At Urban, we want and expect our students to be active historians. Several courses are taught exclusively through documents from the era, and in all our classes, students develop their own analytical ideas through abundant writing and discussion. We are committed to depth of understanding by teaching topic-defined classes that allow intensive study of critical periods, such as through courses like UAS America Transformed, a social history of the United States from 1865 to 1929, and French Revolution, a course on the upheaval and reshaping of a nation.

We believe in the importance of global coverage. Our students can explore the variety and richness of the world with such courses as UAS Modern Middle East, UAS History of South Asia and Birth of Modern China. Each of these courses focuses on contemporary history and traces current issues to their historical sources.

We value history for the greater understanding of today’s world that it provides. In focusing on the making of the modern world, we aim to highlight how the past is relevant to the present, emphasizing that students are not simply spectators but participants in their society. UAS Environmental History investigates the relationship between humans and the land beginning in pre-colonial times to understand the state of the planet today, and UAS History of Women in America discusses gender issues today by studying the evolution of those roles.