Department of History & Geography

About Us

What majors and minors are offered?
The department offers a Bachelor of Arts in History, a Bachelor of Arts in History with Teacher Certification, a Bachelor of Science in History, and a Bachelor of Science in History with Teacher Certification. Minors are offered in Geography, United States History, European History, and International Studies.
Why should I choose Missouri Western’s program?
All full-time faculty members in the department are published scholars and have earned doctorates from excellent graduate programs in their respective academic disciplines.

The department is committed to the development of a strong academic culture on campus through its sponsorship of special lectures, events, and seminars on topics in the areas of history and geography.  Independent student research and presentations at a variety of regional and national venues are encouraged and supported by the department.

Expanding the realm of students’ experiences beyond the limits imposed by their own life span and mobility is the focus of the History program. Faculty members are committed to developing a historical consciousness among our students. Geography faculty members help students develop skills in spatial reasoning, analyzing  complex situations, and trends, and drawing logical inferences from these analyses.
What type of graduate schools and programs are your graduates attending?
Recent graduates of our programs who are seeking advanced degrees in History, Geography, or other academic disciplines are currently attending the following universities: University of Chicago, University of Kansas, University of Missouri-Kansas City, Southern Illinois University-Carbondale, Southwest Missouri State University, University of Washington-Seattle, and Northwest Missouri State University, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, and University of Illinois-Champaign.
What are the admission requirements for the program?
Students desiring to major in History must have a minimum GPA of 2.0. Applicants for secondary teaching only must have completed the following courses before their major applications will be considered:  HIS 100, 110, or 130; HIS 140 or 150; ENG 104, with a grade of C or higher in each course.
As a high school student, how should I prepare for this program?
High school students preparing for a major in our department should take the high school core classes. Two units of foreign language are also strongly recommended. Students need to take as many courses as possible that require analytical reading, writing and research skills.
What is the typical class size?
General studies courses in history range in size from 30 to 60 students. Upper-level courses in history range in size from 10 to 25 students.

General studies courses in geography range in size from 45 to 55 students. Upper-level courses in geography range in size from 10 to 15 students.
How much individualized attention can I expect in your department?
Students in all of our courses receive individualized attention from our faculty by simply asking for it. Students have access to our faculty during regularly scheduled office hours, as well as via voicemail or e-mail. Students are able to schedule appointments with faculty very quickly.
How do students work together with faculty?
Faculty members are willing to work with students who wish to engage in faculty/student undergraduate research. Each year our department conducts a symposium at which students majoring in our programs can present their research to the college community. Faculty serve as mentors to help students prepare their work for presentations at regional or national conferences.
What student organizations are available?
History department students have an opportunity to join the Phi Alpha Theta Honors Society, a chapter of the national History honors society.
Does the department have any direct interaction with the community?
Our faculty and students provide service to the community through local, regional, and national organizations, including local churches, Second Harvest Food Bank, various offices of the City of St. Joseph and Buchanan County, Missouri Humanities Council, Gamma Theta Upsilon, and the Association of American Geographers.