Bachelor of Arts, a major or minor in Historical Studies.
Since the Fall Semester of 1997, students admitted to Memorial University (MUN) have been able to take a Historical Studies (B. A.) degree at Sir Wilfred Grenfell College. Like most other Arts degrees, this programme consists of 40 courses, normally spread over four years; and, it demands the same general Core Requirements. Most importantly, our degree is unique and specifically tailored to the liberal, multi-disciplinary spirit of Sir Wilfred Grenfell College. This programme however also remains broadly compatible with the existing Memorial University of Newfoundland degree in History. This allows students, who so wish, to choose between completing their Historical Studies or History degree at Grenfell or to transfer their credits between campuses. Students may also enter into an honours year in history at St. John's from Grenfell's programme, if they met the necessary qualifications.
A Note to All Students
The historian seeks to understand the past, not to recite it verbatim. Indeed, memorization is no more important in Historical Studies or History than it is in English, Philosophy, or any other discipline. Therefore, and contrary to popular myth, heroic feats of memory are not required for anyone wishing to study History. Rather, our emphasis is learning about, conceptualizing and interpreting the past.
A Unique Degree
Historical Studies differs from most general degrees in History in that it offers a clear structure and focus as well as ongoing and consistent guidance for students who seek a broad and well-rounded historical education. Foremost, it provides chronological breadth. We insist that students take courses in both "Early" and "Late" history so that no major period in history is ignored. While still offering students considerable choice in course selection, our programme prevents students from graduating with only a narrow range of vaguely connected courses. Furthermore, though our courses do often explore the impact of western societies upon the Third World, we focus on Western History instead of Global History. In these ways, Historical Studies offers its students a clarity of purpose and breadth of view. We maintain a resolutely liberal and inclusive approach to education and expose students to ideas and methods from disciplines other than History, where those disciplines offer insights into the human past. Our ultimate goal is to produce graduates who are truly historically literate and intellectually prepared to fully benefit from the many opportunities which such an education provides them.
Degree Requirements: Highlights
The Historical Studies programme is described in detail in the Memorial University Calendar. What follows is a brief outline of the key components of the degree programme for students taking majors or minors.
Major in Historical Studies
Students will complete 40 courses (3 credit hours per course) including:
- The College Core Requirements (a summary of the Core Requirements is available online, or see the Grenfell Section of the MUN Calendar for specific details).
- History 1100 and History 1101 (two courses which together provide a survey of history from the 14th century to the 21st century, introducing the student to key historical concepts, ideas and events)
- History 3840 (Historical Methods)
- History 4950 (Independent Project in Historical Studies) - See below.
- Four courses from the Early Western History list
- Four courses from the Later Western History list
- Two courses in 4000-level History courses other than History 4950
- Five courses from a long list of specified "Historical Studies" courses in disciplines other than History
- An eight-course minor in one or a balanced combination of two disciplines other than History
Minor in Historical Studies
Students will complete 8 courses (3 credit hours per course) including:
- History 1100 and History 1101
- History 3840 (Historical Methods)
- One course (3 credit hours) at the 3000 level in History
- One course (3 credit hours) at the 4000 level in History
Three additional courses (9 credit hours) in History
Minor in Art History
Students may now wish to take a minor in Art History at Sir Wilfred Grenfell College. Below are the requirements for a minor in Art History:
- Visual Arts 2700 and 2701
- 18 credit hours in Art History at the 3000- or 4000- level
The Historical Studies degree at SWGC culminates with HIST 4950, an independent project. In this course, the student brings together all of his or her learning to write an essay on any topic of his or her choice, providing that the topic is approved by the faculty. The Independent Project allows the student to delve into areas of history that interests or excites him or her that perhaps were only touched on - or not covered at all - in other courses.
For further information about admission to the University or Historical Studies at Grenfell College, please click here.