Department of History.

Studying History at WIU - The Past, The Present, and Your Future

Welcome to the internet presence of the Department of History at Western Illinois University. Our dedicated faculty and staff are ready to assist you in developing the analytic, research, and communications abilities you need to excel in your chosen vocation. The skills and knowledge you learn in History translate into fulfilling, well-paid careers because we offer training for a lifetime of success. Our graduates work in business, teaching, the law, government, public history, management, and the voluntary sector. But, more importantly, we aim to foster an appreciation for History, encouraging you to read deeply and to understand how past and present shape your future.

Follow the links on the left-hand side of this page for more information about the History program, our faculty, and the study of this fascinating subject. Feel free to contact us by telephone (309-298-1053) or by email (s-cordery@wiu.edu). The Department of History is part of the College of Arts and Sciences.  

The study of the past is a conversation among historians. Our understanding of History is dynamic and our interpretations are constantly being challenged and changed. The past is very much alive, which is why we continue to enjoy reading, researching, discussing, and writing about it. Join the conversation today! 

What We Offer


Bachelor of Arts in History with one of the following options:

Learn more about our undergraduate programstudying history, or view undergraduate courses


We offer a program of study leading to the Master of Arts degree in WIU's  School of Graduate Studies. 


 News  For You

  • New History Majors (freshmen and transfers) are invited to a pizza social from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. on Friday, 28 August, in Morgan Hall Room 302.  We look forward to seeing you there!
  • Congratulations to Luke Vander Pluym (BA, 2013), who was one of five teachers from Chicago Public Schools asked by the Chicago Financial Literacy Initiative to make a presentation at the national conference of the Council for Economic Education in St. Petersburg, Florida.
  • A warm Leatherneck Welcome to all of our new and returning History majors!  If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact us. Our undergraduate advisor is Mr. Ralph Heissinger, who can be reached at RW-Heissinger@wiu.edu or 309-298-1129. Incoming History graduate students should contact Dr. Edward Woell (EJ-Woell@wiu.edu or 309-298-2977).  The Department Chair is Dr. Simon Cordery, whose email address is S-Cordery@wiu.edu. You can reach the Department by phone at 309-298-1053.
  • Updates on Recent Graduates:  Samantha Morrow begins the Master of Science in Predictive Analytics program at Northwestern University this September, and Matt Geimer has accepted a 6th-grade Social Studies teaching position at Freedom Middle School in Berwyn.  Congratulations to both of you!