12) upon graduation.
  • Lawyer – History is a fitting major for anyone interested in the legal field. As indicated by a Law School Admission Council (LSAC) report, history stands out as one of the most prevalent majors among law school applicants, with a particularly high admission rate of 77.5% for history majors. At UNE, history majors considering law school can seek guidance from History program faculty to structure their academic path. The History major is designed to provide you with a solid liberal arts foundation, positioning you well for law school and a prosperous legal career.
  • Archeologist – According to the Society for American Archaeology, a 4-year college degree (B.A. or B.S.) is the minimum educational requirement for a career in archaeology. While anthropology or archaeology are common majors, related fields like history or geography are also suitable. For roles beyond entry-level archaeologist positions, the majority of archaeological jobs require a master's degree. UNE offers an Anthropology minor with faculty in many specialty areas including archaeology. Students participate in classroom activities, research, internships, and activities including on-campus archaeology digs.
  • Librarian – A career as a librarian could start with an undergraduate degree in history. From there, graduates move on to pursue a master’s degree in library science.
  • Archivist – History majors could land a job as an archivist and work with paper documents, photographs, maps, films, and computer records.

History majors can also consider graduate study in fields including law, journalism, the arts, and business. To apply for MBA programs, you need an undergraduate degree, but it doesn't have to be in a specific field. A liberal arts degree in a subject like history often signifies a comprehensive education. Admission to an MBA program considers various factors like entrance exam scores (e.g., GMAT, GRE).

Graduates of UNE’s Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in History degree program in Maine have pursued careers as businesspersons, doctors, lawyers, archivists, teachers, artists, museum professionals, and published authors.

As a History student at UNE, you will have the ability to work with our Academic and Career Advising Center. It doesn’t matter if you have a clear career goal or just a general interest in a field.

Learn more about Career Advising at UNE

How much does a history major make?

As of August 2022, the average salary for a history major in the U.S. was about $51,000, as reported by Zippia. Common salary breakdowns by job according to Indeed* include:

  • Park ranger: $39,345
  • Reporter or journalist: $45,059
  • Librarian: $55,248
  • Museum archivist: $55,306
  • History professor: $55,517
  • Historian: $69,374
  • Writer or editor: $69,455
  • Researcher: $70,655
  • Business consultant: $75,835
  • Lawyer: $91,525
*Last updated July 2023

Is a history degree worth it?

Many people enjoy studying history because it is interesting. Studying history might be a great choice if you often wonder about complex matters like politics, war, or culture, and find simple answers unsatisfying. Grasping our past aids us in living in the present and constructing the future.

When deciding whether or not to major in history, think about the practical reasons to earn a history degree. History students develop skills in analytical thinking, research, problem-solving, communication, and project management – all highly valued by employers. These skills also enhance performance in other subjects and future career pursuits.

A history degree can lead to diverse job options, such as policy analysts, editors, or paralegals. For those inclined towards teaching, certain schools (including UNE) offer the chance for history majors to pursue teacher certification simultaneously. Graduate study is also a route, leading to fields like law, journalism, arts, and business. Advanced degrees, like master’s or doctorate in history, open up opportunities at colleges, universities, museums, and more.

UNE offers history as both a major and a minor. Students will chart a course through the past while developing 21st-century skills that prepare them for an exciting future.

Get an overview of UNE’s History program

What does a history degree teach you?

A history degree helps you understand how the past shapes global, national, and local relationships. It enables you to see patterns that are often hidden in the present, offering a crucial perspective to solve current and future problems. History programs equip students with analytical and communication skills applicable in various fields, both within academia and outside it.

At UNE, the History major and minor let you explore the past in relation to the present. Courses expose you to diverse perspectives on history and build essential 21st-century skills. Required classes teach history's nature, research skills, and different historical viewpoints. A broad selection of electives delves into specific eras and locations. Students can develop museum exhibits, create podcasts, develop independent research projects, and collaborate with faculty.

How long does it take to get a history degree?

If you’re earning a bachelor’s degree in history, it typically takes four years of full-time study and requires a minimum of 120 credits. There are also two-year, 60-credit associate degree programs in history out there that can broaden your history knowledge and give you a foundation for the rest of your academic journey.

UNE’s B.A. in History program is 120 total credits. Students will complete the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) Core Requirements, foundational and advanced required courses, electives, and choice of a History track. Those options are:

  • History
  • History Education

View UNE's Bachelor of Arts in History curriculum requirements

What are the best colleges for history majors?

Below are a few factors that you should look for in an undergraduate history program.

Faculty

Figure out your preferences for an instructor and dive into their academic and professional background. Explore the opportunities for networking with professionals that can enhance your career prospects.

UNE’s history program boasts small class sizes and close working relationships with faculty. You can work side-by-side with your professors as a research assistant or embark on your own historical investigations. At UNE, our faculty don’t just teach history – they do history. The History major emphasizes hands-on, real-world learning, providing you with experiences that will set you apart in numerous professional fields.

Meet faculty and professional staff in the School of Arts and Humanities

Curriculum

Learn about the types of classes you’ll be taking and the types of internships and learning experiences offered.

There are many ways you can navigate the UNE History major. The following are just some examples of the exciting courses that you can take:

  • History of Drugs in the Americas
  • War Letters
  • Sex and the City
  • Drink! A History of Liquid Refreshment
  • Revolutionary Medicine
  • Terrorism in Latin America
  • Latin American History Through Film

UNE's one-of-a-kind HuMed program readies students for medical school while allowing them to follow their humanities passion. HuMed offers enriched curriculum flexibility without acceleration, enabling students to dedicate time and energy to explore aspects of the human condition that aren't attainable through a conventional pre-med route.

The UNE History major focuses on practical, real-world learning that stands out in various professions. You might curate a museum exhibit, do independent research, or handle historical documents. At UNE, it's not just about learning history; it's about actively engaging in historical work.

UNE is committed to experiential learning. Students can become research assistants and engage in their own scholarship plus develop skills applicable to virtually any field.

Opportunities for undergraduate student research and scholarship, include the LASKA Scholarship, a $2,000 scholarship funded by the New England History Teachers Association.

Learn more about undergraduate research and scholarships at UNE

Internships for history majors at UNE allow students to explore career options, network with professionals, and gain valuable learning/work experience in the field. Intern near campus during the academic year or in your hometown over the summer. Internship sites include libraries, museums, politicians’ offices, multinational corporations, historical societies, and law offices.

Learn more about internship opportunities with the UNE College of Arts and Sciences

Career goals

Determine if the program offers career advising and qualifies you for a lucrative, rewarding career in the history field.

UNE History majors develop skills including critical thinking, communication, the ability to adopt different perspectives, and life skills acquired from internships and faculty/peer relationships. These skills open you up for a variety of careers or prepare you for graduate study.

UNE offers Career Advising to help history majors plan their next step. 93% of bachelor’s degree graduates are employed or continuing higher education within six months to one year of graduating.

Location and environment

Ask yourself what kind of environment suits you best. Figure out if you want to stay in your state or if you wish to move. See if you will be inspired or challenged by your fellow students and faculty.

UNE offers a great environment for history majors. Overall, UNE boasts small class sizes. We have a 12:1 student-to-teacher ratio and an average class size of 20.

Learn more facts about UNE

Our two libraries, the Ketchum Library on the Biddeford Campus and the Abplanalp Library on the Portland Campus house a collection of over 135,000 print volumes, over 375,000 e-books, and 80,000 full-text journals. Student researchers have the opportunity to display their work in highly-visible exhibit space.

Also, students can explore the Maine Women Writers Collection at the Abplanalp Library. This one-of-a-kind collection offers a unique view of the literary, cultural, and social history of women in Maine and New England.

At the George and Barbara Bush Center, the Bush Legacy Collection holds rare items about the 41st U.S. President, George H.W. Bush, emphasizing his New England family heritage. The Center also features The Randall J. Cushing Collection, containing World War I and II letters sent by soldiers to loved ones between 1914 and 1963.

Beyond the classroom, history students can engage in student groups that match their interests, like the History Club and Phi Alpha Theta, the national history honors society (requires a 3.1 GPA in history courses and a 3.0 overall GPA). The History Student of the Year award, chosen by faculty, honors the top History major or minor each spring.

Learn more about student clubs and organizations at UNE

UNE students study abroad at nearly five times the national average. Our Global Education Program offers an array of short-term travel courses to many destinations.

Learn more about study abroad opportunities at UNE

Financial aid

Does the school you are considering offer financial aid or scholarships to help you in your education?

A UNE education is very affordable. Our tuition is 16% below the average tuition for private universities in New England. All incoming full-time undergraduate students at UNE will receive Merit Scholarships in amounts from $5,000 to $22,000 per year.

Learn more about grants and scholarships available for UNE undergraduate students

UNE's Student Financial Services includes both Financial Aid and Student Accounts offices. Our program maximizes available institutional and federal funds. To discover ways to fund your education, reach out at sfs@une.edu or (207) 602-2342 during our Monday–Friday 9 a.m.–3 p.m. office hours.