The Bachelor of Arts in History is designed for students to accomplish the following: First, and of paramount importance, is the student's acquisition of historical knowledge. The number and content of courses offered, coupled with the flexible structure of history major and minor requirements, enable students to pursue a wide range of topics. Second, history students are exposed to an enormous amount of material which they learn to organize into meaningful categories of information. Third, students of history must be able to communicate effectively in both oral and written forms. Finally, the constant improvement of student reading ability is also of major importance. Text assignments, critiques of journal articles, research for term papers and book reviews permit students to use and strengthen these essential skills.
The study of history leads to the understanding and appreciation of the heritages of humans. Since the time when human beings invented writing, they have left records of their understanding of the world and the events in their lives and how they felt about them. We can use what we learn about the experiences of people who lived before us to help understand, if not solve, problems we face today. Though the modern world is quite different from the societies in which our ancestors lived, the knowledge of their accomplishments and failures is an important standard by which we can measure the quality of our own lives and the success of our social arrangements.