**New concentrators: please email your potential new concentration advisor via email for a zoom link to their office hours. Hours and names can be found by clicking HERE.**

The Undergraduate Program in History

History is the study of how societies and cultures across the world change over time. History concentrators learn to write and think critically, and to understand issues from a variety of perspectives. The department offers a wide variety of courses concerned with changes in human experience through time, ranging from classical Greek and Roman civilizations to the histories of Africa, Middle East, the Americas, and Asia. While some courses explore special topics, others concentrate on the history of a particular country (e.g. China or Brazil) or period of time (e.g. Antiquity or the 20th century). By taking advantage of our diverse course offerings, students can engage in and develop broad perspectives on the past and the present.

Student Goals

Students in the History Concentration will:

  • Approach the study of the past from a multicultural perspective
  • Understand the nature of evidence and its relation to different historical methodologies
  • Develop expertise in at least one chronological and geographical field of study
  • Hone their writing abilities
  • Produce a body of original, historical research

**Prospective concentrators should visit the office hours of their prospective concentrator advisor (assigned according to student surname). Please meet with a concentration advisor before filling out the ASK concentration form.**


Basic requirement: A minimum of 10 courses, at least 8 of which must be courses taught by a Brown University History Department faculty member (including their cross-listed courses) and/or courses offered by the Brown History Department (such as those taught by Visiting or Adjunct Professors). Transfer students or study-abroad students who have spent a year or more at another institution must have at least 7 of 10 history courses taught by Brown History faculty or otherwise offered through the Brown History Department.


Courses in the "Premodern" era (P) 2
2 Courses in 3 different geographic regions 6
Field of focus  4
Capstone Seminar  1
Any combination of courses that fulfill the four requirements above for a total number of 10 courses*   
Honors (optional)
3 additional courses related to writing a thesis (one of which, HIST 1992, can count towards your 10 concentration requirements)

*Any HIST course can fulfill two or more of the above requirements. For instance, Professor Mumford's HIST 0233 Colonial Latin America, can count towards fulfilling a Latin America geographic distribution as well as a premodern (P) requirement. Depending on the student, it could also count towards a field of focus and as a capstone seminar.

Cross-listed courses count as "internal" HIST courses

Cross-listed courses have a HIST number and a number from another department and counts towards the required 8 HIST courses. With very few exceptions, cross-listed courses are taught by faculty with an appointment in the History Department. Please see this page for a list of faculty with cross-listed courses.

Two possible "external" courses

Subject to the approval of the concentration advisor, 2 of the 10 required courses may be courses highly relevant to a concentrator's coursework that do no have a HIST number. Always consult your concentration advisor about a non-HIST course you think could count towards concentration requirements.

  • Up to 2 classes without a HIST number can count towards the concentration if:
    • the course is taught by a historian in another department. For example, Professor Robert Lee is a historian, and his course, ETHN 1650B, Asian Americans and the Racial State: Exclusion and Internment, could count as one of the 2 "external" courses; and/or
    • the course is not taught by a faculty member whose PhD work was primarily in the discipline of history, but takes a historical approach and enhances a student's field of focus or coursework in a significant way. 
  • Courses from other Brown departments may not be applied toward the "P" chronological requirement.
  • EXCEPTION: up to 3 "external" classes can count if student spent a year or more away from Brown. 

This partial image from the editable History concentration form shows where the two "external" courses can be accommodated into coursework for a History concentration.

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Fall 2020

Spring 2021

Summer 2021

ENVS 1910 "The Anthropocene: The Past and Present of Environmental Change" Assistant Professor Bathsheba R Demuth


CLAS1130 "The Fragility of Life in Ancient Greece" Graham J Oliver


JUDS 1726 "Jewish Humor and Commercial Entertainment in Early 20th-Century Europe and America" Professor Mary Gluck


JUDS 0050M "Difficult Relations? Judaism and Christianity from the Middle Ages until the Present" Professor Adam J Teller


JUDS 0902 "History of the Holocaust" Professor Adam J Teller


HMAN 1974Q "Revolutionary England, 1642-1660: Civil War, Regicide, and Republic" Professor Tim Harris

JUDS 0050M/ HIST 0930G "Difficult Relations? Judaism and Christianity from the Middle Ages until Present" Professor Adam Teller


JUDS 0050H/ HIST 0930L "Israel's Wars" Associate Professor Rachel Rojanski


JUDS 0066/ HIST 0930B "American Jewish History" Associate Professor Rachel Rojanski


AFRI 1090/ HIST 1930G "Black Freedom Struggle Since 1945" Associate Professor Francoise N Hamlin


ITAL 2550/ HIST 2993 "Gender Matters" Professor Caroline Castiglione (Graduate Seminar)


CLAS 2100G/ HIST 2998 "The World of Late Antiquity" Associate Professor Jonathan Conant (Graduate Seminar)


No Courses

For a list of the Geographical and Chronological designation of our courses, please see this Google Sheet.

In 2015-16, we inaugurated a new numbering system.  You can find the new number of an old course, and see what a newly numbered course used to be called.