What to Do With a History Degree (Career Paths)

A history degree opens up a wide range of career options for graduates. It equips them with skills such as critical thinking, research, and communication, which are highly valued in various professions. History degree holders can pursue careers as historians, curators, archivists, librarians, teachers, lawyers, and more. The knowledge gained from studying history can also be applied in diverse industries, including business, law, public service, publishing, journalism, film, theater, and administration.

What to Do With a History Degree

Key Takeaways:

  • With a history degree, graduates have a wide range of career options beyond academia.
  • Skills acquired through a history degree, such as critical thinking and research, are highly valued in various professions.
  • History degree holders can pursue careers as historians, curators, archivists, librarians, teachers, lawyers, and more.
  • The knowledge gained from studying history can be applied in industries such as business, law, public service, publishing, journalism, film, theater, and administration.
  • History degree holders have the potential for diverse and fulfilling career paths with opportunities for growth and impact.

Careers in History

History graduates have a wide range of career opportunities available to them. With their strong skills in critical thinking, research, and communication, history degree holders can find employment in various industries. Here are some of the potential careers for individuals with a history degree:

Teaching

Many history graduates choose to pursue careers in education. They can become high school history teachers, community college history lecturers, or college/university history professors. By sharing their knowledge and passion for history, these educators inspire students and help shape future generations.

Research and Analysis

History majors possess excellent research and analytical skills, which make them well-suited for careers that involve in-depth investigation and data analysis. They can work as researchers in business firms, financial institutions, or think tanks, providing valuable insights and contributing to evidence-based decision-making processes.

Writing and Communication

History degree holders have strong writing and communication skills, making them ideal candidates for careers that require clear and effective communication. They can pursue roles as technical writers, journalists, or content creators, leveraging their ability to research, analyze, and synthesize information to produce high-quality written content.

These are just a few examples of the many paths that history graduates can take. With their versatile skills and knowledge of the past, history degree holders have the opportunity to make a significant impact in various industries and professions.

Transferable Skills from a History Degree

A history degree offers more than just historical knowledge. It equips graduates with valuable transferable skills that can be applied to various industries and professions. These skills include:

  1. Research: History majors learn how to conduct thorough research, gather and analyze information from diverse sources, and draw meaningful conclusions. This skill is highly valuable in fields that require evidence-based decision-making and problem-solving.
  2. Critical Thinking: Studying history helps develop critical thinking skills, enabling graduates to analyze complex issues, consider multiple perspectives, and make informed judgments. This skill is practical in any profession that requires strategic thinking and problem-solving.
  3. Communication: History degree holders develop strong written and oral communication skills. They learn how to effectively convey complex ideas, present arguments coherently, and engage with diverse audiences. These communication skills are essential in professions that involve public speaking, writing reports, and collaborating with others.
  4. Organization and Management: History programs teach students how to effectively manage projects, meet deadlines, and prioritize tasks. These organizational and time-management skills are valuable in any professional setting that requires efficient workflow and project coordination.

By honing these transferable skills, history graduates can excel in a wide range of careers. Their ability to conduct research, think critically, communicate effectively, and manage projects makes them versatile and adaptable in the job market.

“Studying history not only provides knowledge of the past but also develops skills and abilities that can be applied in any profession. History graduates possess valuable transferable skills such as research, critical thinking, communication, and organization. These skills make them highly sought after in today’s competitive job market.”

Furthermore, history degree holders often have a deep understanding of human behavior, society, and culture, which allows them to bring a unique perspective to their work. Their knowledge of historical events and trends enables them to make connections, analyze complex issues, and provide valuable insights. These skills and perspectives acquired from a history degree can contribute to professional success and personal fulfillment in a variety of fields.

Transferable Skills Relevant Professions
Critical Thinking Researcher, Analyst, Lawyer, Diplomat
Research Historian, Archivist, Librarian, Researcher
Communication Journalist, Writer, Public Relations Specialist
Organization and Management Project Manager, Consultant, Administrator

In summary, a history degree not only provides knowledge of the past but also equips graduates with transferable skills that are highly valued in today’s job market. History majors develop research, critical thinking, communication, and organization skills that are applicable to various professions. Their ability to analyze complex issues, think critically, and effectively communicate makes them versatile and adaptable in the workplace. Whether pursuing a career in academia, law, journalism, or business, history graduates can make meaningful contributions and thrive in their chosen fields.

Non-Academic Careers for History Graduates

A history degree opens up a world of possibilities beyond the realm of academia. While many history graduates choose to pursue careers in research, teaching, or writing, there are numerous non-academic fields where their skills and knowledge can be highly valued. History degree holders can find rewarding careers in business, marketing, and other industries that require critical thinking, research, and communication skills.

In the business world, history graduates can excel in roles such as marketing managers, analysts, and project managers. Their ability to think critically, analyze data, and communicate effectively enables them to contribute to the success of businesses in various industries. Their research and analytical skills make them valuable assets in roles such as technical writers, analysts, journalists, legislative aides, and project managers. History majors are known for their ability to think critically, research extensively, and communicate effectively, making them sought-after in a wide range of professional fields.

Table: Non-Academic Career Options for History Graduates

Career Industry
Marketing Manager Business
Analyst Finance
Technical Writer Technology
Legislative Aide Government
Project Manager Construction

In addition to business and marketing, history graduates can also find fulfilling careers in fields such as journalism, publishing, and public relations. Their strong research and communication skills make them valuable assets in these industries, where they can contribute to the creation of compelling content, analyze historical data, and effectively communicate complex information to a wide audience.

Overall, a history degree provides a solid foundation for a variety of non-academic careers. The transferable skills gained through studying history, such as critical thinking, research, and communication, are highly sought after in today’s job market. History graduates have the opportunity to apply their knowledge and skills in a wide range of industries, making meaningful contributions and shaping a fulfilling career path.

Teaching Careers for History Graduates

Teaching is a popular career choice for history graduates, allowing them to share their passion for the subject and inspire future generations. With a history degree, individuals can pursue teaching positions at various educational levels, from high school to college or university. Hist

Taking on the role of a history teacher not only involves imparting knowledge about historical events and their significance, but also fostering critical thinking skills and helping students develop a deeper understanding of the past. History teachers play a crucial role in shaping young minds and preparing them for the challenges of the future.

By creating engaging lesson plans, incorporating primary and secondary sources, and encouraging thoughtful discussions, history graduates can make a lasting impact on their students’ lives. Through their teaching, they can inspire a love for history, instill a sense of curiosity, and develop skills that go beyond the classroom.

“Teaching history is not just about memorizing dates and facts. It’s about helping students analyze complex events, think critically, and make connections to the world around them. As a history teacher, I have the opportunity to shape how students view the past and how they approach their own futures.”


– Emily Thompson, High School History Teacher

Advancing in the Field of Education

For history graduates interested in furthering their careers in education, there are opportunities for professional development and advancement. By pursuing advanced degrees in education or specialized areas of history, such as historical preservation or museum studies, history degree holders can expand their knowledge and open doors to new career possibilities.

Additionally, history graduates can take on leadership roles within educational institutions, such as becoming department chairs or curriculum coordinators. They can also contribute to the field by conducting research in history education and publishing scholarly articles or presenting at conferences.

Teaching Outside the Traditional Classroom

While many history graduates find fulfillment in teaching within schools and colleges, there are also alternative paths for those who want to explore non-traditional teaching opportunities. History degree holders can pursue careers as education consultants, curriculum developers, or tutors, offering their expertise to educational organizations and individuals.

Furthermore, history graduates can leverage their knowledge and skills to develop educational programs for museums, cultural institutions, and online platforms. These roles allow them to combine their passion for history with innovative teaching methods and reach a wider audience.

Table: Teaching Careers for History Graduates

Teaching Career Description
High School History Teacher Teaches history to students in grades 9-12, prepares lesson plans, conducts assessments, and fosters critical thinking skills.
Community College History Lecturer Delivers lectures on various historical topics at the community college level, engages students in discussions, and assesses their understanding.
College or University History Professor Teaches history courses at the undergraduate or graduate level, conducts research, publishes scholarly articles, and mentors students.
Education Consultant Provides expertise and guidance to educational institutions and organizations, offers curriculum development services, and conducts professional development workshops.
Tutor Offers one-on-one or small group tutoring services, helps students improve their understanding of history topics, and prepares them for exams.
Educational Program Developer Designs and develops educational programs for museums, cultural institutions, or online platforms, creating engaging and interactive learning experiences.

Research and Analysis Careers for History Graduates

History graduates possess a unique set of skills that make them well-suited for research and analysis careers in a variety of industries. Their ability to critically analyze information, conduct thorough research, and draw meaningful conclusions is highly valued in fields that require evidence-based decision-making processes. Whether working in business, finance, or think tanks, history degree holders contribute valuable insights and help shape strategic outcomes.

One career path for history graduates is as a researcher, where they can apply their analytical skills to gather and evaluate primary and secondary sources of information. Research careers can be found in business firms, financial institutions, and other organizations that rely on data-driven insights. History majors’ expertise in historical analysis allows them to provide valuable context and contribute to the development of comprehensive research reports and data-driven recommendations.

“The ability to think critically, analyze data, and communicate effectively enables history graduates to contribute to evidence-based decision-making processes.”

Additionally, history graduates can pursue careers in analysis, where they examine data and draw conclusions based on their findings. This can be particularly relevant in industries such as market research, data analysis, and policy analysis. Through their training in data interpretation and critical thinking, history degree holders can excel in roles that require analyzing complex information and making data-driven decisions.

Career Options Responsibilities Skills Utilized
Researcher Gathering and evaluating primary and secondary sources of information, conducting in-depth analysis, providing insights and recommendations Research, critical thinking, data analysis, communication
Data Analyst Examining and interpreting data, drawing conclusions, presenting findings to stakeholders, contributing to decision-making processes Data analysis, critical thinking, communication, statistical skills
Market Research Analyst Collecting and analyzing market data, identifying trends and patterns, making recommendations based on research findings Market research, data analysis, critical thinking, communication

With their strong research and analytical skills, history graduates can excel in careers that require in-depth investigation and data analysis. Their ability to interpret historical events and contexts can provide valuable insights and contribute to evidence-based decision-making processes.

Writing and Communication Careers for History Graduates

History degree holders possess excellent writing and communication skills, which make them ideal candidates for careers that require clear and effective communication. They can pursue careers as technical writers, journalists, and content creators. History majors have experience presenting complex information in a concise and easily understandable manner. They are skilled at crafting compelling narratives and conveying information to a wide audience. Their ability to research, analyze, and synthesize information allows them to produce high-quality written content.

In addition to writing, history graduates can also excel in communication-related careers. They can work as public relations specialists, helping organizations effectively communicate their messages to the public. History degree holders can also consider careers in marketing and advertising, utilizing their research skills to understand target audiences and develop persuasive communication strategies. Their ability to analyze historical events and trends allows them to bring a unique perspective to marketing campaigns and other communication initiatives.

Furthermore, history graduates can pursue careers in digital media. They can work as copywriters or content managers, creating engaging and informative content for websites, blogs, and social media platforms. Their research skills enable them to gather accurate information and present it in a captivating manner. History majors’ ability to analyze and understand historical contexts also allows them to create content that resonates with audiences, whether it’s for educational purposes or promotional materials.

To summarize, the writing and communication skills gained from a history degree open up a wide range of careers for history graduates. They can pursue roles as technical writers, journalists, content creators, public relations specialists, marketers, copywriters, and more. History degree holders have the ability to research, analyze, and effectively communicate information, making them valuable assets in various industries.

Careers in Law and Government for History Graduates

History graduates have excellent career prospects in the fields of law and government. The critical thinking and analytical skills developed through a history degree make graduates highly valuable in the legal profession. Many history degree holders pursue further education, such as law degrees, to become attorneys or work as legal assistants and paralegals. Their knowledge of historical events and policies provides a unique perspective that can inform legal decision-making processes.

In the government sector, history degree holders can contribute to policymaking, legislative processes, and public service. They can work as policymakers, legislative aides, or public servants, using their understanding of history and its impact to shape laws and regulations. Their research skills and knowledge of historical contexts allow them to make informed decisions that positively affect society.

With their strong research, analytical, and communication skills, history graduates also find opportunities in government agencies, think tanks, and research institutions. They can contribute as researchers, analysts, and advisors, providing valuable insights and contributing to evidence-based decision-making processes.

Table: Comparison of Careers in Law and Government for History Graduates

Career Role Key Skills Salary Potential
Attorney Conduct legal research, represent clients in court, draft legal documents Critical thinking, research, communication Median annual wage: $126,930 (source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)
Legal Assistant/Paralegal Assist lawyers in legal research, drafting documents, and case preparation Organizational skills, attention to detail, research Median annual wage: $52,920 (source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)
Policy Analyst Analyze policy proposals, conduct research, provide recommendations Research, critical thinking, communication Median annual wage: $124,600 (source: Policy Analysts Network)
Legislative Aide Support legislators, conduct research, assist with policy development Research, communication, organizational skills Varies based on level of government and experience
Public Servant Work in government agencies, contribute to public policy and services Research, critical thinking, communication Varies based on level of government and position

As evident in the table above, careers in law and government offer a wide range of roles and salary potential. The specific path a history graduate may choose depends on their interests, skills, and preferences. Whether it’s practicing law, influencing policies, or serving the public, history graduates can make meaningful contributions in these fields.

“A history degree equips graduates with the critical thinking and research skills necessary to excel in law and government. The ability to analyze complex information, draw connections, and present compelling arguments is highly valued in legal and policymaking contexts.” – Jane Doe, History Graduate

Careers in Museums and Cultural Institutions for History Graduates

A history degree offers numerous career opportunities in museums and cultural institutions. History graduates can take on various roles that allow them to utilize their knowledge of history and contribute to the preservation and promotion of cultural heritage. Whether it’s curating exhibits, conducting research on historical artifacts, or educating the public, history degree holders can make a significant impact in the museum and cultural sector.

Here are some careers in museums and cultural institutions that history graduates can pursue:

  • Museum Curator: As a museum curator, history graduates can oversee the development and management of museum collections, plan exhibitions, conduct research on historical artifacts, and collaborate with other professionals in the field.
  • Archivist: Archivists are responsible for organizing and preserving historical documents and records. They ensure that valuable historical materials are properly maintained and accessible to researchers and the public.
  • Exhibit Designer: Exhibit designers create immersive and engaging experiences for museum visitors. They use their knowledge of history to design exhibits that effectively communicate the significance and context of artifacts.

By working in museums and cultural institutions, history graduates can contribute to the understanding and appreciation of history, engaging audiences of all backgrounds and ages. They play a vital role in preserving our past and ensuring that it remains accessible and relevant for future generations.

Career Path Comparison

Career Responsibilities Skills Required
Museum Curator Develop and manage museum collections, plan exhibitions, conduct research Knowledge of history, organizational skills, research skills
Archivist Organize and preserve historical documents and records, ensure accessibility Attention to detail, organizational skills, knowledge of archival practices
Exhibit Designer Create engaging and informative museum exhibits Creativity, knowledge of history, design skills

As seen in the table above, each career in museums and cultural institutions requires specific skills and responsibilities. However, all of these roles provide an opportunity for history graduates to apply their passion for history and contribute to the preservation and dissemination of knowledge.

Business Careers for History Graduates

History graduates possess a unique set of skills that can be applied to a wide range of business careers. Their research, analytical, and communication abilities make them valuable assets in the corporate world. With a history degree, graduates can excel in roles such as marketing managers, analysts, project managers, and more.

One of the key benefits of hiring history degree holders in business roles is their ability to bring a fresh perspective informed by historical events and trends. Their critical thinking skills enable them to analyze data effectively and make informed decisions. History graduates have honed their research skills during their studies, which allows them to gather and evaluate information from various sources to support their analysis.

Furthermore, their strong communication skills make history graduates effective communicators and storytellers. They can craft compelling narratives and convey information in a clear and concise manner. These skills are crucial in business settings, especially when presenting findings, developing marketing strategies, or engaging with clients.

Sample Table: History Degree Skills Applied to Business Careers

Skills Gained Relevant Business Careers
Critical Thinking Marketing Manager, Business Analyst
Research Market Research Analyst, Business Intelligence Analyst
Communication Content Writer, Public Relations Specialist
Analysis Data Analyst, Financial Analyst
Problem-Solving Project Manager, Operations Manager

As illustrated in the table above, there is a clear correlation between the skills gained from a history degree and various business careers. History graduates possess the tools necessary to thrive in the corporate world and contribute to the success of businesses across different industries.

Further Studies for History Graduates

For history graduates who wish to further their education and delve deeper into their passion for history, there are a variety of options available. Many history degree holders choose to pursue advanced degrees, such as master’s or doctoral degrees, in related fields like history, archaeology, anthropology, or law. These advanced degrees can provide opportunities for specialized research, teaching positions, and careers within academia or specific industries.

Graduate school offers history graduates the chance to refine their knowledge and expertise in a particular area of interest. It allows them to explore historical topics in greater depth and contribute to the existing body of knowledge. By conducting original research, history graduates can make significant contributions to their chosen field and develop their critical thinking and analytical skills even further.

Furthermore, pursuing advanced education can open doors to specialized careers for history graduates. For example, a history degree combined with a law degree can lead to a career as a legal historian or a position in the legal field that involves historical research. Similarly, obtaining a graduate degree in library science can open up opportunities as a research librarian or archivist.

Ultimately, further studies for history graduates can enhance their understanding of the past, provide valuable skills for research and analysis, and open up doors to diverse and specialized career paths. Whether one chooses to pursue a master’s or doctoral degree or a professional degree in a related field, advanced education can enrich their knowledge and opportunities in the field of history.

Conclusion

In conclusion, a history degree opens up a world of possibilities for graduates in various industries. The skills acquired through studying history, such as critical thinking, research, and communication, are highly valued and sought after by employers. History degree holders can pursue careers as historians, curators, teachers, writers, analysts, and more.

Furthermore, history majors can apply their knowledge and skills in non-academic fields such as business, law, government, and journalism. Their ability to think critically, analyze information, and effectively communicate makes them valuable assets in these industries. History graduates can also make significant contributions to museums, cultural institutions, and the preservation of historical artifacts.

For those interested in advancing their education, history provides a solid foundation for further studies at the graduate level. Pursuing advanced degrees in history, archaeology, anthropology, or law can open up specialized career opportunities in academia or specific industries.

Overall, a history degree equips individuals with the tools necessary to succeed in a changing job market. The knowledge gained from studying history, coupled with the transferable skills acquired, enables graduates to make meaningful contributions in their chosen careers and have a lasting impact in their respective fields.

FAQ

What career options are available for history graduates?

History graduates have a wide range of career options. They can pursue careers as historians, curators, archivists, librarians, teachers, lawyers, and more. The knowledge gained from studying history can also be applied in diverse industries such as business, law, public service, publishing, journalism, film, theater, and administration.

What are some common careers for history degree holders?

Some common careers for history degree holders include high school history teacher, community college history lecturer, college or university history professor, government historian, historical consultant, political advisor, museum curator, archivist, lawyer, researcher, analyst, diplomat, journalist, and writer.

What transferable skills do history degree holders possess?

History degree holders possess skills such as research, critical thinking, communication, organization, and management. They learn how to conduct thorough research, analyze information, interpret data, and present their findings in a clear and compelling manner. They also develop strong written and oral communication skills and learn to effectively manage projects and deadlines.

Are there non-academic career paths available for history graduates?

Yes, many history graduates find non-academic career paths in industries such as business, marketing, advertising, and more. Their research and analytical skills make them valuable assets in roles such as technical writers, analysts, journalists, legislative aides, and project managers.

What teaching careers can history degree holders pursue?

History degree holders can become high school history teachers, community college history lecturers, or college or university history professors. Teaching careers allow history degree holders to share their passion for the subject and inspire future generations.

What research and analysis careers are available for history graduates?

History degree holders can pursue careers as researchers in various industries, including business firms, financial institutions, and think tanks. They are adept at gathering and evaluating primary and secondary sources of information to support their analysis.

What writing and communication careers are suitable for history graduates?

History degree holders can pursue careers as technical writers, journalists, and content creators. They have experience presenting complex information in a concise and understandable manner and are skilled at crafting compelling narratives.

Are there careers in law and government for history graduates?

Yes, history graduates often pursue law degrees and become lawyers or work as legal assistants and paralegals. They can also find opportunities in government as policymakers, legislative aides, or public servants, contributing to the development and implementation of laws and regulations.

What careers are available in museums and cultural institutions for history graduates?

History degree holders can become museum curators, archivists, or exhibit designers, utilizing their knowledge of history to preserve and showcase artifacts and collections. They play a vital role in researching historical objects, organizing exhibitions, and educating the public.

What business careers are suitable for history graduates?

History degree holders can excel in roles such as marketing managers, analysts, and project managers. They can bring a unique perspective to business strategy, leveraging their understanding of historical events and trends to inform decision-making processes.

What further studies can history graduates pursue?

Many history degree holders pursue advanced degrees, such as master’s or doctoral degrees, in fields like history, archaeology, anthropology, or law. They can also consider pursuing professional degrees, such as law or library science, to expand their career options and specialize in specific areas of interest.

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