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History Honors Program

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Students in the History Honors Concentration have the exciting opportunity to pursue their own research while working closely with a faculty mentor. Past participants have found it to be highly rewarding to spend time learning about a topic of personal interest, an invaluable immersive experience for their intellectual development. Course offerings include unique and challenging opportunities, like Dr. Lynn Sacco’s “Dolly’s America” that has recently been featured in Rolling Stone and the New York Times.

For any student who plans to apply to graduate programs, participating in this program is crucial. Graduate admissions committees like to see that prospective students have had experience doing original research and writing a substantial paper. In addition to history graduate programs, our honors students have gone on to pursue a variety of careers in law, teaching, and the corporate world. They have found that the experience and skills they gained while working independently on their research projects helped them succeed after they left UT.

The Requirements

All declared history majors with strong faculty recommendations or an overall GPA of at least 3.25 are invited to try out the honors curriculum. Of the 24 upper-division hours required of a history major, honors concentrators must complete four honors-level courses (12 credits):

  • Two honors courses (6 credits)—any combination of:
    • HIST 267 or 268 – Honors: A History of World Civilization
    • HIEU 247 or 248 – Honors: Development of Western Civilization
    • HIST 307 – Honors: Introduction/Historical Problems
    • Honors-by-Contract, 3-credits (by petition/special arrangement)
  • The 2-semester seminar sequence for thesis writers, led by the Honors Coordinator:
    • HIST 407 – Honors: Senior Paper (a preparatory course offered every Spring)
    • HIST 408 – Honors: Senior Paper (to aid in completing the thesis in the Fall

A grade of B or above must be maintained in all honors courses, along with an overall GPA of 3.25. For more information about the concentration, contact Dr. Kristen Block (email: kblock3@utk.edu), or fill out and submit the attached form: History Honors Interest Form

  •  2016-2017 Honors Theses
    • Taylor Black, “Black Spiritual Liberation and the Politics of Force in Reconstruction Tennessee, 1865-1870.” Mentor: Dr. Luke Harlow
    • Emma Evans, “Turning the Tide: How the USS Nautilus’s Trip to the North Pole Transformed America’s Cold War Propaganda Into a Popular Culture Phenomenon.” Mentor: Dr. Vejas Liulevicius

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