Welcome to the Public History Initiative (PHI) of the UCLA Department of History. We help students and scholars bring history alive.

The PHI aims to facilitate widespread understanding that history is not only useful, but it is essential to grasping the human condition. Our mission is to move the insights and expertise of the UCLA Department of History beyond the academy into the realm of the general public. We seek, stimulate, share, and make accessible historical practices, findings, and perspectives. We cultivate broad understanding for how the present grew out of the past. We empower graduate and undergraduate students to become productive, analytical, and engaged citizens through internships and public engagement programming. We support  efforts to enliven the teaching of history at the university and K-12 level. We expand the reach of the department’s scholarship and training as well as the social value of the discipline by:

  • researching the relevance of the past,
  • innovating curricula and courses,
  • producing public programs, and
  • fostering core competencies and professional development for desirable career outcomes.

Our HistoryCorps program places undergraduate history students in credit-earning internships in museums, schools, and cultural organizations in the Los Angeles region.

The National Center for History in the Schools (NCHS), now a division of the PHI, seeks to enliven the teaching of history at the university and K-12 level through publication and professional development resources.

EAT MY GLOBE: Things You Didn’t Know You Didn’t Know About Food Podcast


The “EAT MY GLOBE” podcast is created in cooperation with the UCLA Department of History and former Public History Initiative Director, Karen Wilson, PhD.

To view the website and listen to the podcast, click here. 


Medieval and Renaissance themes continue to have a profound influence on contemporary comic books and graphic novels. Join Dr. Kristina Markman (History, UCLA) for a panel discussion featuring comic creators Conor McCreery (Kill Shakespeare, IDW Publishers), GMB Chomichuk (Midnight City, Infinitum, Rust and Water, Raygun Gothic) and industry veteran Howard Chaykin (The Divided States of Hysteria, Image, Marvel, and DC Comics).

Hosted by the Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies.

Read about the event in the DailyBruin.

PHI Program Coordinator Dr. Kristina Markman is bringing public history to the classroom. In summer 2017, the students Dr. Markman’s course,  History 119D: “Sex in the Middle Ages,” received a behind-the-scenes tour of “Illuminating Women in the Medieval World,” an exhibit at the Getty Center on “attitudes toward medieval womanhood.” Inspired by the visual language of the illuminations, the students created reaction projects exploring the correlations between medieval gender expectations and modern conceptions of sexuality. The projects are on exhibit at UCLA’s Powell Library through June 15, 2018.

To learn more, read about the exhibit in the DailyBruin and watch Dr. Markman and her students in a live broadcast by the Getty Center.

A new book by NCHS Director Emeritus Gary B. Nash

Gary B. Nash’s latest book Warner Mifflin: Unflinching Quaker Abolitionist, published by University of Pennsylvania Press, offers a dynamic history of key figure in the abolitionist movement before and after the American Revolution.

Gary B. Nash is Distinguished Research Professor of History at the University of California, Los Angeles. He is author of numerous books, including The Urban Crucible: Social Change, Political Consciousness, and the Origins of the American Revolution, which was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in History.

Last chance to purchase teaching units in print.

The UCLA National Center for History in the Schools (NCHS) is proud to announce that we are gearing up to begin a new phase of development that will further our mission of enhancing and promoting K-12 education. As part of our next phase, we will be moving toward an e-book model for our teaching units. Read more on purchasing print units before December 1, 2017.

Celebrating 100 Interns!

HistoryCorps is proud to announce that in Summer 2017 we celebrated our 100th internship. This is a milestone in the continuing growth and success of the UCLA Public History Initiative. Our goal is to help students and scholars bring history alive in the classroom and the community.

Meet our first 100 interns.

New Edition

The 2017 edition of A Compact History of Humankind: The History of the World in Big Eras for grades 6-10 is now available purchase in print and e-book.

Written for middle school/early high school students, this reader offers an interpretive narrative of the human past from the origins of the universe through the twentieth century. Each of the units is organized into three sections: Humans and the Environment, Humans and Other Humans, and Humans and Ideas.

Forbidden Love (2017 revised edition)

The PHI/NCHS is proud to announce the publication of Forbidden Love: The Hidden History of Mixed Race America revised and expanded by UCLA Professor Emeritus and NCHS founder Gary Nash. Nash’s groundbreaking work examines how Americans for two centuries tried to build social walls and legal fences to keep people of different racial ancestries from marrying each other and how  these walls and fences have been dismantled in the last half-century.  A number of new profiles on “racial renegades,” or boundary-crossers, enliven the revised edition, which should resonate with younger students who themselves are the products of mixed-race marriages or have rejected racial categorizations entirely.


(310) 825-4702

PHI Director

(310) 825-4456

PHI Program Coordinator

(310) 825-4702

NCHS Orders*

*Please make all purchase orders payable to UC Regents

Mailing Address

6265 Bunche Hall
Box 951473
Los Angeles, CA  90095-1473