Different types of history courses include introductory classes, survey courses, electives and seminars. Courses often have a specialty focus, such as geographical location, time period or methodology. The exact courses offered vary by university and typically rotate on a schedule of availability.
Introductory courses cover basic historical concepts while providing tools for critical analysis in the discipline. These classes help students decide whether to pursue history as a major or minor. Survey classes examine broad time periods or sub fields within history. For example, a survey course for U.S. history may include the colonial period through the modern era.
Advanced courses provide greater focus on a topic. Electives aid students in selecting a core focus area, such as European history. Courses in electives can include classes on the history of the Soviet Union, public policy, American history during specific subsets of time and war.
Seminars can change by the semester and examine a single topic in depth. For example, courses that emphasize methodology, such as historiography, are part of seminars. Historical divisions by geographical region may include the United States, Africa, the Middle East or Asia. Others may include Europe, Latin American and the Caribbean. Comparative history involves cross-sectional analyses of more than one geographical area.