- Welcome New History Undergraduate Students!
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
- Who We Are: Meet the Members of the History Department
Starting university can be an exciting experience, but it also brings with it new challenges and a lot of new information. While it can feel overwhelming, we have gathered together some of the most pertinent information to help you navigate your first year.
- What will History classes look like in my first year?
This year we are offering mostly in person first year History courses with a few online only options as well.
Regardless of the format, all courses will require sustained engagement and participation. You will therefore need to organize your time and manage your weekly schedules in order to complete the various components of your different courses in the allotted time. Please keep this in mind as you craft your schedules for the academic year.
Should you find yourself taking one of our online course offerings, please note that the shape or format of these classes will vary. Most online first-year classes will have a mix of scheduled and unscheduled components.
It is important that you are clear about the format, expectations, and requirements in each of your courses. If something is unclear, make sure you ask your professor or teaching assistant.
- What are First-Year Seminars?
First-year seminars offered by the History Department give incoming students a chance to work with a professor in a small class setting and give students the opportunity to study and discuss topics of interest in a core subject area. These seminars are identified by the course code, FSYM 1405, and will take place in person and on campus.
First-year seminars offer an introduction to the study of History in a way that is not possible in other first-year courses. Throughout the year, students explore selected thematic issues and learn about the tools historians employ as they investigate the past. These courses have a maximum of 30 students and are taught by professors who are committed to teaching and mentoring first-year students.
As you’ll see from the course descriptions, these seminars will allow you to immerse yourself in a distant time and place and to learn the skills you’ll need to thrive in your undergraduate studies.
History majors are strongly encouraged to enroll in a first-year seminar in History.
- How many First-Year courses should I take this year?
Students must take 1.0 credit in HIST at the 1000-level or any section of FYSM 1405. All our FYSM 1405 courses are 1.0 credit year-long courses. Our 1000-level HIST courses include a mix of 1.0 credit full year courses and one semester 0.5 credit courses. Students are welcome to choose either a full year course or two 0.5 credit courses to complete their required 1.0 credit in HIST at the 1000-level.
Many of our students choose to enroll in both a FYSM 1405 and a 1000-level HIST course. Please note, however, that you should not enroll in more than 2.0 credits of HIST courses in your first year.
- What can I expect in the other 1000-level HIST courses?
Our 1000-level HIST courses introduce you to the people, events, and ideas that made and remade the globe. They are usually broad surveys of time and space, designed with the needs of first-year students in mind.
You’ll notice on the registration website that we offer multiple versions of many of our 1000-level courses, each taught by a different instructor.
This ensures that you’ll find one that fits your timetable and your interests. Note that each course will reflect the particular expertise of the instructor so do be sure to see the more detailed course descriptions that we’ve posted to our website. These will give you a better idea of exactly what to expect.
- What kind of supports are available to new students?
We encourage you to take advantage of the First Year Connections (FYC) Program, a mentorship program that is designed to help new students adjust to university life during those critical weeks in their first semester.
The Department of History counts among its students a small corps of dedicated student mentors who, as former participants in the FYC Program, understand just how valuable the connections with students can be.
This Fall, Carleton is committed to providing the full range of student services to you, from academic advising, to mental health counselling and support, to creative social spaces and activities so that you can connect with your fellow students. Many services may be available online, in person, or have limited hours so please check each department’s website for more details.
- What do I do if I want to make any registration changes?
Any time you make any changes to the courses you are taking, you’ll want to make sure that you are still meeting the requirements for your degree and taking prerequisites necessary for upper-level courses in other disciplines. We strongly recommend that you reach out to us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com if you want to change courses, or if you want to make sure that you’re on the right track. Tanya would be happy to pull your audit and explain to you how any changes you are planning to make will affect you and your academic plan.
- How can I know more about what’s going on in the History Department?
- Join the History Undergraduate Society (HUgS)and interact with other undergraduate students at all levels who love history. This year, HUgS will be offering a mix of in person and remote events to ensure that history students will continue to have a community in which to share a love for all things history, while respecting public health concerns. They have recently increased their social media presence, so follow them on Instagram and Twitter and join the Facebook group to get involved. They will be sharing resources for online learning, providing information on Carleton and the department, hosting assignment workshops, movie and trivia events, and much more. If you have any suggestions or requests for events, be sure to reach out to a member of the HUgS executive. Additionally, if you want to have an upper-year student work through a history assignment with you, reach out to HUgS to take advantage of their one-on-one assignment workshops. You can DM them on social media or send an email to the HUgS gmail account.
- Check out the History Department’s homepage where we post news stories about our faculty and students. At the bottom of the page, you’ll also find a list of upcoming events.
- Follow the History Department on Twitter (https://twitter.com/CU_History).
- Sign up for the weekly roundup email. Just complete your contact information on the CU History newsletter sign up page and you’ll receive an email about once a week listing upcoming events and announcements.
- I’ve heard that the Department encourages students to explore History using many different methodologies and media.
How can I learn more about that?
You can visit our Student Projects page. There you’ll learn about films produced as part of a recent Documentary History course, activist essays published in an eJournal, and even digital history projects.
- Where can I find a History-specific guide to help me write an essay?
The Department of History has produced a guide to assist undergraduate students in writing their essays. It covers everything from planning a paper, to using the appropriate writing style and writing proper footnotes. You can download the PDF version.
The History Undergraduates Society (HUgS) has also created a citation guide to assist students.
- Does the History Department offer department-specific scholarships and awards?
In addition to the scholarships and awards open to all Carleton students, the Department of History rewards academic excellence among its undergraduate scholars. Faculty members submit nominations at the end of the winter term for all prizes. Students are welcome to discuss the suitability of an essay or other course work for a particular prize with a faculty member. All prizes are listed on our website: https://carleton.ca/history/undergraduate/scholarships-and-awards/
Students with strong academic records are encouraged to apply for summer research internships later in their academic careers.
- I’m a little worried about adapting to university life. Are there services available to help me succeed?
While you can always talk to the Undergraduate Supervisor, Prof. Susan Whitney (firstname.lastname@example.org), or the Undergraduate Administrator, Tanya Schwartz (email@example.com), there are many groups across campus who also want to support you:
- The Academic Advising Centre is there to help students who may be experiencing academic difficulty or are considering changing elements of their program.
- The Centre for Student Academic Support is a collaborative student learning centre that can help you develop effective study habits, improve your writing and study skills, and enhance your understanding of course materials. They offer a range of support services that can help you including workshops, English conversation sessions, and Peer Assisted Study Sessions (PASS).
- Career Services provides students and alumni with resources and guidance to explore career options, learn effective job search strategies, and find employment opportunities that align with your interests. They can even help you with resume and cover letter writing and preparing for interviews.
- The Paul Menton Centre (PMC) for Students with Disabilities is responsible for the coordination of academic accommodations and support services for students with disabilities. You can contact PMC to set up an appointment with a PMC Coordinator to learn more.
- Health and Counselling Services is available to Carleton students. Not only is there a team of medical professionals including family physicians and registered nurses but there are also confidential personal counselling services available to you.
- Meet Professor Susan Whitney, the History Department’s Undergraduate Supervisor
Professor Whitney is a faculty member in the History Department who also serves as Undergraduate Supervisor of the History Department. As Undergraduate Supervisor, she is responsible for undergraduate education in the department. Professor Whitney teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in the history of twentieth-century France; modern Paris; youth; and women and gender. This year, she will also be teaching the department’s third-year course in historical theory.
Professor Whitney is the person you want to see if you have concerns about the content of a History course, need advice on which History courses to take, are wondering about career opportunities in History, think you might want to go on to graduate school, or want to chat about pursuing an optional Honours Research Project.
As a dedicated professor and administrator, Professor Whitney wants to help you achieve academic success during your time with the History Department. Please send her an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any concerns or want to set up a meeting.
- Meet Tanya Schwartz, the History Department’s Undergraduate Administrator
Leaving secondary school or CEGEP and entering post-secondary study is a big adjustment. Even transfer students who have attended university in the past can find it challenging. This change can be stressful but know that you are not alone. While faculty, administrators, and your fellow students can be a big help, there is one person who would love to be your main point of contact: Tanya Schwartz, the Undergraduate Administrator for the Department of History. Think of Tanya as your personal guide as you navigate the new challenges facing you at Carleton University.
She can help you make sense of your audit so you can choose your courses with confidence. She can explain how making a change to your program can affect your degree. She can also direct you to other services on campus — like when you need help navigating the library, fixing a registration error, or accessing health and counseling services. As a recent undergraduate student herself, she has faced many of the same issues you will be facing. So any time you have a concern, know that Tanya is here to help you. There is nothing she would rather be doing than helping students succeed. (Well, maybe reading a good book surrounded by her three dogs, but helping students is a very close second!)
She alternates working from home and from her office in 400 Paterson. So send her an email at email@example.com if you have any questions, concerns, or want to set up a meeting.
- Meet Professor James Miller, the History Department’s Chair (on sabbatical 2022-23)
Professor Miller is a faculty member in the History Department and is responsible for the management of the entire department. Professor Miller’s teaching and research interests include slavery and emancipation in the United States and the Atlantic World; the History of Art Brut/outsider Art; and the experiences and representations of insanity and asylum life. (He frequently teaches a popular third year online course, History of Madness.)
Professor Miller is the person you want to see if you have concerns about the way the History Department functions or about how a course is being delivered. He is also always eager to hear from students, particularly when it comes to your suggestions for the department and the History program. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Meet Professor Sonya Lipsett-Rivera, the History Department’s Acting Chair (2022-23)
Professor Lipsett-Rivera is a faculty member in the History Department who is currently managing the entire department while Professor Miller is on sabbatical. Professor Lipsett-Rivera’s teaching and research interests include Latin America, especially Mexico; environmental and social history; gender and family; and popular culture and violence.
During the 2022-23 academic year, Professor Lipsett-Rivera is the person you want to see if you have concerns about the way the History Department functions or about how a course is being delivered. She also wants to hear your suggestions for the department and the History program. You can reach her at email@example.com.
- Other Administrators in the History Department
Darlene Moss, Departmental Administrator
Phone: 613-520-2600 ext. 2847; firstname.lastname@example.org
Professor Paul Nelles, Graduate Supervisor
Phone: 613-520-2600 ext.2823; email@example.com
Joan White, Graduate Administrator
Phone: 613-520-2600 ext. 2834; firstname.lastname@example.org
- Faculty Members in the History Department
You can find the full list of instructors in the History Department on our website. When visiting our faculty profile page, click on the name of any professor to learn more about their research and teaching areas as well as how to reach out to them. Each and every one of our professors is looking forward to teaching you more about their subject areas and sharing their passion for History.