History Department

SPU students walk across campus together on a sunny fall day

History is the study of the vast record of human experience, the collective memory of humankind. As memory defines selfhood and guides behavior, so history teaches about social identity and responsibility.

Just as memory changes and matures, so does the collective understanding of the past change as new evidence is discovered and new perspectives are developed. Like a detective hunt, the discipline of history teaches us to seek facts, weigh interpretations, and draw conclusions. It requires wide reading, deep thinking, and clear communication.

Historical study at SPU seeks a balanced understanding of world cultures, exploring the roots and development of Western civilization in the ancient and medieval periods, tracing the interaction between the West and the rest of the world, and probing more deeply into American, European, and non-Western history. Along the way, we trace the impact of Christianity in both Western and non-Western settings.

museum of science and industry

Museum Studies

The Museum Studies Track supplements the History major core with coursework that helps you prepare for graduate study and employment in the field of museum studies and public history. (Photo courtesy of Museum of History and Industry (MOHAI).)

Female student on the Fremont Bridge in Seattle, near SPU

Equipping You to Succeed

In collaboration with the Center for Career and Calling (CCC), your history professors will provide oversight of your professional development within the program to help you identify and pursue the career path that will actualize your gifts and passions. Located in Seattle, SPU is uniquely positioned to take advantage of a multitude of internship opportunities in collaboration with leading corporations, governmental agencies and nonprofits to provide you with vital skills and work experience, laying the necessary foundation for success after graduation. The CCC helps you network, meet potential employers, explore different job sites, and secure local internships.