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 First Year

Students very sensibly wonder whether a degree in Historical Studies can lead to an attractive and well-paying career. The answer is a resounding "yes". Such careers, however, are based more on the conceptual, research and writing skills that a degree programme in history will develop rather than the factual information that a student accumulates. Such an intellectual background works to the advantage of the student. For the analytical skills acquired in studying history are universal, whereas the particular knowledge from individual courses is not.

What is our "teaching philosophy"?
What constitutes Historical Studies?

Find out more about the value of studying history based on what noted Canadians and Newfoundlanders have told us:

"History is so fascinating (unlike algebra and chemistry, which will never change.
-- Allen Fotheringham, "Why history is better than algebra," Financial Post, June 23, 1997

"Of course it's vital to so many things--not the least of which is what I try to do for a living. I wish only that I'd spent more time with it as an undergraduate, and not had to struggle to make up for my inattention later on, when I realised what I'd missed."
-- Peter Gzwoski

"You can certainly quote me as saying that people should not involve themselves in history for any particular reason. I do it because I am absolutely fascinated by it and it is good fun . . . history gives me more of a kick than almost anything else that I can think of.
-- Farley Mowat

"Whether it is just with respect to how to live or where we live or the state of government, society and politics at this time a knowledge of the history leading up to the present circumstances is absolutely essential . . . The knowledge of all of this will certainly help the person get a thinking job, if not just any job."
--John C. Crosbie, lawyer and ex-politician

A strong background in history can lead to a career in education, law, journalism, the diplomatic corps, the civil service, communications, parks and tourism, and numerous other areas.

Our "teaching philosophy" for first-year students is reflected in the following principles.

We strongly recommend that all undergraduate students take Hist 1100/1101 as a way of introduction to the discipline. Not only will a student receive background on themes of historical importance (i.e., revolution, social and economic change, discovery), but he or she will also learn solid research and writing skills which are transferable to other disciplines and to the workplace.

We encourage our first-year to specialize (or major) in historical studies or to consider taking an historical studies cognate minor. This minor of eight courses can enhance a degree in English, Social/Cultural Studies, Fine Arts and the Humanities.

What constitutes historical studies?

  • Western civilization
  • British history
  • Canadian history
  • History of imperialism
  • Medieval History
  • Women's history
  • Historical theory and methods
  • Folklore in history
  • Cultural and literary history
  • Greek and Roman history
  • Environmental history
  • Newfoundland history
  • Ethnohistory of native people
  • Historical sociology
  • Military history
  • Local history
  • History of social welfare
  • Other varieties of history


street address:

Grenfell Campus
Memorial University

20 University Drive
Corner Brook, NL
A2H 5G4

mailing address:

Grenfell Campus
Memorial University

PO Box 2000
Corner Brook, NL
A2H 6P9

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