About Us

Our Mission

The Department of History strives to promote excellence in teaching, learning and scholarship on historical change. The department engages students with a broad range of historical periods, geographic settings, and themes. Students in the undergraduate and graduate programs will learn to analyze critically secondary and primary historical sources, developing the ability to produce evidence based arguments and original research within their chosen field of study. The History Department also sees history as a foundational discipline within the liberal arts and social science traditions, one that develops key research, writing and analytical skills, but also promotes knowledge and memory of the past as essential to an engaged citizenry. The department supports the development and dissemination of primary research by faculty and graduate in peer reviewed and public venues, and understands its research as essential to the development of history as a field of human inquiry. The department places academic freedom at the core of all teaching and research activities, with students and faculty able to explore and disseminate multiple perspectives on the past.

Why Study History?

Studying history will give you research, analytical and problem-solving skills, and hone your writing abilities. But more importantly, Memorial's History Department offers a wide range of appealing courses and exceptional resources.
Memorial's History Department also delivers a variety of the research/writing courses required for the BA degree, courses which not only serve as a foundation for upper level courses in history (which generally have a core essay requirement), but as a basis for many employment opportunities.

Studying history is very practical, because it involves:

  • Learning about people - how they interact, the motives and emotions that can tear people apart into rival factions or help them to work together for a common cause (useful knowledge for team-building at work!)
  • Learning about countries, societies and cultures - so many of today's conflicts and alliances have their roots in the past; how can you negotiate with, trade successfully with, or report on a country if you know nothing of its history?
  • Learning to locate and sift facts - to identify truth and recognise myth, propaganda and downright lies (useful in every aspect of life!)
  • Presenting what you've learned in a way that makes sense to others - whether in graphs, essays or illustrated reports - and having the confidence to defend your findings.

With your degree in history you can be an educator, researcher, communicator or editor, information manager, advocate, or even a businessperson.

Here is a brief list of the career opportunities available to the undergraduate history major:

Historians as Educators

  • Elementary Schools
  • Secondary Schools
  • Postsecondary Education
  • Historic Sites and Museums

Historians as Researchers

  • Museums and Historical Organizations
  • Cultural Resources Management and Historic Preservation
  • Think Tanks

Historians as Communicators

  • Writers and Editors
  • Journalists
  • Documentary Editors
  • Producers of Multimedia Material

Historians as Information Managers

  • Archivists
  • Records Managers
  • Librarians
  • Information Managers

Historians as Advocates

  • Lawyers and Paralegals
  • Litigation Support
  • Legislative Staff
  • Foundations

Historians in Businesses and Associations

  • Contract Historians
  • Historians in Corporations
  • Historians in Nonprofit Associations

For more about career opportunities for history majors in Canada, please visit the Canadian Historical Association's career page.

Other sources: The Historical Association (U.K.) and the American Historical Association.



Department of History

230 Elizabeth Ave, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1B 3X9

Postal Address: P.O. Box 4200, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1C 5S7

Tel: (709) 864-8000