Department of History.

Congratulations to our Department of History Writing Award winners. The William & Doris Burton Writing Award in History was awarded to second-year graduate student Ann Rosentreter for “St. Frances’ Orphan Home, Normandy, Missouri,” while senior Joseph Adams won the Judy Ellen Denton Thompson Award for his essay, “The Illinois South: Culture and Identity in Southern Illinois.”

Looking Ahead. Professor Edward Woell has been selected to deliver the John Hallwas Liberal Arts Lecture in the Fall 2016 semester. This is a tremendous honor for Prof. Woell and for the Department. For more information on the Hallwas Lecture series, visit http://www.wiu.edu/cas/about/hallwas_lecture_series/. Congratulations Prof. Woell!

Studying History at WIU - The Past, The Present, and Your Future

History. What good is it? Entrepreneurs Peter Diamandis and Steven Kotler assert in Bold: How To Go Big, Achieve Success, and Impact the World (2015) that success derives from mastering the four fundamental skills of “looking, reading, writing, and integrating knowledge” (p.54). There is no better way to learn these crucial ways of communicating and sharing information than by studying History. History: good for your future.

To learn more, follow the links on the left side of this page for information about our History degrees and courses, our faculty, and the study of this fascinating subject. Feel free to contact us by telephone (309-298-1053) or by email (JL-McNabb@wiu.edu). The Department of History is part of the College of Arts and Sciences.  

Programs of Study:  BA, MA


Undergraduate Advisor: Mr. Ralph Heissinger; email RW-Heissinger@wiu.edu or call 309-298-1129

Bachelor of Arts in History with one of the following options:

Learn more about our undergraduate programstudying history, or view undergraduate courses


Director of History Graduate Studies: Dr. Edward Woell; email EJ-Woell@wiu.edu or call 309-298-2977

We offer a program of study leading to the Master of Arts degree in WIU's  School of Graduate Studies. 


WIU History News

  • Congratulations to WIU Professor of History Dr. Jennifer McNabb (Ph.D., University of Colorado, 2003) on being selected to fill the position of Interim Chair for the 2016-17 year. Dr. McNabb, who was named the 2009 WIU Provost's Award Winner for Outstanding Teaching, the 2012 WIU Provost's Award Winner for Outstanding Service, and the 2012 WIU College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) Hallwas Liberal Arts Lecturer, brings a wealth of leadership experience to the position. Dr. McNabb will assume the duties of her new position on July 15, 2016. (Read more.)
  • For new History Majors entering in the Fall of 2016: Welcome to Western! Look for the announcement of the new-student party early in the new semester. We will email you, and we will put up posters around Morgan Hall. We look forward to greeting you and introducing you to our faculty and to the returning students.
  • Congratulations to the new Phi Alpha Theta Officers: President Jillien Zudell, Vice President Mikayla Kitchen, and Secretary/Treasurer Kamren Minnaert.
  • Congratulations to the new executive board of Associated Students of History: Daniel Kellogg, president; Taryn Wehling Vice President; and the other members of the board, Gwen Hanford, Nick Ebelhack, Adam Patchik, and Maddie Olejnick.