History (B.A.)


With the stroke of a pen, a queen beheads her cousin. By sitting down to order lunch, four young men ignite a national movement. In a speech lasting less than 20 minutes, a young president commits his nation to a 20-year effort to land a man on the moon. Understanding those acts — making sense of them later — is critical to understanding who we are and how we live now. If you have a strong enthusiasm for learning about the past, majoring in history at Clemson will enthrall you. And it will also prove remarkably practical and adaptable to your long-term professional goals. Past graduates of the program have become lawyers, entrepreneurs, teachers, freelance writers, photojournalists, technical writers, purchasing agents, political consultants, military officers, media specialists, airline pilots, sports writers and, of course, history professors. 


  • The history major is one of the most flexible at Clemson and can be tailored to complement your long-term career goals.
  • The history faculty includes prolific authors with diverse specialties, including British history, Vietnam War, Early Hellenistic Period, American Civil War and the Middle East.
  • Hardin Hall is home for Clemson's history students. Built in 1890, the building has been renovated twice, and now includes rooms built in the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries.
  • Academic advising is shared by members of the history faculty and is considered a core activity for the department.


As a Clemson history major, you will receive thorough grounding in the liberal arts and sciences. You will choose humanities classes in fields such as literature, theater, music and foreign language. You will also study the social and natural sciences.

Classes for majors include a wide range of offerings in U.S., European and non-Western history, as well as geography. As a history major you will develop skills in historical analysis, critical thinking, and argumentative communication. You will also have the opportunity to explore specialized areas of the discipline such as digital history, public history and museum studies. Writing is central to this degree, and senior year, you'll take a capstone course in which you produce a major research paper.

You will work closely with your adviser throughout your years at Clemson to map out the courses that will best prepare you for your plans after graduation. For students interested in pursuing a law degree, specialized advising is offered.

Emphasis Area - Our public history emphasis provides a diverse base of coursework designed to introduce you to preservation theory and museology, and incorporate that knowledge into hands-on experiences at historic sites. The emphasis will also provide a broad base of courses relevant to pursuing graduate studies. Our new digital history emphasis focuses on the dynamic new field that integrates computing technology and humanities scholarship. Students will gain foundational knowledge in the digital methods that will increasingly be used by all historians and museum professionals. 

Double Major - The Bachelor of Arts degree with a double major in history and secondary education prepares students for teaching at the secondary school level, as well as for graduate studies in history.

Special Minors - The department also offers specialized minors in Pan-African studies and geography.


Popular Minors

  • Biological Sciences
  • English
  • Political Science


The study of history is often viewed as a solitary endeavor, but as a Clemson history major, you'll find countless ways to get involved with others who share your interests.

 Broaden your historical perspective by engaging with visiting scholars. Opportunities include lectures, symposia, conferences and seminars on topics ranging from Alexander the Great to the Civil Rights Movement.
 Put your knowledge of history to work as you help restore a historical landmark, archive historical artifacts or intern at a historical site.
 Work closely with faculty and other students as part of a small group investigating a topic that interests you.
 Nothing expands your horizons as much as living and studying in another culture. Choose from semester-long and summer offerings around the world.
 Clemson's outstanding students in history are invited to join Phi Beta Kappa, the nation's oldest academic honor society. Among its ranks are 17 U.S. presidents, 38 U.S. Supreme Court justices and 136 Nobel laureates.


Your college decision isn't really about the next four years. We get it. It's about what doors are opened by your degree and whether those opportunities are what you had envisioned for yourself. Here's a snapshot of what life after graduation looks like for some of our most recent students.


  • Management Trainee

    Thompson Industrial Services

  • Adviser

    Sperry Van Ness

  • Assistant Ranger

    S.C. Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism

  • Recruiting Coordinator

    Pionear Recruiting

  • GIS Researcher

    Apple Inc.


  • J.D.

    Vanderbilt University

  • J.D.

    University of South Carolina

  • M.A. History

    Clemson University

  • M.Ed.

    College of Charleston

  • Ph.D.

    University of Chicago


    • Government
    • Politics
    • Law
    • Nonprofit Organizations
    • Curatorial and Archival Management
    • Journalism
    • Broadcast
    • Print
    • Education
    • Teaching
    • Community Education
    • Business
    • Management
    • Sales
    • Office Administration


Have more questions or want more information? Fill out the form below, which goes directly to the following department contact. If you’d also like to receive general University information from Clemson’s admissions office, please follow the link to the right and sign up to join our mailing list.