Q:

What can a person do with a history degree?

A:

Quick Answer

While no clearly defined career path for history graduates exists, job opportunities are diverse, with positions in fields such as education, research, journalism and writing, archiving, business, advocacy and law. A legal profession has been among the most popular choices for history graduates.

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Full Answer

Contrary to a common misconception, there is no such degree program as pre-law that entitles students to enroll in a law school in the same way that pre-med qualifies students for medical school. Therefore, a good history degree can feed directly into enrollment at a good law school, such as Columbia, NYU or Stanford.

Teaching is often the second most popular route for history graduates to take, with many students opting to become licensed to work as educators. Positions might range between elementary schools, secondary schools, post-secondary educational institutions and even historic attractions or establishments, such as museums. In the latter case, history graduates make well-informed and authoritative guides, curators, interpreters and directors of educational programs.

Graduates might also go into politics, perhaps analyzing trends and policies for governments at all levels.

Transferable skills learned as a history student include:

  • Written communication, which is important in any graduate job
  • Critical analysis, which is crucial for effective decision-making and problem-solving
  • Effective research, enabling graduates to gather information for analysis
  • Cross-discipline thinking, or thinking about a single problem from a number of angles.
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