Institute of History

Bachelor of Arts in History

96 credits
For students entering the program at the Sophomore level
(holders of a recognized Baccalaureate or Freshman diploma - equivalent to 30 credits)
Progamme Accreditation


General Education
Arts and Humanities
6 credits
Behavioral and Social Sciences
6 credits
Civic Engagement
2 credits
English and French Communication
6 credits
HIS215Lebanon in the Ancient Period
3 credits
Students will be introduced to the ancient history and antique archeology of Lebanon, including the main historical events and the archeological sites that make this period important for Lebanon. Students will present, through written and material testimonies, the diverse civilizations and the cultures of Lebanon, having gained knowledge and experience through working on archeological sites and studying several themes: arts, crafts, trade, religion, politics, and society. The period examined, distributed over six chronological phases, starts with pre­history and ends at antiquity/the pre­Byzantine era.
Quantitative Reasoning
3 credits
Religious Sciences
3 credits
Science and Health
3 credits
1 credits
Common Core
AAR360Archeology / Tourism in Lebanon: archeological and touristic sites
2 credits
The purpose of this course is to make students aware of the values of Lebanon’s archeological heritage. Important historical sites of Lebanon will be studied. The cultural, architectural and artistic characteristics of every period will be underlined. The main discoveries preserved in Beirut National Museum and in the regional museums of Baalbek, Beiteddine and Byblos, as well as the major works preserved in the international museums, will be included. This highly visual course will be illustrated with projected images.
AAR355Art History in Lebanon
3 credits
This course presents art in Lebanon since its origins until the present day. By conducting comparative studies, students explore its sources, its interactions, the influences it has undergone, its originality and its geographical, historic characteristics and close and distant cultural context.
AAR340Former Language: Greek or Latin (Indo-European Group)
3 credits
This course enables students to decipher inscriptions and to read the classic texts as well get acquainted with the use of tools: grammar, dictionaries, corpus of texts, etc.
AAR335Former Semitic Languages: Semitic Group (Phoenician, Hebrew, Aramaic, Syriac)
3 credits
Students of history and archeology will study the Semitic languages, grammar books, dictionaries, and the corpus of texts. In this course students will learn how to read inscriptions and texts.
2 credits
Geography is a science, which is interested in the inhabited earth. It analyzes the natural facts in relation to human beings, their distribution, their movements, their activities and their actions. Beyond the influence of the natural mechanisms on life, geography studies the great contemporary problems: social and economic globalization, inequalities of development, ecological risks, and the overcrowding of cities, etc.
HIS301Historical Criticism
3 credits
This course approaches history as an experimental science within the constellation of human sciences. It teaches the student-historians how to apply rigorous thought processes, which consist of a series of critical examinations on a variety of testimonies (material, oral and written sources), and on information gathered. The historians master the research processes through independent analysis, the use of supplementary material and the application of critical apparatus (authenticity, origin, restitution, originality), to begin developing the chosen subject. This fundamental course teaches student-historians to work independently with critical minds.
AAR320Introduction to Pre-History
2 credits
In this course students will study the period before history, known as pre­history, and consider all the events which marked human beings before the invention of writing. This course is a multidisciplinary science, which includes geology, anthropology, climatology, zoology, etc. Students will examine material, mute traces and lifeless remnants of the past, which will provoke questions and enable students to draw information from multiple arenas.
HIS485Islam: open questions: doctrines, institutions, rites, law, Sufism, brotherhood, western trends
2 credits
This course presents the different theological interpretations and current legal issues, as well as examining the current myths about Islam, the brotherhoods and the different contemporary movements questing an ideal. Students will be studying the papers and the works of contemporary Muslim intellectuals throughout this course.
HIS230Lebanon in the Contemporary Period
3 credits
This course covers the history of contemporary Lebanon from the eve of World War I until the present day. This history includes the formation of the State of Lebanon and the struggle to maintain its integrity and independence. Lebanon was the first political entity established in the Near­East since the 16th century. The roots of its political institutions were built during the Mutasarifiya, under the guarantee of major powers. The Lebanese political entity was confirmed through the declaration of the Lebanese Republic in 1926 and its independence. Independent Lebanon, since 1943, has experienced periods of stability and prosperity as well as periods of disturbance and socio­political agitation on the local scale, depending on regional and international rivalries.
HIS220Lebanon in the Medieval Period
3 credits
Students are introduced to the history of medieval Lebanon, a very important period, which begins with the Arab­Muslim conquest of Lebanon in 636 and which ends in 1516 with the victory of the Ottomans over the Mamelukes. Students will become familiar with research while using primary sources.
HIS225Lebanon in the Modern Period
3 credits
The history of modern Lebanon extends from the date of the Ottoman victory over the Mamelukes during the battle of Marj Dabek in 1516 to the beginning of the First World War in 1914. Students will learn chronologically about the great periods and events in Lebanon’s history, as well as the reign of the Maan and Chehab dynasties, and both Caïmacamias, Moutasarifiya (from 1861 to 1915), and the evolution of Lebanese society.
AAR305Museology and Archeology
2 credits
The course introduces students to the methods of museology, including conservation, restoration, and publishing. They are trained to substantiate the heritage of the Near East by using traditional tools and new technologies during excavations. They will conduct field work at the national museum of Beirut, and compare theories of different methods of conservation used and deployed by international museums, such as Le Louvre in Paris, or the Pergamon museum in Berlin.
HIS385Ancient Near-East: Egypt
2 credits
This course introduces students to the history of Egypt in ancient times, focusing on the chronology of the Pharaohs and their power in the Near East. Students will learn how to read and even to translate hieroglyphs. Students should be able to use primary sources and contextualize the topic in drawing a comparative chronology between Egypt and the rest of the eastern world.
HIS390Ancient Near-East: Mesopotamia
2 credits
This course focuses on the history of Mesopotamia in ancient times. This is a fundamental course which enables students to understand the context of the establishment of the first state-cities in the world. Students will use classical methods of learning, such as chronology and scale analysis. They should be able to establish the link between the history of Mesopotamia and the history of Egypt and other countries during the same period.
HIS395Ancient Near-East: Syria
2 credits
This course intends to focus on the idea that ancient Syria has never been a centralized and strong state. Students will use methods of contextualization to understand that throughout history its cities have been influenced by empires and neighboring kingdoms: the Hittite Empire in the North, Assyria in the East, and Egypt in the South. This course will also consider the geography of Syria and its geopolitical situation. Finally, it will refer to archeological fields in order to enhance the importance of Syria at a certain time of History.
AAR415Art of Modern Times
3 credits
The course covers the period from the 14th century up to the first half of the 18th century. It studies the transformations in art throughout the centuries within the sociocultural context, from early antiquity in the West, until when paintings and sculptures began to illustrate real characters in real places. Students will learn how to analyze a work of art (painting, sculpture, drawings, etc.) and how to compare the techniques used by the artists in different periods of time.
AAR460Contemporary Art
3 credits
Contemporary art begins in the last half of the 20th century, and this course explains the causes of transformations in art, and the trends, forms and tools which resulted in the contemporary arts. Students learn how to give value to a contemporary work of art in a time when there are not fixed standards anymore and where everything seems allowed. We consider the role of a work of art in society and its impact on the observer, as well as explore real and virtual museums.
HIS460Contemporary Middle East
3 credits
The expression “Middle East” concerns the area including the states of the Fertile Crescent and those of the Arab Peninsula, and Turkey, Pakistan, Iran, Afghanistan, Libya, Egypt, and sometimes India. The course limits the study to states of the eastern Mediterranean Sea and Iraq. Students will examine themes dealing with the political and economic evolution, social mutations, demographic dynamics and some geopolitical questions focusing on contemporary issues, such as conflicts related to water management and the Arab Spring.
HIS400Greek and Byzantine History
2 credits
Greek history lives on thanks to its rich heritage, especially in the Mediterranean area. The course will present the constitutive elements of this long history since the emergence of the Minoan and Mycenaean “palatial” civilizations up to the fall of the Byzantine Empire in 1453. Students will study the cultural aspect of the Greek civilization, which reached its apogee with Hellenism. The course will help the students to analyze the process of diffusion of Christianity all around the Mediterranean coast, realized by the foundation of the Byzantine Empire and the uniqueness of the Basileus. A political approach will be adopted, analyzing the different regimes in the Greek and Byzantine world, from democracy to the powerful Empire, through tyranny. Attention will be given to the evolution of the city of Constantinople.
HIS480History of Christianity: birth and doctrines
3 credits
This course focuses on the inauguration of the New Alliance by Jesus, and the New testament which records the words and actions of this period. When Apostles proclaimed the good news by the kerygma it validated the evangelic mission of the Church, and from it, the first Christian communities were developed and organized. Their emergence caused different reactions and they were attacked by the upholders of Judaism and adherents of paganism. The course focuses on the dialectic of the integration of the Christians. The account of the genesis of Christianity is examined in this course along with the elaboration of the corpus of the first texts, and by minutely questioning the essence of the message that it brings to its understanding, its transmission, its evolution and its interpretation.
HIS425Islam, from Mahomet to 1516
3 credits
Gathered under the leadership of the prophet Mahomet, in the 7th century, the Arabs dominated the Near­East within a few years and continue the conquest in Africa and in Europe. The Caliph Rachidoun (632­661) yielded power to dynasties, which governed Dar­el­Islam of various capitals. Students will closely follow the stages of the expansion, the moments of the transfer of power, the organization of the administration and the governmental institutions of the Arab community from social, economic, cultural and scientific perspectives.
HIS450Modern Europe
3 credits
This course deals with the history of Europe from the Renaissance until the end of the Monarchy. Students will examine financial and economic questions, the political regimes, religious reforms, the Industrial Revolution, as well as the psychological and social structures of the period.
HIS405Roman History
2 credits
The course examines, through the history of the roman entities, the different factors which enhance the role of Rome as a Mediterranean power. The development and enlargement of the roman influence will be explained during both periods: period of the Roman Republic and then the period of roman imperialism. Students will use a comparative approach to examine the roman influence during these two periods and in different areas. Students will furthermore be able to define the process of Romanization and to develop a critical approach concerning the heritage of the Romans.
HIS455The Contemporary World
2 credits
This course will focus first on the interwar period of the 20th century. It will then deal with the main reasons that disturbed the world order during the second half of the 20th century: bipolarization, positive neutrality, decolonization, the European construction, the end of communism, the role of the USA as a superpower, globalization, international organizations, etc.
HIS435The Ottoman Empire
3 credits
The interest in writing about the Ottoman period in history was renewed when local archives were made accessible in the second half of the 20th century. The image of a tyrannical and fanatical power, which made Europe tremble, was sweetened and the emphasis was put on the internal organization of the Empire.
Defeated in Lepante in 1570, stopped in Vienna in 1683, and overruled in the Treaty of Kaynardji in 1774, the Empire weakened and became “the sick man of Europe” throughout the 19th century and had disappeared by the end of World War I.
HIS430Western Middle Ages
2 credits
The course describes the western Middle Ages period with a social, political, military and cultural approach. Students will be introduced to the first theories of modern states, which contributed to transform Europe from the 5th to the 14th centuries. Primary sources and works of art will help the students to understand the different representations of the societies, their leaders and the new-born states. A comparative approach is necessary to understand the different evolutions in the European areas.


This accreditation commission of evalag, Evalag-Baden-Württemberg, accredited this program and awarded the evalag international label for program accreditation.


The program aims to introduce students to the history of the region they live in, which constitutes their direct heritage. Students will learn about Eastern history, especially the history of Lebanon and history of the Middle East since ancient times.
Additional courses will be offered covering religious history, such as Christianity and Islam, which contribute in developing a double-sided civilization in the Middle East.
Program Educational Objectives
1. Graduates will conduct objective analysis on historical events in the Middle East.
2. Graduates will master the different aspects of the history of their region: religion, politics, economic and social matters.
3. Graduates will contextualize, in time and in space, the different events they study.
4. Graduates will be able to conduct a comparative analysis on different scales.

Program Outcomes

a. Students will have the ability to distinguish Lebanon's historical heritage, museums, and art.
b. Decipher inscriptions and texts in ancient languages.
c. Analyze great contemporary problems while linking them to historical events.
d. Conduct historical research, develop a precise subject and manage an adequate dissertation.
e. Savvy historical facts, problems and events.
f. Comprehend various theological interpretations, current legal issues and myths about Islam.
g. Perceive facts about the ancient near-east.
h. Fathom the modern history of different regions.
i. Discern contemporary occurrences.
j. Acquire the Greek and Byzantine history.
Holy Spirit University of Kaslik
Tel.: (+961) 9 600 000
Fax : (+961) 9 600 100
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