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About this course

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Full-time | 2024



Our History degree is one of the most varied and exciting in the country. You can explore history from the end of the Roman Empire to the present day. You may study periods and places you have encountered before, but in new ways and in more detail; you may also encounter entirely new ones. You can also explore diverse themes and approaches, such as environmental and scientific history, visual cultures, and gender and sexuality. The course will equip you with critical and presentational skills that are valuable in many careers.

Year 1 offers you an induction into advanced historical study, engaging with different periods and approaches to the study of the past, and experience how history encompasses the diversity of the human experience.

In Year 2 you will engage with a range of periods and styles of historical study, with modules introducing new problems in a more specific framework and developing your understanding of historiography and how to write extended historical arguments. You can also apply to add a placement year or a year abroad to your degree, increasing the course from three years to four.

In Year 3 you will take further responsibility for your own learning. You will bring all your knowledge and skills together in your dissertation. You will be able to concentrate your studies in an area that fascinates you, and really blossom as an independent learner and researcher.

You will be encouraged to attend an extensive programme of activities, including research seminars and public lectures from high-profile guest speakers.


Year 1
Core modules:
Making History gives you a grounding in the key skills you will need at later stages of the course to interpret and explain historical information. You will be introduced to the practice of researching and writing history by examining how historians shape knowledge in particular areas.

Examples of optional modules:
Decline and Crisis? Europe 1300–1500
Transformations in the Late Antique Mediterranean, c.300–c.700 CE
Connected Histories: Early Modern Europe, c.1450–1750
The Atlantic Archipelago, c.1500–c.1750
Modern Times: A Cultural History of Europe, c.1860–1960
Power in Africa
Imagining East Asia in the Modern World
Wars and Welfare: c. 1900–1945
The Rise and Fall of American Slavery, 1607–1865.
Year 2
Core module:
Conversations with History encourages you to identify and define your own questions in the context of a given set of historical and historiographical issues. You will develop effective strategies for dealing with these contrasting approaches as you plan and write an in-depth, independent project, and you will discuss and explain your ideas in a small-group context.

Examples of optional modules:
The Book of Hours in Medieval Life and Art
Medieval Islamic World
Inventing France, 1300–1500: Kings and Communities of the Realm
Law and Order in the Barbarian Kingdoms c.500–800 AD
The Court: Art and Power in Early Modern Europe
A ‘Pure’ Land? Gender, Caste and Community in South Asia, c.1750–1950
The "Vast" Early Modern Americas
Early Modern Hospitality in Global Comparative Perspective
Hard Times: British Society, 1815–1902.
Year 3 (Year 4 if undertaking a placement or year abroad)
Core module:
You will undertake supervised independent research leading to the writing of a Dissertation. You will choose your own Dissertation topic, through consultation with a supervisor. With some limitations, the potential range of topics is very wide – in recent years topics have varied from representation of bandits in twentieth-century Hollywood films to ceremonial in medieval France.

Examples of optional modules:
Interpreting Conflict in Post-Colonial Africa
Revolution and History
Liberty, Equality, Democracy: Progressive Thought in Nineteenth-Century Britain
History and Its Audiences
Empires and States in Early Modern Asia: Nomads, Slaves, Scholars, Rulers
Health, Wealth and Happiness: Investigating Standards of Living and Wellbeing in the Past
Beyond Feudalism.

Assessment methods

Most modules are assessed by coursework essays or projects and by examinations in which you will write answers to essay-style questions. An oral presentation forms part of the assessment of the Conversations with History module.

In your final year, you will write a dissertation on a subject of your choice, giving you the opportunity to demonstrate your skills in independent learning and research and your ability to tie together areas of learning from across the entire course.

The Uni

Course locations:

College allocation pending

Durham City



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What students say

We've crunched the numbers to see if overall student satisfaction here is high, medium or low compared to students studying this subject(s) at other universities.


How do students rate their degree experience?

The stats below relate to the general subject area/s at this university, not this specific course. We show this where there isn’t enough data about the course, or where this is the most detailed info available to us.


Teaching and learning

Staff make the subject interesting
Staff are good at explaining things
Ideas and concepts are explored in-depth
Opportunities to apply what I've learned

Assessment and feedback

Feedback on work has been timely
Feedback on work has been helpful
Staff are contactable when needed
Good advice available when making study choices

Resources and organisation

Library resources
IT resources
Course specific equipment and facilities
Course is well organised and has run smoothly

Student voice

Staff value students' opinions
Feel part of a community on my course

Who studies this subject and how do they get on?

UK students
International students
Male students
Female students
2:1 or above
First year drop out rate

Most popular A-Levels studied (and grade achieved)


After graduation

The stats in this section relate to the general subject area/s at this university – not this specific course. We show this where there isn't enough data about the course, or where this is the most detailed info available to us.


What are graduates doing after six months?

This is what graduates told us they were doing (and earning), shortly after completing their course. We've crunched the numbers to show you if these immediate prospects are high, medium or low, compared to those studying this subject/s at other universities.

Average annual salary
Employed or in further education
Employed in a role where degree was essential or beneficial

Top job areas of graduates

Business, research and administrative professionals
Sales, marketing and related associate professionals
Business, finance and related associate professionals

History is a very popular subject (although numbers have fallen of late) — in 2015, over 10,000 UK students graduated in a history-related course. Obviously, there aren't 11,000 jobs as historians available every year, but history is a good, flexible degree that allows graduates to go into a wide range of different jobs, and consequently history graduates have an unemployment rate comparable to the national graduate average. Many — probably most — jobs for graduates don't ask for a particular degree to go into them and history graduates are well set to take advantage. That's why so many go into jobs in the finance industry, human resources, marketing, PR and events management, as well as the more obvious roles in education, welfare and the arts. Around one in five history graduates went into further study last year. History and teaching were the most popular further study subjects for history graduates, but law, journalism, and politics were also popular postgraduate courses.

What about your long term prospects?

Looking further ahead, below is a rough guide for what graduates went on to earn.


The graph shows median earnings of graduates who achieved a degree in this subject area one, three and five years after graduating from here.







Note: this data only looks at employees (and not those who are self-employed or also studying) and covers a broad sample of graduates and the various paths they've taken, which might not always be a direct result of their degree.

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Post-six month graduation stats:

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It offers a snapshot of what grads went on to do six months later, what they were earning on average, and whether they felt their degree helped them obtain a 'graduate role'. We calculate a mean rating to indicate if this is high, medium or low compared to other universities.

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The Longitudinal Educational Outcomes dataset combines HRMC earnings data with student records from the Higher Education Statistics Agency.

While there are lots of factors at play when it comes to your future earnings, use this as a rough timeline of what graduates in this subject area were earning on average one, three and five years later. Can you see a steady increase in salary, or did grads need some experience under their belt before seeing a nice bump up in their pay packet?

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