American History (United States)

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About the American History Major

The history of the United States is actually quite short when compared to those of other nations, but that certainly doesn't diminish its value or importance. Known since the early 1900s as a "melting pot," America's powerful history boasts stories of independence, freedom, pride, and many different cultures coming together to form a rich culture and set of customs. As an American history major, you will learn about America's past, both the positives and the negatives, by studying its society, culture, customs, and institutions throughout its entire history.

American history courses generally include curriculum that focuses on American historiography, American history sources and materials, historical research methods, and applications to the study of specific themes, issues, periods, and institutions.  Specialization of the American history major is available at most institutions. Popular areas include African American history, Native American history, military and international history, constitutional history, economic and business history, and gender and women's history. The level of education required depends upon the career route you wish to take. Degrees are offered from undergraduate through PhD levels. 

A variety of career opportunities exist for those with an American history degree. Teaching is a great way to relive history again and again, and opportunities are available at the elementary, middle, and high school levels. Other career paths include anthropology, archaeology, governmental, research, or work as an archivist, curator, historian, or librarian. Programs are also available for students in order to gain life experience through internships or apprenticeships.
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