Why choose History at Dal?

A British novelist described the past as a "foreign country: they do things differently there." History students explore that foreign country. You unlock the secrets of the past and the present, learn who you are and who you could be.

Studying history means sifting through layers of evidence, looking for clues that lie not just in words and documents, but in images, fashion, the law, customs, music, and other traces left from the past. Historians look for discernible patterns in people's lives, work, and thought: the meanings they carried then and the meanings they suggest now.

One of our History program's greatest strengths is the way it transcends borders. Rather than simply concentrating on specific countries, we also look at the broader regions to which they belong. The histories of North and South American countries have more in common with each other than meets the eye, as do the nations that surround the Atlantic Ocean.

Expanding horizons

Our program also crosses disciplines. History at Dal offers you whole new horizons to explore through courses in other programs such as International Development Studies, Spanish and Latin American Studies, Gender and Women’s Studies, European Studies, Law and Society, Canadian Studies, Russian Studies, and Sustainability. Our award-winning faculty members are actively involved in many related programs in the university.

As a Dal History student, you’re encouraged to question, to assess evidence and analyze conflicting interpretations, to think critically and independently, and to express your own opinions—all attributes that are highly sought in a wide range of careers and professions.

Program details

Bachelor of Arts (BA)

Program Options

  • Concentration (3 years)
  • Major/Double Major (4 years)
  • Honours/Combined Honours (4 years)
  • Available as a second subject to BSc students


Required high school courses:

  • English
  • Four additional university preparatory courses

Recommended high school courses:

  • History
  • Political Science

See admission requirements for more information.

Application Deadline and Program Dates

Application deadlines for 2017/18

  • March 1 - Deadline for scholarship consideration for fall semester
  • April 1 - International students (except USA)
  • June 1 - All Canadian and American applications

Other important program dates

Class Size

  • Courses in first and second year range from 50-200 students
  • Upper-level courses range from 15-35 students

Tuition Fees

Use our Fee Calculator to estimate the cost of a full year at Dalhousie.

Residence & Housing

Whether you're applying to one of our residence halls or you’re looking for help with an off-campus apartment search, Dalhousie’s Residence and Housing services can help.

Housing options

  • Meal plans
  • Dorm-style traditional residences
  • Apartment-style, non-traditional
  • Off-campus housing

Outside the classroom

A castle with a view

In 2010, Marilyn Smulders took a Dalhousie summer class in the Czech Republic—Advanced Seminar in Baroque Culture (HIST 4162)—where she immersed herself in history in Ceský Krumlov Castle.

"From the window, you can see terracotta roofs of houses wrapped cheek-by-jowl around a horseshoe bend of the Vltava, a fast-running river cutting across this beautiful Eastern European country."