Jul 21, 2024  
2023-2024 Undergraduate Catalog 
2023-2024 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

History Pathway Guide

Click here for more information about transferring to SMU.

Preparation for Transfer as a History Major

The following sequences are suggested courses to take in your semesters prior to transferring to SMU as a history major. For students attending a Texas public community college or university, Texas Common Course Numbers (TCCNS) are listed. If you are transferring from a college or university outside of Texas, click on the SMU course for a course description which may be used to select/compare courses at your current institution.

CC listings refer to SMU’s Common Curriculum, which all undergraduates are required to complete. Refer to the Common Curriculum Transfer Guide  for a list of courses satisfying CC components. Interactive equivalency guides organized by transfer institution are available on the Transfer and Transition Services’ website.

Save all of your course syllabi! The History Department might ask for them to consider your courses for the history major.

Preparing for a Smooth Transfer

A seamless transfer to SMU and the History program requires planning. This guide is designed to assist you in planning your transition. Taking the time to prepare for your move lays the best foundation for success. The following are a few important points to remember:

  • The second language requirement of the Common Curriculum  may be satisfied by 1) transferring two terms of college courses in the same world language, 2) placing out of four terms of world language by taking an SMU placement test or through AP or IB credit, or 3) being literate in a native language other than English.
  • SMU accepts AP scores of 4 or 5.
  • Work on the Common Curriculum  prior to transfer is highly encouraged.
  • Compare Course Descriptions  found in SMU’s University Catalog to course descriptions at your current institution to maximize your awarded transfer credits.
  • For additional information on the History major, visit our department homepage or call 214-768-2984
  • For more information about transferring to SMU, click here or call 214-768-3417.

B.A. in History

SCHs = Semester Credit Hours

First Year

WRTR 10XX - First Year Writing I ENGL 1301 3
HIST 2312 - Unfinished Nation: U.S. History Since 1877   HIST 1301 3
CC Math Course Choose One: MATH 1324, MATH 1332, MATH 1325, MATH 1425, MATH 2413, MATH 2320, MATH 1342, BUSN 2305 3
CC Breadth Course - Creativity and Aesthetics Choose One: ARTS 1301, ARTS 1316, ARTS 2316 , ARTS 2326, ARTS 2333, ARTS 2346, ARTS 2356, DRAM 1351, HUMA 1315, MUSI 1306 3
World Language Course* 4
  SCHs 16
Spring TCCN SCHs
WRTR 10YY - First Year Writing II ENGL 1302 3
PLSC 1340 - Introduction to Comparative Politics   GOVT 2371 3
CC Breadth Course - Historical Contexts Choose One: ARTS 1303, ARTS 1304, HIST 2321, HIST 2322 3
CC Breadth Course - Social and Behavioral Sciences Choose One: ANTH 2351, GOVT 2305, GOVT 2371, PSYC 2301, PSYC 2314, PSYC 2319, SOCI 1301 3
World Language Course* 4
  SCHs 16

Second Year

HIST 2365 - Europe in the Modern World, Renaissance to 1760  (if available)   3
CC Breadth Course - Literary Analysis and Interpretation Choose One: ENGL 2321, ENGL 2322, ENGL 2323, ENGL 2326, ENGL 2327, ENGL 2328, ENGL 2331, ENGL 2332, ENGL 2333 3
CC Breadth Course - Exploring Science Choose One: BIOL 1406, BIOL 1407, BIOL 1408, BIOL 1411, BIOL 2401, BIOL 2402, CHEM 1405, CHEM 1411, CHEM 1412, ENVR 1401, ENVR 1402, GEOL 1401, GEOL 1403, GEOL 1405, GEOL 1445, PHYS 1401, PHYS 1402, PHYS 1403, PHYS 1405, PHYS 1404, PHYS 1407, PHYS 1415, PHYS 1417, PHYS 2425, PHYS 2426 4
Second major, minor or elective courses 6
  SCHs 16
Spring TCCN SCHs
HIST 2366 - Europe in the Modern World, 1760 to the Present  (if available)   3
CC Breadth Course - Philosophical, Religious and Ethical Inquiry Choose One: PHIL 1301, PHIL 1304, PHIL 2303, PHIL 2306 3
CC Breadth Course - Technological Advances and Society Choose One: COSC 1301/1401, BCIS 1305, COSC 1309 3
Second major, minor or elective courses 6
  SCHs 15


*The second language requirement may be satisfied by (1) transferring two terms of college courses in the same world language, (2) placing out of four terms of a world language by taking an SMU placement test or through AP or IB credit, or (3) being literate in a native language other than English.

The History Program

The study of history offers students an opportunity to investigate the past, gain perspective on the present, and develop their critical faculties. History provides students a sense of human development and interrelatedness, and an understanding of social processes.

The William P. Clements Department of History offers small classes, usually 25 to 30 students. Junior seminars (12 students per section) provide intense training in research and writing. Our 24 faculty members specialize in fields including North America, Latin America, Europe and the non-Western world. The department’s courses include rich offerings in ethnic and women’s studies and in the history and culture of the American Southwest.

Symposia and Research

The Stanton Sharp Lectures and Symposia are supported by Ruth Sharp Altshuler, honoring her son Stanton Sharp. Inaugurated in 1991, the Sharp events bring to the SMU campus some of the nation’s most distinguished scholars for lectures, discussions and interaction with students, faculty and members of the community. The Sharp Endowment also enhances faculty research and teaching. 

In addition, the William P. Clements Center for Southwest Studies promotes research, publishing, teaching and public programming in a variety of fields related to Texas, the American Southwest and the U.S. - Mexico borderlands. 

The Center for Presidential History seeks to advance understanding of the history of the American presidency through research and the Collective Memory Project.

Majoring in History

A total of 33 credit hours in history are required for the major, with at least 18 credit hours in courses at the 3000 level and above. Students must complete 18 hours of advanced coursework (3000 level and above) in the major in residence at SMU. Students must take at least six credit hours in American history, six credit hours in European history, and six credit hours in African, Asian, Latin American or Middle Eastern history. 

All history majors are required to take HIST 4300 - Junior Seminar in Research and Writing , and HIST 4390 - Senior Seminar in Research and Writing HIST 4300 - Junior Seminar in Research and Writing  counts as three hours of the 18 advanced hours required for the major, but it cannot be counted toward area distribution requirements for the major. HIST 4390 - Senior Seminar in Research and Writing  counts as three hours of the 18 advanced hours required for the major, and counts toward either the area distribution requirements or the electives for the major.

All advanced courses taken for the major must be passed with a grade of C- or better. History majors must earn 2.000 minimum GPAs in their history coursework and may not take history courses pass/fail. 

Six credit hours of Advanced Placement (AP) credit can be applied toward the history major if the students received a four or higher on AP history exams in European history or American history.

For more information on the major, contact the director of undergraduate studies: HistoryDUS@smu.edu.

Minoring in History

Students with a general interest in history may pursue a minor by taking fifteen semester hours of departmental coursework. Nine semester hours must be taken at the 3000 level or above. Students can earn six credit hours towards the history minor if they received at least a four on an AP history exam.

SMU Degree

A degree from SMU is typically comprised of a minimum of 120 hours, 60 of which must be completed through SMU, 42 of which must be in courses at the 3000 and higher levels. Components of the degree include:

  • Courses in your major.
  • Courses required for the Common Curriculum (CC) .
  • Elective courses. These electives may be used to add a second major or minor.

The Common Curriculum (CC)

The Common Curriculum is required of all undergraduate students and consists of three main components: 

  1. Foundations - 6 hours of Writing courses, 3 hours of Quantitative Reasoning courses, proficiency in a second language. 
  2. Breadth - 7 Breadth courses which may double count with majors and minors.
  3. Proficiencies and Experiences - 8 Proficiencies and Experiences requirements, met through coursework or approved, noncredit activities.

NOTE: If you transfer with 23 or fewer credit hours and/or transfer in your first year out of high school, transfer work earned prior to high school graduation (dual/concurrent credit) will not satisfy CC requirements.


Apply Now!

Click here for more information about transferring to SMU.