Specializations and Advanced Certificate Programs at the Department of History

In addition to the course work and offerings of the Department of History, there are a number of Specializations open to History students. In these Specializations students earn certificates in addition to their degree diploma. Moreover, the specialization makes it easier for students to take relevant courses offered by other CEU departments. Prospective students who wish to participate in a specialization should indicate their interest in their application to the Department of History. However, even after students have already enrolled in a History program, it is still possible to register for a specialization. For further details on the specializations, please consult the links provided below.

Specialization in JEWISH STUDIES

In addition to their MA degree, students at the History Department can earn the diploma of the Jewish Studies Specialization. Its students are enrolled in a teaching program in Jewish history and culture from the Middle Ages to the present, including classes on the methodology of Jewish Studies, Jewish thought, antisemitism, the Holocaust, the state of Israel, contemporary Jewish identity, and the regional history of Central and Eastern European Jewries. In years of sufficient demand, Hebrew or Yiddish language classes are part of the program. The Specialization, which offers fellowships and grants of its own, organizes a lecture series, conferences, excursions, and a yearly field trip.

Advanced Certificate in RELIGIOUS STUDIES

The Advanced Certificate in Religious Studies Program is coordinated by the Center for Religious Studies. Students pursuing the Advanced Certificate in Religious Studies engage in the study of concepts and methods in the study of religion, as well as a range of religious phenomena from Late Antiquity to the present. The emphasis is on the monotheistic religions in historical and comparative perspective. Students are introduced to central texts and themes concerning the great debates on religion, providing a comparative study of their social, institutional, cultural, intellectual, and political contexts and implications. The program provides students with a solid methodological and theoretical foundation for competently addressing religious phenomena from an analytical and interdisciplinary perspective.


The Advanced Certificate in Eastern Mediterranean Studies belongs to the activities of CEMS, the Center of Eastern Mediterranean Studies (head: Professor Volker Menze).

By cutting through traditional chronological, geographic, and disciplinary boundaries, the Advanced Certificate in Eastern Mediterranean Studies presents students with a unique opportunity to explore how various classical traditions were appropriated by and adjusted to the realities of medieval and early modern polities in the Eastern Mediterranean. This Advanced Certificate program provides a framework for a comparative approach to (as well as in-depth individual focus on) the history, religion, and culture of the Later Roman and Byzantine Empires, the Arab Caliphate, and the Ottoman Empire, in all their diversity. 

Advanced Certificate IN SCIENCE STUDIES

The Advanced Certificate Program in Science Studies examines the relations between scientific and technical forms of knowledge and the social, philosophical, and historical contexts that make these specialized practices both possible for experts and meaningful for their many audiences. It draws deeply upon a variety of disciplinary resources in its attempts to understand both producers and consumers of Science: history, philosophy, and sociology foremost, but also borrowing tools from anthropology, art history, visual studies, cultural studies, gender studies, law, literature, medicine, and computer science. Interdisciplinary by necessity, Science Studies reflexively seeks more effective combinations of interpretive inquiry and rational analysis that not only link disparate forms of scientific investigation, but also make sense of their impacts in industry, government, and daily life.


The Advanced Certificate in Political Thought engages in the comparative study of political thought from a variety of perspectives, both within and outside the Western canon. Special attention will be given to the historicity of diverse political traditions but also to recurring themes and questions. Learning to recognize political thought, both past and present, as being time- and place-specific will equip students, regardless of their major field of study, with additional analytical and methodological skills grounded in the appreciation of the contextual and intertextual aspects of diverse intellectual traditions. Beyond contextualization the students will learn about comparative methods, addressing topics of political thought from intercultural and diachronic perspectives.


The Advanced Certificate in Archives and Evidentiary Practices is initiated by the Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives (OSA) and organized jointly with the Department of Legal Studies and the Department of History.

The aim of the program is to provide students with theoretical grounding and practical skills in working and pursuing research in a contemporary and innovative archive. They will explore the basic historical, legal, political and societal aspects of archives in a permanently changing technological environment, from recordkeeping through documentary evidence to justice and memory-making, as well as new archival storage and research tools. During a series of seminars, hands-on workshops, discussions and practical archival activities, students will be able to make full use of the unique collections and facilities of OSA.

The knowledge and skills acquired during this specialization will open up for students additional avenues of pursuing a career not only in their chosen field but also in archives, libraries, and museums or in the multidisciplinary arena of the digital humanities.

More information: Csaba Szilágyi at szilagyc@ceu.edu