Baylor University
Department of History
College of Arts and Sciences

Dr. Jeffrey S. Hamilton, Chair Tidwell Bible Building, 2nd Floor, Waco, TX 76798 | 254-710-2667

Undergraduate Course Descriptions

Baylor > History > Undergraduate Program > Course Descriptions
The History Department offers a wide variety of courses, thoroughly covering every major geographic area in the world as well as every major time period. There are several introductory level courses which will give students the necessary background to delve immediately into the more in-depth upper-level courses.

Should a student find that there is a topic of interest in which the History Department does not offer a course, students are allowed to take up to six semester hours of reading courses that will allow students to specialize in an area of his or her interest.

Jump to: 2000 Level Courses | 3000 Level Courses | 4000 Level Courses



Featured Course: HIS 4388 - American Environmental History




1305 | World History to 1500


Prerequisites: None
Principal civilizations of Asia, Africa, Europe, and the Americas from prehistory to about 1500 A.D.,focusing on religious ideas, patterns of economic and cultural development, and artistic and literary achievements of these civilizations, as well as their influences on one another.

1307 | World History since 1500


Prerequisites: None
History of major world civilizations and the growth of the modern global community as well as the spread of ideologies and cultures.

2365 | History of the United States to 1877


Prerequisites: None / Cross-listed as AMS 2365
A chronological, thematic, and analytical study of the political, economic and social, cultural, and diplomatic history of the United States from colonial origins and early nationhood through the era of Reconstruction.

2366 | History of the United States Since 1877


Prerequisites: None / Cross-listed as AMS 2366
A chronological, thematic, and annalistic study of the political, economic, social, cultural, and diplomatic history of the United States from the end of Reconstruction to the present.

2380 | Introduction to Slavic and East European Studies I


Prerequisites: None / Cross-listed as SEES 2380--Primary Department
Basic introduction to the peoples, history, and cultures of the countries covered by Slavic and East European Studies, including the post-Communist states and Eastern Europe, the former Soviet Republics, and the former Federated Yugoslavia up to the mid-1700's.

2381 | Introduction to Slavic and East European Studies II


Prerequisites: None / Cross-listed as SEES 2381--Primary Department
Major events and factors -- e.g., political, economic, and social -- leading to upheaval and change in the area countries from the mid-1760's to the present, with attention to the Bolshevik Revolution in Russia, Stalinism, the creation of the Soviet Empire, the collapse of communism in Central and Eastern Europe, and the transition of post-communist states.

2395 | Historiography


Prerequisites: Six Semester hours of history or consent of instructor
An introduction to ancient, medieval, and modern historiography and the development of the philosophy of history. Consideration will be given to traditional thought about concepts fundamental to history, including the ideas of historical explanation, purpose, cause, and interpretation. Emphasis will be given to methods of historical research and writing. This course may be counted as three hours toward fulfilling the six hours of advanced European history or the six hours of advance American history for history majors; it is required for secondary education majors with a teaching field in history.

2V89 | Introduction to Model Organization of American States


Prerequisites: None
Course prepares students for first-time participation in a Model Organization of American States simulation. Stresses historical and contemporary hemispheric issues.



3305 | Traditional China


Prerequisites: Six semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AST 3305
A survey of Chinese history from its origins to 1700. Treatment of artistic, cultural, economic, literary, political, social, and religious developments in China that have shaped East Asian civilizations.

3307 | Japan


Prerequisites: Six semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AST 3307
A survey of the internal and external forces which have affected the development of Japanese civilization from ancient times to the twentieth century. Emphasis upon political, economic, and cultural developments which have shaped modern Japan.

3308 | Hitler and the Holocaust


Prerequisites: None / Cross-listed as REL 3308
The rise of Adolf Hitler and the policies of war and extermination he pursued before and during World War II, as well as suffering, complicity, and responses of Jews and Christians within and after the Holocaust.

3310 | The Middle East


Prerequisites: Six semester hours of history or consent of instructor
A survey of Islamic civilization, especially under the Umayyad, Abbasid, and Ottoman empires; analysis of contemporary national, and international problems with attention to the historical-geographical and political-geographical elements.

3311 | Middle East History 600-1798


Prerequisites: None
A survey of Middle East history from the rise of Islam to Napoleon's invasion of Egypt in 1798.

3315 | History of West Africa


Prerequisites: Six semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AFS 3315
A study of black African cultures with emphasis on the social, economic, religious, artistic, and political institutions of the states in sub-Saharan West Africa.

3316 | History of Africa to 1900


Prerequisites: Six semester hours of history or consent of instructor
African history from the earliest time to 1900.

3317 | History of Africa since 1900


Prerequisites: Six semester hours of history or consent of instructor
The colonization of Africa and subsequent changes under colonial rule.

3340 | Russia to 1861


Prerequisites: Six semester hours of history or consent of instructor
A study of the historical, social, cultural, and intellectual currents of Russia.

3342 | Russia since 1861


Prerequisites: Six semester hours of history or consent of instructor
A study of society, literature, history and politics, of the Russian Empire, the Soviet Union, and present post-communist Russia.

3344 | History of Modern Germany


Prerequisites: Six semester hours of history or consent of instructor
A survey of the political, cultural, and economic development of German-speaking Central Europe since the eighteenth century.

3353 | Pre-Columbian and Colonial Latin America


Prerequisites: Six Semester hours of history or consent of instructor
A survey of pre-Columbian civilizations in the Americas and an examination of Spanish and Portuguese colonies. Emphasis will be given to Meso-American and Andean civilizations, the creation of colonial society, and the forces leading to the end of political colonialism in Latin America.

3355 | Modern Latin America


Prerequisites: Six Semester hours of history or consent of instructor
A survey of the evolution of Latin American countries since Independence. Emphasis will be placed on economic and social factors influencing national development and contemporary issues such as narcoterrorism, the debt crisis, liberation theology, the rights of indigenous peoples, the ecology, and hyper-urbanization.

3360 | History of the American Presidency


Prerequisites: HIS 2365 and 2366 or consent of the instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 3360
A survey of the presidency and the presidents. Subjects include backgrounds, parties and elections, ratings of presidents, selected case studies, and the vice presidency.

3362 | History of Religion in America


Prerequisites: HIS 2365 and 2366 or consent of the instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 3362
A survey of religion from the period of discovery to the present with emphasis on the diversity of American religion, the origin and development of major denominations, and the interaction of religion and society.

3371 | History of Black Americans


Prerequisites: None / Cross-listed as AMS 3371
A survey of the history of black Americans from their African origins to the present. Emphasis will be given to the economic, social, and political impact of the presence of black people in the American colonies and the United States; attention will be given to the institution of slavery, the emancipation movement, the rise of segregation, black nationalism, and the ideologies and personalities of the civil rights movement.

3380 | History of Texas


Prerequisites: None / Cross-listed as AMS 3381
The political, economic, and social history of Texas in its regional setting in the American Southwest from the period of colonization to the present.



4300 | History of Medicine


Prerequisites: Senior standing or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as MH 4300--Primary Department and PHI 4300
A review of the origins and development of medicine and medical science from prehistoric times to the present. Consideration will be given to the impact of major diseases on civilization and the emergence of successful measures of control.

4305 | Modern China


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AST 4305
A history of China from 1700 to the present that considers cultural, economic, literary, political, social, and religious developments. Emphasis will be given to the late imperial state, the Chinese heritage, and decline, conflict with the West, revolution, and modernization.

4312 | Modern Middle East History


Prerequisites: Upper-level standing
Political, religious, intellectual and social transformations in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

4313 | War and Peace in the Middle East


Prerequisites: None
The interaction of policy, military force and society in the waging war and the quest for peace and security in the Middle East.

4316 | The African Diaspora


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
The history of peoples of African descent in the Diaspora worlwide.

4322 | Ancient Greece


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
Culture and institutions of Archaic and Classical Greece to 323 B.C.

4324 | Ancient Rome


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
Prerequisites: Roman Republic and the rise and fall of the Empire to 565 A.D.

4326 | Early Medieval Europe c. 300-1000


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
Emergence of medieval civilization through the blending of Roman, Christian, and Germanic institutions, customs, and beliefs.

4327 | High Middle Ages, c. 1000-1450


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
A study of the flowering of medieval civilization, with emphasis on the medieval church and the origins of the modern state.

4328 | Medieval Britain


Prerequisites: Upper-level standing and nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
Medieval British history, emphasizing the development of parliament and the common law; the medieval church in the British Isles; the social impact of warfare; the demographic impact of famine and plague in England and Britain.

4329 | The Renaissance and Reformation


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
The political, economic, intellectual, artistic, and religious upheavals in Europe from the thirteenth through the sixteenth centuries and resulting social, political, religious, and cultural changes.

4331 | European Expansion, 1400-1800


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
The development and maintenance of permanent contacts by Europeans with other peoples and cultures around the world between the late Middle Ages and the turn of the 19th century.

4332 | Early Modern Europe


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
A history of Europe from the age of absolutism to the enlightenment. Emphasis will be upon the major political, economic, social, cultural, scientific, and intellectual developments of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.

4333 | French Revolution and Napoleon


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
Background and history of the French Revolution; relatively brief consideration of the effects of the Revolution and Napoleon upon Europe.

4336 | Europe Since World War I


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
Problems of peace making and international organization; rise of Fascism and Communism; background and history of World War II.

4337 | Europe from 1815 to 1914


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
Political, social, and economic development of the European nations from the Congress of Vienna to the outbreak of the First World War; the rise of liberalism and growth of the nationalism; imperialism and the development of the international rivalry.

4338 | Cultural and Intellectual History of Europe through the Seventeenth Century


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
History of ideas and their social and economic background from Classical Greece through the Baroque period. Course includes Greek and Roman philosophy, early Christianity and Scholasticism, the Renaissance, the Reformation, the Scientific Revolution, and the idea of a mechanistic universe. Considerable emphasis on literature; some attention to art and music.

4339 | Cultural and Intellectual History of Modern Europe


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
History of ideas and their social and economic background from the Enlightenment to the present. Course includes study of Enlightenment philosophy (Reason, Nature, God, and Man), romanticism, Democratic theory and Marxism, Idealism, Darwinism, Fascism, and Existentialism. Considerable emphasis on literature; some attention to art and music.

4340 | Special Topics in History


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 4339
Study in a specialized area of history not covered by regular course offering. May be repeated once for credit provided topic is different.

4341 | Tudor-Stuart England


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
The history of Britain under the Tudor and Stuart dynasties.

4343 | France since 1815


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
Major topics in French history from Waterloo to the present day, including the Bourbon Restoration, the revolutions of 1830 and 1848, the Second Empire, republicanism, colonialism, the world wars, and Gaullism.


4345 | Britain in the Nineteenth Century


Prerequisites: Upper-level standing and nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
The political, social and economic history of Britain from the end of the Napoleonic War to the beginning of the First World War.

4346 | Britain in the Twentieth Century


Prerequisites: Upper-level standing and nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
The political, social and economic history of Britain from the beginning of the First World War to the end of the first Blair Government.

4348 | Reading Course in European History


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
A tutorial course for undergraduates with intensive study of a given period or topic in European history. The nature and precise limits of the study will be established after consultation between professor and student. No student may take more the one history reading course in a given semester. A maximum of six semester hours of reading courses may apply toward a history major.

4350 | The History of Gender in Latin American


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as LAS 4351
The changing status of women from pre-Columbian societies to modern Latin America, with emphasis on the last century, emphasizing class and racial stratification, and cultural as well as regional differences.

4354 | Religion & War


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
The dynamic relationship between religion and war throughout American history, focusing on religious myths of American exceptionalism and power, religious justifications for war, and anti-war activism and non-violence. Coverage stresses, but extends beyond, the Christian faith and traditions.

4357 | Inter-American Relations


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor
A history of the evolution of Inter-American relations from colonization to the contemporary development of regional economic blocs. Topics will include relations among the American colonies efforts at unification after independence, the expanding role of the United Sates in hemispheric relations and the Latin-American reaction, and the evolution of regionalism in hemisphere.

4360 | Religion and the Body Politic


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as CHS 4360--Primary Department, PSC 4360 and REL 4360
Theological foundations, historical roles, and political directions of religion in the body politic in the United States. Particular attention will be given to the ways in which religion has been and is involved in the body politic and the political consequences of religion in the life of the nation. Note for undergraduate religion majors. This course or CHS 3339 will be accepted as three elective hours on a religion major, but will not be accepted for a credit on a minor in religion or toward the six hour religion requirement by the University.

4362 | American Colonial History


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 4362
The settlement, growth, and development of Anglo-American colonies in North America. Topics include models of colonization, the development of American individualism, the creating of Atlantic trading systems, the establishment of colonial, political elites and hierarchies, and the social circumstances of women, blacks, and Indians.

4363 | American Revolution and Constitution


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 4363
The creation of an American nation out of thirteen colonies. Topics include the social, economic, political, and ideological roots of the colonists' resistance to the imperial power, the decisions for revolution and independence, the fighting of the Revolutionary War, the Rise and fall of the Confederation, and the drafting and ratification of the Constitution.

4365 | The Early Republic, 1789-1860


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 4365
An overview of the challenges related to creating the new nation of the United States including political, diplomatic, social, economic, and cultural issues and controversies.

4368 | Civil War and Reconstruction


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 4368
Causes, military operations, and the aftermath of the American Civil war.

4369 | Religion in America, 1877-Present


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 4369
Religion in America from the end of Reconstruction to the present. Special attention devoted to religion's intersection with culture and politics and to the growth of religious pluralism in America.

4371 | United States 1877-1920


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 4371
Major economic, social, and political, developments in the United States within the prescribed chronological limits, with secondary emphasis on the rise of the United States as a world power and its involvements in World War I. Primary emphasis given to industrialization, the farmer revolt, the Progressive Movement, and the ramifications of these events in politics and society.

4374 | United States Since 1920


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 4374
Continuation of HIS 4371 with emphasis on the Post-Progressive decade, the Great Depression, the New Deal and domestic developments since the New Deal. Of secondary emphasis is the coming of World War II and the consequent rise and development of the Cold War.

4375 | The American Civil Rights Movement


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 4377
The origins, major events, and legacy of the struggle to gain full equality for African Americans in the century following the American Civil War. Emphasis on the philosophies and strategies employed to realize full citizenship rights for blacks, individual and institutional leadership, the participation of women, the role of religion, and the impact of this social justice movement on the South, the United States, and the world. (Graduate students may not receive credit for both HIS 4375 and HIS 5375.)

4376 | Eastern Perspectives on Church and State


Prerequisites: Upper-level standing Cross-listed as CHS 4376--Primary Department
The theory and practice of "church-state" relations from the "Eastern" perspective. Special attention will be paid to the question of the nature of power and its utilization in both secular and spiritual realms.

4378 | History of the American Woman Since 1865


Prerequisites: None / Cross-listed as AMS 4373
A social, political, economic survey of women in the United States from the end of the Civil War to the present, emphasizing the women's movement and its influence on American society.

4380 | The American West


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 4382
The frontier in American history from early colonial times to the end of the nineteenth century, with emphasis on the significance of the frontier in American history and historiography.

4383 | History of the South


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 4383
Southern culture with three topics in the ante-bellum period and three topics in the post-bellum period.

4384 | American Indian History


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 4384
History of American Indians in the area known as the continental United States from the arrival of the first Europeans to the present day.

4385 | The United States in the 1960's


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 4355
The political, economic, social, and diplomatic development of the United States in the 1960's.

4386 | The City in American History


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 4386
Emergence, expansion, and impact of urban growth in America from colonial times to the present. Emphasis given to the mechanics of city building, the social, economic, political, and cultural dimensions of urban development and the changing image of the city in the minds of the American people.

4388 | American Environmental History


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 4388
Investigation of the physical, social, cultural, and economic relationships between humans and their environment in America from precontact to the present.

4390 | American Foreign Relations to 1919


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 4390
American diplomacy with particular emphasis upon those factors, foreign and domestic, that have influence the making of foreign policies.

4392 | American Foreign Relations since 1919


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 4392
Role of the United States as a great power, with emphasis upon the changing attitudes toward world affairs.

4395 | History of American Thought, 1630-1859


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 4395
Enduring beliefs about attitudes toward the world and themselves held by Americans. Emphasis on patterns of beliefs as bases for assurance and commitment. From Puritans through transcendentalists.

4396 | History of American Thought, 1859 to Present


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 4396
Beliefs Americans have relied on to define and comprehend the world and themselves. Emphasis on what Americans needed and were able to believe in their search for assurance from the naturalism of the Gilded Age to the personal experiential quest of the present.

4398 | Reading Course in American History


Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of history or consent of instructor / Cross-listed as AMS 4398
A tutorial course from undergraduates with intensive study of a given period or topic in American history. The nature and precise limits of the study will be established after consultation between professor and student. No student may take more than one history reading course in a given semester. A maximum of six semester hours of reading courses may apply toward a history major.

4V89 | Advanced Model Organization of American States


Prerequisites: HIST 2V89 / Cross-listed as PSC 4389
Course prepares advanced students for leadership roles in a Model Organization of American States simulation. May be repeated for a total of six credit hours under different topics.