Professors Jim Klotter, Harold Tallant, and Cliff Wargelin (Chair);

 Associate Professors Ellen Emerick, Liyan Liu, and Lisa Lykins;

Adjunct Instructor James Crinean

Contact the Department

History Department
Georgetown College
400 East College Street
Georgetown, KY 40324

Department Site


History involves the study of most aspects of the human experience over time‚ÄĒpolitics, social life, cultural developments, military affairs, diplomacy, ethnicity, technology, economics, religion, literature, and so much more. It is a story of real people and how they acted and reacted when facing change or choice or conflict. Studying History offers us a perspective on events, whether they are at a world, national, regional, state, local, or individual level. Students in the History Department learn critical skills useful not only to the study of the past, but in numerous other areas as well‚ÄĒhow to do research, how to analyze evidence, how to put the findings in proper context, and how to communicate the results in a clear and coherent way. Internships and study abroad represent examples of the ways students can learn more outside the college classroom. The History Department encourages student leadership opportunities in various ways, including Phi Alpha Theta, the History honorary. In short, the History Department prepares students to do well in the wider world.


History majors will complete requirements for the major‚ÄĒincluding producing and defending a primary research paper‚ÄĒin a timely fashion while meeting departmental standards. Additionally, students that major in history will be presented with opportunities for involvement in the field of history outside of the classroom, including membership in the Phi Alpha Theta history honorary, field study, study abroad, and attendance at and submission of papers to history conferences and contests.


History majors will:

develop a workable knowledge of important facts, themes, and issues of American, European, and world history

become familiar with varieties of sources, techniques of source evaluation, and methods of historical interpretation utilized by historians;

develop skills of critical thinking, analysis, and written and oral communication that allow for informed assessment, debate, and defense of historical issues an arguments;

develop the ability to distinguish historical similarities and differences among different cultures/societies and across time.



(B. A. degree) Thirty-three hours required in History including HIS 111, 113, 250, and 450. Students must take at least three hours of American, three hours of European, and three hours of Asian/non-Western history. Eighteen hours must be at the 300-level or above.




Eighteen hours required in History including at least one course in two of the following three areas: American, European, or Asian/non-Western.


111. History of Civilization to 1648. (3 hours) A study of human origins stressing the continuity of development through 1648. The course will be taught on a chronological or topical basis and attempt to combine historical interpretation with a general knowledge of the significant developments of the past.                                                                       Fall


113. History of Civilization Since 1648. (3 hours) A study of civilization from 1648 to the present. The course will be taught on a chronological or topical basis and attempt to combine historical interpretation with a knowledge of the significant developments of the past.                                                                                                                            Spring


211. Asian Civilization I. (3 hours) This course will survey the development of East and South Asian civilizations, covering their origins as well as their cultural influences, from prehistoric times to approximately 1800 AD.             Fall


213. Asian Civilization II. (3 hours) This course will explore the development of East and South Asia from about 1800 AD to the present. Students will compare and contrast the similarities and differences among the national experiences in modern Asia. Spring


223. Introduction to American History: 1492-1877. (3 hours) This course is a survey of the political, economic, intellectual, social, and religious development of America before 1877.                                                     Fall


225. Introduction to American History: 1877 to Present. (3 hours) This course is a survey of the political, economic, intellectual, social, and religious development of America after 1877.                                           Spring


250. Historical Methods. (3 hours) An intensive introduction to concepts, methods, and issues in the study of history. Emphasis will be on the framing of historical questions and immersion in the actual sources of history. Prerequisite: Sophomore standing.               Spring


302. Traditional China. (3 hours) This course provides the student with an overview of Chinese history in pre-modern times. It traces the growth of Chinese civilization from its pre-historical genesis until about the 19th century. It will explore the dominant philosophical and religious traditions, the nature of political culture, and the social structure of traditional China through a variety of sources. It will also look at groups and individuals outside of the central power structure, and at longer socio-economic trends which transcended dynastic changes. The class meetings will consist of lectures, media, and discussions of the readings.

Odd Falls


304. Kentucky History. (3 hours) The study of statemaking as an important contribution to the understanding of the political, social, and cultural life of the United States. Kentucky as the first frontier state.           Spring

306. Colonial and Revolutionary America, 1607-1783. (3 hours) An intensive investigation of the American colonies, their political and social origins, their culture developments, and their subsequent revolution with and separation from Great Britain.     Odd Falls


308. History of the Early Republic: 1783-1848. (3 hours) This course is a study of the formative years of the United States. The course covers the early years of government under the Articles of Confederation, the adoption of the United States Constitution, and the political development of the new nation through the Mexican War. Additionally, the course will cover the social, ethnic, economic, intellectual, cultural, and religious transformations which characterized American life in the 1780s-1840s.         Even Falls


310. History of the South. (3 hours) The contribution of Southern civilization to the total life of the nation, with emphasis on the New South.                                                                                                                              Fall


312. Civil War and Reconstruction. (3 hours) Intensive investigation of some aspect of the period. Topics selected to give insight into the war and its effect on American history.                                                   Even Springs


314. Gilded Age through the 1920s. (3 hours) An intensive overview of America between 1877 and 1930. This course explores the political, social, economic, and cultural developments of the period, especially in their relationship to the formation of industrial capitalism.                                                                                                                               Odd Falls


316. Modern China. (3 hours) This course is a study of modern Chinese history since 1800. It examines the political, cultural, social and economic developments

in the last two centuries and offers a comprehensive view of China’s unique path to modernization.               Even Springs


318. History of Canada. (3 hours) This course is a survey of Canada’s political, economic, intellectual, social, and religious development.                                                                                                                             As needed


321. History of Japan. (3 hours) This course will cover Japanese history from the sengoku period to the Russo-Japanese War. While covering the political, institutional, religious, economic, and cultural history of Japan, particular attention will be paid to the significant influence of China as well as Japanese social structure and reaction to the outside world.  Even Falls


323. Renaissance and Reformation. (3 hours) This course will cover the intellectual, cultural, political, and economic development of Europe with particular focus on the Italian Renaissance and the Reformation in Germany. The course will continue through the Counter-Reformation and the Thirty Years War.

Odd Springs


325. United States Diplomatic History. (3 hours) The course will survey the historical development of United States diplomatic policies and positions which have influenced American attitudes toward other peoples or significantly affected domestic development. American economic, religious, racial and cultural values will be integrated into the study. Even Falls


331. Revolutionary Europe 1789-1871. (3 hours) A survey of European history from the period of the French Revolution through the unification of Germany, emphasis will be given to the revolutionary political, economic, social, cultural, and military/diplomatic changes transforming Europe in this period.                                                                 Odd Falls


333. Europe in Crisis 1871-1949. (3 hours) A survey of European history from the period of German unification to the beginning of the Cold War, emphasis will be given to the challenges posed by nationalism and militarism; the two world wars; technological, economic, and social change; imperialism; the emergence of fascist, national socialist, and communist movements and governments; and the evolution of cultural modernism.                                                                                Even Springs


335. History of England. (3 hours) Study of the political, social, economic, religious, and constitutional history of England to the end of the Stuart period.

Odd Falls


337. Modern England. (3 hours) This course describes the role of the English nation in the modern world as well as its contributions to modern society. Anglo-American relations will be given special emphasis. Even Falls


338. Religion in American History. (3 hours) Role of religion in American history; impact of religion on major social and political developments.

Odd Springs


343. Modern Central Europe. (3 hours) A survey of German, Austrian, and Hungarian history from the 19th century to the present; topics include the industrial revolution in Central Europe, the 1848 revolutions, the creation and collapse of the German and Austro-Hungarian Empires, the rise of radical ideologies after 1918, the Second World War, and Germany’s division and reunification.

Odd Springs


345. Military History. (3 hours) A survey of the role of warfare and the military in Western society from prehistory to the present. Topics will include the origins of war and military institutions; the relationship of military organizations to the state; philosophies/doctrines regarding the state’s use of war as policy; the evolution and impact of new military technologies, tactics, and strategies; the role of leadership, organization, and logistics in war; moral and ethical issues of war; and the perspective of the individual combatant.             Odd Falls


356. Medieval History (3 hours) Beginning in the fifth century CE, this course follows the disintegration and rebirth of political, economic, and social life in Europe after the collapse of the Roman Empire through the fourteenth century. Those developments are contrasted to what is happening in China and the Middle East during the same time frame. Even Falls


360. Public History. (3 hours) Introduction to various aspects of public history in a philosophical and practical way.               Odd Springs



378. Tutorial Topics. (3 hours) Special topics in History using a one-on-one tutorial method of instruction similar to that used in humanities courses at Oxford University. Prerequisites: History 111 or 113 and permission of the instructor.

As needed


407. World Prehistory. (3 hours) A seminar examining the techniques involved in historical study of prehistory, the patterns of prehistoric life, and the changes that took place in human society in both the Paleolithic and Neolithic eras. Those changes included the evolution of modern humans in Africa and their colonization of the rest of the planet; revolutionary shifts in global climate and human culture and social organization; the transition from hunting/gathering to sedentism; the development of language, artistic expression, and religion; the domestication of plants and animals; and the utilization of increasingly diverse and sophisticated technologies.         Odd Springs


409. Modern Kentucky Politics and Government. (3 hours) An introduction to the state’s recent political history and an examination of how state government is structured and functions.                                     Odd Falls


412. Ancient History. (3 hours) Roots of western civilization; primary source material for the ancient Near East, Greece and Rome.     Even Springs


417. History of Modern Russia. (3 hours) A survey of Russian history from the 19th century to the present, topics will include the social and cultural trends of Imperial Russia, Russia’s role in European and world affairs, the 1917 revolutions, the Communist era and Cold War, and the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Even Falls


424. History of the Middle East. (3 hours) Political, economic and cultural events and institutions from the time of Muhammad, with emphasis on the contemporary period.                                                          Odd Falls


426. History of the American Indian. (3 hours) This course traces the multifarious history of American Indians with particular emphasis on the course of American history from their perspectives. It is designed to digress from the traditional view of Indian history as one of Indian-white warfare and frontier violence, and explore a deeper understanding of Indians as human beings caught up in dramatic historical events that continue to shape their lives.                                           Spring


430. Recent America. (3 hours) American technological and industrial growth since 1930 and the social, political, and intellectual adjustments which that growth has required.                                              Even Falls


440. Independent Study. (1, 2, or 3 hours)                                                  As needed


450. Senior Seminar. (3 hours) Historical criticism, historiography and research. Prerequisite: HIS 250 with a grade of C or better.        Fall


470. Topics in History. (3 hours) Some topics might include African-American history, History of Feminism, Hitler and National Socialism; History of Revolutions; History of American Labor; History of Race Relations; History of American Business; History of Latin America.                                                                                                             As needed


475. Topics in the Social and Intellectual History of the United States.
(3 hours)                                                                                                             As needed

Click to See Career Options


  • Federal agencies including: The Smithsonian Institute, National Archives and Records, Library of Congress, National Park Service, Intelligence services, Foreign service
  • State and local agencies including: Archives and libraries, Museums, parks, and historic sites, Municipal archives, Arts and humanities councils
Gain relevant experience in student government or other related organizations. Complete an internship with a government agency. Maintain a superior academic record. Plan on obtaining an advanced degree. Develop foreign language skills. Become familiar with specialized government hiring procedures. Consider a variety of entry-level positions in all branches of local, state, and federal government.


  • Elected or appointed public officials (i.e., legislators, governors, mayors, judges)
  • National political party headquarters
  • Public interest/advocacy groups
  • Political campaigns
Gain experience and make contacts through internships with government agencies or public officials. Volunteer to work with public interest groups, political campaigns, political associations, or community service projects. Participate in student government and campus politics.


  • Law firms
  • Corporate legal departments
  • Government agencies
  • Public advocacy groups
Obtain paralegal training or law degree. Gain experience through summer or part-time work in a law firm. Volunteer with a public advocacy group. Participate in mock trial and pre-law associations.


  • History museums and historic sites
  • Historical associations and societies
  • Cultural heritage organizations
  • Historical projects
  • Research and service institutions
Volunteer with various nonprofit organizations of interest. Consider supplementing curriculum with relevant course work in anthropology, sociology, art history, or foreign languages.


  • Museums
  • Historical homes
  • Art galleries
  • Special collections
  • Historical societies
  • Libraries
  • Universities and colleges
  • National, state, and local government
  • Corporations
  • Non-profit organizations
  • Research institutes
Acquire strong computer knowledge and experience. Obtain an internship or volunteer in a related organization. Develop excellent written and oral communication skills. Hone organizational skills and develop attention to detail. Earn a master’s degree in information sciences for advanced opportunities in data management.


  • Broadcast
  • Print
  • News departments of local, public, and commercial radio and TV stations
  • Syndicated radio services
  • Newspapers
  • National, state, and regional radio networks
Work on campus newspaper, TV, or radio. Find summer or part-time work with local commercial TV or radio station. Volunteer with public TV or radio. Consider obtaining a minor or double major in journalism or broadcasting/electronic media.


  • Teaching: Elementary, Middle, or Secondary, Higher Education
  • Community Education
  • Public and private schools
  • Colleges and universities
  • Museums
  • Zoological parks, aquariums, wildlife refuges, and bird sanctuaries
  • Arboretums, gardens, and conservatories
  • Camps
  • National and state parks
Develop excellent presentation skills. Become skilled in the use of multimedia. Learn how to develop curriculums and workshops. Become an “expert” in a particular subject. Obtain teaching certificate for public school teaching. Obtain a graduate degree for college and/or university teaching. Gain experience as a tutor, camp counselor, church schoolteacher, etc. Build strong relationships with professors, supervisors, or other community leaders for strong personal recommendations. Complete an internship or volunteer in a setting of interest.


  • Management
  • Sales
  • Office Administration
  • All major retail firms including drug, specialty, variety, and department store chains
  • Wholesalers
  • Manufacturers
  • Insurance companies
  • Real estate agencies
  • Financial institutions
  • Nonprofit organizations
Earn a minor in business. Obtain related experience through advertisement sales positions with campus yearbook or newspaper. Gain relevant retail sales experience. Acquire good computer and statistical skills. Develop excellent communication skills. Demonstrate a high energy level. Obtain leadership experience in student or community organizations. Consider an MBA for brand management, consulting, and research opportunities.

General Information

  • An undergraduate degree in history is good preparation for graduate study in history as well as other areas such as psychology, law, or business.
  • Research the prerequisites of the area of interest and tailor program of study to meet curricular and skill needs.
  • Part-time, summer, internship, and volunteer experiences are critical.
  • Develop skills by obtaining a leadership role in a school or community organization.
  • Get involved in Student Government.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills are imperative for most careers related to history, politics, or government.
  • Become familiar with the government application process for opportunities in federal, state, or local government.
  • Prepare to develop a specialty area including both academic training and work experience for history related careers.
  • Develop patience, persistence, and drive in obtaining history related positions.
  • For careers in politics, be prepared to volunteer extensively before being hired or elected as an employee or official. Begin by working with the campaign or official of choice while in college.
  • For careers in arts and humanities, obtain a broad liberal arts background including knowledge of the arts, personal and mass communication, and foreign languages.
  • Join related social and/or professional organizations.
  • Develop a network of both formal and informal contacts.
  • Research websites and books that address various job opportunities, pay structure, and hiring processes.

Helpful Links

Prepared by the Career Planning staff of Career Services at The University of Tennessee, Knoxville.
(2005) UTK is an EEO/AA/Title VI/Title IX/Section 504/ADA /ADEA Employer


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