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Historians use a variety of information sources such as written texts (newspapers, letters, diaries, certificates etc), databases and multimedia to perform research into human activity that has taken place in the past. Historians may perform analysis, gather sources, formulate conclusions and theories and present their findings to a variety of audiences. They may also write books and articles about their work, consult and advise on government policy and legislation and teach and lecture in their area of interest.
Historians often specialise in a particular area of interest and may be employed by museums and libraries, educational facilities, government departments that deal with cultural and historical conservation but also in private industry.
An architectural historian is involved in exploring the built environment through history with reference to social, political, religious, technological and cultural factors that underpin architectural styles and building programs.