William & Mary


St Andrews and William & Mary offer similarly demanding and prestigious undergraduate programs in  History. Undergraduates pursuing a joint degree in History will benefit from the complementary attractions of these two high-quality programs. St Andrews has great strengths in the study of medieval and early modern Europe, in the history of Scotland, England, and the British Empire, and in Middle Eastern studies. William & Mary has a robust concentration in the history of early America, nineteenth-  and twentieth-century America and Europe, with strong offerings in early modern Europe, Latin America, Africa, and Asia. In addition to the opportunity to concentrate intensively in a particular field at our two universities, students in the joint degree program find their experience enhanced by exposure to two different pedagogical approaches, as the lecture- and discussion-based courses at William & Mary contrast effectively with the quite traditional approach of small seminar-based Honours courses at St Andrews. Students culminate their education with a significant research project geared towards producing a sophisticated work of high-caliber scholarship.

Requirements for Degree:

Required Credit Hours: A minimum of 54, 45 of which (180 in St Andrews equivalents) must be taken in courses numbered 300 or above.

Core Requirements:
  • Two courses in American history, which together offer significant chronological coverage (6 credits at W&M; 40-60 credits at St Andrews).
  • Two courses in European or Scottish history, which together offer significant chronological coverage (6 credits at W&M; 40-60 credits at St Andrews). Students are strongly encouraged, though not required, to take courses in both European and Scottish history.
  • Two courses in non-Western history, which together offer significant chronological coverage (6 credits at W&M; 40-60 credits at St Andrews).
  • One upper-level class designated as a colloquium at W&M. Each colloquium has the letter “C” directly after its course number (for example, HIST 490C). Students will ordinarily take this in years 3 or 4.
  • A historical methods course, to be taken in Spring semester of the second year (at St Andrews, HI 2001: “History as a Discipline”; at W&M, HIST 290, “The Historian’s Craft”).
  • All joint degree students complete a fourth-year capstone experience which involves extensive, independent, faculty-mentored research. For students spending their fourth year at W&M, this typically takes the form of an Honors thesis (6 credits at W&M). For students spending their fourth year at St Andrews, it will be a Senior Honours Project (30 credits at St Andrews).

In addition, the Joint Degree in Historyrequires extensive coursework in a foreign language (Arabic, German, Italian, French, Latin, Russian, or Spanish). Students will typically take one language class during all eight of their semesters.  The language and culture/area studies concentrations currently offered have been chosen because both institutions offer sufficient classes to meet the program requirements. If changes in curricular offerings allow other language/area studies to meet these requirements, they will be added to the list of approved tracks.

  • Students must successfully complete at least one language course/module in every semester (or, at least, no fewer than eight overall).
  • These classes must be taken in one language; they must build onto each another; and they must, in years three and four, include four advanced classes in the target language (60 StA/12 W&M credits or equivalent), typically at or above the 300/3000-level.
  • Advanced language courses/modules must be delivered in the target language (Latin being an exception) to count towards the total
  • Summer language classes offered by W&M or St Andrews can be counted toward the total number of credits and courses/modules with the advisor’s advance approval.
  • Other than French and Italian, all other approved languages may be begun at either the elementary level (i.e., from scratch) or at the intermediate level.  French courses must be at the W&M 205 level or higher because St. Andrews requires A-levels in French; this means students wishing to study French must enter W&M with four credit years of high school French or have received a 4 or a 5 on the French Language or French Literature AP exam.  Students wishing to study Italian must start at ITAL 101.  Because of limitations on W&M upper-level Italian offerings, Joint Programme students will typically spend their third year at St. Andrews, where they will take three Italian modules, unless arrangements can be made for them to take two upper-level Italian courses in year 3 at W&M.
  • Once this language requirement has been met, students wishing to do so are welcome to consider taking classes in another language to widen their experience. Such classes may count toward breadth requirements.
  • In the event a student has commenced a language unsuccessfully, s/he may (with the permission of the adviser) change to a different language at the beginning of year 2. Classes taken in year 1 will count towards the required overall total of 8 language classes, but in such cases the number of advanced classes/credits is reduced to two (or 30 StA/6 W&M credits or equivalents).

At St Andrews, students will typically take sub-honors courses in years 1 or 2, and honors-level courses in years 3 or 4. Students will discuss the level of courses they take at W&M with the advisor, depending on their backgrounds in history and language, and to ensure that they complete the requisite number of upper-division courses.

Faculty contact:

[[glchouin, Gerard Chouin]]
Department of History