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Department ofHistory


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Attention Teacher Education Candidates: Updates for admission to Approved Teacher Education Programs

  1. Effective January 1, 2014 all students seeking admission to approved teacher education programs must take the Praxis Core. Passing scores on Praxis I achieved by December 31, 2013 continue to be valid and accepted for admission to approved teacher education programs.
  2. Teacher candidates registering for a course that requires a field experience as part of the approved professional education program must obtain a clearance prior to starting the field experience. This process may take up to eight weeks. Follow the instructions for completing this process at ODU Field Experience Clearance Procedures
  3. Praxis Tests: You may now register to take Praxis Tests at the Old Dominion University Testing Center

The Department of History offers the Bachelor of Arts degree in History, as well as the Bachelor of Arts degree in History that includes licensure to teach social studies on the secondary level in Virginia. We also have the M.A. degree in history. And finally, we offer an accelerated program that allows students to earn both the B.A. and the M.A. in a five year period.

Bachelor's of Arts in History

The Department of History offers a Bachelor of Arts in History as well as a state-approved Bachelor of Arts in History and Social Science that prepares students to teach in secondary schools. Both of these offer a broad introduction to the history of the world's peoples and civilizations. Students who major in history are required to choose courses in three of the four following areas: 1) United States, 2) Europe, 3) Area Studies, 4) Comparative History. After introductory survey courses, students enroll in a Historical Methods course that provides an introduction to the basic methodologies and perspectives in history. In their senior year they enroll in a capstone course that includes intensive writing and combines the investigation of a particular area or theme from the perspective of different theoretical frameworks.

Master of Arts in History

The Department of History also offers a Master of Arts degree. This degree is available through a thesis or an exam option. Both are 30-credit programs and both require the completion of HIST 600, Historical Theory and Practice. Students take courses from nearly every field of history, with the ability to emphasize a particular geographic region or time period through electives.

In the History Department we have a strong faculty who are active teacher-scholars pursuing research, publishing books and articles, and winning awards and grants. They bring the latest methods and historical interpretations to the classroom. The Department's strengths lie within American and European history, but we also have faculty members who cover Latin America, Africa, Asia, and Russia. Currently we have seventeen faculty members who offer graduate courses and fifty to sixty students enrolled in the program during any given semester. Classes are small, usually eight to fifteen students, and most often meet at night to accommodate the many students who work.

One of the distinctive features of Old Dominion University's graduate student body is its diversity. The graduate students who enroll in our program come from diverse educational and professional backgrounds. The Department thus offers a general Masters program that encourages students to take a variety of coursework in many fields. The program is designed to facilitate preparation for entry into doctoral programs in history and for teaching at the community college and secondary levels. Graduate work in history also provides an excellent background for careers in law, theology, business, government service, and for specialized work as a museum curator, librarian, archivist, editor, historic site specialist, or public historian.


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