History is not simply a list of memorized names and dates, but rather it is an exploration of complex questions about why and how people, societies, institutions, ideas, economies, and cultures have evolved over time. As students of history, we work to challenge and revise existing narratives about the past, both to understand the events that they describe and to shed light on contemporary society’s evolving needs and concerns.
Historical study teaches us to look beyond appearances as we examine the relationship between cause and effect, analyze motives, and understand change over time. It develops in us strong capacities to think critically about the relationship between arguments and evidence, while questioning the inevitability of our own ideas and assumptions. It also pushes us to reflect upon the often hidden relationships between ideas and social institutions, and between individuals and their cultures.
The mission of the History Department is to provide students with the analytical tools and scholarly perspective that will enable them to interpret historical processes and understand the complexity of the past. In support of this mission, we foster intellectual curiosity and critical thinking by teaching students how to analyze texts and documents; how to frame research questions and conduct independent inquiries; and how to organize and write historical analyses that are engaging and persuasive. Coursework in History cultivates an awareness of the legacy that each present has inherited from its past, along with the many perspectives one can have on that legacy, and it provides students with an ability to understand the increasingly interconnected, culturally diverse world in which we live today.
Curriculum and Degrees
The curriculum in the History program is designed to provide the transfer student the opportunity to achieve an Associate of Arts (AA) in History or an Associate of Arts degree for Transfer (AA-T) by providing the necessary breadth in the field and an introduction to the methods used. Students who complete the Associate in Arts Degree in History for Transfer receive priority admission to the California State University system, though admission to a specific campus is not guaranteed. While an associate degree may support attempts to gain entry-level employment or promotion, a baccalaureate or higher degree is recommended for those considering professional careers, which can be achieved through transfer.
Core Courses and Electives
The History Department at Saddleback College is comprised of six full-time faculty members with Ph.D.s in U.S. history, African history, East Asian history, and Latin American history. We offer a wide breadth of courses ranging from introductory surveys in U.S. and world history to specialty courses based on the diverse scholarly and teaching interests of our faculty. We also welcome and encourage the development and pursuit of ongoing research projects.
History Department Core Courses:
- HIST 4: World History to 1500
- HIST 5: World History from 1500
- HIST 16: History of U.S. since 1876
- HIST 17: History of U.S. since 1876
History Department Elective Courses:
- HIST 7: Social and Economic History of the U.S. to 1876
- HIST 8: Social and Economic History of the U.S., 1877 to the Present
- HIST 11: Perspectives of Peace Studies
- HIST 12: Revolutions and Revolts
- HIST 15: The Vietnam War
- HIST 16: History of the United States to 1876
- HIST 17: History of the United States Since 1876
- HIST 19: United States Since 1945
- HIST 20: Ethnic Cultures of the United States
- HIST 21: Women in United States History: A Multicultural Perspective
- HIST 22: Basic United States History
- HIST 27: Latin America: Pre-European to Independent Nationhood
- HIST 28: Latin America: 1800 to the Present
- HIST 29: Film and History in Latin America
- HIST 30: History of Mexico
- HIST 32: California History
- HIST 33: The Political/Social History of Chicanos/as
- HIST 40: English History to 1688
- HIST 41: English History Since 1688
- HIST 61: History and Politics of Russia: Soviet Period to the Present
- HIST 62: European History to 1650
- HIST 63: European History Since 1650
- HIST 70: History of Asia to 1800
- HIST 71: History of Asia Since 1800
- HIST 72: History of China
- HIST 74: History of the Middle East to 1800
- HIST 75: Introduction to the Contemporary Middle East
- HIST 80: Introduction to Contemporary Africa
- HIST 81: African American History
History Department Study Abroad Programs:
- Cuba (Spring/Summer 2017, pending Board approval): HIST 5 and HIST 28 will be offered as part of this program.