Explore History Careers: Exciting Paths for Aspiring Historians

As a professional copywriting journalist, I’ve had the chance to explore a range of fascinating topics and industries. But as someone with a passion for history, I can confidently say that few fields offer the same level of intellectual excitement and career diversity as history careers.

Whether you’re interested in museums, education, research, or public service, a history degree can open up a world of possibilities. In this article, I’ll take you on a tour of the history job market, exploring different career paths and specializations within the field. We’ll also look at the skills and qualities needed for success in history careers, as well as practical tips and resources for navigating the job search.

If you’re an aspiring historian or simply curious about the options available, read on to learn more!

I will endeavor to cover the following: careers in history, history job opportunities, history related careers, career options in history,  jobs in history field, history degree careers,  history job prospects, careers with a history degree.

Key Takeaways:

  • History careers offer a diverse range of opportunities in museums, archives, education, government, non-profit organizations, and consulting
  • A history degree provides transferable skills such as critical thinking, research, analysis, and effective communication, valued by employers in various sectors
  • Practical tips and resources for job searching, including networking, resume building, and professional organizations, can help aspiring historians gain experience and find their ideal role

History Careers & Job Opportunities: Where Can a History Degree Take You?

As a history graduate, the world is your oyster when it comes to career paths. A degree in history equips you with a diverse range of skills that are applicable to many fields, including:

Museums and ArchivesEducationGovernment
CuratorTeacherPolicy Adviser
Exhibition DesignerLibrarianIntelligence Analyst

In addition to these sectors, history graduates may also find employment in non-profit organizations, consulting, or even entrepreneurship. Your skills in research, analysis, and communication are highly valued by employers looking for critical thinkers and problem solvers. Furthermore, your ability to interpret and contextualize complex information provides valuable insight in many industries.

Whether you’re interested in pursuing a career in museums, education, government, or beyond, a history degree can take you there. Don’t limit yourself, and explore the many exciting opportunities available to you.

history job opportunities

Career Options in History: Exploring Different Specializations

If you’re considering a career in history, it’s important to explore the various specializations within the field. Specializing in a particular area of history can open up a range of job opportunities in both the public and private sectors.

One area of specialization is political history, which involves studying past political events, leaders, and systems. Political historians often work in government or with political organizations, analyzing policy decisions and crafting narratives around political events.

Cultural history is another specialization that focuses on the cultural aspects of a society, including art, literature, music, and popular culture. Cultural historians often work in museums, galleries, and heritage organizations, curating exhibitions and interpreting cultural artifacts.

SpecializationCareer Options
Social HistoryResearcher, Academic, Journalist, Curator, Writer
Economic HistoryResearcher, Policy Analyst, Consultant, Financial Analyst

Social history is another specialization that examines the lived experiences of people in the past, with a particular focus on marginalized groups such as women, minorities, and the working class. Social historians often work in academia, journalism, or museums.

Economic history examines the history of economic systems and financial institutions. Economic historians can work in a range of fields, such as finance, consulting, or policy analysis.

Wherever your interests lie, there’s a specialization in history that could be right for you. Consider exploring different areas of history to find your niche and develop the skills you need to succeed in your chosen career.

career options in the history field

Prospects for History Graduates: Job Market and Demand

As I researched the job market and demand for history graduates, I found that there are a variety of factors to consider when pursuing a career in this field. While some history graduates enter directly into history-related jobs, others utilize the skills gained from their degree to diversify their career paths. It’s important to note that the career prospects for history graduates are constantly evolving, with job opportunities being influenced by economic, social, and political factors.

According to the National Careers Service, employment rates for history graduates are generally high, with over 90% of graduates in work or further study six months after graduation. On average, history graduates earn a starting salary of around £18,000, with the potential for higher earnings as their career progresses.

IndustryMedian Annual Salary (UK)
Museums, Libraries, and Archives£25,000
Government and Public Services£24,000
Non-Profit Organizations£21,000

Through my research, I discovered that the skills and knowledge gained from studying history are highly valued by employers. History graduates possess strong research, analytical, and critical thinking skills. They also have the ability to communicate effectively, both verbally and in writing, and are capable of working well under pressure. These skills are transferable and can be applied in various sectors, including education, government, non-profit organizations, and consulting.

Overall, the job market and demand for history graduates are promising. However, it’s important to stay updated on industry trends and seek out professional development opportunities to enhance your skills and stay ahead in your career.

history job prospects

Pursuing a History Career: Education and Training

As an aspiring historian, obtaining a degree in history is an essential step towards a fulfilling career in the field. A Bachelor’s degree in history will provide you with a foundational understanding of historical events, critical thinking skills, research skills, and effective communication skills. Many universities offer postgraduate studies in history, such as Master’s and PhD degrees, which can lead to specialization in a specific area of history and enhance your career prospects.

Internships are a great way to gain practical experience and exposure to the industry. Many museums, archives, and other history-related organizations offer intern programmes for history students. These experiences not only provide hands-on experience, but they also build your network of contacts in the field.

Professional development opportunities such as attending conferences, workshops, and seminars can also be helpful in staying updated with the latest trends and developments in the field of history. It is important to continuously improve your skills and knowledge as the field of history is constantly evolving.

Remember: pursuing a career in history requires dedication, hard work, and continuous learning. But the rewards of a fulfilling career in the field of history are worth it!

history degree careers

Skills for Success: Key Qualities for Historians

Aspiring historians need to develop a range of skills to succeed in their careers. The ability to think critically, conduct thorough research, and communicate effectively are just a few of the key qualities required. Here are some essential skills that every historian should cultivate:

Critical ThinkingHistorians must be able to analyze and evaluate information from a variety of sources to form cohesive conclusions and interpretations of historical events.
Research SkillsConducting in-depth research is one of the most important aspects of a historian’s job. They must be able to gather information from a variety of sources and synthesize it into a cohesive narrative.
Analytical ThinkingHistorians must be able to break down complex concepts and ideas into smaller, more manageable pieces for analysis, interpretation, and presentation.
Effective CommunicationHistorians must be able to communicate their ideas effectively, both in writing and verbally. This includes the ability to write well-crafted research papers and reports, as well as give engaging presentations to various audiences.
Attention to DetailHistorians must possess a meticulous eye for detail, ensuring that nothing is overlooked when analyzing historical events.
OpenmindednessHistorians must have an open mind and be willing to consider multiple perspectives when examining historical events. This allows them to form unbiased conclusions based on their research.
AdaptabilityHistorians must be able to adapt to new technologies, research methods, and historical interpretations as they emerge.

Developing these skills is critical for success in the history field. It is important to note that these skills can be developed and honed through practice and experience.

skills for success

Navigating the Job Search: Tips and Resources

Looking for a job can be a daunting task, but don’t worry, there are plenty of resources available to help you navigate the job market in the history field. Here are some tips to get you started:

1. Network, network, network

Join professional organizations and attend conferences and events to meet other historians and potential employers. Don’t be afraid to reach out to alumni or professors from your history program for guidance and advice. Building a strong professional network can lead to new opportunities and connections.

2. Build a Strong Resume/CV

Your resume or CV is your chance to showcase your skills and experience to potential employers. Tailor your resume to the job you’re applying for, highlighting relevant coursework, internships, and volunteer experience. Make sure to proofread for errors and have a trusted mentor review it before submitting it.

3. Prepare for Interviews

Research the company or organization you’re interviewing with and prepare for common interview questions. Be able to speak to your experience and how it relates to the job you’re applying for. Don’t forget to send a thank-you note after the interview.

4. Utilize Online Job Boards and Professional Organizations

Check online job boards such as Indeed, LinkedIn, and Glassdoor for job postings specifically for history graduates. Join professional organizations such as the American Historical Association or the Society for History Education for access to job postings, networking opportunities, and career advice.

5. Gain Experience through Internships and Volunteering

Internships and volunteering can be a great way to gain experience and skills in the history field. Seek out opportunities at museums, archives, and historical societies, or reach out to non-profit organizations and government agencies. Not only will you gain valuable experience, but you may make connections that lead to future job opportunities.

history job search

Success Stories: Profiles of Inspiring Historians

Allow me to introduce you to some of the most inspiring historians of our time. From groundbreaking research to leadership roles, these individuals have made significant contributions to the field of history and serve as role models for aspiring historians.

Dr. Mary BeardAncient RomeProfessor of Classics at the University of Cambridge, author of multiple books on ancient Rome, recipient of the OBE for services to Classical Scholarship
Dr. Henry Louis Gates Jr.African American HistoryProfessor at Harvard University, author of multiple books on African American history, host of the PBS show “Finding Your Roots”
Dr. Adam ToozeEconomic HistoryProfessor of History at Columbia University, author of multiple books on economic history, winner of the Wolfson History Prize
Dr. Nell Irvin PainterAfrican American History and Women’s StudiesProfessor of History emerita at Princeton University, author of multiple books on African American history and women’s studies, recipient of the National Humanities Medal

These historians have not only excelled in their respective fields, but they have also become advocates for historical education and social justice. Their contributions have brought history to life and made it accessible to a wider audience.

If you’re looking for inspiration, I encourage you to read more about these historians and their work. They serve as a reminder of the endless possibilities that come with pursuing a career in history.

inspiring historians

Advancing in a History Career: Professional Growth and Opportunities

As an aspiring historian, it is important to consider the potential for growth and advancement in the field. With the right skills, education, and experience, history graduates can take on a range of leadership roles and specialize in areas of interest. Here are some opportunities for professional growth and development in history careers:

Leadership RolesAs historians gain experience, they can progress into leadership roles such as department heads, curators, or executive directors. These roles come with increased responsibility and authority, making them a stepping stone for further career growth.
ConsultancyAs experts in their field, historians can offer consultancy services to organizations and businesses that require historical perspective. This can be a lucrative and rewarding option for those with specialized knowledge and experience.
ResearchHistorians can continue to conduct research and publish academic papers, becoming sought-after experts in their areas of expertise. This can lead to teaching positions and further career advancement.

Continued professional development is also important for historians seeking career growth. Attending conferences, workshops, and training sessions can help keep professionals up-to-date with the latest trends and advancements in the field. Networking with other historians and professionals can also lead to valuable connections and opportunities.

Regardless of the path taken, success in a history career requires dedication, hard work, and a passion for the subject. With the right mindset and approach, history graduates can enjoy rewarding and fulfilling careers that allow them to make a meaningful impact in their field.

history job prospects


As a historian myself, I can attest to the incredible opportunities and rewarding experiences that come with pursuing a career in history. In this article, we’ve highlighted the diverse range of career paths available to history graduates, from working in museums to consulting for non-profit organizations.

We’ve explored different specializations within the field, such as political, cultural, social, and economic history, and discussed the job market and demand for history graduates.

For aspiring historians, we’ve provided advice on education and training, as well as key qualities and skills for success. We’ve also shared practical tips and resources for navigating the job search and offered profiles of inspiring historians who have made significant contributions in their careers.

Remember, pursuing a career in history is not only an opportunity to follow your passion but also a chance to make a difference in the world. With continuous learning and professional growth, you can achieve great success and become a leading voice in your field.

So, what are you waiting for?

Get started today and join the exciting world of history careers!


Q: Why should I consider a career in history?

A: Pursuing a career in history allows you to delve into the past, uncovering fascinating stories, and understanding how events shape the present. It offers a range of diverse and exciting career paths.

Q: What job opportunities are available for history graduates?

A: History graduates can find job opportunities in museums, archives, education, government, non-profit organizations, and consulting. The skills and knowledge gained from studying history are transferable and valuable in these fields.

Q: What are the different specializations within the field of history?

A: History offers various specializations, including political history, cultural history, social history, and economic history. Within each specialization, there are specific roles and positions that provide a wide range of career options.

Q: What are the job prospects for history graduates?

A: The job market for history graduates is diverse, with opportunities in various sectors. Employment rates are generally favorable, and the transferable skills gained from studying history are highly valued by employers.

Q: What education and training do I need for a history career?

A: A history degree is typically the first step in pursuing a career in history. Postgraduate studies, internships, and professional development opportunities can further enhance your knowledge and skills in the field.

Q: What key qualities do historians need for success?

A: Historians require critical thinking, research skills, analytical thinking, effective communication, and attention to detail. Developing these skills can greatly enhance career prospects in the field of history.

Q: How can I navigate the job search in the history field?

A: Networking, building a strong resume/CV, preparing for interviews, and utilizing online job boards and professional organizations are essential in the job search process. Internships and volunteer opportunities can also provide valuable experience.

Q: Can you share any success stories of inspiring historians?

A: There are numerous inspiring historians who have made significant contributions in their respective careers. Their achievements, career trajectories, and impact showcase the exciting possibilities in the field of history.

Q: What opportunities for professional growth are available in history careers?

A: History careers offer opportunities for specialization, leadership roles, consultancy, and research. Continuous professional development and lifelong learning are crucial for advancing in the field.