Social Studies (Secondary Certification)

If your career goal is to teach social studies, you will want to pursue a history major with secondary education certification. The experienced, caring faculty in the Department of History and Political Science will help you choose the combination of study to best meet your personal goals.

Whatever your interests in the field of history, you’ll have opportunities to explore them as you choose courses that cover everything from the great cultures of ancient times to 21st century America. At the same time, you’ll be able to investigate other areas to obtain your social studies certification that will help you make connections and draw conclusions based on what you learn.

Employers highly value the reasoning, analytical and interpretive skills that you will develop as a history major, and you will be well-prepared to begin your career as a teacher of social studies or to continue your studies in graduate school.

What Can I Do With This Degree?

  • Historians in Classrooms: Schools, Colleges, and Universities
    • Primary and secondary education. Preparing for teaching history in either private or public schools at the kindergarten through twelfth grade (K-12) levels requires at least a bachelor’s degree.
    • Higher Education: Graduate work in the discipline of history is a requirement for teaching history at all levels of higher education. In the past some community and two-year colleges, and a few small private or denominational four-year colleges have employed holders of an M.A. degree in history on a permanent full-time basis.
  • Research jobs with a history degree / history major:
    • Researchers -- drawing on their skills in evaluating and analyzing documentary evidence. This can be within museums and historical organizations.
    • Government departments and not-for-profit organizations -- These may be Policy Advisors, who serve as planners, evaluators, and policy analysts, and local historians.
  • Law and Accountancy jobs with a history degree / history majors:
    • Due to their solid foundation in research and analysis, history graduates often pursue careers in law, especially if their degree is combined with political science.
  • Academia and Education
    • Work as a Research Assistant or Researcher at College and University levels is one option, often combined with lecturing work, which might in turn lead to a career as a history professor.
  • Historians in Museums
    • While you may be able to find a museum position with a B.A., you will almost certainly need graduate training to acquire more experience in handling more responsibility. 
    • Curator: A Curator is often a museum’s sole link to the academic community.  It is the curator who coordinates the acquisition and presentation of the museum’s holdings, whether permanent or temporary.  A curator will write up grant proposals, research the market for acquisitions, and supervise how acquisitions are stored and displayed.
    • Museum Education: The museum’s education officer coordinates tours throughout the museum and other educational activities.  The education officer is often responsible for training the guides and volunteers.
  • Historians in Editing and Publishing
    • Considering the students of history spend significant amounts of time working with texts and with books of all sorts, historians are often ideal candidates for the field of publishing.
    • Documentary Editing; Scholarly Publishing.
  • Historians in Archives
    • Archivists arrange, preserve, catalogue, describe and provide access to source collections
  • Historians in Historic Preservation;  Historians in Federal, State and Local History; Historians as Consultants and Contractors.