Skip to Local Navigation
Skip to Content
California State University, Long Beach
CSULB Catalog Banner
Print this page Add this page to your favorites Select a font size Select a small font Select a medium font Select a large font


College of Liberal Arts

CSULB students walk on campus

History - Programs

Bachelor of Arts in History (code HISTBA01) (120 units)


Majors must take 48 units of history: 9 lower-division and 39 upper-division.

1. Core: 15 units. All majors must take HIST 301 and 302 with a grade of "C" or better; HIST 499 and one history course that fulfills the gender, race, and ethnicity requirement (from a list of approved courses available from the Undergraduate Advisor). HIST 301 MUST be taken in the first semester of upper-division course work in the major. HIST 301 is a prerequisite for 302, and both courses are prerequisites for 499.

2. Fields of emphasis: 18 units. All majors have the option of specializing in two or three fields. Option one: two fields of nine units each. Option two: three fields of six units each. The fields are:

  • A. Africa and the Middle East
  • B. Ancient and Medieval Europe
  • C. Asia
  • D. Latin America
  • E. Modern Europe (Including Britain)
  • F. United States
  • G. World

3. Breadth: 6 units. Majors must take six units in a field (or fields) of history outside of their fields of emphasis.

4. All majors must develop a portfolio (beginning with HIST 301) reflecting their work in the History major. The portfolio will be evaluated as one of the requirements in the senior seminar, HIST 499. Prerequisites for HIST 499 are completion of HIST 301, 302, and 18 units of upper-division work in the major.

NOTE: History majors are strongly encouraged to include the study of foreign language and literature in their programs. Students working for a single-subject credential in secondary education must consult with the College's secondary education advisor as to the applicable credential major requirements.

Honors in History

Students with a major in history may be admitted to the History Department honors program (option of the University Honor’s Program) provided they have:

  1. Completed at least 30 semester units of college- or university-level courses, including at least two history courses;
  2. A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.3, and a 3.5 in history courses;
  3. Submitted to the department honors committee chairperson two letters of recommendation from faculty members;
  4. Received admission approval from the departmental honors committee.

Students who have the minimum GPA requirements established by the University Honors Program (3.0 overall and 3.3 in the major, but who do not meet History departmental GPA requirements above may petition the department honors committee for conditional admission to the Department Honors Program).
In order to graduate with Honors in history a student must:

  1. Complete all regular requirements for the history major;
  2. Complete 3 units in HIST 501;
  3. Complete 3 units in HIST 498H: Honors Research;
  4. Complete 3 units of HIST 499H: Honors Thesis;
  5. Complete 6 units of additional course work chosen in consultation with the Department Honors Advisor; such courses normally will require two analytical papers or a research paper on a honors level of performance;
  6. Have at the time of graduation a cumulative GPA of at least 3.3 and a GPA of at least 3.5 in history.
    Students admitted to the program must maintain a file in the University Honors Program which will include copies of proposals for 498H and 499H.

Oral History Program

This program, housed in the Department of History, is designed to teach and train history students in the use of materials that focus on largely unwritten sources. History majors, and social science credential students with a history concentration, are urged to take the one-unit workshop. Students in these workshops learn how to design an oral history project, and to conduct interviews. Workshops are especially helpful for students interested in local history, the history of the family, and communities whose written records have not been included in traditional historical materials.

Minor in History (code HISTUM01)

A minimum of 21 units which must include:

  • Lower Division: A minimum of six units, which must include a six-unit sequence from the following: HIST 211 and 212, 131 and 132.
  • Upper Division: A minimum of 12 units, which must include at least six units in each of two areas as defined for the major.

Minor in Jewish Studies (code HISTUM02)

The Minor in Jewish Studies consists of a minimum of 19 units. Jewish Studies encourages undergraduate students to acquire the academic breadth and depth to comprehend the major issues, themes, and concepts of a culture and heritage that has had a distinct impact on world civilization. The interdisciplinary minor consists of courses in a variety of disciplines, including literature, history, religion, geography, Hebrew language, and politics. Students will expand their understanding of the broader dynamics of the Jewish experience through different eras and geographic settings, both in Israel and the Diaspora.


  1. Required core courses: HEBW 101A, HIST 470, R/ST 314;
  2. Three units from the following elective courses: CWL 342, HIST 431, R/ST 311;
  3. Six units from the following elective courses: GEOG 309I; HIST 304, 432; POSC 367; R/ST 315.

Minor in Latin American Studies (code HISTUM03)

This minor offers students majoring in any subject an opportunity to supplement their education focusing on interdisciplinary study of Latin America. The flexible program of study is ideal for students interested either in intellectual enrichment or professional development in their major. Courses used to meet this minor requirement may be counted also, where applicable, toward General Education requirements, and the major or minor requirements of the cooperating departments.


  • 1. Requirements for the Latin American Studies minor:
    • A. Successful completion of two college intermediate level courses in Spanish, Portuguese or any other language appropriate to student’s area of concentration or equivalent fluency as determined by program advisor.
    • B. Consultation with program advisor, including formal declaration of minor, and application for graduation.
  • 2. Completion of 21 units distributed as follows:
    • A. Core (required of all students) 3 units. Choose either LAS/HIST/SOC 161 or SPAN 445.
    • B. Electives: 18 additional units from the following courses, selected from at least two disciplines:
      ANTH 323, 324, 345, 440*, 490*, 499*; AH 457/557, 458/558, 459/559 CHLS 352, 380, 395, 400, 420, 490*, 499*; CWL 440, 499*; ECON 490*, 499*; FEA 302C; HIST 362, 364, 366, 461, 462, 463, 490*, 495*, 498*; LAS 161/HIST 161/SOC 161; POSC 358, 481, 497*, 499*, SOC 341, 490*, 499; SPAN 341, 441, 445, 490*, 492, 495*, 550
      • *Special Topics and Independent Study courses in the area of Latin American Studies (including Short Term Study Abroad) must be approved by the advisor.

Minor in Middle Eastern Studies (code HISTUM05)

This minor encourages undergraduate students to acquire a broad and interconnected understanding of the dynamics of Middle Eastern societies, cultures, and histories by taking courses in a variety of disciplines including History, Arabic language, Political Science, Geography, Art History, International Business, and Religious Studies. Expands understanding of major issues, themes, and concepts associated with a complex and diverse region as Middle East.


A minimum of 18 units.

Core Required Courses

Minimum twelve (12) units: At least three (3) units must be in History of the Middle East and four (4) units must be in Arabic.*

ARAB 101A, 101B, 201A, 201B, 250; HIST 416/516, 418/518, 431/531, 432/532; R/ST 331I; POSC 367.

Elective Requirements

Must take a minimum of six (6) additional units, selected with an advisor, from the following courses without repeating courses from the core:

ARAB 101A, 101B, 201A, 201B, 250; ART 465/565; CWL 104, 402/502; GEOG 309I; HIST 393, 394, 416/516, 418/518, 428, 431/531, 432/532; POSC 367; R/ST 331I, 490**.

Three (3) of these units may be taken from the following courses, which have a global and comparative perspective, without repeating courses from core: CBA 300; WGSS 401I; CDFS 410; R/ST 102, 448/548; HIST 495**.

  • *Other languages of the Middle East may be substituted with the approval of the Director of the program.
  • **Only topics courses relevant to the minor will be accepted.

Master of Arts in History (code HISTMA01)


  1. A bachelor’s degree in history with an overall 3.0 GPA or higher or
  2. A bachelor’s degree with 24 units of upper-division courses in history. These courses must be comparable to those required of a major in history at this University. Deficiencies are determined by the graduate advisor after consultation with the student and after study of transcript records.


The Master of Arts in History is a program of 30 minimum units as defined below.

Core Courses required of all students: HIST 501, 590

Options for Field of Study

The fields are Africa and the Middle East, Ancient/Medieval Europe, Asia, Latin America, Modern Europe, United States, World.

Option One

For Students pursuing one field of concentration.18 Units of graduate level coursework (500/600 numbered courses) in the student’s field of concentration.

18 units must include: HIST 510 in the field, HIST 510 outside the field; Research Seminar if offered (for example, HIST 611 [ancient/medieval], 631 [Europe], 663 [Latin America], 673 [US], and 682 [East Asia]).

Option Two

For students pursuing two fields of concentration. 9 units of graduate level coursework (500/600 numbered courses) in each field. Nine units must include: two 510s, one in each field; Research Seminar in the field of concentration (for example, HIST 611 [ancient/medieval], 631 [Europe], 663 [Latin American], 673 [US], and 682 [East Asia]).

Electives applicable to all students:

Six units of electives of graduate (500/600) coursework in History or supporting disciplines relating to the student's Field(s) of Concentration. Upon written approval of the Graduate Advisor, students may substitute three to six units of upper-division (300/400) coursework in History or supporting disciplines relating to the student's Field(s) of Concentration. Graduate students who wish to enroll in double-numbered (400/500) courses must take the 500-level course.

All Students

The courses for Special Preparation (595), Directed Study (695), Directed Research (697), and Thesis (698) may be applied to the 18 unit total only with the permission of the graduate advisor. A student may propose a field other than those cited above with the consent of the Graduate advisor and her/his graduate committee.

A reading knowledge of a foreign language may be required, depending upon the candidate’s program of study as recommended by her/his graduate committee.

Advancement to Candidacy

Students should see Graduate Advisor to file Advancement to Candidacy after at least 6 units but no more than 15 units of graduate coursework are completed.

Must have taken 501 as well as have passed the Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement (GWAR) or appropriate designated course. The Writing Proficiency Exam (WPE) is administered several times every academic year by the University Testing Office. Must be attempted in the first semester of graduate work and passed by the time of advancement. Exam may be waived if earned a 4.0 or higher on Writing portion of GRE.

Advancement must take place at least two semesters prior to taking Comprehensive Exams or completing the Thesis. Comprehensive Examination Approval Form or Thesis Committee Agreement Form must be filed with department at time of Advancement. At this point, a student must commit to taking exams or writing a thesis. Advancement to Candidacy is a formal contract listing courses student has taken, is taking, and will take. Changes to contract may be made in consultation with Graduate Advisor.

Culminating Project

Students must take either Comprehensive Exams in one field (two periods) or in two fields, or write a Thesis on one field or incorporating two fields to culminate their Master's Degree in History.

Comprehensive exams require filing a Comprehensive Examination Approval Form with the department.

Completion of a thesis: a thesis requires filing a Thesis Committee Agreement Form and enrolling in HIST 698 with the thesis advisor for four (4) units.

All candidates for the M.A. degree in history who have selected to write a thesis must demonstrate competency in one foreign language. Exceptions are granted only with the approval of the chair of a graduate student’s committee and the Graduate Advisor.

The language competency requirement may be met in three ways:

  1. Through an examination by a faculty member with expertise in the student's language. The exam will be a translation of about a 500-word text to be completed in two hours; a dictionary is allowed.
  2. By taking the equivalent of two full years of university level foreign language courses, with an average GPA of 3.0 in those courses. If the primary concentration is in Ancient/Medieval, a student may also fulfill this requirement by taking one year of Greek and one year of Latin. All course work completed must be within five years of admission to the graduate program.
  3. By taking and passing the Educational Testing Service Graduate Foreign Language Exam.