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BA History / Course details

Year of entry: 2021

Course description

Xenia Bellwood

"What I love about Manchester is that it doesn't just explore history from the official perspective.

"You can explore it from a cultural perspective, from a feminist perspective, those who have maybe been left behind."

Xenia Bellwood / BA History Student

Our BA History course will give you the opportunity to tailor your degree to suit your own interests while learning from one of the largest concentrations of historians in Britain.

You will be able to choose course units covering a wide range of periods and topics, including ancient, medieval, modern and economic and social history, as well as the history of science, technology and medicine.

In Years 1 and 2, you can also take course units in other disciplines, including languages, the humanities and the social sciences. There are also opportunities for you to spend part of your degree studying abroad.

Students will have the option to specialise in a particular area of interest or continue to study a broad range of areas in their final year, when you have a choice of units covering topics such as British, European, American, African and Asian history at different periods, culminating in a 12,000-word thesis.

You will receive expert training in analysis and critical reasoning while developing important transferable skills in communication and presentation, argument and debate, teamwork, research, and time management, all of which will help prepare you for life after university.

Special features

Hanna Matt

"We can learn so much from the past. It's made me understand some of the more current problems.

"I think no other university that I looked at before applying gave you so much selection and gave you so much freedom to actually do the modules you want to do."

Hanna Matt / BA History Student

Placement year option

Apply your subject-specific knowledge in a real-world context through a placement year in your third year of study, enabling you to enhance your employment prospects, clarify your career goals and build your external networks.

Study abroad

You can apply to spend one semester studying abroad during Year 2, with exchange partners including those in Europe as well as the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong and Singapore.

Get involved

Our students have the opportunity to take part in history-related activities outside of the course, including the Manchester Histories Festival .

Explore world-class collections

Enjoy unique opportunities to explore special archived material and carry out research in a wide range of archives, libraries, museums and other research institutions in Manchester and beyond.

Flexible Honours

Our Flexible Honours initiative may allow you to study an additional arts, languages or cultures subject in conjunction with History.

Teaching and learning

You will learn through a variety of channels, including lectures, face-to-face and online seminars, and small group tutorials.

We encourage students to undertake independent study at every level.

Coursework and assessment

Assessment procedures in different course units vary, but our basic objective is to achieve a good balance between formal examinations, continuous assessment and project work.

The Year 3 dissertation is a major piece of original work, accounting for 22% of the final overall mark.

Course content for year 1

Designed to assist students with the intellectual and academic transition to university study, level 1 modules focus on introducing students to key conceptual and methodological issues in relation to studying History. All students take History in Practice, in which students learn important skills in research and writing to equip them for historical study at university level.

Course units for year 1

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
History in Practice HIST10101 20 Mandatory
From Reconstruction to Reagan: American History, 1877-1988 AMER10002 20 Optional
Constructing Archaic Greek History CAHE10011 20 Optional
From Republic to Empire: Introduction to Roman History, Society & Culture 218-31BC CAHE10022 20 Optional
The Odyssey CAHE10101 20 Optional
The Making of the Mediterranean CAHE10132 20 Optional
Discoveries and Discoverers: Sights and Sites CAHE10282 20 Optional
Modern China: from the Opium Wars to the Olympic Games HIST10152 20 Optional
Histories of the Islamic World HIST10171 20 Optional
Capitalism in Historical Perspective: 1700-1913 HIST10181 20 Optional
Imperial Nation: The Making of Modern Britain, 1783-1902 HIST10191 20 Optional
An Introduction to the Medieval World HIST10262 20 Optional
The Manchester History Workshop HIST10272 20 Optional
States, Nations and Empires. Europe, c.1750-1914 HIST10312 20 Optional
Science & the Modern World HSTM10221 10 Optional
Bodies in History: An introduction to the History of Medicine HSTM10272 10 Optional
Science and the Modern World (20 Credits) HSTM10721 20 Optional
Exploring Enterprise MCEL10001 10 Optional
Entrepreneurial Skills MCEL10002 10 Optional
Standing on The Shoulders of Giants: Foundations for Study in The Arts SALC10002 20 Optional
Religion in Modern South Asian History SALC10222 20 Optional
History of Humanities: The Past, Present and Future of Ideas that Shape the World SALC10411 20 Optional
Living and Dying in the Ancient World SALC10602 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 23 course units for year 1

Course content for year 2

Modules become increasingly specialist and the programme offers significant choice and flexibility. Students write a History Long Essay, which is an extended piece of coursework supervised on a one-to-one basis on a topic of the student's choice.

Course units for year 2

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Independent Research Project HIST20390 20 Mandatory
Work and Play in the USA, 1880-2010 AMER20112 20 Optional
From Jamestown to James Brown: African-American History and Culture AMER20141 20 Optional
American Civil War AMER21001 20 Optional
The World of Late Antiquity: Europe and the Med from the Severan Dynasty to the Rise of Islam CAHE20022 20 Optional
The Conquering Hero: The Life, Times and Legacy of Alexander The Great CAHE20041 20 Optional
The Roman Empire 31BC - AD235: Rome's Golden Age CAHE20051 20 Optional
Politics and Society in Classical Greece CAHE20062 20 Optional
Families in the Greek and Roman Worlds (6th c. BCE - 3 c. CE) CAHE20441 20 Optional
Roman Women in 22 Objects CAHE20532 20 Optional
Introduction to the History and Culture of Pharaonic Egypt CAHE21441 20 Optional
Slavery in the Ancient Greek World CAHE24501 20 Optional
Digital Tools for the Humanities DIGI20020 20 Optional
Making of the Modern Mind: European Intellectual History in a Global Context HIST20181 20 Optional
Winds of Change: Politics, Society and Culture in Britain, 1899 -1990 HIST20252 20 Optional
The Cultural History of Modern War HIST20482 20 Optional
Colonial Encounters: Race, Violence, and the Making of the Modern World HIST21122 20 Optional
From Catastrophe to Crusade: Europe in the Aftermath of the Vikings HIST21141 20 Optional
The Stuff of History: Objects Across Borders, 1500-1800 HIST21152 20 Optional
Histories of the Islamic World HIST21191 20 Optional
Capitalism in Historical Perspective: 1700-1913 HIST21201 20 Optional
From Cholera to COVID-19: A Global History of Epidemics HSTM20031 10 Optional
From Cholera to COVID-19: A Global History of Epidemics HSTM20081 20 Optional
The Crisis of Nature: Issues in Environmental History HSTM20092 10 Optional
Information visions: past, present and future HSTM20282 10 Optional
The Crisis of Nature: Issues in Environmental History HSTM20592 20 Optional
Information visions: past, present and future HSTM20782 20 Optional
Aesthetics and Politics of Italian Fascism ITAL20501 20 Optional
Renaissance Florence: Culture, History and Art ITAL20622 20 Optional
Themes in the Histories of Arab and Jewish Nationalisms MEST20271 20 Optional
History of Modern Islamic Thought MEST20501 20 Optional
Religion, Culture and Gender RELT20121 20 Optional
Goddesses, Demons and Stories in South Asian History: From Early Epics to the Present Day RELT21222 20 Optional
100 Years of Revolution: Russia from Lenin to Putin RUSS20242 20 Optional
The Making of Modern Russia RUSS20251 20 Optional
The 1989 Revolutions and their Aftermaths RUSS20472 20 Optional
All about Eve: Encountering the First Woman from Antiquity to Today SALC21132 20 Optional
History of Latin America SPLA20362 20 Optional
Entrepreneur: Innovator and Risk-Taker UCIL24002 10 Optional
Displaying 10 of 39 course units for year 2

Course content for year 3

Students may specialise in the periods and subjects that they have found most interesting. All students write a History Dissertation, which is an extended piece of coursework based on independent primary research and supervised on a one-to-one basis on a topic of the student's choice, which our students generally find to be the most enjoyable and fulfilling part of their studies.

Course units for year 3

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Thesis (40 credits) HIST30970 40 Mandatory
The Visual Culture of US Empire AMER30522 20 Optional
American Hauntings AMER30811 20 Optional
Athens and Attica CAHE30052 20 Optional
Families in the Greek and Roman Worlds (6th c. BCE - 3 c. CE) CAHE30441 20 Optional
The Roman Army and the North-West Frontiers CAHE30882 20 Optional
Egypt in the Graeco-Roman Worl CAHE31401 20 Optional
Slavery in the Ancient Greek World CAHE34501 20 Optional
Screening the Holocaust GERM30481 20 Optional
Culture and Society in Germany 1871-1918 GERM30722 20 Optional
London and Modernity 1880-1960 HIST30102 20 Optional
'A Nation In The Making': India, 1800-1947 HIST30291 20 Optional
Empire, Gender and British Heroes, c.1885 - 2000 HIST30621 20 Optional
Refugees in Modern World History, 1914 to the Present HIST30941 20 Optional
Gender and Sexuality in Modern Africa HIST31001 20 Optional
China & the West: From the Opium War to the Olympic Games HIST31201 20 Optional
Contesting the Supernatural in the Early Modern British Isles, c. 1600-1800 HIST31292 20 Optional
Sex, Drugs and Shopping: Readdressing Inter-war Britain HIST31342 20 Optional
The Great Irish Famine and Its Impact, 1845-1900 HIST31451 20 Optional
The Holocaust: History, Historiography, Memory HIST31491 20 Optional
The Comparative and Transnational History of Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany HIST31521 20 Optional
John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, and U.S. Foreign Policy in the 1960s HIST31552 20 Optional
Defining the Deviant: Crime and British Society, 1888-2000 HIST31592 20 Optional
The Black Freedom Movement, 1955-1975 HIST31752 20 Optional
War, Memory and Politics of Commemoration in Eastern Europe HIST31841 20 Optional
Seaborne State? Venice and the East 1150-1550 HIST31861 20 Optional
Culture in Ottoman Society, ca. 1300-1800 HIST31872 20 Optional
Material Encounters in the Early Modern World, 1400-1800 HIST31881 20 Optional
'Brains and Numbers': Intellectual Life in Victorian Britain HIST31892 20 Optional
Caste Politics in Twentieth Century India HIST31912 20 Optional
Imperial Encounters, Soviet Frontiers: Nations, Borders, Migration in the Caucasus HIST31922 20 Optional
Curating War and Human Rights: methods in cultural and public history HIST32012 20 Optional
Love and Power: Family Relationships in the British Isles, c. 1660-1837 HIST32052 20 Optional
Islam in China HIST32062 20 Optional
Spatial History: Mapping the Past HIST32112 20 Optional
From Greed to Grandezza: A History of Capitalism from the Renaissance to Modernity (1250s-1900s) HIST32122 20 Optional
Health, Development and People: The Global Journey towards Health for All HSTM30232 10 Optional
Madness and Society HSTM30832 10 Optional
The Nuclear Age: Global Nuclear Threats from Hiroshima to Today HSTM31212 10 Optional
The Nuclear Age: Global Nuclear Threats from Hiroshima to Today HSTM31712 20 Optional
From Sherlock Holmes to CSI: a history of forensic medicine HSTM32011 10 Optional
From Sherlock Holmes to CSI: a history of forensic medicine HSTM32511 20 Optional
Climate Change & Society HSTM33201 10 Optional
Climate Change & Society HSTM33501 20 Optional
Madness and Society HSTM40332 20 Optional
Political and Cultural History of Italy ITAL30342 20 Optional
Introduction to the History of the Book ITAL30431 20 Optional
Bodies, Sex and Gender in Japan JAPA33071 20 Optional
Tools and Techniques for Enterprise MCEL30001 10 Optional
Tools & Techniques for Enterprise MCEL30002 10 Optional
Enterprise Feasibility MCEL30052 10 Optional
Culture, Media and Politics in the Soviet Union and post-Soviet Russia RUSS30601 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 52 course units for year 3

Facilities

As well as taking advantage of the University Library and study spaces such as Alan Gilbert Learning Commons, you will be able to explore a wealth of archives, libraries, museums and other research institutions in Manchester and beyond, including the John Rylands Library and the Manchester Museum.

Visit the Facilities page on the History website to find out more.

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants from the Disability Support Office .