Northern Michigan University Department of History


Creating a Community of historians and Inspiring Students Through the Study of the Past


Why NMU for History? 

Literally hundreds of universities offer the history major, so why come to Northern

  • Committed Faculty: Here at NMU you will find mentors not merely instructors
  • A Community: At NMU the history faculty and students work closely together and hold several events across the course of the semester
  • Citizenship Studies: We have the only academic program focused on Citizenship in Michigan
  • Reacting the Past: A proven game-based pedagogy that enhances analytical skills, presentation skills, and our community of students and faculty
  • The History Teaching Assistants: Upper-Class students embedded in our lower division course dramatically enhancing student success rates
  • The NMU Archive: All of students engage in individual, in-depth research in the archives
  • Virtual Reality: Studying Greece? Tour the Parthenon from the History Reading Room
  • The History Lounge: An informal space dedicated to allowing our students a place to interact with each other and the faculty
  • A Clear Path to Graduation: The Bachelors degree in History offers a clear path to graduation in a timely manner


The History faculty at NMU is committed to teaching and contributing to the profession. We offer a wide range of courses, including some you won’t find replicated on many campuses: Globalization and you, History of Prejudice, and Sports History. All history students also take our Historians Laboratory class and the History Seminar. e small classes immerse students intensive research and allow them to work closely with the faculty.

Students at NMU also have the opportunity to help create the historical record future historians will use through the oral history project for the Upper Peninsula. You can see the oral histories already collected and transcribed by clicking here

Here at NMU the faculty employ a variety of engaging teaching methods, including game-based teaching and the use of virtual reality. Now you can tour the Anne Frank house or wonder through a Greek temple as part of your classes here at NMU. We also engage students in Reacting to the Past scenarios where particular pivotal moments are replayed – but this isn’t mere reenactment: things sometimes turn out differently depending on how students strategize and maneuver in during the class. Of course, we exam what did happen and the contingencies that led to particular historical outcomes as part of these reacting scenarios, and learn about how seemingly small decisions can have significant impacts. Our students also have opportunities to be teaching assistants or to work on a scholarly journal Upper Country.  Our alumni hold a wide variety of positions ranging from teaching, to politics, to business. Indeed, I encourage you to visit the Alumni and Friends page.

Northern Michigan truly is a special place to study history!


Contact Us

To contact the History Department, call 906-227-2512 or fax 906-227-2229. 

Or you can e-mail Department Head Alan Willis,

University Business Hours

University business hours are 8 a.m.–5 p.m. during the fall and winter semesters (late August through early May) and 7:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. during the summer (early May through late August). Northern Michigan University is located in the Eastern time zone.

Campus Location

The History Department is located on the 2nd floor of Gries Hall (see campus map).

Mailing Address

History Department
Northern Michigan University
1401 Presque Isle Avenue
Marquette, MI 49855