History students in a seminar

History and Politics BA

Department of History

Department of Politics and International Relations

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You are viewing this course for 2021-22 entry.

Key details

Course description

POL - Students taking notes win Elmfield lecture theatre (sociology students)

Contemporary politics and political theory, particularly in Britain and Europe, is complemented by the study of social and cultural themes in history.

In the second and third years you can take optional modules in areas that interest you. There's also a project module.

Throughout the three years, you'll write reports and essays, give presentations and work on projects.

Dual and combined honours degrees

Modules

A selection of the modules below will be available each year. There may be some changes before you start your course. For the very latest module information, check with the department directly.

Title: History and Politics BA course structure
UCAS code: VL12
Years: 2021

For history, the first year programme is designed to help you to make the transition from studying History at school or college to studying it at degree level. It introduces you to core academic skills and provides a solid grounding in historical study and research, giving you the foundations you'll need to deepen your understanding of historical events and processes throughout your degree and setting you off on the path to becoming an independent historian.

Our first year history option modules introduce you to our main areas of teaching and research and give you insight into what you can study in the coming years, so that you can better shape your degree to your individual interests.

For politics, your first year is made up of core modules and two optional modules from the table below.

Core history module:

History Workshop

What does it take to be a historian? In this module, students study the process of historical research, learning discipline-specific methods and essential study and writing skills through close engagement with a historical monograph linked to their tutor¿s research interests. Students will develop skills in critical reading, historiography, essay writing, bibliographic techniques, and oral communication. Assessment consists of independent work (completing tasks on the online learning environment and producing a critical analysis of the secondary source), and group work (oral presentation on a related historical topic).

20 credits

History option modules:

Empire: From the Ancient World to the Middle Ages

Covering the period from the 4th century BC to the 15th century AD, this module invites students to explore the ancient and medieval worlds through the lens of `empire'. It provides an introduction to ancient and medieval types of empire, their contacts with and legacies to each other, and the connectedness between East and West in this period. Using a wealth of primary evidence and drawing on corresponding historiographical debates, students explore what it meant to live in ancient and medieval empires, what kind of social, cultural and religious encounters they engendered, and whether there was any space for resistance.

20 credits
The 'Disenchantment' of Early Modern Europe, c. 1570-1770

The decline of magic, and some sorts of religion, lies at the heart of this course which traces the emergence of human societies that sought to operate according to rules supposed to be scientific. European cultural experience in the critical juncture between the Reformation and the Enlightenment was by no means the simple rejection of one world-view and its replacement with another. Through the rich, surviving evidence of court records and printing-presses we examine people's changing assumptions about how they should be governed and how they fitted into the world around them.

20 credits
The Making of the Twentieth Century

The module aims to explore the forces in Europe which produced two World Wars of unprecedented destruction, leaving the Continent in ruins by 1945. From there, it analyses the ways in which Europe was able to rise from the ashes, with a troubled route to a semblance of emerging unity - and certainly a half-century of initially unexpected peace - following the suicidal 'European Civil War' of 1914 - 1945. The changing balance of power and approach to war in 1914; the 'era of ideology' in the unparalleled brutality of 'totalitarian dictatorships' and the clashes of Fascism, Communism and Democracy; the postwar settlements; and the growth of the European Community are some of the themes explored.

20 credits
Land of Liberty? Rights in the USA, 1776-2016

In 1776, the Declaration of Independence proclaimed that men were created with ‘certain unalienable rights’. Yet the new United States denied those rights to large swathes of its people. Examining themes which resonate powerfully today, this module explores American history as a struggle over how rights have been defined and debated, expanded and contracted, and secured and denied. Linking the history of ideas to the efforts of ordinary people, we will look at debates over liberty and slavery, democracy and disenfranchisement, capital and labour, integration and segregation, gender and sexuality, nationalism and internationalism, and conservatism and liberalism.

20 credits
The Transformation of the United Kingdom, 1800 to the Present

This module explores the central political, social, economic, cultural and diplomatic developments that have transformed Britain since 1800. Unlike most of its European neighbours, Britain did not experience dramatic moments of revolution, constitution-building, invasion or military defeat; indeed the belief that the nation was set on a course of gradual evolutionary progress was central to many versions of British identity. This course examines how, when and why change occurred in Britain. Key themes include the transition to mass democracy; the impact of industrialisation; shifts in social relationships based on class, gender and ethnicity; and the rise and fall of Britain as an imperial power.

20 credits

Core politics module:

Analysing Politics

This module is about (1) politics, and (2) how to analyse it. More specifically, it involves (1) understanding how power and truth operate in the contemporary world; and (2) discovering different ways to research these dynamics so to build compelling and rigorous accounts of the political worlds that we find ourselves a part. Students will learn through a combination of lectures, seminars, and independent study; and will be assessed on the basis of an essay, a portfolio relating to seminar preparation, and an online multiple-choice test.

20 credits

Optional politics modules:

Introduction to International Relations

This module will introduce students to the discipline of International Relations (IR) and therefore the study of global politics. IR is a complex, multi-level and multi-actor field whose terrain spans global to individual issues. To provide a comprehensive introduction to IR, the module will focus on two questions: 1) What is the subject matter of IR? And 2) What is the unit of analysis? Structuring the module as such will introduce students to key debates in IR and provide a broad overview of the subject matter (from global governance to individual activism) and different actors (from the UN to terrorists).

20 credits
Introduction to Global Political Economy

This module provides an introduction to global political economy (GPE). It covers key mainstream and critical theories and considers critically what GPE is. Following this, the main focus will be on sketching the outlines of the global economy (past and present) by considering particular commodities. This provides a novel way to introducing the student to the major processes of global trade, finance and production. It also considers the political economy of race, class and gender as core theoretical themes that interweave the empirical examination of the global political economy, from roughly 1500 through to the 21st century.

20 credits
Introduction to Western Political Thought

This module provides an introduction to key themes and thinkers in Western political thought. It explores the different meanings of the nature of politics and the political in this tradition. One key theme will be the relation between human nature and politics. This will be explored through a series of deep conflicts between reason and desire, the state and individual, and the public and private. These conflicts are examined through the different visions of politics of a selection of ancient and early modern thinkers. The module will also engage with critiques of the canon of Western political thought itself, in particular from a postcolonial perspective.

20 credits
Introduction to Comparative Politics

This module examines the utility of the comparative approach to politics in an era of the proclaimed 'end of history' and 'global convergence'. It examines executives in a number of political systems. It focuses on 'constitutional engineering' by examining the effect that electoral and party systems have on the structure of executive authority and the types of executive commonly used in political systems. These are presidential, prime ministerial and mixed systems. It considers what is meant by 'strong' and 'weak' executives. The cases examined are: US presidency, Brazilian presidency, UK prime minister, German Federal Chancellor, Russian presidency and the French presidential system.

20 credits
British Politics

This module will introduce students to key concepts and debates in British politics through an examination of post-1976 British political history. Each lecture will take as its starting-point one day in recent British history and will describe what happened on that day and what happened as a result of that day. Each of the seminars will then follow that discussion: paying particular attention to concepts and ideas within the study of politics which can help us make sense of those events.

20 credits


The content of our courses is reviewed annually to make sure it's up-to-date and relevant. Individual modules are occasionally updated or withdrawn. This is in response to discoveries through our world-leading research; funding changes; professional accreditation requirements; student or employer feedback; outcomes of reviews; and variations in staff or student numbers. In the event of any change we'll consult and inform students in good time and take reasonable steps to minimise disruption. We are no longer offering unrestricted module choice. If your course included unrestricted modules, your department will provide a list of modules from their own and other subject areas that you can choose from.

Learning and assessment

Learning

You'll learn through a mix of interactive lectures and lively discussion-based seminars. Research is central to the student experience here in Sheffield and all our teaching is informed by the latest findings. In your final year, you'll have the opportunity to take our Special Subject module, which allows you to spend a year specialising in a topic that really interests you.

We invest to create the right environment for you. That means outstanding facilities, study spaces and support, including 24/7 online access to our online library service.

Study spaces and computers are available to offer you choice and flexibility for your study. Our five library sites give you access to over 1.3 million books and periodicals. You can access your library account and our rich digital collections from anywhere on or off campus. Other library services include study skills training to improve your grades, and tailored advice from experts in your subject.

Learning support facilities and library opening hours

Our internationally renowned tutors offer modules spanning four thousand years and criss-crossing continents - allowing you to explore great events, extraordinary documents, remarkable people, and long-lasting transformations, from the ancient period to the modern day and across the globe.

Entry requirements

With Access Sheffield, you could qualify for additional consideration or an alternative offer - find out if you're eligible

Standard offer
Access Sheffield offer

The A Level entry requirements for this course are:
AAB
typically including an A in History or Classical Civilisation

The A Level entry requirements for this course are:
ABB
typically including A History or Classical Civilisation

A Levels + additional qualifications | ABB, typically including an A in History + B in a relevant EPQ; ABB, typically including A in History + B in Core Maths ABB, typically including an A in History + B in a relevant EPQ; ABB, typically including A in History + B in Core Maths

International Baccalaureate | 34 typically including 6 in Higher Level History 33 typically including 6 in Higher Level History

BTEC | DD in a relevant subject typically in combination with grade A in A Level History DD in a relevant subject typically in combination with grade A in A Level History

Scottish Highers + 1 Advanced Higher | AAABB + typically A in History AAABB + typically A in History

Welsh Baccalaureate + 2 A Levels | B + AA, typically including History or Classical Civilisation B + AB, typically including A in History or Classical Civilisation

Access to HE Diploma | 60 credits overall in a relevant subject, 45 at Level 3 with Distinctions in 36 Level 3 credits, including History units, + Merits in 9 Level 3 credits. Applicants are considered individually 60 credits overall in a relevant subject, 45 at Level 3 with Distinctions in 30 Level 3 credits, including History units, + Merits in 15 Level 3 credits.Applicants are considered individually

Mature students - explore other routes for mature students

English language requirements

You must demonstrate that your English is good enough for you to successfully complete your course. For this course we require: GCSE English Language at grade 4/C; IELTS grade of 7.0 with a minimum of 6.5 in each component; or an alternative acceptable English language qualification

Equivalent English language qualifications

Visa and immigration requirements

We also accept a range of other UK qualifications and other EU/international qualifications.

If you have any questions about entry requirements, please contact the department.

Department of History

As a history student at Sheffield, you'll develop your understanding of the past in a friendly and supportive environment.

Our internationally-renowned tutors offer modules spanning four thousand years and criss-crossing continents - allowing you to explore great events, extraordinary documents, remarkable people, and long-lasting transformations, from the ancient period to the modern day and across the globe.

You can tailor your course to suit you, discovering the areas of history that most inspire you most while preparing for the future you want with opportunities like studying abroad, work placements and volunteering.

Department of History students are based in the Jessop West building at the heart of the university campus, close to the Diamond and the Information Commons. We share the Jessop West Building with the School of English and the School of Languages and Cultures.

Department of History

Department of Politics and International Relations

We are proud to be one of the UK's leading departments for research and teaching in politics and international relations.

We have over 50 specialists in the key areas of politics and international relations working at the cutting edge of the discipline on issues such as: Brexit, transgender politics, animal rights, environmentalism, populism and Middle East Politics. This research directly shapes and inspires what you're taught on all levels of our programmes.

We were the first department to pioneer the 'Parliamentary Studies' undergraduate module that's accredited and co-taught by the House of Commons.

Department of Politics and International Relations students are based in Elmfield building, but we timetable teaching across the whole of our campus.

Teaching may take place in Elmfield, but may also be timetabled to take place within other departments or central teaching space. Many of the University buildings are close together so it’s easy to walk between them and it’s a good way to get to know the city.

Department of Politics and International Relations

Why choose Sheffield?

The University of Sheffield

  A Top 100 university 2021
QS World University Rankings

  Top 10% of all UK universities
Research Excellence Framework 2014

  No 1 Students' Union in the UK
Whatuni Student Choice Awards 2019, 2018, 2017


Department of History

Top 5 in the UK for History

The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020

3rd in the UK for world-leading research

Research Excellence Framework 2014


Department of Politics and International Relations

UK top three for research

Research Excellence Framework 2014

UK top 10 for politics

The Complete University Guide 2020
The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020

Our politics and international relations courses are ranked 7th in the UK

The Complete University Guide 2020


Graduate careers

Department of History

Our history graduates are highly skilled in research, critical reasoning and communication. You'll be able to think and write coherently, to put specific matters in a broader context, and to summarise complex ideas in a discerning and creative way.

Our graduates have gone on to become successful lawyers, marketing executives, civil servants, accountants, management consultants, university lecturers, archivists, librarians and workers in museums, tourism and the heritage industry.

So, however you choose to use your degree, the combination of academic excellence and personal skills developed and demonstrated on your course will make you stand out in an increasingly competitive graduate world.

Companies that have employed our graduates include Accenture, Ernst and Young, PricewaterhouseCoopers and DLA Piper. You'll also find our graduates in organisations ranging from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, to the Imperial War Museum and the National Archives, to BBC online and The Guardian.

Department of Politics and International Relations

A politics degree from Sheffield can set you apart from everyone else. You'll have many opportunities across all levels of your course to add valuable work experience and transferable skills to your CV.

Our degree programmes are designed so you can tailor your course to your own interests and career aspirations. They also provide a foundation to go on to work in a wide range of professional, political and administrative organisations across the world, in local, national, and international government, the charitable sector, education, the media, public relations, research and the private sector.

Work experience and study abroad

Work experience

There are lots of opportunities to get work experience, with hands-on projects integrated into several of our academic modules. Alternatively, you can undertake a placement with a heritage or culture organisation, or join our student-led volunteering organisations History in the City and take part in activities that bring history to new audiences within the local community.

All of these experiences will help you build a compelling CV. You can also study our courses with the Degree with Employment Experience option. This allows you to apply for a placement year during your degree where you'll gain valuable experience and improve your employability.

Study abroad

There are opportunities to study abroad for a semester or a year, as part of a three or four-year degree programme. We have exchange agreements with universities in the USA, Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, India, New Zealand, Singapore and throughout Europe.

Fees and funding

Fees

Additional costs

The annual fee for your course includes a number of items in addition to your tuition. If an item or activity is classed as a compulsory element for your course, it will normally be included in your tuition fee. There are also other costs which you may need to consider.

Examples of what’s included and excluded

Funding your study

Depending on your circumstances, you may qualify for a bursary, scholarship or loan to help fund your study and enhance your learning experience.

Use our Student Funding Calculator to work out what you’re eligible for.

Visit us

University open days

There are four open days every year, usually in June, July, September and October. You can talk to staff and students, tour the campus and see inside the accommodation.

Open days: book your place

Taster days

At various times in the year we run online taster sessions to help Year 12 students experience what it is like to study at the University of Sheffield.

Upcoming taster sessions

Applicant days

If you've received an offer to study with us, we'll invite you to one of our applicant days, which take place between November and April. These applicant days have a strong department focus and give you the chance to really explore student life here, even if you've visited us before.

Campus tours

Campus tours run regularly throughout the year, at 1pm every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Book your place on a campus tour

Apply for this course

Make sure you've done everything you need to do before you apply.

How to apply When you're ready to apply, see the UCAS website:
www.ucas.com

The awarding body for this course is the University of Sheffield.

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    2021-2022