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Brockport / History / Major

Undergraduate Program


      The Department of History is committed to teaching and scholarly excellence.  All of our classes are taught by dedicated scholar-teachers.  This means we are committed to producing new research and then using those findings to enrich our courses and enliven the classroom experience.  We firmly believe that taking history courses will improve your understanding of the world we live in by helping you understand how it came to be and the often deep, historical roots behind the most pressing contemporary issues facing the United States and the world today.   The study of history will also help train you to gather and assess new information and to communicate your findings to others, skills that are valuable in most careers. 

       Whether you are interested in majoring in history, minoring in it, or just taking a history course for the challenge and enjoyment of it, we welcome you to our courses.   Please see our Winter and Fall 2013 course listing for a short description  of our upcoming offerings.  We also regularly work with students who are pursuing teaching certification.  Please see our .pdf checklist for childhood and secondary education, to see how a History major can work with your certification courses. 


History Major

Declaring your Major | List of Required Courses | Double Major & Minors l

Joint BA/BS & MA Program | Independent & Directed Studies |

Transfer Credits & Study Abroad | Your Faculty Advisor 

Declaring Your Major

If you have not yet filled out the form to declare yourself a history major, go to Teri in the Department office, 133 Albert W. Brown Building, for a copy. When you declare the major will you be added to the History majors’ Angel group, and will be assigned a faculty advisor. On the declaration of major form you can also indicate an interest in a minor, a second major, or in a teaching certification program. Your DARS report will then reflect those interests, even if you choose not to actually pursue them. If you make that choice, make sure to go to the Office of Registration and Records in Rakov and have them change your DARS accordingly. It is also important to review the General Education Requirements for all students.

List of Required Courses:

  • For History Majors who are not pursuing teacher certification (.pdf document) 
  • For History Majors pursuing certification in Secondary Education (.pdf document)
    (For those admitted to Certification Program in Fall 2002 or after)
  • For History Majors pursuing Childhood Certification (.pdf document)

To read .pdf documents, you must have Adobe Acrobat.
(Click here to download Adobe Acrobat free of charge.)


4+1 Combined: Bachelor of Science/Arts in History and Masters in History

The combined degree allows students to complete their BS/BA and MA in just five years. Students can also save money by paying undergraduate tuition rates for graduate credits.

The first three years of the program students take undergraduate courses, then in the fourth year students may take four graduate courses, with a fifth year (including the summer) used for the remaining MA graduate courses. Students will have a fallback position, which is to complete a BS/BA with a minimum of 120 credits as required for a normal BS/BA at SUNY Brockport, should they decide to change course before completing the master's program.

Application details here.

Double Major and Other Minors 

History majors can choose to do a double major with just about any other department. Political science, English, philosophy or foreign languages are frequent choices, but anthropology, African and African-American studies, art history, women's studies, communication, even biology or theatre are possible, depending on your interests. Just check on the number of credits in the other major, as some - like business - are substantially more than history. Regardless of what you double major in, finishing both may require you to stay for an extra semester or year. The extra time is almost always worth it! You may also choose to do a minor in another department like those mentioned above, in art history, or in an interdisciplinary minor. Brockport offers interdisciplinary minors in: Asian studies, Canadian studies, film studies, Jewish studies, Latin American studies, and modern war and society.

Independent & Directed Studies  

If you have completed at least 54 credits at the college level and have completed one semester at SUNY Brockport and have a cumulative GPA of at least 2.0, you are eligible to arrange an independent or directed study with a professor. These are two quite distinct kinds of courses. The independent study builds from a course you have already completed and is designed in consultation with the professor who has agreed to work with you. A directed study substitutes for an already existing course that you cannot fit into your schedule. In both cases you work independently according to the program agreed to with the professor. Note that professors are not obligated to do independent and directed studies; they do so in addition to their regular teaching loads. That said, many history faculty are willing to do them, and the independent study in particular can be a chance for you to get into depth on a subject that strongly interests you.

Transfer Credits & Study Abroad

If you come to SUNY Brockport with college credit from an AP course, a community college or another four-year college, you will need to send copies of your transcripts to The Office of Registration and Records as part of the application process. We cannot properly advise you until your DARS report reflects those transfer credits. If you feel that errors have been made in awarding you transfer credit, talk to your faculty advisor.

If you take a semester to study overseas through one of SUNY Brockport’s programs, or another college’s program – something that we highly recommend – you should set up your program of study before leaving. Talk with your faculty advisor about how courses at the overseas university would contribute to your history major, and fill out the paperwork to have the credits transfer seamlessly. Recently, History majors have earned credits in England, Scotland, Ireland, Ghana, Vietnam, Mexico, New Zealand, Australia, and Poland.

Working With Your Advisor

Each history major has a History professor as an academic advisor. At a minimum, you will see your advisor twice a year, usually in early November to plan for spring classes and in early April to plan for fall classes. Announcements about each semester’s advisement schedule will be sent to the history majors’ Angel group. Only your advisor can give you the six-digit advisement key number that will allow you to register. You should come for these meetings prepared with: 1) a copy of your DARS report 2) knowledge of the courses you still need 3) a proposed schedule based on the next semester’s class listings. You should also tell your advisor about any plans you have to apply to teaching certification programs, as that may affect the courses you need to take, or choices you can make in the General Education program.

Some rules of thumb to bear in mind when drafting your plans: 1) You must have completed three of 101, 102, 211, and 212 before you can take 390: The History Seminar 2) You should take 390 before taking any 400-level courses 3) You should not attempt more than three history courses each semester, given the amount of reading and writing that we expect.

Many history majors see their advisors more frequently, especially to seek career planning advice. We actively encourage you to do this! Although we have all pursued the route of doctoral study in History, we know that History majors have a wide variety of interests, and we will do our best to help you sort through your options and plan for the future. Your advisor will also steer you toward other faculty who can help with particular interests or questions. Please see the Career Planning section of this handbook for more information. For those who are interested in pursuing doctoral work in history, talk with your advisor about the Honors Program, study abroad, and other ways to build your skills and knowledge.

History Minor

The history minor requires 18 credits, at least nine of which must be upper level (300 or 400). Only courses in which you receive at least a C (2.0) will count, and at least nine credits must be completed at SUNY Brockport.

Declaring Your Minor: To formally declare as a history minor, fill out that portion of the Declaration of Academic   Major form and file it with your major department. Then the history minor will show up on your DARS report and transcript.


Last Updated 11/5/12


Our sincere congratulations to Matty Lynn Kuhar who won the 2016 School of the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Undergraduate Award!

Dr. Alison Parker has been invited to be this year's Harriet Jacobs Lecturer at Purdue University. Her talk is entitled Mary Church Terrell, Black Women, and the Rise of the Democratic Party. 

Dr. Nishiyama has been invited to give a talk (title "Kamikaze Technology and Culture for War: Japan and the USA, 1941-2001") at the RIT.

Dr. Alison Parker facilitated significant donation of historical papers to Oberlin College and participates in its celebratory symposium on the life of racial justice advocate Mary Church Terrell (1863-1954).

Congratulations to Dr. Jose R. Torre on winning the Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching!


History Forum will host Region 11&12 Meeting of the Association of Public Historians of New York State, on 4/30 (Saturday, from 9am to about 4pm) at McCue Auditorium (LAB104).

History Department Graduation Ceremony will be held in New York Room, Cooper Hall, at 10:30 am, May 14 (Saturday).