History students discussing different artefacts in a seminar.

History and Sociology BA

Department of History

Department of Sociological Studies

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You are viewing this course for 2021-2022 entry.

Key details

Course description

A lecturer delivers a presentation to a classroom of students

By studying both history and sociology, you'll develop an understanding of past societies and patterns of social change.

History modules cover past societies from the late Roman through to the modern period, addressing political, social and cultural themes in history. You'll learn to exercise independent judgement, to be critical of accepted opinion and to present your arguments effectively.

Sociology modules cover the fundamentals of sociological analysis. Subjects include crime and deviance, religion and belief, migration, surveillance, race and racism and new genetics. You will also learn research and information retrieval techniques.

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 Sociology BA course structure
UCAS code: VL13
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 sociology, core and optional modules are listed 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 sociology modules:

Classical Sociological Theory

The aim of this module is to introduce foundational theories in sociology. The lectures will describe the ideas of leading theorists Durkheim, Marx, and Weber with reference to the social context in which they lived and wrote. Lectures will analyze the primary texts of sociological throught with reference to the social contexts in which they emerged. This will include a look at the concerns of the first generation of sociological thinkers, their understanding of changes in European societies at the time, and the way in which their ideas inform an understanding of issues and problems in the contemporary world.

10 credits
Exploring Classical Social Thought Seminars

The purpose of this seminar module is to provide a medium for students to discuss, evaluate, assess, and engage foundational theories in sociology. The seminar topics will seek to relate major sociological theories to (historical) events of concern to the theorists themselves, and events of interest to contemporary students of social affairs. The discussions will emphasise ideas and concepts in key sociological writings and their contribution to shaping sociological enquiry.

10 credits
Introduction to Social Research

Students will be introduced to theoretical, methodological and practical issues in conducting empirical social research and become equipped with some of the basic skills necessary to undertake qualitative and quantitative projects, from project planning through to writing up research findings. Students will also be given the opportunity to explore different areas of social research in small groups through class presentations and debates

10 credits
The Sociological Imagination Seminar

Drawing upon the lectures in the accompanying module (SCS100), students will use the seminars to explore a range of everyday life situations - such as mobile phone use, shopping, and travel - from a sociological perspective. Emphasis will be placed on students reflexively exploring their own experience, on the one hand, and gathering exemplary material from print and digital media. Students will be required to do exercises on specific topics.

10 credits
The Sociology of Everyday Life

This module aims to introduce students to basic sociological concepts, such as 'the sociological imagination', 'social interaction', 'social identity', 'deviance' and 'globalisation' and illustrate how these can be applied to everyday life. Drawing on the work of key thinkers in sociology, a range of everyday life situations, such as mobile phone use, shopping and travel will be used as exemplary cases

10 credits

Optional sociology modules:

Gender, Sexuality and Society

This unit intends to address the following questions regarding gender and sexuality and their interaction with society: What do we mean by gender and sexuality? How do we do gender and sexuality? How do we see gender and sexuality? How do we control gender and sexuality?

10 credits
Globalisation and World Cultures

This unit will take a social anthropological approach towards understanding the concept of culture and the ways in which it informs the organisation and practices of societies around the world - specifically in terms of their values and belief systems and traditional practices. From this basis, it will go on to not only examine the impact of social change and globalisation on different cultures, but also highlight the ways in which cultural ways of living continue to persist despite globalisation or have become more fundamental to societies as a result of globalisation.

10 credits
Introducing Criminology

Crime is a major social problem in virtually all societies. In this module, sociological understandings of crime are discussed, often with reference to their implications for policy. The module will introduce you to major research about crime in contemporary Britain and help you to understand the contribution of sociology to its analysis. This module will be of value to anyone thinking about a career in the criminal justice services, journalism, public service, the voluntary sector and anyone interested in understanding the significance of crime in contemporary British society

10 credits
Introduction to Media and Communication in Society

This module examines the relationship between media and society. It examines the nature of influence and persuasion, representation, ownership, and identity in contemporary media environments.

10 credits
Living with Science and Technology

To fully understand contemporary society, we have to consider the roles of science and technology. They are a pervasive presence and influence across all aspects of social, political and cultural life. They saturate issues like shifting definitions of gender, racialised border control, the ordering of public space, gig economies and changing work practices, anti-vaccination movements, and the climate crisis, with implications for social inequalities, human rights and even the definition of truth itself. This module introduces a range of concepts and ideas to explore the relationship between science, technology and society.

10 credits
Social Divisions Seminar

The aim of this unit is to explore a key concern of sociology to explain how and why material and symbolic rewards are distributed unequally. The unit will focus on how social constraints and opportunities arise from social divisions and will explore how various social divisions interact to produce unequal outcomes. It will evaluate critically sociological research that provides evidence of structured inequality in society. A key aim of the unit is to provide students with a sociological framework to assess critically how social divisions operate in their own lives through the constraints and opportunities they encounter.

10 credits
Understanding Inequality

The aim of this unit is to explore a key concern of sociology to explain how and why material and symbolic rewards are distributed unequally. It will consider the unequal distribution of wealth, privilege and power and, in doing so, will question common-sense understandings of various inequalities in society. It will focus on various social divisions including the `big three' of social class, gender and race, as well as sexuality, age, religion and disability. Major themes will be explored with a predominantly British- and policy-related focus, although global divisions and inequalities will also be included for consideration.

10 credits
Welfare Politics and the State

This unit introduces students to some of the material and theoretical concerns of social policy by focusing on the politics of `welfare'. It is organised around unpacking common contemporary 'welfare myths' - e.g. 'the benefit scrounger', 'welfare tourism' and the need for austerity - by taking a long view of their articulation through history, exploring their ideological roots, examining policy responses and assessing the empirical evidence to support them. In doing so the unit also focuses on the policy making process, examining in particular issues of power in contemporary UK and the role of the media in perpetrating 'welfare myths'.

10 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.

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 History or Classical Civilisation

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

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

International Baccalaureate | 34, typically with 5 in Higher Level History 33 typically including 5 in Higher Level History

BTEC | DD in a relevant subject typically in combination with grade A in A Level History DD + B in History or Classical Civilisation

Scottish Highers + 1 Advanced Higher | AAABB + typically B in History AABBB + typically B in History

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

You'll learn about key concepts like community, identity and welfare. Our degrees explore important sociological issues including crime, migration, gender and poverty.

Our world-leading research shapes our teaching, so you're always challenged and up to date. Our interdisciplinary approach brings sociologists, social policy analysts and social workers together under one roof.

Our staff are experts in their field and work with organisations in the UK and worldwide, bringing fresh perspectives to your studies. They'll give you the advice and support you need to excel in your subject. There are around 130 places available on our courses.

Department staff also play key roles in the Faculty of Social Science's Digital Society Network (DSN), an active group of researchers working on all aspects of digital-society relations. The DSN hosts events and activities to stimulate and support research in this area.

Our courses develop students who are socially aware, with strong analytical skills and a flair for approaching problems in new ways. You'll become skilled at research and bring your own insights to key issues that affect our lives. In your third year, specialist modules allow you to investigate current thinking on a wide range of topics. You'll learn about the latest research from subject experts and explore your ideas in workshop-style sessions.

Department of Sociological Studies students are based in the picturesque Elmfield building where our staff have their offices and some seminar and small-group teaching takes place. Teaching may also be timetabled to take place within other departments or central teaching space.

All the University buildings are close together so, it’s easy to get around. The University Sports Centre is just next door, and accommodation, the Information Commons and the award-winning Students’ Union are all within easy walking distance.

Department of Sociological Studies

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

  No 1 in the north for graduate employment
The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020


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 Sociological Studies

79% of our research is world-leading or internationally excellent

Research Excellence Framework 2014


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 Sociological Studies

Our graduates work in a range of sectors including broadcasting, the police service, teaching and social work. They are also employed in local government, the civil service, charity and campaign organisations and market research.

Some have carried out graduate training with national and international companies, and are employed around the world. Many go on to masters courses in sociology and social policy and other areas such as human resources.

You could pursue a career in marketing, communications and PR, or work in museums, theatres or charitable organisations.

Placements 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. 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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Explore this course:

    2021-2022