This department supervises the following degree programs:
The Department of History also participates in a minor in women's studies; various Honors College programs; and Arts and Sciences minors in Asian studies, community and urban studies, environmental studies, ethnic studies, European studies, family life studies, global studies, medieval and renaissance studies, and religion studies.
The broad liberal arts foundation available through a major in history can cultivate those mental skills – particularly critical thinking, analytical, and communication skills – required for meaningful employment in many areas of the modern economic system. Studying history can also deepen students' understanding of the complex world in which they live and stimulate intellectual attitudes conducive to effective participation in contemporary society. A history student may consider a career in teaching within colleges, universities, or public or private schools; in various branches of municipal, state, or federal government; in park administration; in regional and local historical societies; in archives and records management; in museums; and in many areas of business and industry generally. Many students also use their undergraduate major in history as a preparation for advanced studies in such areas as law, medicine, and theology.
The Department of History at Texas Tech University boasts an outstanding and diverse faculty with expertise in a wide range of specializations. The department is particularly strong in the areas of international politics and political culture and United States history with an emphasis on the U.S. in a global context. It is also strong in Texas history, the history of the American west and southwest, and borderlands history; modern and early modern European history; and world history. The department maintains thematic strengths in the history of race, imperialism, and national identity; foreign relations, war and society/military history; gender and sexuality; memory, commemoration, and political culture; environmental history; business history; the history of technology; and religious history.
Bachelor of Arts in History. Students seeking a Bachelor of Arts in History will complete 36 hours of HIST courses, in accordance with the following:
Minor in History. Students seeking a minor in history will complete 18 hours of HIST courses, in accordance with the following:
Minor in Military History. Students seeking a minor in military history will complete 18 hours of HIST courses, in accordance with the following:
Other courses may be substituted with prior departmental consent.
Note: All courses numbered at the 3000 and 4000 levels are upper-division (or "advanced") courses. All courses at the 4000 level are "writing intensive" and require junior standing or consent of the instructor. A student must receive at least a C in any HIST course if it is to count toward the major or minor.
Teacher Certification Track in Social Studies. The Department of History cooperates with the College of Education in offering a preparatory track for teacher certification in social studies for grades 7-12. This certification track is designed to prepare students for a teaching career in public education and to successfully pass the TExES teacher certification examination in social studies as administered by the Texas Education Agency. Students wishing to teach social studies for grades 7-12 should major in history while minoring in secondary education and should complete their certification through the Texas Tech University College of Education's TechTeach program.
In order to fully understand the teacher certification process, students are strongly encouraged to consult with the undergraduate advisor in the Department of History and an advisor in the College of Education to learn more about teacher certification programs in the State of Texas and the requirements related to those programs.
Students wishing to teach social studies for grades 7-12 who are pursuing their certification through TechTeach should complete the following coursework, which fully incorporates all requirements necessary for a Bachelor of Arts in History:
Information about departmental admission standards, prerequisites, and other matters dealing with graduate study in history may be acquired by consulting the departmental website or by contacting the department's director of graduate studies or graduate studies coordinator (see www.depts.ttu.edu/history/graduate/programs.php).
The Department of History offers two different kinds of Master of Arts degrees in History – the M.A. academic preparatory track (with thesis) and the terminal M.A., or professional enrichment preparatory track (non-thesis).
Course Requirements. A student in the M.A. academic preparatory track must successfully complete at least 36 hours of graduate work to receive the Master of Arts degree. All Department of History graduate courses meet face-to-face (no online courses are offered). A minimum of 24 hours must be taken in the Department of History at Texas Tech. This includes 12 hours taken at the 5000 level in a geographic area of concentration (U.S., Europe, or World) and 12 hours of elective graduate coursework. Of the electives, 6 hours must be chosen from geographic areas outside of the student's geographic area of concentration. Students must take a minimum of 6 hours of the electives at the 5000 level and may take no more than 6 hours at the 7000 level. Students must complete HIST 5304 and 6301 in the first semester they are offered after the student's admission to the program. HIST 5304 must be taken before HIST 6301. HIST 5304 and 6301 must also be taken before completing 6 hours of HIST 6000. Within this framework, students are strongly advised to plan their programs with the advice and consent of the graduate studies coordinator, the director of graduate studies, and their primary faculty advisor.
Program Requirements.The 36 hours are distributed as follows:
Foreign Language Requirement. One foreign language is required for the M.A. thesis-track degree according to the following guidelines:
Thesis. Thesis work is directed by a committee consisting of at least two members of the history
graduate faculty. Frequently a third member, who may be a scholar with relevant expertise
from the history department, another department, or another university, is added if
the thesis director, student, and graduate advisor conclude that the nature of the
thesis topic warrants it. After the thesis has been approved by the committee, students
are required to pass an oral defense of the thesis.
Course Requirements. A student in this plan must successfully complete at least 36 hours of graduate work to receive the terminal Master of Arts degree. A minimum of 24 hours must be taken in the Department of History and at least 3 hours must be taken at the 6000 level. No more than 6 hours may be taken at the 7000 level. Students must complete HIST 5304. Students are also required to select at least two, and no more than three, focus areas (either geographic and/or from the thematic fields list produced by the department). For the three-field track, students are required to complete a minimum of 9 hours in each field. For the two-field track, 15 hours are required in one field, and 12 hours in the other field. The remaining 6 elective hours toward the degree can be used either to intensify work in an already selected focus area or pursue an appropriate minor in another department. Within this framework, students are strongly advised to plan their programs with the advice and consent of the graduate studies coordinator, the director of graduate studies, and their committee chair. The student will select a committee chair by the second semester of coursework and, in conjunction with the chair, select one department faculty member for each focus area chosen.
Program Requirements.The 36 hours are distributed as follows:
No language is required for the Terminal Master of Arts option.Comprehensive Examinations. M.A. non-thesis track students who have finished their required coursework are required to take qualifying exams in their chosen focus areas. Students can take the exams in the semester they complete their coursework. In the qualifying examinations, the student is expected to demonstrate a very high level of factual knowledge, an insight into problems of meaning and interpretation, and a command of the historiography and literature of the fields selected.
The Doctor of Philosophy in History Program requires sixty (60) hours beyond the B.A./B.S. degree. Thirty (30) of those hours must be taken at Texas Tech University. All Department of History graduate courses are face-to-face (no online courses are offered).
2. Secondary Geographic Field (9 hours). Students must also select one secondary geographic field (one of the two geographies not selected for the major field) and a faculty member to represent that field.
3. Thematic Field (9 hours). Students must also select one thematic field from the following list (or petition the Graduate Studies Committee for approval of a thematic field not appearing on the list) and complete nine hours of coursework in that thematic field. Students are required to select a committee member for the thematic field who does not represent either of their geographic fields:
No more than 12 of the 60 hours of coursework required beyond the B.A. can be taken at the 7000 level (i.e., no more than four HIST 7000 independent readings/studies courses can be taken and counted as part of a student's Ph.D. degree plan).
Foreign Language Requirement. If not satisfied at the Master of Arts level, proficiency in one language other than English is required of all candidates for the Ph.D. degree. For the purpose of the above listed requirements, "proficiency" in a language is defined according to the following parameters:
Comprehensive Examination. Doctoral students who have finished their coursework in history (and in their outside minor field if they select one) are expected to take qualifying exams as soon as possible. All coursework should normally be completed in the semester prior to the qualifying exam. In the qualifying examination, the student is expected to demonstrate a very high level of factual knowledge, an insight into problems of meaning and interpretation, and a command of the historiography and literature of the fields selected. The comprehensive exam consists of two separate steps: written examinations in the chosen four fields of study and an oral examination.
Dissertation. The dissertation should represent a contribution to the discipline, either as a reevaluation of a subject or as an original contribution to knowledge. It should demonstrate a high-level command of research techniques and the ability to organize materials and present them clearly. The chairperson of the student's advisory committee is primarily responsible for directing the research and writing of a dissertation, with the other members acting in an advisory capacity. A defense of the dissertation is held after the committee has approved the final working draft.
Sean P. Cunningham, Ph.D., Chairperson
Professors: Bell, D'Amico, Howe, Iber, McBee
Associate Professors: Adams, Barenberg, Bjerk, Calkins, Cunningham, Forsythe, Hahn, Hart, Hill, Levario, Milam, Mosher, Pelley, Stoll, Swingen, Willet, Wong
Assistant Professors: Baum, Brittsan, Franklin, Johnson, Keyes, Legacey, Scharfe, Skidmore, Walker