May 27, 2020  
Undergraduate Catalog 2014-2015 
Undergraduate Catalog 2014-2015 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

History and Political Studies

Chair: Lisa Clark Diller

Faculty: Lisa Clark Diller, Kris Erskine, Ben McArthur, Mark Peach, Mindi Wiygul

Program Coordinator (History): Lisa Clark Diller

Program Coordinator (GPS): Mindi Wiygul


History is the study of the human experience. It investigates mankind’s ideas, institutions, and activities. In pursuing this investigation, history courses at Southern Adventist University emphasize the Christian view of humanity. This perspective recognizes both the potential and the limitation of human endeavor and thereby permits a broader comprehension of the past and a greater hope for the future.

Planning Your Major

History majors have a large amount of flexibility within their course of study. All majors should work closely with their academic adviser to plan for maximizing their educational time through judicious choices of classes, second majors and/or minors. Academic advisers are also a good source of wisdom in regard to thinking about employment after graduation and/or the pursuit of graduate school degrees.

Description of Political Studies

The mission of the Global Policy and Service program is to provide students with a greater understanding of the politics of the global arena and to enable students to develop practical skills to serve intelligently and with cultural sensitivity, fostering the compassion of Jesus in a world of desperate need.


Departmental Policies

  1. A maximum of three hours may be earned through AP or CLEP for the history/GPS major or minors
  2. Nine hours must be taken in residence.

GPS Majors

Seniors will be assessed two ways:

  1. By writing a senior capstone paper which will be evaluated by the GPS professor.
  2. By presenting their research to the entire History and Political Studies faculty in a formal setting.

History Majors

Assessment of seniors consists of two parts. First, in late fall semester of their senior year students will take a national standardized major field exam in history. Second, at the beginning of the fall semester seniors will take a departmental exam. Preparation for this exam will constitute a one-hour independent study course involving: 1) reading a selected few classics of historical literature; 2) reviewing one’s history course work utilizing several thematic questions provided by the history faculty; 3) creating a comprehensive c.v. detailing the student’s undergraduate experience. The subsequent examination will be in the form of a one-hour interview of the candidate by the history faculty. The oral examination is graded on an Honors, Pass, or Fail basis. A failure requires further preparation by the student and another interview before graduation.

Upper-division history classes seek to improve skills of writing and speech. All such classes require analytical writing as part of the course work. Additionally, many classes involve discussion and oral class reports as partial basis for the student’s grade, most notably HIST 497 , which requires an extended formal presentation of student research.

History as a preprofessional degree: A student majoring in history who plans to enter a professional school in an area such as medicine or law must present a balanced program of general education classes and electives that will support the professional objectives.

History Department tours: The History Department regularly sponsors study tours. The purpose of these tours is to provide students and other participants with an enhanced understanding of history and culture through a combination of traditional lecture and reading with direct observation of historical sites. Academic activities connected with the tours require students to spend an amount of time equal to that expected in a regular classroom setting. Preparatory meetings and assigned reading are included in this computation. Course credit is offered under HIST 294 /HIST 494  for International Tours and HIST 296 /HIST 496 . Cost of the tours includes charge for academic credit. Up to six hours of history tour credit may count toward the history major or minor.

History as general education: Freshman and sophomore students earning general education credit in history normally take courses from the 100 and 200 level. Junior and senior students meeting General Education requirements in history should select courses from the 300 and 400 level.