History and Literature Honors (Archive 2018-2019)

History & Literature Honors Major Archive 2018-2019

Students in the History and Literature Honors major read literary, cultural, and historical texts and analyze their usefulness in making sense of the past. Through this interdisciplinary lens, History and Literature Honors majors recognize how history works as an imaginative project, not just an accumulation of facts, and explore the degree to which writers can serve as agents of historical change. Students must complete a major in either History or English and a minor in the other field. They may also double major in History and English. Students are admitted to the History and Literature Honors major by application only, typically in the sophomore year or first semester of their junior year. To complete the major, students must write an Honors thesis in their senior year that integrates their studies of History and Literature.

Major Requirements: 14-15 courses, 56-60 credits

To be considered for honors in History and Literature, a student must satisfy the following criteria:

  1. Prospective majors must seek the approval of the coordinators of the program to undertake this major. Qualifying students must have a 3.5 GPA in the major subject.
  2. Students must complete two classes on methodology. These courses also fulfill a major requirement in each department and may fulfill a minor requirement:




Explores history as an evolving academic discipline, a method of inquiry into the past, and a profession. Students learn historical thinking and research skills that enable them to frame a research question, identify and retrieve required sources, and make an argument about the ideas and actions of past peoples and societies. Required for history majors. Offered annually during Fall term.


WRI-102 or WRI-H103




This course seeks to answer the following questions. What is literature? Why do we study literature? What methods aid the study of literature? What are English Studies all about? This course extends reading and writing skills, and provides more specialized terms, knowledge, and approaches to prepare students for study at the junior and senior level. Topics vary from term to term.

  1. The student must complete one honors seminar in English or History. The honors seminar may fulfill a major or minor requirement.
  2. The student must complete an interdisciplinary honors thesis under the joint direction of one professor in History and one professor in English. To write a thesis, the student should register for HSTLT H555 - Senior Honors Thesis. Normally, the student should undertake one credit of HSTLT H555 in the fall semester of the senior year and three credits of HSTLT H555 in the spring semester of the senior year. HSTLT H555 may fulfill an elective in the major. Any student who completes HSTLT H555 will receive credit for the course; however, projects completed in HSTLT H555 must also be approved by the History and English departments to satisfy the requirement for honors.
  3. The student must provide an oral defense of the honors thesis, to be evaluated and approved by faculty from both departments.
  4. Honors students must finish their coursework in the major and minor with a GPA of 3.5.
  5. In special circumstances (such as the case of transfer students), particular exceptions to the requirements above will be considered.

Interdisciplinary Advising in History and Literature

To facilitate this process, and to help the student select appropriate courses in both departments, the student should seek advising as follows:

1. The student should see the coordinators of the program during advising periods to ensure that departmental requirements and honors requirements for the major and minor are being met. The coordinators will also help the student to identify potential thesis advisors and to coordinate interdepartmental aspects of the program such as the oral defense. Finally, the coordinators will guide the student in selecting courses in the department that are particularly interdisciplinary in approach or that are appropriate to the student's focus. For example, a student may be directed to courses in both departments on American history and literature of the 19th century or on women in history and literature.

2. In writing the History and Literature thesis the student must work with two thesis advisors, one from History and one from English. These advisors will help the student identify a thesis topic and guide him or her through the writing process. They may also help the student to select courses appropriate to his or her research interests.

Residency Requirement Policy: In the College of Arts and Sciences, a two-course (8 credit) residency requirement must be satisfied for completion of a minor and a four-course (16 credit) residency requirement must be satisfied for the completion of a major.

History and Literature Honors Courses Archive 2018-2019

History and Literature Honors Courses


1.00- 4.00


An individual program of reading, research, and writing on an approved topic, under the supervision of two faculty members, one in History and one in English. The completed thesis will be at least 25-30 pages reflecting original research.