Purdue’s approach to the study of history is a fusion of politics, society, culture, gender, race, war, diplomacy, science, and technology. The Department of History is genuinely involved in educating students to think critically, with courses that teach not only what happened in the past but also how the past informs the present. History majors acquire skills in critical thinking and communication.

The department is dedicated to excellence in undergraduate and graduate teaching as well as historical research. The department's faculty members take pride in fostering close working relationships with students and have national and international reputations for research.

What's Next


Upon completion of the program, History majors may choose to enter a field directly or indirectly-related to their studies. Student experiences have included:

  • Cataloger and Archivist
  • Press Secretary
  • Teacher
  • Legislative Assistant
  • Research Assistant
  • Governor’s Fellow
  • Hall Director
  • Technical Recruiter
  • Graduate or Professional School


All Purdue University College of Liberal Arts majors prepare students with the skills identified as contributing to professional success: communicating and listening well, an understanding and appreciation of diverse points of view, creative thinking and problem solving, a collaborative mindset, the ability to synthesize complex ideas and communicate them clearly, and a Boilermaker work ethic.

Within the field of History, students develop skills that are applicable to many different careers. These skills may include, but are not limited to:

  • Ability to conserve and preserve manuscripts, records, and other artifacts
  • Presentation of historical data from a wide variety of sources, such as archives, court records, diaries, news files, and photographs
  • Conduct historical research as a basis for the understanding of identification, conservation, and reconstruction of historic places and materials
  • Ability to research and prepare manuscripts in support of public programming and the development of exhibits at historic sites, museums, libraries, and archives
  • Understanding of data base user interface and query software, desktop publishing software, and document management programs

What's Next

History majors may choose to enter into the workforce using the skills they have acquired at Purdue. They may otherwise choose to attend graduate school to either continue their degree or master in a field related to the skills they have gained from their liberal arts education. Past graduates have gone on to:


Department of History

Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907 (765) 494-4600

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