Public History


Word CloudGettysburg College’s historic location, well-established partnerships with a wide range of museums and historical organizations, and commitment to experiential education provide a solid foundation for the minor in Public History.

What Is Public History?

As a discipline, public history revolves around the politics and practice of preservation and interpretation, in public settings and in conversation with public audiences. A wide variety of subfields cluster under the umbrella of public history, ranging from curation, museum education, and historic preservation to interpretation, documentary film, and archival management.

The coursework for the minor will enhance students’ skills in historical research, cultural analysis, presentation, public engagement, collaboration with community partners, and digital technology. The interdisciplinary curriculum will provide students rich perspectives on the complex relationship between cultural practices, historical narratives, and material objects, and include substantial emphasis on field education and hands-on work. As future professionals, minors will be well-positioned to continue their education on a graduate level, while as citizens, they will be better equipped to advocate for more democratic, intellectually rigorous representations of history in the public sphere.

Students with a focus on Public History can pursue graduate study in history, public history, museum studies, art history, anthropology, library science, film studies, public policy, education, ethnic studies, public humanities, geography, sociology, or American Studies. They can also seek employment in fields ranging from museums, libraries and historic preservation to education, consulting, and government.

Contact Information

For more information about the Public History minor, please contact Prof. Jill Ogline Titus (jtitus@gettysburg.edu) or Prof. Peter Carmichael (pcarmich@gettysburg.edu).

Minor Requirements:

  • HIST 301 (Introduction to Public History)
  • 1 Archaeology course
  • 1 content course in History
  • 1 course in Visual & Material Culture
  • 1 course in Memory & Interpretation
  • Internship (IDS 470)

Please see below for a list of courses approved by the Advisory Committee to meet these requirements.

INTRODUCTORY COURSE

HIST 301: Introduction to Public History

ARCHAEOLOGY REQUIREMENT

ANTH 106: Introduction to Archaeology & Physical Anthropology

ANTH 212: Archaeology of Pennsylvania

ANTH 250: Topics in Anthropology (Archaeology of Landscape)

CLA 125/ANTH 255: Archaeology of the Ancient Mediterranean World

HISTORY CONTENT REQUIREMENT

HIST 230: Native American – European Encounter

HIST 318: Europe 1914-1945

HIST 319: Europe Since 1945

HIST 339: From Old South to New South

HIST 341: Colonial America

HIST 345: Civil War and Reconstruction

HIST 348: Early Twentieth Century America

HIST 349: US Since 1945

HIST 350: Black Freedom Struggle in America

VISUAL & MATERIAL CULTURE REQUIREMENT

ARTH 125: Survey of Western Art

ARTH 131: Introduction to Asian Art

ARTH 201: Arts of Ancient Greece & Rome

ARTH 202: Medieval Art

ARTH 214: Methods in Art History

ARTH 225: History & Theory of Photography

ARTH 267: Art & Public Policy

FILM 220: Video Production

MEMORY & INTERPRETATION REQUIREMENT

AFS 262: Africa in Fiction, History, and Memory

ANTH/AS 229: Tourism & Culture in China

CWES 320: Aftermath

EDUC 306: Teaching Social Studies

ENG 201: Writing the Public Essay

IDS 217: The American Civil War on Film

*SOC 250: Recollections

*This course has a prerequisite

INTERNSHIP

IDS 470: Individualized Study – Internship

Courses chosen to fulfill the minor requirements must be selected from at least three different departments/programs. No more than two courses may be transferred in from off-campus study.

Students who would like to substitute other related courses (taken either on or off-campus) for the approved courses or make a case for an alternative path to meeting a minor requirement may formally petition the advisory committee.