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Why should you study history at Sacred Heart?

Albert Einstein once said that a college education was not primarily about learning facts but about “training of the mind to think.” As a major, you will explore American history with primary sources and discover an appreciation for societies other than your own. The higher thinking skills we teach are transferable to a wide range of professions including teaching, law, government, the pursuit of research graduate degrees, and business management. An article in the Los Angeles Times shows that mid-career salaries of history majors are on par with those holding a business bachelor’s degree, and this does not include those who went on to law or graduate school.

Today everyone has access to more data than they can ever consume, but we will teach you how to critically evaluate the significance and utility of large amounts of information from contemporary sources and from the analyses of historians. You will also gain the confidence to conduct self-directed learning and define your own research questions and goals. As a history major, you will have the opportunity to produce a senior thesis project for your employment portfolio to demonstrate your ability to work with large amounts of information to formulate a focused historical question and an argument in response, and use relevant evidence to support that argument. Most importantly, you will be able to express and defend your argument orally and in writing. There is no employer who does not want someone with these skills. Come join our faculty who offer courses that explore the histories of the U.S., Europe, Latin America, East Asia, and Ancient Greece and Rome.

More History opportunities at SHU

Program Offerings

In addition to the major and minor, multi-disciplinary minors are available in:


History is the systematic, critical study of the past. It seeks to understand and explain the course of human development, that we may better comprehend the path that has led to the present, with the understanding that the present itself is inextricably linked to the past and future. Historians gather, evaluate, and organize evidence, creating a coherent explanatory narrative. The craft of history develops a variety of abilities, including research, critical thinking, problem-solving, and the clear presentation of ideas. These skills have general application to many fields of endeavor. In addition, the breadth of knowledge imparted by a major in history creates a cosmopolitan perspective much sought after in today's interconnected world.

Latest News

Frederick Douglass and Ireland: The Making of a Human Rights Champion

January 24, 2019

SHU in Dingle, the Department of History and the Isabelle Farrington College of Education and the Human Journey Colloquia Series present “Frederick Douglass and Ireland: The Making of a Human Rights Champion” on Wednesday, February 13, from 3:30 – 4:45 p.m. in the Schine Auditorium at Sacred Heart University, 5151 Park Avenue, Fairfield. The guest speaker will be Christine Kinealy, Ph.D., director of Ireland’s Great Hunger Institute at Quinnipiac University. The event is free and open to the public.

Sacred Heart History Professor Awarded Fellowship in Germany

November 26, 2018

David K. Thomson, assistant professor of history at Sacred Heart University, recently received a 2019 Obama Fellowship at the Obama Institute for Transnational American Studies at the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz in Mainz, Germany.

Professor David Thomson to Participate in History Seminar on the Civil War and American Memory

April 6, 2018

Sacred Heart University is pleased to announce that History Professor David K. Thomson, Ph.D., is one of a select group of faculty members nationwide chosen by the Council of Independent Colleges (CIC) and the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History to participate in a special American history seminar on “The Civil War and American Memory.” The seminar for faculty members in history, political science, and related fields is especially important for those who may be called upon as resources and experts when questions arise over what should be done with controversial historical statues and markers on their campuses and in their communities. From a pool of 58 highly competitive nominations, 25 faculty members were selected to participate in the seminar, which will be held June 10–14, 2018, at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut.