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Think history is just a bunch of names and dates? Think again. Dordt’s history faculty will show you a new, exciting approach to history. Immerse yourself in various time periods through historical simulations. Discuss and debate how history impacts current events. See humanity in a different light, growing in your empathy and understanding of others.

When you major in history at Dordt, you’ll learn how people’s stories and decisions shape culture and values. And you’ll learn how to understand what’s happening in the world through a uniquely Christian perspective on history.

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Program Overview

Dordt’s history department strives to develop students’ insight into the events and circumstances which have shaped human civilizations. We want to equip students with the skills needed to better understand those processes. Along the way, we hope to help students articulate a Christian interpretation of the meaning and significance of history in the light of God's Word.

Our dedicated faculty commits to providing a learning experience and environment unlike any other. As a history major, you’ll do more than memorize events, dates, and names. You’ll develop a broader understanding of God’s work throughout the course of history. And you’ll see how we can make the future better using what we know of the past.

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What can I do with a major in history from Dordt University?

As a history major, you’ll develop effective research and writing skills through your studies, both of which translate effectively to any career you choose. And your ability to critically analyze events, problems, and solutions will make you invaluable in any job. After graduating, you’ll be ready for a variety of career paths, including public policy, law enforcement, public relations, and museum studies.


Historians are responsible for researching and preserving archival objects and materials.

Museum Archivist

A Museum Archivist deals with the valuable records and documents of a museum.

History Teacher

History Teachers educate students about past events that have occurred both in the US and around the world.

Program Options

History Major

The history curriculum begins with an introductory Western Culture and Worldviews course and continues with a range of survey courses on Latin American, American, European, Muslim, and Far Eastern societies and cultures. Courses span from ancient to contemporary history. You'll select upper-level studies in American and European history, such as U.S. Civil War and Reconstruction or the Modern Middle East. Many courses also offer cross-disciplinary connections with other programs.

To learn more, you can also view the program strengths and learning outcomes for this program.

A degree in history will require students to choose a variety of history courses from a specific selection. Additionally, students must choose an emphasis.

  • Survey of American History: A survey of the main contours of American history from 1750 to the present.
  • Survey of Canadian History: A survey of Canada’s history from the age of discovery and exploration to the present. The various forces and individuals that contribute to the making of Canadian nationhood will be stressed, but due time will also be devoted to the racial and sectional issues that have worked against national unity.
  • History of the Muslim World: A survey of the history of the Muslim world focusing on the Middle East, North Africa, and Southwest Asia. Primary emphasis is on the development and features of Muslim society and culture, the relations between Muslim and Western civilizations, and the sources of tension in the modern Muslim world. Not open to first-semester freshmen.
  • Latin America: A selective survey of the history of Latin America from pre-Columbian times to the present. Attention will be given to the indigenous and colonial origins of Latin American culture and society. Twentieth-century developments will be explored through a series of case studies. Not open to first-semester freshmen.
  • East Asia: The history of East Asia, paying special attention to China, Japan, and Indonesia in the early-modern and late-modern periods. The primary emphasis will be on east Asian responses to the challenges represented by Western ideas, commerce, and imperialism in its various expressions. Not open to first-semester freshmen.
  • Introduction to Historical Studies: An introduction to the basic skills, methods, and resources of historical scholarship including the types of historical literature and scholarship, biblical foundations for historical interpretation, historiographical schools of interpretation, and uses of historical scholarship. Satisfies Core Program writing-intensive requirement.
  • Historiography: This course covers the nature and meaning of history and the nature of the historian’s task and responsibilities. Emphasis is on review and evaluation of the various schools of history and of the philosophies of leading historians.
  • History Seminar–United States History Emphasis: Focuses on writing a research paper about some aspect of the history of the United States. Students select a topic for in-depth study in order to implement and develop various skills learned in previous history courses. Emphasis is on mature evaluation of evidence, developing a historical interpretation in light of a biblical understanding of history, and constructing a narrative depicting the results of research. Open to juniors and seniors only.
  • History Seminar–World History Emphasis: Focuses on writing a research paper about some aspect of world history. The course description and requirements are the same as History 388. Open to juniors and seniors only.
Core classes for the general emphases:
  • Eight additional history courses above 214
    • At least three must be above 300
    • At least two must be from History 202, 301, 306, 307, 308
    • At least three must be from History 220-226, 230, 319, 321, 326, 327, 328, 329, 335

See the course catalog for more information.

Education Emphasis

An Education emphasis is also available with the History program. As you study History you'll also train in education, giving you the tools to teach others.

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Ready to take the next step?

Student Stories

Dordt students and alumni use their gifts to make a difference in the world. Check out their stories to see how Defender Nation lives out our mission to work effectively toward Christ-centered renewal in all aspects of contemporary life.

Thinking Creatively

Amy Vander Vliet

Dordt's effort to develop a comprehensive curriculum rooted in the Reformed perspective prepared Amy for all of the experiences Amy had after graduating.

Amy Vander Vliet

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A student sits on Florida State University's campus

Beginning of Wisdom

Justin Vos

The History department at Dordt taught Justin a variety of different skills and techniques that prepared him to further his education and knowledge in history after college.

Justin Vos

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Submit your information to request more information about Dordt and this program. We'll also use this information to connect you with your admissions counselor!

Related Programs

Still looking for the right fit? Here are some additional program options that we think might interest you or are often paired with this program. You can also view the programs page to keep exploring your options.