Bachelor of Arts

Public History

With a passion for the past and a need to share history for the future, TU’s public history program goes far beyond the walls of a history classroom. Public history focuses on insight of historical events and the best ways to communicate history to the masses. Our classes focus on research, critique and various means of communication through written word, filmmaking and design, to ensure future generations will know historical value.

In TU’s public history program, students will develop primary and secondary research to interpret historical events, critique information about the diverse human condition and identify assumptions and evidence, to resolve problems in a diverse global environment. Public history places a focus on how to communicate this information, through written and visual design.

The public history program links historical knowledge to professional practice, as all students will be able to work in various applied history professions, including historical consultants, museum professionals, government historians, archivists, oral historians, cultural resource managers, curators, film and media producers, historical interpreters, historic preservationists, policy advisers, local historians and community historical activists.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, archivists, curators and museum workers have a median pay $47,360 per year (in 2017) or at $22.77 per hour.

In 2016, the number of jobs in public history field totalled at 31,000, but the job outlook in 2016-2026 is set to increase by 13%, or 4,200 jobs, which is faster than average.

With TU’s curriculum, a student also has the opportunity to apply to a graduate history program.

Humanities Core Curriculum 18 hours

  • ENG 152 Technical Writing
  • DMD 134 Introduction to Digital Media
  • COM 324 Communicating Across Cultures
  • DMD 230 Digital Video I
  • COM 310 Human, Interpersonal and Small Group Communication
  • SAS 470 Internship

Public History Major 39 hours

  • HIS 122 Research and Writing for History
  • HIS 114 Public History I
  • HIS 231 Creating a Nation: The United States through the Civil War
  • HIS 242 The United States, 1865-1945: Consolidation, Industrialization & the Rise to Global Leadership
  • HIS 267 The Challenges of Global Leadership: The United States after 1945 HIS 214 Public History II
  • HIS 303 Civilizations Emerge and Develop
  • HIS 323 The Emerging West, Exploration, Colonization, and Commerce
  • HIS 314 Public History III
  • HIS 410 The Inter-Connected World: Globalization In a Post-Colonial World
  • HIS 425 Historiography
  • HIS 475 Practicing Public History


  • ENG 152 Introduction to Technical Writing
  • DMD 134 Intro to Digital Media
  • COM 324 Communicating Across Cultures
  • DMD 230 Digital Video I
  • COM 310 Human, Interpersonal and Small Group Communication
  • HIS 122 Research and Writing for History
  • HIS 303 Civilizations Emerge and Develop
  • HIS 114 Public History I
  • HIS 214 Public History II
  • HIS 314 Public History III
  • HIS 438 Practicing Public History

Total BA 121 hours

This is a sample course sequence to illustrate course offerings for this major. Consult the official Academic Bulletin for detailed registration and advising information.

On Campus - Offered in a 15-week semester format with start dates of January and August

There are no related concentrations available.

Research and Writing for History (HIS122) - This class is designed to develop the research and communication skills common to the history profession. Each student will complete a variety of research projects using primary and secondary source material, scholarly journals, oral histories, artifacts and photographs. The advantages and shortcomings of online research will be presented. Students will also learn how to work successfully in groups to prepare and deliver an oral presentation of their joint research. This is a writing intensive course.

Communicating Across Cultures (COM324) - Introduction to the study of cultural and intercultural theory and behavior, discussion of various culturally specific patterns of communication. This is a writing intensive course

Historiography (HIS425) – This capstone course investigates how the study of history has evolved, with a special emphasis placed on competing historical theories. Using samples of historical writing from representative historians over time, students will seek to understand the role of objectivity and the temptations of manipulating the past to influence the future. In addition, they will learn how technology has influenced the profession. Material studied will include European as well as American historical thought and practice. This is a writing intensive course.

Dawn of Humankind: Civilizations Emerge and Develop (HIS303) - This course explores the birth and diffusion of world civilizations from the dawn of recorded history to 1350 CE. First, the course will begin by examining the development of early civilizations and then will follow their developments into the classical age by exploring the Mediterranean societies of Greece and Rome, the Indian subcontinent, China, and the Persian Empire. Finally, the course will conclude with the establishment of post-classical empires and the expansion of world religions. Over time, technology and human enterprise led to regular encounters between distant societies. This course highlights the ways these interactions came to shape the modern world. This is a writing intensive course.

  • Archivists
  • Community Historical Activists
  • Cultural resource managers
  • Curators
  • Film and Media Producers
  • Government Historians
  • Graduate School
  • Historical Consultants
  • Historical Interpreters
  • Historic Preservationists
  • Local Historians
  • Museum Professionals
  • Oral Historians
  • Policy Advisers

This is a new program! Successful placements to come in the next few years …


Michael Goodnough
Michael Goodnough

Michael Goodnough, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of History

School of Arts & Sciences
Degrees & Certificates
  • Ph.D., in Cultural and Intellectual History, Kent State University
  • M.A., Kent State University
  • B.A., History, Bowling Green State University

Michael Goodnough, Ph.D.

Dr. Michael Daniel Goodnough is Assistant Professor of History in the School of Arts and Sciences. He started at Tiffin University as a part-time instructor in 2017 before coming on full-time as Instructor of History in the fall of 2018. A native of Ohio, Dr. Goodnough received his B.A. from Bowling Green State University in 2011 and completed his M.A. (2013) and Ph.D. (2019) in cultural and intellectual history from Kent State University.

Professor Goodnough’s teaching interests are wide-ranging. At TU, he teaches the majority of the history courses. He specializes in teaching U.S. history from colonization to globalization, World History, and sub-Saharan African history. Dr. Goodnough uses the lens of cultural history to teach how culture can provide insight into a plethora of historical themes. While at TU, he also worked to develop the new Public History major, which merges the field of history with the University’s mission of linking knowledge to professional practice.

In addition to teaching, Dr. Goodnough is an active scholar. He has presented research at international, national, and regional conferences, including the 2014 15th International Bakhtin conference at the Royal Institute of Art, Stockholm, Sweden and the 2017 American Historical Association Annual Conference in Denver, Colorado. He published a journal article (2015) and an encyclopedia entry (2018) about the New Left during the 1960s. His current research focuses on antimodernism during the 1970s.

Michael Goodnough, Ph.D...
Assistant Professor of History
Michael Goodnough, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of History


  • “I was faced with the pressure of being the very first to graduate from college in my immediate family. Not coming from a wealthy or 'well off' background, college was just a very faint thought, even approaching my senior year in high school. I dealt with self-esteem issues throughout my high school career and I found it hard to see myself anywhere than where I was. My perceived challenges were rooted from me and my surrounding circumstances. Here at TU, I was able to overcome my fears and put myself in a position that wouldn’t have been possible otherwise. Becoming a Dragon was the best decision I have ever made.”

    Nellene Arnett
    Class of 2017
    Toledo, Ohio

    Students in game room
  • Jessica Paule - Class of 2015
    "Tiffin University is the college that has helped me grow into the person that I am today. While at Tiffin, I have made unforgettable memories and friends. I continued my education at The University of Toledo College of Law. Although I am moving on, I will never forget everything I have gained from my time at Tiffin University."

    – Jessica Paule, Class of 2015

    Jessica Paule - Class of 2015
  • Ivan Santiago - Class of 2015
    "I chose TU because of its reputation for excellence, national recognition, many extracurricular opportunities and because it offers in a small, diverse college environment. I have learned the significance of academics, leadership, diversity, communication, and relationships. TU allowed me to get out of my comfort zone in order to lead and inspire. It has prepared me to make wise and imperative decisions that will benefit me in my career and my life.”

    – Ivan Santiago, Class of 2015

    Ivan Santiago - Class of 2015
  • “The main challenge I overcame in order to become a Dragon was the language barrier and the financial situation. However, Tiffin University gave the opportunity to join my passion for soccer with my dream of having an education in the U.S. As part of the soccer team, I was able to overcome my language barrier and have the best experience of my life. For that, I will always be thankful.”

    Talita Russo
    Class of 2013
    Sao Paulo, Brazil

    Students in game room
  • "TU gave me the extra boost needed to move forward with accomplishing my dream of becoming a small business owner. With the help and encouragement of my professors and coach, I was able to take that leap into the business world knowing I could not succeed if I did not take risks."

    – Emily Miller

    "TU gave me the extra boost needed to move forward with accomplishing my dream of becoming a small business owner. With the help and encouragement of my professors and coach, I was able to take that leap into the business world knowing I could not succeed

Have a Question?