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Careers In History


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#1 ktjoanna

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Posted 07 May 2004 - 02:12 PM

Is anyone thinking of or already in a career which is based on history?
I could have gone on to a search engine but I wanted to get people's opinions on whether they would like to have a career in history? If so, what career would that be?

Any thoughts?

I personally love history:wub: but I'm not sure what career to go in to...thats why i would like to hear others views... :D

ktx

#2 MrJohnDClare

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Posted 07 May 2004 - 06:18 PM

The only problem with a career in history is that there's no future in it. :D

More seriously, it's lovely that you want to make history your career, but I think you'll have difficulty being a full-time historian outside teaching (at school or university), archivist/librarian or writing/publishing.
Occasionally, it is possible to get some funded research jobs for firms, organisations or lottery-funded community projects, but these are all short-term projects, tend to be poorly-paid, and have no long-term job security.

Perhaps other people can think of other possibilities.

#3 ktjoanna

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Posted 07 May 2004 - 06:21 PM

:lol: very funny!

I imagined it would be hard to have a career in history outside of school etc
tourism and museums sound good! thanks for the feedback :lol:

Edited by ktjoanna, 08 May 2004 - 04:57 PM.


#4 MrJohnDClare

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Posted 08 May 2004 - 10:34 AM

Had some more thoughts. What about:
- Tourism/ tour guide (chance to work abroad)?
- Heritage (curator/ warden)
- Museums (not all stuffy - some are more like a theme park)
- TV (research/ presenting)

#5 ktjoanna

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Posted 10 May 2004 - 11:44 AM

has anyone taken a history degree and if so did u enjoy it? And are you able to chose which time periods you can do? What career did you make out of it?

A lot of these questions popped into my head and although i have been on the net its not the same as getting a personal response from someone... :D

Any thoughts? :blush:

#6 MrJohnDClare

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Posted 10 May 2004 - 10:07 PM

Did you know?

Famous history graduates include:
- HRH Prince Charles
- Gordon Brown, Chancellor of the Exchequer
- Neil Kinnoch, EEC Transport Commissioner
- Kenneth Clarke, former Chancellor of the Exchequer
- Robert Gunn, Chairman of Boots
- Lord Sainsbury, President of the supermarket chain
- Marmaduke Hussey, BBC Chairman of Governors
- John Tusa, Managing Director of BBC Worldwide
- Brian Walden, TV interviewer

and that:
Tony Blair, the Prime Minister, is on record as saying:
‘I wish I had studied History at University.’


34% of History Graduates went into:
Administration, Management, Marketing or Finance (finance was the most popular).

#7 Mrs Faithorn

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Posted 10 May 2004 - 11:21 PM

has anyone taken a history degree and if so did u enjoy it? And are you able to chose which time periods you can do? What career did you make out of it?

As far as I am aware Forum Members are all students still at school (at least the ones who post are) and the adults are all History Teachers - so we all have History degrees. Obviously we all enjoy the subject and have made our careers in teaching. ;) - though some of us have done other jobs before going into teaching later on.

However, as Mr Clare has pointed out, studying History at University can lead to a whole range of careers and also there are a great many things you can do apart from teaching but still directly using History. (see his previous messages) Oh and he forgot to add Ali G to his list of well known History graduates!

Employers in lots of different industries like Historians because they have a whole range of transferable skills. They know how to do research and to synthesise information from a number of sources. They are able to evaluate their sources and can weigh up the evidence and construct logical arguments. Unlike a lot of people we are very good at seeing both sides of an argument and then reaching balanced conclusions. All of this is very useful in the 'big wide world'. They have good communication skills. Historians are amongst the most 'employable' of all graduates.

As far as what you can study at University the possiblilities are wide and very varied. From Medieval to Modern; from Britain to Europe to S America to China etc etc etc. It all depends on which University you go to as to what courses they offer. What you need to do is to look at a range of University prospectuses to see what is out there.

#8 ktjoanna

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Posted 11 May 2004 - 03:35 PM

From: Mr Clare

34% of History Graduates went into:
Administration, Management, Marketing or Finance

Finance is very suprising for me...hmmm interesting *strokes chin*
wow I would never expected so many people in a variation of careers to be associated with history...wow and ali g 2? :blink:
Thanks for all the feedback Mrs. F and Mr. Clare!!!
Much appreciated!!
:D

#9 MrJohnDClare

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Posted 12 May 2004 - 07:31 AM

HISTORY AND A CAREER

The study of people is at the heart of History – their feelings, attitudes, prejudices and motivation. This understanding is very useful in the ‘people professions’, from receptionists, hairdressers and beauticians, to teachers, the Health Service, Social Work and Personnel.

History teaches interviewing and enquiry skills, which fit an historian for jobs which find out information – TV researcher, investigative reporter, market research, police etc.

Historians know how to read documents, ignore irrelevancies, separate propaganda from the truth, and circumstantial from hard evidence. This is essential for people such as lawyers, administrators and politicians.

History requires extended, logical, reasoned debate in writing. It is essential for any job which requires writing reports, the Civil Service, Law, Journalism etc.

Historical knowledge is essential for certain jobs, such as Artist, Architect, Designer, Librarian, Archaeologist, Archivist, Tour Guide etc.

Historical skills such as cause and consequence, change and continuity etc., are essential in any job which requires analysis and strategy – which includes jobs such as the Army, Teaching, Advertising, Medicine, Banking and Accountancy.

A pupil who has studied the Industrial Revolution will go into Industry aware of its structures and parameters – for instance, accounts, markets, wages and working conditions, health, safety and trade unions.

The study of History teaches information handling, communicating ideas, flexibility and tolerance – skills now regarded as essential in Industry. Historians solve problems and evaluate solutions. often by doing problem-solving group-work; skills essential in management in Industry and the Public Services, and in research and development teams in Science and Engineering.

So, really, History is an ideal and important basis for ANY career. Its skills are so varied that many employers actively encourage History graduates - recently, I read an article in which ICT firms were recruiting History graduates to their development teams because of their ability to think logically AND laterally at the same time.

I am aware, however, that you asked for careers which specifically involved working IN HISTORY, and these are harder to come by.

#10 ktjoanna

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Posted 12 May 2004 - 08:48 AM

wow thanks for all the feedback...
Its amazing yet so logical that history is involved in so many careers that i guess had never even considered having anything to do with history but now its obvious they do.
thanks you! :D

#11 Mr Westbrook

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Posted 15 May 2004 - 02:12 PM

I am now a teacher (obviously) but before teaching I worked for the BBC and the civil service for short periods of time.

Remember - most careers are non-degree specific, so with a History degree you can get a job in almost any area - people I was at university with have gone on to be lawyers, journalists, writers, managers, accountants, librarians, university lecturers and plenty of other career paths.

#12 Daniela

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Posted 27 June 2004 - 03:27 PM

I'm so glad that this topic is here :D

I've got work experience and careers interviews etc coming up in the next few months and I really want to make some discisions about my future. I am quite good with history, but I really don't know if i want to continue with it. When I have asked about a future with history I recieved almost identical answers, but then I have asked other subjects and have recieved equally wide and varied ranges of work, which seem to overlap somewhat.

I've become quite confused with all the subjects trying to convince students that A/AS and GCSEs with their subject will provide all sorts of necessary skills that will be very desirable with employers and useful in life etc. I dare not leave thinking about this for any longer as I found deciding on GCSEs so hard. Now I don't really have any favourite amongst the subjects i am taking (I think it's important to know another language well, though, so I'll probably take A level French).

I have already used programs such as Pathfinder and end up in Economics, Finance and that sort of area, but I don't feel any desire to follow this direction. I know that this is my decision and that I need to work this out myself, but what made you choose History (that's to anyone at whatever level). A big problem for me is that I don't feel that I have done better in any particular subject than in any other I am taking and I've already taken on a little extra work for some subjects so am tied down a bit already (S1 Maths, AS Literature, Triple Science and possibly AS history).

What should I ask myself to make a decision? Also, what part does History play in the IB? I have been wondering if I should find out some more about this, does anyone know if its a good thing - is anybody teaching as part of it or taking it now or in the future?

Daniela - sorry,my post is too long.... :blush:

#13 Mrs Faithorn

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Posted 27 June 2004 - 07:21 PM

I do understand your confusion Daniela and I know that it is especially difficult to make choices about future subjects if you are a good all-rounder.

What made you choose History (that's to anyone at whatever level).

I chose to study History (for A level) because I enjoyed it and was good at it, and above all because I had every confidence in the teachers I knew I would have. At that stage (GCSE) I didn't know whether it was something I would continue with at University, but I did carry on to read History at University. I didn't do that with any clear idea in mind about where it might lead career-wise, but just because I thought it was the most fascinating subject in the whole wide world. I eventually decided to go into teaching because I wanted to convey that enthusiasm to young people. It's a decision I have never regretted. I think what I am saying here is that you should "follow your heart" rather than taking totally pragmatic decisions about a future course of study. Apart from vocational courses any subject will enable you to learn skills that are applicable in a variety of careers.

What should I ask myself to make a decision?

I think you need to ask yourself (when choosing subjects for AS/A2):
Do I enjoy it?
Am I good at it?
Am I confident that I will be well-taught?
Am I closing any career paths I might be interested in by choosing this subject? (Choosing History shuts very few doors - unless of course you want to be a doctor or a nuclear physicist!)

You also need to ask yourself questions like:
Am I a 'people person'? (if you are fascinated by what makes people 'tick' then History is a brilliant subject to take)
Am I an analytical person?
Do I think logically?
Can I see both sides of a question?

Positive answers to these questions suggest History would be a good choice, but other subjects would also be relevant here.

what part does History play in the IB?

It depends what 'type' of IB you take, but the route that is Humanites-based has a big History element. To be honest I know little about it, but if no one else answers this question for you I can get someone who teaches it to answer your questions. My overall impression is that IB is very stimulating and an excellent foundation for University study. Certainly I have heard little negative about the course.

I hope that goes some way to answering your questions?

Perhaps some of the regular posters here who are taking AS/A2 History may reply too as I think that there is nothing like hearing from those who are actually doing it! Teachers of History are inevitably somewhat biased in their views - however hard we try to be objective!

#14 Daniela

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Posted 28 June 2004 - 10:31 PM

Thank you :D Mrs Faithorn.

There's a lot to think about there. I wish I had the belief in a subject as strong as your belief in History.

Daniela

#15 Mrs Faithorn

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Posted 07 July 2004 - 09:47 AM

In addition to all the advice/information given earlier in this thread, students wondering about pursuing a career in History might like to read these articles on the Historical Association website:

I LOVE HISTORY - but I've got to start thinking about a career!

What's the Use of History? The Career Destinations of History Graduates.

Edited by Mr. D. Bryant, 21 October 2011 - 09:40 PM.
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