• professor siting and talking to student next to book shelf

Understanding history is key to preparing for the future. As a history major at Fresno Pacific University, you’ll gain a deeper understanding of the ancient, medieval and modern world through primary sources and in-depth seminars. Visit the Holocaust Museum as part of your Nazi Germany studies and dive in to your family history in your American Ethnicity class. This flexible major allows you to emphasize in the historical areas that interest you most. You’ll learn beyond the classroom by participating in field studies at local and regional museums and events, and you’ll have the opportunity to study abroad in places like Italy, Turkey, Vietnam and Israel.


  • Learn from faculty with real-world experience spanning service in the armed forces to teaching in other countries
  • Study religion in history and culture, and explore ideas about how they shape each other
  • Participate in sponsored events and conferences, featuring a variety of guest speakers and seminars
  • Work closely with faculty in other disciplines based on your interest to enrich your research and preparation

Career opportunities

Graduates are prepared to pursue advanced study in the disciplines of history, theology, classics, philosophy and education, as well as professional fields such as law, library science, journalism, archival management and public history. Fresno Pacific has an excellent reputation among local high schools in single-subject credential acquisition. The breadth of training that you receive in our history program is a significant part of the social science subject-area preparation for a teaching career.

Transferring to Fresno Pacific

Associate Degree for Transfer (ADT) Information
History (AA-T) to History, B.A

BA courses fulfilled through ADT:

  • All lower-division General Education requirements fulfilled
  • BA co-requisites and major courses fulfilled through ADT:
    • HIST 120 - Ancient Civilizations (4)
    • HIST 140 - Modern Civilizations (4)
    • HIST 150   American Civilization (4)
  • This program is offered as daytime traditional

ADT Guarantee is the completion of BA/BS degree in 68 units.

Course listing

In order to obtain a bachelor’s degree from Fresno Pacific University, students must complete at least 120 units. Along with completing all required courses in their selected area of study, general education requirements must be met by all graduates. See the general education summary  in the undergraduate academic catalog for more information.

Select programs may not provide enough units for a student to graduate and therefore an emphasis and/or elective courses must be completed alongside the major. Please see below for emphases related to this area of study.

General Education Prerequisites (16 Units)

HIST 120Ancient Civilizations4
HIST 130Medieval and Early Modern Civilizations4
HIST 140Modern Civilizations4
HIST 150American Civilization4

Required Courses (32 Units Minimum)

At least one upper-division course in five of the following areas

  • Ancient history
  • Medieval, Renaissance or Reformation history
  • Modern European history
  • World history
  • American history
  • Religious or topical history

Sufficient additional courses to complete the number of units required for the major.

Capstone Courses

HIST 462Historiography3
HIST 483Projects in History
Must complete 4 total; usually 2 completed in two consecutive semesters*
1 - 3

*Both parts focus attention on the various ways of interpreting historical subjects, the role of Christian faith and religious experience in history and historical interpretation, the philosophical and theological implications of historical work and the development of a historical habit and practice in the student.

It is recommended that history majors complete a minor in another field of study or a deliberately chosen set of courses to prepare for anticipated work in a particular area.

Program director

Photo of W. Marshall Johnston, Ph.D.

W. Marshall Johnston, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Program Director, History


Photo of Kenneth Martens Friesen, Ph.D.

Kenneth Martens Friesen, Ph.D.

Professor of Political Science

Photo of Pam Johnston, Ph.D.

Pamela Johnston, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of History

Photo of Rod Janzen, Ed.D.

Rod Janzen, Ed.D.

Professor of History

Photo of Stephen Varvis, Ph.D.

Steve Varvis, Ph. D.

Professor of History

Photo of Bret Kincaid, Ph.D.

Bret Kincaid, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Program Director, Political Science, Pre-Law & Individualized M.A.

Allen Carden, Ph.D.

Allen Carden, Ph.D.

Professor of History