Academic Year: 2009 – 2010

By emphasizing the link between the past and the contemporary world, the History Department seeks to help students understand themselves and the times in which they live. The department encourages students to compare elements of their own culture with those of other cultures from other time periods. Students of history gain a sense of what is unique in, as well as generally characteristic of, individuals, groups, and national cultures in the present as well as the past.


The baccalaureate curriculum is organized for citizen-students who hope to place their world in historical perspective as a means of living rich and intelligent lives. Through understanding change as well as continuity in human institutions, students can grasp the forces shaping their present and future. Education in history at the University of Illinois at Springfield is broad-based humanities training, providing students with research capabilities, analytical methods, and communication skills that are useful in many fields. The curriculum prepares students for careers in history, politics, government, law, journalism, writing, and administration. Through internships in the Experiential and Service-Learning Programs (EXL coursework), students are able to test career possibilities where the research and analytical skills of the historian are appropriate.

Online Degree Program
The Online History Degree Program, which is identical to the on-campus program except for entrance requirements, allows students to participate actively in dynamic, diverse, and interactive online learning communities and to complete their degrees in their own time and at their own pace via the Internet. The online format enables them to complete coursework using the latest networked information technologies for increased access to educational resources, advisers, and materials.

The online program will accept 20 students per academic year. The History Online Program will only consider applicants who live outside a 50-mile range of UIS. However, the department will consider applicants within this limit who have documented disabilities and meet all program qualifications.

Each student is assigned a faculty adviser to assist in planning an individual program of study responsive to the student’s interests and goals and designed to meet the requirements of the History Department.

Major Requirements
Lower-division Requirements
To pursue a major in history, students must complete two courses from the following list of classes on historical regions and themes (6 hrs. total). The two courses must be from different categories of historical regions and themes. Alternately, students can transfer equivalent courses from an accredited institution. Comparative Societies courses can be used to fulfill both the Comparative Societies requirements and history lower division requirements provided students graduate with sufficient total credits. These courses will not be offered online.

Categories of historical regions and themes (total of 6 Hrs.):
World History (HIS 106 Peoples of the Past, HIS 201 World History) 3 Hrs. each
Comparative Religion (HIS 150 Topics in Comparative Religion) 3 Hrs.
Europe (HIS 202 European History) 3 Hrs.
United States (HIS 203 U.S. History) 3 Hrs.
Middle East (HIS 160 Topics in Middle Eastern History) 3 Hrs.
East Asia (HIS 176 History of Premodern East Asia,
HIS 177 History of Modern East Asia) 3 Hrs. each

Additional program requirements for the Online History Program
To be considered for the online program, applicants must meet the following requirements:
* have access to the Internet and possess computer skills necessary to study online
* have achieved a GPA of 3.20 (on a 4.00 scale) from an accredited college or university

Additionally, applicants to the online program must submit a statement of intent (not more than 500 words) in which they discuss their
* academic background
* rationale for pursuing a degree in history
* rationale for wanting to complete the degree online at UIS
* plan for progress toward, and completion of, their degree
* other relevant experience

The statement of intent should be mailed to History Department, UHB 3050, University of Illinois at Springfield, One University Plaza, MS UHB 3050, Springfield, IL 62703-5407.

Application review dates for the Online History Program
2009-2010 academic year: Review of applications will begin in February. For best consideration, applicants must have all information submitted by April 1.

Technology needs for online students
Minimum specifications for using BlackBoard on both PC and Mac platforms can be found at the web site for the Office of Technology-Enhanced Learning (see http://otel.uis.edu/Portal/blackboard/support/hardware.asp). Some software and applications may require more advanced specifications, and UIS Technical Support suggests the following:

Windows XP or higher / Mac OS X
1.5Ghz processor or higher
1Gb of RAM
Broadband internet connnection (cable/dsl)
Sound card and headset
Video card with minimum resolution of (1024×768)

Graduation requirements for both on-campus and off-campus programs
Upper-division Core Requirements
HIS 301 The Historian’s Craft 3 Hrs.
HIS 303 Understanding U.S. History 3 Hrs.
HIS 401 Senior Seminar (capstone) 3 Hrs.
Two non-U.S. history courses 8 Hrs.
Upper Division Elective History Courses 16 Hrs.

Students should consult with advisors in the major for specific guidance regarding completion of general education requirements.

Courses from other departments may count for history credit when they support the student’s degree plan and are approved in advance.

Students must demonstrate the ability to analyze and interpret historical sources through submission and acceptance of a research paper. Students and their advisors will confer about the paper, which will be submitted to the assessment committee.

Learning Experiences
Learning experiences available to history majors include regular classroom courses; independent study and tutorials; and Applied Study Term internships at libraries, archives, historic sites, and other institutions, particularly in state government. The history curriculum includes period courses covering America from the colonial era to the present, thematic courses in such areas as imperialism and women’s history, courses in European and Asian history, and courses analyzing historic forces shaping the contemporary world.


History majors can be certified to teach at the elementary or secondary level. Students must apply separately to the Teacher Education Program (TEP). Students seeking certification will be assigned both a history advisor and a TEP advisor, whom they should consult regularly to make sure they satisfy requirements for both the major and certification. Students interested in certification should consult the teacher education section of this catalog.


Students must complete a minimum of 16 semester hours of upper-division course work at UIS. Transfer credit is evaluated on a case-by-case basis through the student petition process. Students should consult with a History Department faculty member in designing and meeting the requirements for a minor.

Core Courses (17 Hrs.)
HIS 301 The Historian’s Craft 3 Hrs.
HIS 303 Understanding U.S. History 3 Hrs.
At least one upper-division history elective course in non-U.S. history 4 Hrs.
One upper-division history elective 4 Hrs.
HIS 201, 202, or 203 or approved equivalent 3 Hrs.

Grading Policy for Major and Minor
History courses for which the student has attained a grade of full C or higher (= GPA of 2.00 or higher) will be applied toward the B.A. degree (major or minor). History courses taken as CR/NC will be applied toward the degree if a grade of CR is attained. History majors may repeat program courses for grade improvement only once without seeking department approval.


The M.A. in History emphasizes the development of the analytical, organizational, and research tools necessary to study the past. The curriculum accentuates comprehension of the subtleties inherent in academic historical discourse, stresses primary research, and provides the skills necessary to interpret the past for a public audience. The program offers a choice among three areas of concentration: American History, European and World History, and Public History. The curriculum is designed to serve students with a variety of goals, including those interested in teaching; those pursuing careers with business, labor, or community organizations; those seeking employment in historical agencies, museums, historical societies, or archives; those desiring the intellectual stimulation of a challenging discipline; and those interested in continuing advanced education.

Entrance Requirements
Students holding a bachelor’s degree in history or a related academic field are especially encouraged to apply for admission to the History Department’s master’s degree program.
Applicants for admission into the master’s degree program in history should have a baccalaureate degree with an undergraduate major in history. However, applicants who majored in disciplines that are closely related to history (such as English, political science, sociology, archaeology, anthropology) and who meet the GPA and other requirements, may be fully admitted to the graduate program if they have sufficient course work in history. Students lacking a firm background in history who otherwise meet program criteria stated above can be admitted on a conditional basis and may be required to take additional course work before they are fully admitted.

Applicants must have earned a minimum 3.00 cumulative GPA and a minimum 3.00 GPA in history. Applicants must submit a sample of their writing and include a statement of purpose (not to exceed 500 words) to be considered for full admission into the program.
Applicants who have earned a cumulative GPA and/or a GPA in their major of 2.50 to 2.99, and who submit all required materials for program review, may be considered for conditional admission. In this case, applicants may be required to take additional course work, or to take specified graduate courses, depending on each applicant’s situation.

M.A. Requirements
Master’s degree candidates in history must complete 44 semester hours. These hours must include:

The Master’s Core (20 Hrs.)
HIS 501 Graduate History Colloquium (satisfies 4 hours of the campus’
communications skills requirement) 4 Hrs.
HIS 503 Researching and Writing History 4 Hrs.
HIS 510 Graduate Readings Seminar 4 Hrs.
HIS 560 Position Essay and Historiography
HIS 570 Public History Internship and Project
HIS 580 Thesis 8 Hrs.

Areas of Concentration
To fulfill the requirements for the master’s degree, the student must complete the courses listed for one of the following three areas of concentration.

American History
The American concentration stresses research and study of topics pertinent to the origins and development of the United States, the land, its people, and its place in the world. American concentration requires:
History courses examining methods and applications 4 Hrs.
Courses emphasizing periods, regions, or themes in American history 16 Hrs.
Elective history course (European, world, or public history) 4 Hrs.

Closure requirement: HIS 580 Thesis 8 Hrs.

European and World History
The European and World concentration highlights the research and study of topics in non-U.S. history germane to the interests and specializations of the current faculty. European and World concentration requires:
History courses examining methods and applications 4 Hrs.
Courses emphasizing periods, regions, or themes in
European or world history 16 Hrs.
Elective history course (American or public history) 4 Hrs.

Closure requirement: HIS 560 Position Essay and Historiography
or HIS 580 Thesis 8 Hrs.

Note: The University of Illinois at Springfield does not offer foreign language instruction sufficient to qualify students in the European or World History concentration for admission to most Ph.D. programs.

Public History
The Public History concentration stresses the blending of academic and applied history with intent to broaden public awareness of the value of studying the past. The Public History concentration requires:
HIS 502 Public History Colloquium 4 Hrs.
History courses examining methods and applications 8-12 Hrs.
History courses emphasizing periods, regions, or themes (American, European
and/or World history) 8-12 Hrs.

Closure requirement: HIS 570 Public History Internship and Project
or HIS 580 Thesis 8 Hrs.

During the first semester of study, each student is assigned an initial faculty advisor who assists in defining career goals, selecting courses, and developing an education plan.

Closure Requirements
To attain a master’s degree, the student must complete a closure exercise appropriate to the chosen area of concentration. Candidates must successfully complete 12 hours of core requirements (HIS 501, HIS 503, and HIS 510) before enrolling in credit hours toward the closure requirement (HIS 560, HIS 570, or HIS 580).

The thesis (HIS 580) is a formal written presentation of historical research based on primary sources. The project (HIS 570) derives from an internship served with a historical agency or other entity. The position paper and historiography (HIS 560) is a thorough written examination and evaluation of the essential secondary sources devoted to a specifically defined topic.

The position paper and historiography is offered in the recognition that primary research facilities in European and world history topics pose difficulty of access. The student is encouraged to master the research and analysis undertaken by professional historians in these areas.

In each case, the student will defend the completed exercise before a committee comprised of at least three faculty members (two from the History Department, one from another academic program).

Grading Policy
Students must earn a grade of B or better in all courses counting toward the master’s degree. History graduate students may repeat program courses for grade improvement only once.

Graduate Credit in 400-Level Courses
Graduate students enrolled in 400-level courses are expected to perform at a higher level than undergraduates and to complete extra work as defined by the instructor. Examples of such work include reading and reporting on material in addition to that required of undergraduate students, completing an annotated bibliography in the professional literature of the field, or meeting separately with the instructor to research a specified topic.


Bachelor of Arts, Master of Arts, Undergraduate Minor


Heather Bailey, David Bertaina, Terry Bodenhorn, Cecilia Stiles Cornell, Margot Duley, Elizabeth Kosmetatou, Deborah Kuhn McGregor, Robert K. McGregor, Peter Shapinsky, William H. Siles
Emeritus Faculty: Cullom Davis, Erik Freas, Larry Shiner
Adjunct Faculty: Cindy Nimchuk, Thomas Wood


Phone: 217/206-6779
Email: his@uis.edu
Website: www.uis.edu/history/