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One Historian's Helpful Tip on Making History More Attractive to Students

First published on the History News Network on 8/2/2018.

Across the country, the number of university students majoring in history continues to decline. Students think history is boring, just a bunch of uninteresting dead people and too many dates that need to be memorized. Personally, I think one of the reasons students don’t like history starts in high school.  One of the first questions I like to ask my first year university students is, “Who had a history teacher in high school whose first name wasn’t ‘Coach’?”  Okay, I know that is a gross generalization, but in non-AP History classes it probably isn’t too far wrong.  An inordinate number of coaches are out there teaching history, a topic that is not their priority.  They are far more interested in football, basketball, baseball or some other sport. History is just an afterthought.    At the university level, we haven’t done much to solve the problem.  First year students are greeted by courses with titles like US History since 1…

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