History, B.A.

The history major is intensive and engaging, combining breadth of knowledge with rigorous critical analysis of the diverse cultural, social and economic dimensions of past experience.

The major is regional, national and global in coverage, including courses in North Carolina and United States histories as well as Asian, African, Latin American, European and world histories.

With a focus on the philosophy and practice of history, the program is designed around small classes, thorough research, and open discussions—with particular attention given to historical writing and narrative.

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Take the next step toward completing your Bachelor of Arts in History degree at Lenoir-Rhyne University.

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Take the next step toward completing your Bachelor of Arts in History degree at Lenoir-Rhyne University.


As a history major, you are trained to use the cognitive and professional tools of the discipline that inform historical thinking, intellectual engagement in scholarly debates within the discipline and use of primary source materials in the construction of multiple narratives.

In short, knowledge of the political, social, economic, and cultural events of the past equips you with analytical, critical and innovative skills to address a variety of issues pertaining to the past as well as the present.

The small class sizes of the history program encourage interdisciplinary exploration and a rich learning community between faculty and students. Because of the size of the major’s curriculum, you also have the opportunity to choose a second major, and you are encouraged to consider options such as English, philosophy, political science, and/or religion, especially if you are considering graduate studies.

Learning Outside the Classroom

In the history major, much of the skills and content developed in the classroom environment is also applied in the real world through experiential learning and co-curricular activities.

  • Internships

    Ongoing partnerships with local institutions such as the Hickory Landmarks Society and the Catawba County Historical Museum yield a number of student internships and archival research opportunities as well as field trips to historical sites throughout North Carolina and beyond.

  • Student Activities & Organizations

    History faculty advise and support the LR History Club, a student organization founded in 2014 which works to promote community appreciation of and participation in local history activities.

    We are committed to exposing students to the professional side of a historian’s education. As such, the program regularly sponsors trips to the annual meetings of American Historical Association and the Organization of American Historians in order to give you the opportunity to witness some of the highest levels of scholarship in the history discipline, network with faculty from potential graduate programs and experience the local history of other locations throughout the country via programs sponsored by the professional organization.


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Careers & Graduate School

A major in history prepares you for a competitive workplace and/or advanced graduate studies.

The analytical and critical thinking skills that a history education imparts to students are the keys to success. There are very few fields and professions that do not benefit from historical knowledge. As a result, training within the major provides students with philosophical knowledge and analytical abilities that may be used in a variety of professions, including, but not limited to, education/teaching, museum and archival work, writing and publishing, public history and preservation, journalism, media consulting, government and tourism.

Because of the nature of the major, history is also among the most popular and the best preparations for legal careers.

Major Requirements

The history program seeks to provide a well-balanced and intellectually challenging major, flexible enough to meet the needs of students seeking a broad liberal arts background, a teaching career, admission to graduate or professional school or work in the areas of applied or public history. With its focus on critical thinking and communication skills, history contributes to the liberal arts curriculum and intellectual engagement by appropriate participation in the general education and serves those students taking history courses as electives, as a minor area or in conjunction with other majors. The history major earns a B.A. degree.

In addition, history in conjunction with other academic programs, supports majors in American studies and politics and international relations.


Students may be invited by the full-time history faculty to undertake a senior honors thesis. Upon successful completion of the thesis, along with  and , a student will graduate "with honors in history." Normally in order to be considered, students must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.2 or above and a minimum major GPA of 3.5 or above. The faculty may invite a student to undertake honors who has not met the GPA requirement, and likewise may not invite every student who has done so.  may count as a history elective and  counts as three credits beyond the major requirements.

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