James Rosengarten, Department Chair

An appreciation of historical context is central to understanding the world around us. Our study of history is an exploration of human experience: the ways diverse peoples have differed in their ideas, institutions and cultural practices, the ways experiences vary by period and nationality and social circumstances, and the ways people(s) have struggled with each other. We ask our students to make connections between the past the world they now inhabit and to ponder the question - How did we get this way?

All Upper School students take World History in grade 9 and American History in grade 11. Most students also take Global History: World War I to Present in grade 10, and virtually all take a history elective in grade 12. See below for a listing of our broad range of electives. Our history courses emphasize the analysis of primary sources in the development of critical thinking and original argument. Grade 11 students complete a capstone, primary source-based piece of original research as part of the American History course.

Interested students may also join clubs such as Model United Nations, the Debate Team, and Mock Trial, where knowledge and a deep understanding of the origins of current events is essential.

History Elective Courses

Open to students in grades 11 and 12. With the exception of Modern European History Seminar Advanced, all history electives are one semester long.