THE DEPARTMENT OF HISTORY AT COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY is one of the leading centers of historical scholarship in the world. Our faculty of approximately 50 faculty members -together with colleagues in the Department of History at Barnard College, and historians in other affiliated departments in the University- studies all aspects of human history, from ancient to contemporary societies, across the entire globe. Each year, our community comprises about 200 graduate students and 250 undergraduate majors and concentrators.
The Department of History is also deeply committed to undergraduate education. Many faculty members teach in the College Core, and all faculty members teach undergraduate lectures and seminars in history. Most faculty members regularly sponsor senior theses and independent studies. Our undergraduate curriculum is rich and deep, covering all areas of the world and most periods of written history. Courses explore various methodologies, a wide range of ways of writing history, and different approaches to the past. We emphasize no one approach to history and no single interpretive model. Our principal goals in the undergraduate classroom are to develop the intellectual breadth and deepen the analytical skills of our students.
Columbia has been one of the most important centers of graduate education in history since modern Ph.D. programs began in America over a century ago. Recipients of our degrees hold distinguished positions in virtually every major university in the United States and abroad. Our program offers a broad education in most areas of historical scholarship and attempts to train students for a discipline and a profession in the midst of considerable change; our program not only assists students in acquiring the knowledge and skills essential to becoming contributing scholars, but also helps them to become effective teachers and to exist comfortably within a demanding and complicated professional world.