Is a Military History Degree Right for You?

An online bachelors degree in military history allows students to explore military science and the history of warfare from an interdisciplinary perspective. Course work in a bachelors degree in military history is designed to build a student’s understanding of human conflict throughout history, how it has shaped various cultures and civilization as a whole, significant wars and battles throughout history, how military forces have been organized and managed over the years, and more.

As with other programs in the liberal arts, online bachelor degree programs in military history build a student’s skills in writing, critical thinking, and communicating the finer points of complex concepts. Strong communication skills are in demand in a variety of industries, including education, government, nonprofits, businesses, and public administration. However, jobs directly related to military history may be difficult to come by unless you work in the armed forces or continue your studies at the graduate level and seek a career in academia.

Advice for Earning Your Military History Degree Online

There are only a few military history degree programs in general, and even fewer programs are available online. To expand your options, you might want to consider degrees in military studies or military science as well as history degrees that offer a concentration in military history or military studies.

However, the programs that do exist can be completed almost entirely at a distance. Also, you should confirm the school accreditation status before enrolling in any online degree program. Accreditation is important to ensure program quality and access to federal student loans, so only nationally- or regionally-accredited programs should be considered.

Required Courses

Online Military History degree programs typically include classes in U.S. government and military history. They may also take classes in political science, social sciences, and international affairs. A few required courses may include:

  • American Military History
  • International Relations
  • Conflict Resolution
  • American Constitution
  • Military Leadership

Common Career Paths

Some potential careers for those with a bachelor’s degree in Military History include:

High School History Teachers

  • Expected Growth: 7%
  • Average Annual Salary: $59,125

Students with a background in military history may choose to pursue teacher certification in their state and become high school history teachers. This will require additional course work in human development, child psychology, teaching methods, classroom management, and more, as well as a student teaching internship. The above salary and employment growth figures were gathered from the BLS, and represent average incomes.

Postsecondary History Teacher

  • Expected Growth: 17%
  • Average Annual Salary: $80,615

Students who build on their bachelor’s degree in military history with a graduate degree may decide to pursue a career as a college-level educator. The Ph.D. is the preferred degree for most full-time faculty positions at colleges and universities. These educators may teach courses in military history or related courses in history as well as conduct and publish research in military history. Figures above were provided by the BLS.


  • Expected Growth: 18%
  • Average Annual Salary: $61,030

Historians conduct research into the past by analyzing historical documents, artifacts, and other historical evidence, and reporting on their significance. A background in military history would inform a niche career as a military historian working in museums, research organizations, nonprofits, and consulting firms concerned with military history and related areas.

A master’s degree or doctorate is typically required for historian careers, but a bachelor’s degree in military history could prepare students for future graduate study in the field or for entry-level positions as assistants. Figures above were provided by the BLS.

Military Enlisted Personnel

  • Expected Growth: Varies
  • Average Annual Salary: Varies

Military enlisted personnel carry out the basic functions and operations of the armed forces. They serve as technicians or specialists in various capacities, such as administrative, combat, or media and public affairs, among others. Some serve as front-line supervisors. A high school diploma is required to enlist, but a bachelor’s degree can qualify you for advancement opportunities. The information above was gathered from the BLS.

Military Officers

  • Expected Growth: Varies
  • Average Annual Salary: Varies

Officers in the armed forces act as leaders, supervisors, and managers in their chosen military branch. They lead combat operations or serve as military professionals in law, medicine, and administration, among others. You must have a bachelor’s degree to be eligible for Officer Candidate School (OCW) and some high-ranking officer and professional positions may require a graduate degree. Information above was provided by the BLS.


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