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BA English Literature and History / Course details
Year of entry: 2024
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Course unit details:
Back to the Future: The Uses and Abuses of History
|Available as a free choice unit?
This module is focused on current affairs. It examines how history can be used to address problems in the contemporary world. Students will explore how knowledge about the past can be deployed to inform the development of policy responses to contemporary issues. The module will be delivered in conjunction with employers from sectors such as law, finance, marketing, media, NGOs, media, policy makers, government and heritage. Throughout the module, students will first be introduced to an historical case study, and then asked to use their understanding of this case study to help them develop an appropriate response to a problem faced by a particular employer in the private, public or third sector. The aim of the course is to develop core skills from your History degree and apply them to help resolve issues confronted in the working world.
Develop core skills around historical research
Gain an understanding of how historical knowledge and skill can be applied to problem solving
Generate a template for understanding the transferable skills of your History degree and enhance employability
Generate an environment for enhancing teamwork.
Knowledge and understanding
Demonstrate a range of academic and transferable skills, including communicating ideas and arguments in written form, delivering presentations, group-work and independent research.
Demonstrate self-confidence in a range of learning processes
Present solutions to research problems clearly and effectively orally and in writing
Place data and arguments effectively within their wider comparative context
Understand the intellectual dynamic between past and present
Develop solutions to problems using historical knowledge and research skills
Work in a team to development effective solutions to chosen problems
Address a range of contemporary issues from an historical perspective
Present ideas in a workshop context
Gain skills in making ‘elevator pitches’ to external employers
Gain commercial awareness
Transferable skills and personal qualities
Analyse, evaluate and apply historical research to current affairs
Develop and carry out independent research projects
Generate data for employers in response to commercial / economic change
Communicate arguments through improved written and oral communication skills
Work efficiently as part of a group
- Analytical skills
- The ability to gather, organise and analyse data.
- Oral communication
- The ability to ask, and to answer, precise and incisive questions.
- Problem solving
- The ability to solve problems alone and / or as part of a team. The ability to present complex solutions to problems in concise, clearly directed ways.
- The ability to process large quantities of information for relevant material.
- Written communication
- The ability to marshal information into a coherent and compelling argument, both in writing and orally.
- The course is organised around the application of historical knowledge and research to solving a wide range of contemporary problems and is delivered in conjunction with core employers of History graduates. It is explicitly focused on developing `employability' skills and understanding: The ability to respond effectively to real life situations regarding economic, social or political change (`commercial awareness')
|Written assignment (inc essay)
Formative or Summative
Verbal feedback on Group Discussions and Workshop Presentations
Written feedback on coursework submission via Turnitin
Additional one-to-one feedback (during office hour or by appointment)
John Tosh, Why History Matters (2008)
Jeremy Black, Contesting History: Narratives of Public History (2014)
Paul Ashton and Hilda Kean, People and their Pasts: Public History Today (2008)
Margaret Macmillan, Dangerous Games: The Uses and Abuses of History (2010)
Suzannah Lipscomb and Helen Carr What is History, Now? How the Past and Present Speak to One Another (2021)
|Scheduled activity hours
|Practical classes & workshops
|Independent study hours