Like on-campus programs, online history degrees at the bachelor's level explore past societies and events, as well as their impact on current life. Students may have the option to focus their studies and concentrate on U.S. history or some aspect of world history. Research and writing skills are also emphasized. Online bachelor's degree in history programs are designed to prepare students for graduate studies in areas such as law, public administration, history, politics, business or education.
Most often, students can earn a bachelor's degree in history by completing all of the mandatory coursework online. However, some distance learning programs require that students live within a certain distance of the host institution. A few programs have students finish a minimum number of on-campus credit hours before starting online coursework. In terms of admission, an associate's degree in a history-related field or prior undergraduate credit is sometimes required.
Bachelor's programs in history could take about four years to complete, but this time frame varies based on whether the student transferred in previous college credits and whether the student attends full-time or part-time. Online learning options are available at many public and private four-year universities.
Bachelor's degree programs in history available online typically do not have any special admission requirements beyond the normal expectations for undergraduate students, such as a high school diploma or GED. However, some schools require that prospective students have a certain number of undergraduate college credits already completed, which could be earned within an associate's degree program. Additionally, a school may require that applicants already have some introductory college-level courses in world and American history.
Earning an undergraduate degree from an accredited college or university requires the completion of general education coursework not directly related to a student's major. Many students enrolled in online history bachelor's programs take courses in museum procedures and regulations, historiography and interpreting historical evidence. Some programs allow students to specialize in a specific area, such as military history, music history and business history. Students pursuing an online program in history maintain contact with professors, teaching assistants and peers through various common technologies, such as video conferencing, instant messaging and e-mail. They access lectures, assignments, videos and other learning aids through schools' online classroom environment.
An online undergraduate degree program in history might include the following courses:
- Philosophy in history
- Ancient civilizations
- Pre-revolutionary Russian history
- Naval history
- Current historical issues
Distance learning programs in history, as with campus-based programs, typically culminate with a capstone course requiring students to complete a research project or paper. These usually do not require any on-campus attendance, however.
An online bachelor's degree in history can prepare students for careers in education, government and business. One possible entry-level career for history majors is that of a museum technician. These professionals may answer questions for museum visitors and help curators prepare museum collections.
With additional education and training, aspiring professionals may consider careers in information management, historic preservation and corporate communications. Some individuals with undergraduate degrees in history might enjoy careers as writers, authors or editors. Other possible professions for history majors include the following:
- Political campaign worker
Online bachelor's programs in history offer a variety of specializations, and students can study part-time or full-time. Graduates are prepared for positions in education, teaching and research.