The goal of the History Department is to teach students the skills necessary to analyze the past, and thus gain perspectives on the present. The curriculum includes courses which provide an awareness of our own history, an appreciation of the many cultures which enrich the human experience, and an understanding of the political, social, and economic issues which confront us as citizens. In order to graduate, students must earn 12 credits in History and the Social Sciences, including 4 credits in the category of American History. Students are encouraged to fulfill this requirement in their sophomore year. Courses which meet this requirement are listed under AMERICAN HISTORY. To assist in the selection of appropriate classes, courses are graded in a range of 1 to 5, based on the quantity and difficulty of the work expected—1 is the most challenging. The designation appears at the end of each course description. In planning a program in history each student is strongly encouraged to take a course in three of the four categories, and must confer with a department member about selecting an appropriate sequence of courses.