History is more than just a list of dates and events. Rather than teaching through the memorisation of historical data, the Bachelor of Arts (Honours) Major in History at Ahmedabad University trains students to think historically, inviting them to participate in the rigours, pleasures and adventures of historical enquiry. This critical sensitivity to the past enables students to understand how the present has come to be, and forms the bedrock for endeavours to shape the future.

The Bachelor of Arts in History gives students a grounding in Indian as well as global history. This enables them to understand how people, communities, empires and nations have interacted with and shaped each other over the centuries. Students are trained in spoken and written communication, critical thinking, and evidence-based reasoning. Delivered by faculty members who are themselves active researchers, the major will not only equip students with qualitative analytical skills, but also train them in quantitative ways of approaching history.

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Programme Outcomes

Students of the Bachelor of Arts in History will:

  • Study a range of historical periods and regions, including from all around India, as well as the Silk Road, the regions surrounding the Indian Ocean and beyond
  • Gain familiarity about history as a way of engaging with the world and understand more about the different ways of doing history, from the quantitative to the qualitative
  • Learn to communicate effectively in speech and writing, think critically and make arguments based on evidence
  • Engage with the rich histories around the University and undertake active primary research in various archives in and around Ahmedabad
  • Conduct historical research on an area of their interest, culminating in an Undergraduate thesis

Course Structure

All incoming Undergraduates at Ahmedabad University start with the Foundation programme, an interdisciplinary course that covers fields from Mathematics to Literature through project-based learning.

The History major opens with a course titled ‘Ahmedabad as a Gateway to Global History’, where the city of Ahmedabad becomes a lens to explore a range of histories in multiple time periods.

Core courses from the India, Global, and Methods clusters make up the major’s foundation. Students have flexibility to shape their course of study by choosing three courses from each cluster in order to complete the major.

India Cluster

The India cluster focuses on civilisations through different periods and regions in South Asia. Sample courses in the India cluster include:

History of India (I): the Birth of Civilisations in the Subcontinent
India in the Age of Western Imperialism
Nations and Nationalism in South Asia
Global Cluster

Students of history should have a strong awareness of historical developments at global as well as local scales. Courses in the Global cluster introduce students to the history of diverse geographies, focusing particularly on Africa, East Asia and the Middle East. Sample courses in the Global cluster include:

The Old and the New Worlds
Connections: The Silk Route Across Ages
History of the Indian Ocean
Methods Cluster

The Methods cluster trains students in the practice of doing historical work: of research, close reading, engaging with archives, and quantitative approaches to historical work. Sample courses in Methods include:

Books and Buildings: Textual and Archaeological Perspectives
Constructing a Historical Narrative: From Herodotus to Hobsbawm
The Limits of History
Intellectual History
Discipline Electives

Discipline electives allow students to further specialise in their study of history. Sample electives include:

Introduction to World Religions
Nation and the Performing Arts
How Do We Know What We Know? An Introduction to the History and Philosophy of Science
Imagining Modern India: An Intellectual History of a Nation
Undergraduate Thesis

As in all majors at Ahmedabad University, students pursue their own interests with a thesis or capstone project which they complete in their final year.

Minor in History

Any student in the University can Minor in History. To do this, they have to take two courses in each of the Methods, India and Global clusters.

Sample Course Structure
Semester 1 2 3 4 5
I Foundation Programme Communications Level 1
II Ahmedabad as a Gateway to the World India Course 1 Communications Level 2 GER (Social Sciences) GER (Maths and Physics)
III History Methods Course 1

Global History Course 1

GER (Math Methods 1) GER (Performing and Visual Arts) GER (Biology and Life Science)
IV India Course 2 India Course 3 GER (Math Methods 2) GER (Any course outside History) Discipline Elective
V History Methods Course 2 Global History Course 2 Discipline Elective Discipline Elective Free Elective
VI History Methods Course 3 Global History Course 3 Discipline Elective GER (Any course outside History) Free Elective
VII Discipline Elective Undergraduate Thesis 1 GER (Humanities and Languages) Free Elective Free Elective
VIII Discipline Elective Undergraduate Thesis Part 2 GER (Any course outside History) Free Elective Free Elective


Faculty Spotlight

“How do scientists go about their research? Do aspects་of their cultural and social contexts affect their work, or་does their work seep into who they become as human་beings? What factors determine which technologies་are developed, and how? What happens when a་new discovery has powerful political ramifications?” - Professor Aparajith Ramnath

As a historian of science, Professor Ramnath engages with these important but rarely asked questions. While the subject is difficult to navigate, Professor Ramnath has successfully developed a new pedagogy for instruction. Teaming up with the illustrator/cartoonist Anupam Arunachalam, he has devised a course for students where they learn about the history of science alongside an introduction to comics as an art form. Students are encouraged to present the historical component of the course through short graphic novels. Apart from the great enthusiasm it generated among first year students during Independent Study Period, having to express themselves in a new medium is effective in helping them to clarify their understanding.

Career Pathways

Graduates with a major in History are prepared, depending on their interests, for diverse career paths, in teaching, research, museums, archives, libraries, law, the civil services, journalism, publishing, advertising, the NGO sector, business and entrepreneurship.

Students interested in further study will find the Bachelors in History an ideal preparation for Masters or doctoral level study in various specialisations of History, but also potentially in Politics, International Relations, and Management.


The Bachelor of Arts in History is open to anyone who has completed class 12 or the equivalent.
To know more about the admissions calendar and the selection process - Click here

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