As a 100-level course, it should be taken during the freshman or sophomore year. Students should design their schedules to meet this requirement early in their college careers. Therefore, seniors or others with scheduling conflicts will not be permitted exceptions or alternatives to the stated requirement even in their final semester.
The general education requirement in History (under the "Studies in Society" cluster) is 4 hours of World History -- History 105, 111, or 115. Except as indicated below, students must take one of these three classes. Simply enrolling in a history course does not meet the requirement. Courses in American History and the History of Christianity do not fulfill the requirement.
The Society Cluster Requirement in History may be met by May in Asia or other summer study programs sponsored by the History Department.
Students with special situations not addressed below should contact the History General Education Coordinator, Carla Lovett.
Entering Freshmen - The History General Education requirement may be met by:
- Advanced Placement Test in World History
- A score of 4 or 5 meets the requirement.
- A score of 3 satisfies 2 hours of credit; student must enroll in HIST 131 to satisfy the remaining 2 hours of needed credit.
- Scores below 3 must enroll in HIST 105 or 115.
- Students with International Baccalaureate exam credit in history should contact the registrar's office for information about equivalency. (A minimum IB score of 5 is required for consideration.)
Transfer Students - The History General Education requirement should be met as follows:
- Transfers with no history must enroll in History 105, 111 or 115.
- Transfers who have 3 or 4 hours or more in approved World History courses have met the requirement. Approved courses are of a general character, with broad chronological scope. Advanced courses of limited chronology and cultural scope are not approved, e.g. Modern German History.
- Transfers who submit two semester hours in World History must take HIST 131.
- Transfer students submitting credits in U.S. History only have not met the requirement and must enroll in HIST 105, 111 or 115.
Education Students - Students seeking teacher certification meet the History General Education requirement differently, as part of their Social Science requirement:
Students seeking certification for public school teaching must take 8 hours of history, 4 hours in United States history (HIST 351 or 352) and 4 hours in world history (HIST 334 Asia, HIST 331 Africa, or HIST 292 Latin America) to meet the general education requirement in history. If a student clearly intended to pursue teacher certification but did not complete the process, these courses will still meet the general education requirement. To fulfill the Social Science requirement, the student also must take PSCI 135 American Politics and Government.
Transfer Credit Policy for current Wheaton Students
Students currently enrolled in Wheaton College who wish to satisfy the History General Education requirement must follow the guidelines below before enrolling in a course they wish to transfer. These policies do not affect classes transferred as elective credit in history; they only apply to general education.
The History Department remains concerned over disparities in quality and equivalency among transfer courses students have used to satisfy the general education requirement in world history. The department has worked hard to insure that History 105, World History—the main world history general education course— reflects the priorities of Wheaton College as stated in the General Education Statement of Purpose and the Diversity Initiative. At the same time, we see a significant number of students satisfying the general education requirement through transfer courses, including distance learning courses taken online. While some of these courses appropriately meet the general education requirement, many do not. They demand little in the way of reading, writing, and critical thinking about history and are especially weak in attention to diversity. As a result of these concerns, in 2005 the History Department implemented the following policy concerning transfer credit for history general education. The policy has been revised, effective fall semester 2007. It applies to classes students take after they have matriculated at Wheaton College , including those taken by incoming freshmen. The registrar's office will continue to evaluate general education credit for transfer students based on current practice. Also, these policies do not affect classes transferred as elective credit in history; they only apply to general education.
The Registrar's Office also approved a History Department recommendation that the SAT II exam in History will no longer satisfy the history general education requirement. This is in part because the SAT II does not include a writing component, and the decision reflects the general practice of colleges comparable to Wheaton College . The Registrar will continue to honor AP scores of 4 or 5 in world history as previously defined. Effective Fall 2008, AP scores in European history will not satisfy the History General Education requirement.
These are the changes affecting transfer credit:
Any course to be transferred for history general education credit must be approved by the History Department. Students should submit a syllabus and a Department “Application for Transfer Credit” to the department for approval prior to enrolling in the course . Approval should be secured during the academic year since department faculty may not be available during the summer months. Syllabi will be evaluated based on the following criteria:
- The breadth of chronology, geography, and culture is suitable for a foundational liberal arts course in world history. Courses in western or European history are no longer accepted. The course should also reflect a concern for diversity, e.g. gender diversity, ethnic diversity, or the interaction between the West/Europe and the world.
- Requirements meet basic standards for a lower-division, 3- or-4-credit, college-level course. These standards include:
- Reading : 1,200-page minimum, including both standard textbooks and supplemental primary and secondary sources. Usually this would entail a textbook, a selection of primary sources, and at least one additional text (monograph).
- Writing: Six typed pages minimum.
- Discussion: Eight scheduled discussion periods or equivalent minimum.
- Exams: Two exams (mid-term and final) minimum.
- Contact hours: 40 minimum (generally refers to on-campus courses).
- Duration of course: 4 weeks minimum. (generally on-line courses).
The department will exercise discretion in accepting syllabi that reflect a workload equivalent to the minimum standards listed above, even if the assignments did not correspond precisely. For example, a clearly defined group project might satisfy the discussion requirement. Or, a significantly increased writing requirement might replace one exam. Our purpose is to maintain standards of equivalency, not to insist on the letter of the law. Eventually we hope to assess syllabi on outcomes rather than course requirements.
How to request History Department approval of transfer courses to satisfy the History General Education requirement:
Complete the “Application for Transfer Credit” PDF form (also available in the History Department). Submit the form plus a syllabus for the proposed class. You usually can obtain a syllabus online or by e-mailing the professor or department. The syllabus you provide must be current and correspond to the specific course you wish to have approved. For example, if you intend to take an online course, the syllabus submitted should be from the online course, not a syllabus from the college's on-campus program. A representative syllabus from the previous year will be accepted as long as the course material corresponds to current course content. If your request is approved, we will notify you via e-mail, and you may stop by for Dr. McKenzie or Prof. Lovett to sign the Registrar's transfer credit form (not the same at the History Department form).
HIST 105. World History (previously “World Civilization”). Survey of world history 1500 to the present, recommended to satisfy the GE requirement.
HIST 111. World History, Ancient to Modern. Single-semester survey required for History/Social Science majors and recommended for elementary education majors. Available on a limited basis and meets general education requirements for all others.
HIST 131. Topics in World History. Two-credit course designed for transfer students with some credit or background in world history. Applies to general education requirement only as recommended by the History Department chair.
Courses in U.S. history do not satisfy the history GE requirement, nor do specialized upper division history courses. Students should satisfy the general education requirement during their first or second year at Wheaton , as appropriate for a lower division course.
For questions or suggestions concerning history general education transfer credit or the history general education program in general, contact the History Department General Education Coordinator Carla Lovett or the History Department Chair Tracy McKenzie.