Skip navigation

If you’d like to receive the latest updates from Northumbria about our courses, events, finance & funding then enter your details below.

* At Northumbria we are strongly committed to protecting the privacy of personal data. To view the University’s Privacy Notice please click here

CLOSE

Are you looking for a degree that combines the study of history and politics with 21st-century employability? At Northumbria we offer a high level of academic rigour as well as thorough training in analytical skills.

Core modules in our History and Politics degree provide a grounding in both history and politics as well as the links between them. Optional modules offer considerable flexibility to pick and choose from revolutionary movements in Europe and major debates in American history to issues such terrorism and genocide.  

The course teaches transferable skills, with options for work placement as well as a period of study abroad. The first year emphasises the acquisition of research and communication skills, the second employability and project management, and the third independent learning through a research project of your choice.

Why choose Northumbria to study History and Politics?

Teaching Quality: Politics at Northumbria is ranked top 20 in the UK for Teaching Quality (Times Good University Guide, 2024).

Research Power: History at Northumbria is ranked 26th in the UK for research power, out of 81 institutions (REF, 2021). This represents a rise of 5 places since 2014.

Student Rated: Over 92% of students studying History and Politics at Northumbria believed the library resources supported their learning and believed their course was well organised and felt free to express their ideas, opinions, and beliefs (NSS, 2023).

Discover all of our available History Courses.

Are you looking for a degree that combines the study of history and politics with 21st-century employability? At Northumbria we offer a high level of academic rigour as well as thorough training in analytical skills.

Core modules in our History and Politics degree provide a grounding in both history and politics as well as the links between them. Optional modules offer considerable flexibility to pick and choose from revolutionary movements in Europe and major debates in American history to issues such terrorism and genocide.  

The course teaches transferable skills, with options for work placement as well as a period of study abroad. The first year emphasises the acquisition of research and communication skills, the second employability and project management, and the third independent learning through a research project of your choice.

Why choose Northumbria to study History and Politics?

Teaching Quality: Politics at Northumbria is ranked top 20 in the UK for Teaching Quality (Times Good University Guide, 2024).

Research Power: History at Northumbria is ranked 26th in the UK for research power, out of 81 institutions (REF, 2021). This represents a rise of 5 places since 2014.

Student Rated: Over 92% of students studying History and Politics at Northumbria believed the library resources supported their learning and believed their course was well organised and felt free to express their ideas, opinions, and beliefs (NSS, 2023).

Discover all of our available History Courses.

Course Information

UCAS Code
LV21

Level of Study
Undergraduate

Mode of Study
3 years Full Time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Department
Humanities

Location
City Campus, Northumbria University

City
Newcastle

Start
September 2024 or September 2025

Fees
Fee Information

Modules
Module Information

News / Humanities

Find out what our students and staff are getting involved in.

History at Northumbria University

Discover more about what you will learn on the course, more about our academics research interests, and hear from our alumni's by watching our videos.

Department / Humanities

Our Department of Humanities includes the subject areas of History, English Literature, English Language and Linguistics, Creative Writing and American Studies.

a man flying through the air while riding a snowboard

Department

a person standing in front of a book shelf

Study

Student Profiles / History and Politics

Hear what it is really like to study History and Politics BA (Hons) from our current students.

The relationship between myself and staff is amazing! Everyone is so accommodating and really easy to get along with.

Delve Deeper / Discover more about life at Northumbria

Book An Open Day / Experience History and Politics BA (Hons)

Visit an Open Day to get an insight into what it's like to study History and Politics. Speak to staff and students from the course and get a tour of the facilities.

Entry Requirements 2024/25

Standard Entry

112 UCAS Tariff points

From a combination of acceptable Level 3 qualifications which may include: A-level, T Level, BTEC Diplomas/Extended Diplomas, Scottish and Irish Highers, Access to HE Diplomas, or the International Baccalaureate.

Find out how many points your qualifications are worth by using the UCAS Tariff calculator: www.ucas.com/ucas/tariff-calculator

Northumbria University is committed to supporting all individuals to achieve their ambitions. We have a range of schemes and alternative offers to make sure as many individuals as possible are given an opportunity to study at our University regardless of personal circumstances or background. To find out more, review our Northumbria Entry Requirement Essential Information page for further details www.northumbria.ac.uk/entryrequirementsinfo

Subject Requirements:

There are no specific subject requirements for this course.

GCSE Requirements:

Applicants will need Maths and English Language at minimum grade 4/C, or an equivalent.

Additional Requirements:

There are no additional requirements for this course.

International Qualifications:

We welcome applicants with a range of qualifications which may not match those shown above.

If you have qualifications from outside the UK, find out what you need by visiting www.northumbria.ac.uk/yourcountry

English Language Requirements:

International applicants should have a minimum overall IELTS (Academic) score of 6.0 with 5.5 in each component (or an approved equivalent*).

*The university accepts a large number of UK and International Qualifications in place of IELTS. You can find details of acceptable tests and the required grades in our English Language section: www.northumbria.ac.uk/englishqualifications

Entry Requirements 2025/26

Standard Entry

112 UCAS Tariff points

From a combination of acceptable Level 3 qualifications which may include: A-level, T Level, BTEC Diplomas/Extended Diplomas, Scottish and Irish Highers, Access to HE Diplomas, or the International Baccalaureate.

Find out how many points your qualifications are worth by using the UCAS Tariff calculator: www.ucas.com/ucas/tariff-calculator

Northumbria University is committed to supporting all individuals to achieve their ambitions. We have a range of schemes and alternative offers to make sure as many individuals as possible are given an opportunity to study at our University regardless of personal circumstances or background. To find out more, review our Northumbria Entry Requirement Essential Information page for further details www.northumbria.ac.uk/entryrequirementsinfo

Subject Requirements:

There are no specific subject requirements for this course.

GCSE Requirements:

Applicants will need Maths and English Language at minimum grade 4/C, or an equivalent.

Additional Requirements:

There are no additional requirements for this course.

International Qualifications:

We welcome applicants with a range of qualifications which may not match those shown above.

If you have qualifications from outside the UK, find out what you need by visiting www.northumbria.ac.uk/yourcountry

English Language Requirements:

International applicants should have a minimum overall IELTS (Academic) score of 6.0 with 5.5 in each component (or an approved equivalent*).

*The university accepts a large number of UK and International Qualifications in place of IELTS. You can find details of acceptable tests and the required grades in our English Language section: www.northumbria.ac.uk/englishqualifications

Fees and Funding 2024/25 Entry

UK Fee in Year 1: £9,250

* The maximum tuition fee that we are permitted to charge for UK students is set by government. Tuition fees may increase in each subsequent academic year of your course, these are subject to government regulations and in line with inflation.


EU Fee in Year 1: £18,250

International Fee in Year 1: £18,250


Please see the main Funding Pages for 24/25 scholarship information.

 


ADDITIONAL COSTS

There are no Additional Costs

Fees and Funding 2025/26 Entry

UK Fee in Year 1*: TBC

* Government has yet to announce 25/26 tuition fee levels. As a guide, 24/25 fees were £9,250 per year. 



EU Fee in Year 1: **TBC


International Fee in Year 1: TBC

ADDITIONAL COSTS

TBC

If you’d like to receive the latest updates from Northumbria about our courses, events, finance & funding then enter your details below.

* At Northumbria we are strongly committed to protecting the privacy of personal data. To view the University’s Privacy Notice please click here

How to Apply

Please use the Apply Now button at the top of this page to submit your application.

Certain applications may need to be submitted via an external application system, such as UCAS, Lawcabs or DfE Apply.

The Apply Now button will redirect you to the relevant website if this is the case.

You can find further application advice, such as what to include in your application and what happens after you apply, on our Admissions Hub Admissions | Northumbria University



Modules

Module information is indicative and is reviewed annually therefore may be subject to change. Applicants will be informed if there are any changes.

HI4003 -

The Making of Contemporary Europe (Core,20 Credits)

This module will enable you to learn about the emergence of contemporary Europe by surveying the continent’s history from the 18th century to the present. Its thematic overview of the history of Europe and its relationship with the non-European world, will provide you with an introductory knowledge and understanding of global developments. It covers key issues in the social, economic and political transformation of Europe during this period, dwelling on events in Britain and Europe where necessary, but always maintaining an international perspective. You will be encouraged to think in terms of European development as a whole, and not in terms of discrete national histories, and to make comparisons between different parts of the continent, often on a regional rather than a national basis. Many of the important events which are often seen to be rooted in a particular national considerations are nevertheless are also part of broader contexts which transcend national boundaries. For example, the collapse of the old aristocratic order, profound long-term upheavals in the international economy, the spread of communist ideology, and the rise of fascism, to name but a few.

More information

HI4006 -

Late Medieval and Early Modern Europe 1200-1720 (Core,20 Credits)

You will be introduced to the history of late medieval and early modern Europe from 1200 to 1720, and to a variety of topics including the interaction between Jews, Muslims, and Christians, the growing power of the monarchies of England, France, and Spain, and the development of print culture. You will engage with broader themes in medieval and early modern history, such as rural and urban society, the economy, religion, gender, culture, warfare and state formation, and voyages of discovery, and follow these comparatively across period and place. You will also learn about the different types of source material used by historians of this period of European history, such as medieval court records, state documents, popular literature, and visual images.

More information

HI4007 -

Making History (Core,20 Credits)

History is not only characterised by knowledge and understanding of past developments, but also by a broad range of skills and methods that are directly applicable to academic research. Within this wider context, this module will give you a firm grounding in the skills and methods needed for the study of history, introducing you to a range of source materials from a broad chronological spectrum. In so doing, the module explores traditions in criticism and explains the ways in which sources can be read and utilised. The module is structured along five ‘core skills’ blocks (Writing History, Handling Sources, Approaches to History, Researching & Interpreting History, and Feedback and Careers) which progress logically from each other and provide students with ample opportunities to engage with how historians make history. The first block introduces you to how to study and write history through an analysis of the historian’s key skills. The block also develops skills in three areas: (1) writing history; (2) reading history (3) researching history. The second block examines key approaches to historical sources. In addition to allowing you to demonstrate the skills gained in block one, the block concentrates on how to find primary sources, how to read them, and how to deploy them in written work. Block three considers key conceptual approaches to the past, including race, class and gender. Block four draws the skills you have learnt in a concentrated study of a single secondary source book. . The final block introduces you to careers in and beyond History, and asks you to reflect on your progress over the year. You will develop a critical capacity to scrutinize sources and interpretations of the past.

More information

IR4002 -

Democrats and Dictators (Core,20 Credits)

How can we distinguish between democratic and non-democratic regimes? How does the nature of the political system affect the dynamics of rule, representation, accountability and participation in democratic regimes? Similarly, how can we differentiate between non-democratic regimes and how do we explain their existence? How and why do some countries seek to democratise? Why do these efforts succeed in some cases but fail in others? These are the core questions that you will consider on this module, which is organised around four main topics: the conceptualisation of democratic and non-democratic regimes; political systems in democratic countries; the categorisation and governance of non-democratic regimes, and democratisation, paying attention to the role of domestic and international forces. Each of these topics is further underpinned by the themes of rule, representation, accountability and participation, which you will also explore in modules at levels 5 and 6.

More information

IR4003 -

International Conflict and Cooperation (Core,20 Credits)

In this module I will engage with key concepts and theories of International Relations and learn essential academic skills. I will learn about the three standard schools of International Relations thought, i.e. Liberalism, Realism and Marxism, and begin using them to understand states and state practice, as well as the ordering of the international. In this module I will learn to question common sense beliefs about what states are and the status of the powerful (e.g. US, UK) by engaging with academic literature and case studies. Key concepts will include sovereignty, hegemony, war, peace, security etc.

More information

IR4006 -

Thinking Politically (Core,20 Credits)

The aim of the module is to introduce students to the main thinkers, ideas and debates within political philosophy and political theory. The module differentiates between the different branches of politics (i.e. political economy, political philosophy and theory, and political science) before examining the debates about human nature; the nature of society without government; the arguments for and against democracy; justifying the existence of the state and state rule; liberty; equality; how to produce and distribute the goods and services that society needs and desires; and social justice. Furthermore, it links these debates – and the ideas and theories that inform them – to a range of contemporary political ideologies (e.g. conservatism, liberalism, feminism, etc.) and assesses the impact of these upon politics and society more generally.

More information

YC5001 -

Academic Language Skills for Humanities and Social Sciences (Core – for International and EU students only,0 Credits)

Academic skills when studying away from your home country can differ due to cultural and language differences in teaching and assessment practices. This module is designed to support your transition in the use and practice of technical language and subject specific skills around assessments and teaching provision in your chosen subject. The overall aim of this module is to develop your abilities to read and study effectively for academic purposes; to develop your skills in analysing and using source material in seminars and academic writing and to develop your use and application of language and communications skills to a higher level.

The topics you will cover on the module include:

• Understanding assignment briefs and exam questions.
• Developing academic writing skills, including citation, paraphrasing, and summarising.
• Practising ‘critical reading’ and ‘critical writing’
• Planning and structuring academic assignments (e.g. essays, reports and presentations).
• Avoiding academic misconduct and gaining credit by using academic sources and referencing effectively.
• Listening skills for lectures.
• Speaking in seminar presentations.
• Presenting your ideas
• Giving discipline-related academic presentations, experiencing peer observation, and receiving formative feedback.
• Speed reading techniques.
• Developing self-reflection skills.

More information

AD5011 -

Humanities Study Abroad (60 credit) (Optional,60 Credits)

The Study Abroad module is a semester based 60 credit module which is available on degree courses which facilitate study abroad within the programme. You will undertake a semester abroad at a partner university equivalent to 60 UK credits. This gives you access to modules from your discipline taught in a different learning culture and so broadens your overall experience of learning. The course of study abroad will be constructed to meet the learning outcomes for the programme for the semester in question, dependent on suitable modules from the partner and will be recorded for an individual student on the learning agreement signed by the host University, the student, and the home University (Northumbria). The module will be assessed by conversion of graded marks from the host University and, where appropriate, complementary activities as agreed between the student and module tutor.

Learning outcomes on the year-long modules on which the student is unable to attend the home institution must be met at the host institution, and marks from the host are incorporated into the module as part of the overall assessment.

More information

HI5004 -

Affluence and Anxiety: The US from 1920 to 1960 (Optional,20 Credits)

Historians and other researchers have often used the terms of ‘affluence’ and ‘anxiety’ to describe US history and culture from 1920 to 1960. According to a traditional narrative, Americans enjoyed unprecedented ‘affluence’ in the 1920s and in the postwar period, while experiencing great ‘anxiety’ in the context of the Cold War. While useful, these narratives do not fully account for the complexity of this period. In this module, we will ask questions such as: Who took advantage of affluence (pre- and post-WW2)? Who was excluded from it and how? How did American conceptions of affluence fundamentally shape our current climate crisis? Beyond Cold War anxieties, what were Americans, in their diversity, worried about? How did foreign policy anxieties reveal themselves at home? And how did racial and gender anxieties shape US politics and culture?

With these questions in mind, we will assess and analyse major developments and events of the period, including, but not limited to: the roaring 1920s, the Great Depression, the Dust Bowl, the New Deal, World War II, the Cold War, the postwar “economic miracle,” the suburban boom, and the beginnings of the Civil Rights Movement. By narrowing our focus on four crucial decades of the 20th century, we will be able to look at these events from various angles. In accordance with recent developments in the field, we will pay particular attention to historiographical interpretations that emphasize race, gender, sexuality, and class, as well as the environment. This will mean, for instance, that you will not only learn about the anti-communist ‘Red Scare’ of the 1950s, but also about the lesser known ‘Lavender Scare’ that targeted gay men and women working for the US government. Similarly, we will study Rosa Parks’ efforts to desegregate the buses in 1950s Birmingham, but we will also pay attention to ordinary actors of the Civil Rights Movement, such as the African-American youths who desegregated swimming pools and amusement parks.

Primary and secondary source readings, along with classroom activities, will help you to critically engage this key era of American development and develop the interpretive skills of a historian.

More information

HI5005 -

America in the 1960s (Optional,20 Credits)

This module offers you the opportunity to study the domestic social, cultural, political, and economic history of the United States during the “long 1960s” (roughly 1956-1974). Interdisciplinary in approach the module allows you to examine a range of secondary and primary sources – including television, literature, music, film and visual culture – that illuminate the history and culture of the US during this period. The module also encourages you to consider the perils and advantages of dealing with the 1960s as a discrete historical period, involves you in some of the most important scholarly debates in the field, and asks you to consider how the decade has been remembered and misremembered in popular consciousness by exploring later cultural representations and political uses of the 1960s. Key topics include the Cold War and Vietnam; consumerism; the civil rights and black power movements; national and local politics; science, technology and the environment; youth culture; gender and sexuality; identity politics; regionalism; the New Left and the Counterculture; conservatism and the New Right; mass media and popular music.

More information

HI5009 -

Your Graduate Future (Optional,20 Credits)

This module aims to ensure that you will be equipped with employability-related skills appropriate to graduates of History and associated degrees. The module adapts to your interests, whether you choose to pursue postgraduate study, enter the job market seeking graduate level employment, or establish your own enterprise. One of the purposes of Your Graduate Future is to raise your awareness of the wide range of possibilities, and to equip you with the knowledge, the skills and the experiences that may enable you to respond effectively to future opportunities. This module now includes a “Standard Pathway” and a “Law Pathway”, delivered in collaboration with Northumbria School of Law. For the Standard Pathway, in semester 1 you will attend lectures and participate in seminars that will present the intricacies of contemporary job seeking in different sectors. These will include guest lectures. You will then work with a group of your peers on an outward-looking project that will enable you to display your specific skills, to establish and nurture internal and external contacts, and to express your interests in a public outcome of your choice. In semester 2, you will develop your CV and further explore your evolving skillsets by means of engaging on your choice of work experience, volunteering, enterprise planning or a placement abroad. These will take the shape of supported independent activities. Assessment consists of a group project with a public outcome, an individual report reflecting on the scholarly basis of your project and your assessment of the process, and a placement report (at the end of semester 2). Students in the Law Pathway will also attend the lectures, and will follow a bespoke schedule of workshops, seminars, a field visit to The National Archives in London including archival training and a private tour of the archives. They will also undergo two specialised training sessions in Newcastle. Students in both pathways will follow the same assessment pattern, but those in the Law Pathway will work alongside students from the Law School to investigate a historical legal case using original archival material from The National Archives and Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums, and their group project will see them produce public facing history outputs for these external clients, including exhibitions, website blogs, and contributions to their official social media channels. In Semester 2, the ‘Placement’ element will work with Law students to design and stage a reconstruction of the trial itself.

More information

HI5014 -

From Reconstruction to Reunification: Europe, 1945-1991 (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module you will learn about the problems that Europe faced at the end of the Second World War and the factors that led to the economic boom of the post-war years. These developments will be placed in the context of the struggle between the rival socio-political ideologies of liberalism and communism and the emergence of new social movements in Europe between 1945 and 1991. The module deals with the era of extended military and political confrontation between the main rival socio-political systems which defeated fascism and the eruption onto the world stage of 'new social forces' such as feminism and Third-World nationalism. It covers the key developments in European politics and society as well as Europe's relationship with the wider world during the period.

More information

HI5022 -

The Holocaust (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module you will learn about the Holocaust in its full global, historical context. You will engage with the major historiographical debates surrounding the Shoah. Crucially, throughout the module, there will be a dual focus on the Holocaust’s perpetrators and its victims. The breadth of this focus ensures that the module will be interdisciplinary and you will learn how to navigate historical, literary and sociological perspectives on the Holocaust and its memory.

More information

HI5033 -

Civilians and the Second World War (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module, you will learn about the civilian experiences of total warfare during the period of the Second World War (bearing in mind that exact dates of conflict and occupation vary from nation to nation). The class will take an international comparative approach, examining civilian experiences not just on the British ‘Home Front’ but also experiences in America, Germany, Japan, the Soviet Union as well the states under enemy occupation. The module will take a thematic rather than nation based approach to this area of study. Topics including bombardment, childhood, gender, work and labour, domestic life, internment, occupation, collaboration and resistance will all be explored internationally and comparatively. You will engage with a broad range of historical debates and concepts as well as engaging with a wide variety of primary materials including state propaganda, film, radio broadcasts, oral testimony, diaries, memoirs and archival material. This will equip you to think critically about both historiography and primary sources.

More information

HI5034 -

Setting America Right: Conservatism in the United States, 1933 - 2016 (Optional,20 Credits)

This module will explore the history of conservatism in the United States of America from the 1930s to the present day. Beginning with opposition to Franklin Roosevelt and the New Deal, this module will trace the evolution of American conservatism through the era of Republican presidents Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan, and all the way up to the emergence of Donald Trump and the ‘alt-right’. At the heart of this module is a simple question: did the U.S. ‘turn right’ during the twentieth century? In answering that question, you will grapple with the fundamental issue of what it means to be a ‘conservative’ in America and how that label has been used and fought over in different eras and contexts.

You will learn about developments in high politics and at the grassroots, and gain an understanding of conservative movements both within and without the Republican Party. As well as learning about crucial events in recent U.S. political history (such as Barry Goldwater’s transformational 1964 presidential campaign), you will learn about the ways that conservatives revolutionised the nation’s political culture, pioneering innovative electoral techniques such as direct mail and constructing formidable conservative media outlets like Fox News. The module is organised in a broadly chronological way, but you will also explore key themes and movements that span decades, such as the religious right, anti-feminism, and ‘colour-blind’ conservatism.

More information

HI5035 -

Divisive Pasts: Legacies of Conflict and Oppression in the 20th and 21st Centuries (Optional,20 Credits)

This module concerns the ongoing force and power of history: how the past shapes the politics of the present and is deployed in contemporary political conflicts and challenges. It fuses history with politics and culture and will require you to think expansively about differing ways that nation-states negotiate a troubled and/or violent past. The module covers five case studies of countries which have dealt in differing ways with the legacy of conflict: modern South Africa (1994-), post-Franco Spain (1975-), Northern Ireland since the Good Friday Agreement (1998-), post-Second World War Germany (1945-), and Brazil since the end of the military dictatorship (1985-).

Each case study receives two weeks’ focus in lectures and seminars, granting the basics in understanding each example and the ways in which the violence and divisions of the past might be overcome (or not). It will help you consider themes of memory and the divergent ways in which history is commemorated or simply ignored. Similarly, you will consider the efficacy and value of ‘Truth Commissions’ – the contribution of an ‘honest broker’ (or outside perspective) – along with the ways in which debates and disputes at the past take place through culture or literature. Overall, this module will develop your interdisciplinary skills in combining history, politics and culture with the ongoing vibrancy of the past; how it can be understood and interpreted differently, and whether the official political sphere helps or hinders in the process.

More information

HI5038 -

Early Modern Monarchies: Power and Representation, 1500-1750 (Optional,20 Credits)

This module will familiarise you with different aspects of monarchical rule in the early modern period. In particular, it will explore the history of royal courts between c. 1500 and 1750, ranging from England to Poland-Lithuania and covering dynasties such as the Valois and Bourbons, Habsburgs, Tudors and Stuarts, Jagiellonians, Vasas and Wettins. We will look at court intrigue, favourites and faction politics, gender, representation and political agency, ceremony, entertainments, fashion and royal palaces, and diplomacy as means of transnational contacts between royal courts. We will study various European concepts – including kingship and queenship, chivalry, divine right, ritual, and patronage – and consider how these were adapted to suit different styles of monarchies and courts. We will also think about the ways in which European royal houses were a connected network of cultural and political exchange.

You will learn about how early modern royal courts accommodated the needs of different political systems, for example absolute, elective, and parliamentary monarchy, while retaining key characteristics of European royal culture. We will tackle questions about representation in early modern politics and the day-to-day life at these centres of power by applying the most recent approaches from social, political and cultural history, including elements of archaeology, art history, gender history, and history of emotions. The module is organised thematically, but we will think about the degree of change between c. 1500 and 1750, as royal courts adapted to dynastic change and adopted emerging trends, such as the Renaissance, the Baroque and the Enlightenment.

More information

HI5040 -

Dictatorship and Development: Central America, 1912-1996 (Optional,20 Credits)

The tiny countries of Central America form a narrow land bridge between the continents of North and South America. For centuries a quiet

backwater, the region gained international importance in the twentieth century, thanks to the United States’ growing interest in its ‘backyard’ to

the south.

In this module, you will explore Central America’s tumultuous twentieth century via a variety of primary sources. You will use US military

archives to explore the US occupation of Nicaragua from 1912 to 1933, and discover how historians have used oral history to rescue

memories of the El Salvadoran massacre of 1932. In the second half of the course, you will look at how ideas about development intersected

with U.S. informal empire in the region, using CIA and State Department documents to uncover the roots of the civil wars which wracked the

isthmus in the 1980s. Finally, you will learn about the controversy surrounding Rigoberta Menchú’s memoir of the Guatemalan civil war, and

consider how historians navigate conflicting documents and imperfect, contested memories to create credible accounts of past events.

More information

HI5042 -

The Making and Breaking of Industrial Britain, 1770-1990 (Optional,20 Credits)

By the 1880s, Britain was a major coal exporter and the largest centre of ship building and repair globally. Its manufacturing productivity dubbed it, ‘the workshop of the world’, and its import and export tonnage was colossal. Yet, a century later, by 1980, Britain rapidly entered post-industrialisation and the collapse of the vast infrastructural networks, mines and machinery which had facilitated its rapid nineteenth-century industrialisation. This module makes sense of this historical discontinuity, contextualising the dramatic and fast-paced making and breaking of Britain’s industries from the viewpoint of the environments which underpinned these rapid changes. You will analyse how Britain utilised its fortunate natural resources, notably navigable rivers and voluminous coal deposits, to become a powerful, influential driver of wider industrialisation internationally. You will analyse environmental drivers of industrialisation in comparison to other key drivers such as Empire, demography, urbanisation, social change, technology and politics. You will evaluate in depth how a closer engagement with key elements of the natural environment enabled the British and its wider empire to develop trade and industry successfully and to invent globally game-changing scientific and engineering innovations, notably George Stephenson’s locomotive (1814). Organised thematically, and introducing you to environmental history, the module focuses on one natural resource each week (rivers; coal; precious metals; steam; salt; animals; wood; chemicals; stone; and oil). Consequently, you will understand in depth how Britain’s industrialisation was underpinned by a closer, rather than a remoter, relationship between humans and the environment, thus reconnecting Britain’s industrial might to its natural environments.

More information

HI5043 -

Rise of the Russian Empire: the Romanovs, 1613-1855 (Optional,20 Credits)

This module examines major themes in the history of tsarist Russia between two major crises. In 1613, the election of the first Romanov tsar, Mikhail, marked the end of Russia’s ‘Time of Troubles’ when the state nearly collapsed. Two and half centuries later, the then mighty Russian Empire was defeated by Britain, France and the Ottoman Empire in the Crimean War of 1853-56. In between these crises, Russia’s tsars acquired considerable power over their population and a vast empire that extended across three continents.
This module considers how the Romanov tsars were able to construct and consolidate autocratic power and how they exercised it. First, we will look at how the Romanov dynasty was established under the ‘boy-tsar’ Mikhail and then grew stronger under his successors in the 17th century. Next, we will turn to the major personalities of Peter the Great and Catherine the Great who, in a drive to ‘modernise’, drew upon western European technology and culture to shape and strengthen their empire. Yet ‘westernization’ also inadvertently undermined the stability of tsarism in the long-term, contributing to the growth of challenges to autocracy. Thus began a debate about Russia’s place in Europe which continues today. We will then consider how the successors of Catherine the Great, the so-called ‘enlightened despot’, dealt with her legacy by pursuing conservatism then ‘enlightened’ reform alternatively. Another major theme of the course is how, why and with what consequences, both domestic and international, the tsars were able to build an enormous empire, the largest country in the world. By the end of the eighteenth century, it extended from Poland and Finland in Europe, across Siberia in northern Asia, to Alaska in north America. The power of the Tsars, arguably, had reached its zenith by the early 19th century, when, despite victory over Napoleon in the first decades, cracks began to show in the social and cultural fabric of the empire. New forms of intellectual and political resistance to autocracy gradually emerged and the economic system of serfdom began to appear unfit to compete with the industrializing countries of Europe, demonstrated by Russia’s defeat in the Crimean War of 1853-56.

More information

HI5044 -

Power and Freedom: West African History, 1850 to 2010 (Optional,20 Credits)

This module is an introduction to the modern history of West Africa from 1850 to 2010. You will learn about major themes in the history of the region from Senegal to Nigeria, and key debates around how historians and others have represented West Africa. The module considers precolonial West African states, how and why the region was incorporated into European empires, and West Africans’ responses to colonial rule. You will assess how European colonial policies towards West Africa varied across time and space, how Africans challenged colonial rule to win independence in the 1950s and 1960s, and the challenges faced by newly self-governing nations. The module studies the vicissitudes of ‘structural adjustment’ in the region during the 1980s, and democratisation in West Africa from the 1990s.

You will explore the history of West Africa from political, social, and cultural perspectives, building an understanding of how politics affected everyday life, and vice versa. The module has a broadly chronological structure. In some weeks seminars focus on political history, while other weeks address aspects of society and culture including music, dress, and urban life.

More information

HI5048 -

Witches, Knights and Plague: Medieval Europe on Film (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module you will learn about how medieval violence is depicted on film (such as Game of Thrones and Gladiator) and how far it accurately reflects or the realities of life in the Middle Ages. It will also explore how twentieth-century governments (including Stalin) have used depictions of medieval warfare for political purposes.
The module moves on to explore how modern films have depicted relations between Muslims and Christians. We will examine movies such as Kingdom of Heaven and Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves to explore how films have stereotyped Muslims to arouse either hostility or sympathy. It will also examine how recent films about the Crusades have dealt with Christian-Muslim relations in the aftermath of 9/11, as well as the ways in which medieval religious intolerance has been represented in films such as The Da Vinci Code and how historians have responded to these depictions.
The final part of the module explores how filmmakers have portrayed gender on film. In particular, women are frequently depicted in highly sexualised ways in films and TV programmes which draw on medieval imagery. We will also explore how modern ideas about medieval women are represented in films about witchcraft (The Black Death and The Seventh Seal), as well as exploring how filmmakers depict medieval women who transcended their gender such as Joan of Arc who led armies into battle (Joan of Arc: The Messenger).

More information

HI5052 -

History/Film: Using Popular Film as Historical Evidence (Optional,20 Credits)

We know you like films, and we know that you like using them as historical evidence. But are you aware that you need a very particular skill set in order to analyse and write about films properly? If you weren’t but are interested in finding out more, and particularly if you are thinking of using film in your final-year dissertation, then this is the module for you.

This team-taught module invites you to consider a variety of popular film genres, with a specific view towards considering their value to the historian, both as sources about the past AND sources from the past. Key genres that we’ll examine include documentaries, historical dramas, biopics, science fiction, and more. The module tutors will provide you with leading-edge theoretical and methodological approaches through which you will learn how to analyse cinema as a historian.

Learning about the ways in which we might dissect a film will provide you with a range of tools that you can bring to bear on the world around you. For example, you will be able to demonstrate how popular film reflects and attempts to shape popular opinion about key political issues of the time, and how the semiotics of film enable us to move beyond simply responding to film’s plot or its cast.

As this suggests, the module requires you to develop additional analytic skills to those that you would wield when analysing textual documents. It will enable you to move beyond issues pertaining to a film’s factual accuracy (or lack thereof) to consider its emotional truths, its ideological standpoints, the ways in which the filmmakers attempt to convey and disguise political messages, and the way in which audiences are able to absorb, reject, or transform these messages as they see fit. Naturally, it will encourage you to consider the complicated relationship between the past, film, history, Film Studies, and the discipline of History itself. It might even do more…

More information

HI5054 -

Field Notes: Politics and Policy Making in Place (Optional,20 Credits)

“Field Notes” will take you out of the classroom to immerse you in the major issues facing the contemporary world. The North East is a region alive with controversy and contested spaces which speak to larger challenges facing the nation and the global community in the 21st century. Landscapes throughout the region, from the coast to the Northumberland National Park, Newcastle city centre to the banks of the River Tyne, are inscribed with complex histories which intersect with, and inform, ongoing battles over how to manage, protect, and develop these spaces for a future informed by severe social and economic challenges and the upheaval caused by climate change. You will be taken to four different local sites that are at the centre of these larger environmental-social-political and economic battles and learn how to unravel the complex dynamics that underpin these spaces (from the choices made by policy makers at the local, national, and global level, to the role of communities, activist groups, and other stakeholders in shaping these places). You will be asked to complete a range of assessments from a group presentation to a public poster and site report responding to these field trips. Through the module, therefore, you will be taught how to understand the dynamics of place and policy making and most importantly how to apply historical research to contemporary social issues that impact our world today.

More information

HI5055 -

Migration Nation: Britain’s History of Immigration, Multiculturalism and Race (Optional,20 Credits)

This module introduces students to a long overview of migration and British history. This stretches back around five centuries, but the main focus is on the last 200 years. It explores how mobility, transnationalism, and ethnic diversity have played a transformative role in shaping British society, culture, economics and politics. The module considers diversity and difference from the early modern period, however primarily focuses on the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, and the significance of the colonial and postcolonial context. Students will examine patterns of mobility and circulation within the British Empire and how conceptions of subjecthood and citizenship shifted over the twentieth century with the advent of the Commonwealth.

The course will also explore the political dimensions of migration: forms of transnational activism and dissent, issues around political marginalisation and representation, refugees and asylum, and racist and anti-immigrant movements. We will consider the ways in which diaspora communities have transformed the social and cultural fabric of areas to, and from, which they have moved. The module explores the evolution of British multiculturalism, ‘race relations’ and the era of interfaith relations.

The module also introduces students to some of the key concepts and debates in the study of migration, such as diaspora, transnationalism, circulation, mobility and hybridity. Students will be encouraged to engage with a wide range of primary and secondary material, foregrounding the voices and struggles of immigrants, interrogating a full range of historical sources, and reflecting on the extent to which official archives and versions of British history represent – or ignore – the stories of minority communities.

More information

HI5056 -

Al-Andalus to America: Spain and the New World (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module you will acquire in-depth knowledge about the Spanish late medieval period, with all of its captivating myths and influential realities. You will become critically familiar with exciting passages of universal history, including the end of the Reconquest (with the rise of the Spanish Inquisition and the expulsion of Jews and Muslims), the discovery of America, often referred to as an “encounter” of civilisations, and the development of the modern world from an Iberian perspective. You will explore the concepts of religious persecution and clash of civilisations, establishing the links between the political role of the Catholic Church and the development of a “new” continent in America from 1492. Moreover, you will gain an expert understanding of coexistence and conflict between Muslims, Jews and Christians in Spain, including the transformational cultural legacies that Europe and the West owe to Al-Andalus and Sefarad (Muslim and Jewish Spain). You will also gain a nuanced understanding of imperial dynamics between indigenous civilisations, including the Inca and the Azteca, and European settlers in the New World. You will learn about Spain’s Christian and Imperial mandates by using a wide range of translated primary sources, which will include, amongst many others, the Lead Books of Granada, Hernán Cortés’s Letters from Mexico, and Álvar Núnez’s account of his ten years journey from Florida to California, Castaways. You will also be able to evaluate the role of propaganda, from a comparative history perspective, when assessing the key events that took place before and after 1492, and how these shaped the course of modern history.

More information

HI5057 -

People Power before Democracy: The United Kingdom, 1790-1914 (Optional,20 Credits)

How did ordinary people make their voices heard before democracy? In this module you will learn how to answer this question through examining the UK’s ‘long’ nineteenth century (roughly 1790-1914). This was a period in which few men and no women could vote and political institutions were dominated by an aristocratic elite. Yet, this era was characterised by ‘people power’. Mighty movements such as anti-slavery and women’s suffrage mobilised massive numbers of people to make powerful demands for political change. The module explores this topic, firstly through studies of specific movements, such as Chartism and popular radicalism, before providing a broader thematic focus on different types of political practices and activities that were used by ordinary people, such as petitions or meetings and demonstrations. During the course of the module you will learn about the links between these movements and practices and important historical processes such as the development of democracy in the modern UK. During the module you will engage with a variety of historical debates, such as why was there no revolution in the UK?; and with a wide selection of primary sources, including newspapers, official records, and visual images.

More information

IR5003 -

Theories and Practice of Democracy (Core,20 Credits)

What is a democracy? Are elections enough? How can Western European democracy be improved in contemporary society? In this module you will be invited to challenge the traditional view that elections are sufficient for democracy. In doing so, you will explore democracy beyond the ballot box; examining theoretical and contemporary debates and practices surrounding direct and indirect democracy, political representation and participation. Case studies will be used to explore themes such as: citizen participation (e.g. participatory budgeting, consultation, citizen juries, deliberative polls), non-electoral representation, partnership working and governance, in context of the so called shift from government to governance.

There is a key focus on building your employability in the module. As part of the assessment, you will be asked to take part in a participatory budgeting/competitive funding bidding process. Where feasible, this will be based on a real life project remit linked with the goals and objectives of an external organisation. You will learn knowledge and practice skills used in policy-making, public governance, community engagement and developing and assessing successful funding applications. This is relevant to many roles in the public, private and voluntary and community sectors e.g. community and volunteer engagement officers, elected members, fund-raising officers, researchers etc. Employment related skills gained from this include: team-work, presentation skills, creating and justifying arguments, developing and assessing the merits of funding bids, finding and using evidence, using online IT tools and systems, budgeting public funds and developing projects to meet specific criteria.

More information

IR5005 -

Global Governance (Core,20 Credits)

You will learn about global governance and international organisations in theoretical-conceptual terms as mechanisms to steer and solve problems of international/global scope. You will explore one or more international organisation to understand whether and how these organisations are able to meet the demands required for that purpose, studying in depth both their normative and institutional framework. This will include studying the main actors and bodies of an organisation, the organisation’s aspirations set out in the respective charter as well as key policy development over time.

Historic case studies or policy analysis will be used to supplement your understanding of the successes or failures of the international organisation to meet its own aspirations and/or facilitate international cooperation.

Subject to staff availability, the international organisations analysed may include the United Nations, the European Union, NATO, etc.

More information

IR5008 -

Theories of International Relations (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module I will learn how different scholars have thought about and conceptualised international relations. I will study the range of theories of International Relations, including the three main schools of Liberalism, Realism, Marxism and their variants, and post-structural and critical theories. Learning about the different ways in which we can see, understand and explain international relations will provide me with a better range of tools to form my own understanding and explanation of what I observe, study and read, and thus enhance my skills of critical analysis when engaging with academic literature but also when engaging with political events around the world.

Theories covered in this module will include:
• Neorealism, Neoliberal institutionalism, English School, Constructivism, neo-Marxism
• Critical theory, Postmodernism/Poststructuralism, Feminism, Postcolonialism, International Political Theory

More information

IR5009 -

UK Politics Beyond Westminster (Optional,20 Credits)

On this module I will investigate the changing nature of the British political system. This module will develop my understanding of how politics in the UK operates beyond the traditional Westminster Model by focusing on debates about the relationship between identities and politics in the UK. In this module I will gain a clear understanding of the conceptual and theoretical basis of identity through a focus on class and nation. The module enhances my empirical knowledge with a strong historical focus on the changing nature of the British political system. The module will test a number of my assumptions about the nature of the British political system and give me a clearer understanding of the forces of identity and how this shapes political action in the UK.

More information

IR5010 -

Foreign Policy Analysis (Optional,20 Credits)

You will learn about the most significant issues and challenges of our times in the domain of foreign policy. While grounded in IR theory, you will be introduced to foreign policy analysis (FPA)-specific frameworks and levels of analysis such as to systems of governance, decision making structures and models, leadership analysis, the role of the media, public opinion and special interest groups. Empirically, you will learn about the foreign policy of key actors in the international system towards a region or set of issues such as, for example, US and China foreign policy.

More information

IR5011 -

From Bastille to Strasbourg- A Journey through Human Rights (Optional,20 Credits)

On this module you will explore human rights through three main themes: the philosophy of human rights, the implementation of human rights, human rights and globalisation.

In the ‘philosophy of human rights’ section, you will analyse the history of the concept of human rights and its critiques, starting with the first universal declaration in 1789.

In the ‘implementation of Human Rights’ section, you will critically analyse its gradual codification and legal implementation, at an international, European and national levels, and how real protection mechanisms were implemented after the Second World War, and critically evaluate its limitations. You will focus on three areas: the European Convention on Human Rights and the new rights acquired by European citizens to defend themselves against their own State; the rise of constitutional courts, focusing on the development of constitutional democracies as opposed to majority democracies and the frictions such a change has entailed, using France and Britain as case studies; the role the EU has played for the protection of human rights, starting from the So Lange case in Germany that forced the EU to become more attentive to Human Rights to an exploration of the four freedoms and finishing with an analysis of the European Charter of fundamental Rights.

In the ‘Human Rights and globalisation’ section you will examine the challenges human rights face in a globalised world by focusing on the universalist versus relativist debate on the one hand, humanitarian intervention and right to protect on the other.

More information

IR5012 -

Representing Political Violence (Optional,20 Credits)

This module looks at the ways in which political violence is represented in the media, specifically the ways political violence is racialised and gendered. You will look at race and gender as analytical categories in international relations, along with the methodologies that scholars use to research these, and you will apply these understandings to the study of political violence via case studies such as the FARC, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, the War in Iraq, Daesh and Black Lives Matter.

More information

ML5001 -

Unilang - Languages for all - Level 5 Placeholder (Optional,20 Credits)

The 20-credit yearlong Unilang modules (stages 1 – 5 depending on language) aim to encourage a positive attitude to language learning and to develop and practise the four language skills of speaking, listening, reading and writing introducing the basic/increasingly complex grammatical structures and vocabulary of the spoken and written language (depending on stage) and developing your ability to respond appropriately in the foreign language in spoken and written form in simple and increasingly complex everyday situations.

These modules also introduce you to the country and the culture of the country. In doing this, Unilang modules are intended to encourage and support international mobility; to enhance employability at home and abroad; to improve communication skills in the foreign language as well as English; to improve cultural awareness and, at the higher stages, to encourage access to foreign sources.

More information

YC5001 -

Academic Language Skills for Humanities and Social Sciences (Core – for International and EU students only,0 Credits)

Academic skills when studying away from your home country can differ due to cultural and language differences in teaching and assessment practices. This module is designed to support your transition in the use and practice of technical language and subject specific skills around assessments and teaching provision in your chosen subject. The overall aim of this module is to develop your abilities to read and study effectively for academic purposes; to develop your skills in analysing and using source material in seminars and academic writing and to develop your use and application of language and communications skills to a higher level.

The topics you will cover on the module include:

• Understanding assignment briefs and exam questions.
• Developing academic writing skills, including citation, paraphrasing, and summarising.
• Practising ‘critical reading’ and ‘critical writing’
• Planning and structuring academic assignments (e.g. essays, reports and presentations).
• Avoiding academic misconduct and gaining credit by using academic sources and referencing effectively.
• Listening skills for lectures.
• Speaking in seminar presentations.
• Presenting your ideas
• Giving discipline-related academic presentations, experiencing peer observation, and receiving formative feedback.
• Speed reading techniques.
• Developing self-reflection skills.

More information

AD5009 -

Humanities Work Placement Year (Optional,120 Credits)

The Work Placement Year module is a 120 credit year-long module available on degree courses which include a work placement year, taken as an additional year of study at level 5 and before level 6 (the length of the placement(s) will be determined by your programme but it can be no less than 30 weeks. You will undertake a guided work placement at a host organisation. This is a Pass/Fail module and so does not contribute to classification. When taken and passed, however, the Placement Year is recognised in your transcript as a 120 credit Work Placement Module and on your degree certificate in the format – “Degree title (with Work Placement Year)”. The learning and teaching on your placement will be recorded in the work placement agreement signed by the placement provider, the student, and the University.

Note: Subject to placement clearance; this is a competitive process and a place on the module cannot be guaranteed.

More information

AD5010 -

Humanities Study Abroad Year (Optional,120 Credits)

The Study Abroad Year module is a full year 120 credit module which is available on degree courses which include a study abroad year which is taken as an additional year of study at level 5 and before level 6. You will undertake a year abroad at a partner university equivalent to 120 UK credits. This gives you access to modules from your discipline taught in a different learning culture and so broadens your overall experience of learning. The course of study abroad will be dependent on the partner and will be recorded for an individual student on the learning agreement signed by the host University, the student, and the home University (Northumbria). Your study abroad year will be assessed on a pass/fail basis. It will not count towards your final degree classification but, if you pass, it is recognised in your transcript as a 120 credit Study Abroad Module and on your degree certificate in the format – “Degree title (with Study Abroad Year)”.

Note: Subject to placement clearance; this is a competitive process and a place on the module cannot be guaranteed.

More information

AM6005 -

Red, White and Green: The American Environment Through Time (Optional,20 Credits)

The US is a paradox when it comes to nature: it is both the country that invented the national park concept and the biggest carbon dioxide emitter historically; it was the first country to celebrate Earth Day in 1970, but it is also where the hyper consumerist lifestyle first emerged; it is the birthplace of some of the oldest and most important environmental NGOs and of climate denial. How can we make sense of the US and its relationship to nature? Are Americans doomed to destroy the natural wonders of their nation? Can we envision a red, white and green nation that would put science and technology at the service of sustainability and environmental justice?

The module will answer these questions by examining the US’ complicated relationship to nature chronologically. In doing so, we will re-examine and challenge conventional narratives of US history by integrating the role of nature as a historical actor in its own right. Examples of themes covered include: nature and conquest; Native American environments; nature and technology; the wilderness myth; animals in US history; environmental disasters; urban nature; the rise of environmentalism; environmental justice and environmental racism; waste and pollution; toxicities, etc.

The module will approach these themes using the tools of the environmental humanities. Combining historical, visual and literary analysis with insights from ecology and other ‘hard’ sciences, we will achieve a thorough understanding of environmental phenomena in their full complexity.

More information

HI6004 -

The African American Freedom Struggle Since 1945 (Optional,20 Credits)

In this seminar-based module you will study the roots, trajectory, and legacies of the African American Freedom Struggle since 1945. Although the primary focus will be on the movement for racial justice in the US South between roughly 1954 and 1968, that history will be placed in longer chronological and broader national and international contexts. More specifically you will study the grass-roots activities of African Americans engaged in various forms of resistance and protest alongside the histories of the major civil rights groups – the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE). You will interrogate their tactics, examine their often fraught relationships with each other, and assess their achievements and failures in the face of widespread resistance to racial change. You will examine the contributions of the extraordinary ordinary people at the heart of the struggle, as well as those of nationally prominent leaders such as Martin Luther King. In this module you will also analyse the relationship between the civil rights movement and the federal government, address the role of the media and popular culture in shaping both the history and popular understandings of the post-war Freedom Struggle, and examine the international coordinates and impact of the struggles.

More information

HI6007 -

Civil War and Reconstruction (Optional,20 Credits)

You will learn about the causes, events, and results of the U.S. Civil War, a war which took over 620,000 lives; the bloodiest in American history. The Civil War and its aftermath are considered the dividing line between early and modern US history. The War ended the South’s dominance of American politics. It also led to three major constitutional amendments which ended slavery, defined American citizenship, and provided for African American votes respectively which still have implications in American life in the 21st century. The course begins in 1850 by looking at American sectionalism and how and why that caused the founding of the Republican party and the eventual secession of eleven southern states. It then examines the military aspects of the war and explores its social, political, economic, and diplomatic effects. The end of the term will be spent on the political and social aspects of the post-War period known as ‘Reconstruction.’ It will explain how American national identity became redefined during this tumultuous time, especially in popular memory around public commemorations, art, literature and film. You will also analyse the controversial historiography of this period throughout the semester.

More information

HI6010 -

Women, Crime and Subversion in Early Modern Europe (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module you will learn how different scholars have conceptualised and written about women, crime and subversion from 1400 to 1800. You will assess and analyse why and how tensions in the early modern period meant that authorities across Europe directed their attention upon women in specific ways. The influence of the Protestant reformation is examined in terms of its impact upon female behaviour. Female criminality and subversive behaviour will be examined through a variety of theoretical and methodological approaches, including feminist and gender theories. Key concepts at the fore of this module include witchcraft, petty treason, infanticide, female piracy, prostitution, adultery and fornication, lesbianism, the crime of cross-dressing, and women’s strategies in European court systems. You will move beyond areas classified as criminal to behaviour considered as subversive and deviant, such as domestic disorder. You will utilize a wide range of primary sources including court records, the Old Bailey legal records, assize court records and female testimonies from across Europe which will equip you to think critically about academic literature, primary sources and historical interpretation.

More information

HI6022 -

Joint Honours Dissertation (Optional,40 Credits)

The dissertation gives you the opportunity to work on a sustained piece of research of your own (guided) choice and to present that research in an organised and coherent form in a major piece of writing. The module will teach you how to function as an independent researcher, learner and writer. The dissertation represents the culmination of your studies as a Joint Honours student. You will apply the skills developed in your earlier studies to a discrete body of primary sources, working upon a clearly defined topic. In designing and implementing your research project, you will draw on insights and approaches from both of the disciplines that from part of your degree. The dissertation will develop your research skills and allow you to work independently, drawing on the advice and guidance of a designated supervisor.

More information

HI6025 -

Northern Ireland: The 'Troubles' and the Search for Peace (Optional,20 Credits)

You will learn about the origins, evolution and dynamics of one of Europe’s most recent – and deadly – intra-state conflicts. The ‘Troubles’ in Northern Ireland, 1968-98, was marked by their persistence and seeming intractability. With the paramilitary ceasefires in the 1990s, a new era opened; but difficulties remain in moving from a mere absence of violence to a genuine peace. You will examine the dynamics of violence and its impact on the politics and culture of Northern Ireland over a fifty year period, and the significant challenges posed to peace since the Good Friday Agreement of 1998.

More information

HI6027 -

Barricades and Boulevards: Revolution, Culture, and Urban Life in Nineteenth-century Paris (Optional,20 Credits)

This module examines the political, social and cultural history of Paris between 1815 and 1900. You will study different aspects of the history of nineteenth-century Paris – revolution, urban development, popular culture, and artistic life – through a range of primary sources, including contemporary artistic and literary representations of the city. You will assess and analyse the relationship between the city of Paris and political change during this period, with a particular focus on urban insurrection and revolution. You will also explore artistic movements such as Romanticism and Impressionism, as well as the rise of leisure and consumer culture and the urban development of the city, especially during the Second Empire (1852-1870). Throughout the module, you will investigate wider historical debates about urbanisation and the growth of the nineteenth-century European city. In looking at the history of nineteenth-century Paris – the ‘capital of the nineteenth century’, as the German theorist Walter Benjamin described it – from a range of perspectives, this module will enhance your knowledge and understanding of cultural and social approaches to history, and develop your ability to use interdisciplinary methodologies in your study of the past.

More information

HI6031 -

Recording the Past: Making Your Own History Documentary (Optional,20 Credits)

This module will appeal to anyone interested in telling stories. It will help you think about how your existing historical skills can be applied beyond university, while equipping you with experience of project management, team building, and working with a range of non-university stakeholders. This module gives students the opportunity to make their own short audio documentary. Students pitch, script, record, and edit their own documentaries using audio equipment and free, open-source, cross-platform audio software. Students will be given a broad theme (such as the 1970s and the Northeast of England) and will then generate a proposal and ‘pitch’ this to the class. Following selection, groups will then work on developing a script and identifying interviewees. Teams will produce their documentaries by dividing up the production responsibilities, so that students gain not only experience of teamwork but also of making a specific contribution to the project. Across the semester, the class will progress through the stages of pre- and post-production together week-by-week. Portable recording equipment will be made available and students will be (i) instructed on using industry-standard audio equipment; (ii) classes on ethics and oral history techniques; (ii) training on how to use editing software. At the same time, the class will both engage with relevant literature and listen to a range of audio documentary in order to better understand creative and production issues. The emphasis in this module will be both on the finished documentary but also on the process involved and the skills acquired along the way.

[250] words]

More information

HI6032 -

Men of War: Masculinities and Warfare in Britain 1914 -1945 (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module, you will explore the British male experiences of the First and Second World Wars, primarily through the lens of gender and masculinities. The module will examine the male experience in the broadest sense, looking not only at the experience of training, fighting and dying for Britain but also the experiences of various types of civilian men including those excluded from military service, civilian male workers and civil defence volunteers. The module will also examine the after effects of warfare by considering the experiences of those men who returned from war mentally and physically damaged as well as exploring the cultural legacies of the two world wars in Britain. This is a cutting-edge area of historical research. Therefore, you will be engaging with a growing and developing set of historical debates and ideas. Moreover, you will deal with a wide variety of primary materials including state propaganda, film, radio broadcasts, oral testimony, diaries, memoirs and archival material. This will equip you to think critically about both historiography and primary sources.

More information

HI6037 -

Environmental disaster in modern Britain (Optional,20 Credits)

Sometimes it can seem that concern about climate change and the broader environmental crisis is a recent phenomenon whose effects are largely felt in other parts of the world. This module challenges these assumptions. You will learn about the origins of these concerns in their British context through five environmental disasters that shaped Britain after the Second World War. They are the devastating east coast floods of 1953, the collapse of the spoil heap onto a school at Aberfan in Wales in 1966, the wrecking of the Torrey Canyon, an oil tanker, off the Cornish coast in 1967, the near-extinction of birds of prey as a consequence chemical pesticides in the 1950s and 60s, and the hurricane that caused widespread destruction to woods and forests in 1987. You will spend two weeks on each of these case studies. The first week will focus on the event itself and its human and non-human causes and costs. The second week will focus on the event’s long-term political, social, and cultural consequences. Among the questions you’ll consider are: How did public opinion and the media respond to these disasters? What short and long-term effects did they have on government policy? In what ways did these disasters catalyse the development of the modern environmental movement? How has our understanding of what constitutes a natural disaster changed over time? You will learn about the historical development of theories of climate change and you will be able to contextualise historically the environmental crisis that is shaping political culture today and develop a greater understanding of why it is so difficult to agree on possible solutions.

More information

HI6041 -

Russia Between Democracy and Dictatorship: Gorbachev to Putin, 1985-2008 (Optional,20 Credits)

This module explores a tumultuous period in Russian history when the pendulum swung from dictatorship towards increasing democracy and back again. Relatively freer politics and loosening of controls over the media were accompanied by economic dislocation and social instability under Gorbachev and Yeltsin, while conversely, the Putin era saw improved economic performance, stability and some restoration of order alongside the return of a creeping authoritarianism in politics and tighter censorship. Students will investigate why the Soviet regime, which ten years previously had seemed destined to last indefinitely, was so rapidly undermined. We will examine the political struggle that accompanied perestroika, as well as how official Soviet ideology unravelled under the impact of glasnost’ and the opening of public debate. The module considers Gorbachev’s government’s attempt to find economic solutions to stagnation and the disastrous effects of the collapse of faith in the command economy. Also, particular attention is paid to the role that nationalist movements in the Baltic, Ukraine, Transcaucasia and Central Asia played in tearing the Soviet system apart. The module then turns to Russia’s turbulent post-Soviet transition, the ‘Wild Years’, a dangerous and exciting period where, after the USSR legally ceased to exist on 31 December 1991, the new state, the Russian Federation, set off on the road to democracy and a market economy without any clear conception of how to complete such a transformation in the world’s largest country. As well as looking at Russia’s new political system, we will examine the economic reforms introduced as the country underwent ‘shock therapy’ to create a market economy, involving mass privatization, financial crisis, the rise of oligarchs. We will consider the devastating social impact of these policies, as life expectancy plummeted, birth rates collapsed and crime exploded. Students will assess how in these conditions Vladimir Putin, assumed power and explore how his presidency saw economic upswing and improvement in living standards but also a creeping authoritarianism in politics and media controls. Finally, we will investigate Putin’s cultivation of an aggressive, socially conservative Russian nationalism which grew from the shame and international humiliation derived from the catastrophic transition of the former superpower.

More information

HI6042 -

How to Kill a King: Monarchies in Crisis, 1547-1689 (Optional,20 Credits)

Being an early modern king could be dangerous. Over the course of the period, monarchs were executed, assassinated, and deposed. While Mary Queen of Scots and Charles I lost their heads, boy-king Louis XIV pretended to be asleep as the angry Parisian mob entered his bedroom during the Fronde and James I narrowly escaped being blown up by the Gunpowder Plot. Even if not resolved in loss of life or deposition, monarchical crises that gripped early modern Europe posed a significant challenge to royal authority and legitimacy. These moments of crisis were connected to the changing nature of royal power, redefined in clashes between monarchs and their subjects exacerbated by the Reformation, dynastic politics, the changing relationship between monarchs and nobles, the emerging concept of the state and new ideas about how it should be governed. Over the course of this module you will examine monarchical crises through case studies including the executions of Jane Grey and Mary Stuart, assassinations of Henri III and Henri IV, the English Civil War and Glorious Revolution, the Fronde, and the Defenestration of Prague and deposition of the Winter King, Frederick V. We will consider the causes, outcomes, and representations of these crises through a variety of sources, including pamphlets, chronicles, letters, and images. We will also consider the representation of these events in the modern media such as film, television, and fiction writing.

More information

HI6047 -

Dissertation with Public History (Optional,40 Credits)

In this module, you will be provided with the skills to complete a written dissertation and a public-facing output on a topic that you will agree with your supervisors. The dissertation with public history represents an opportunity to apply the skills you have acquired at earlier levels, as well as a chance to develop new skills, both theoretical and practical, associated with public history. In Semester One you will produce the written piece of work. This written piece, which can take the form of a ‘short dissertation’ or ‘extended essay’, may be an analysis of a discrete body of primary sources, a discussion of historiographical controversy, or an intervention in a current debate about the public understanding of the past. In Semester Two you will work with your supervisors to produce a public output (the ‘knowledge exchange’ component), such as a digital exhibition or public history podcast, based on your research for the short dissertation/extended essay. The knowledge exchange aspect may include work with an external partner. The ‘Dissertation with public history’ is an exercise in research and public engagement and is intended to develop your research and communication skills, as well as your ability to work independently. Topics will be supervised by two appropriate tutors, one with subject-specific knowledge, the second with knowledge exchange experience.

More information

HI6048 -

From the Campus to the Streets: Student Activism and Youth Movements since 1900 (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module, we will consider how young people have responded to, and in some cases shaped, major episodes and developments in modern and contemporary history. In examining youth action, we will cover a variety of movements and campaigns. For example, we will discuss the role of communist and fascist youth organisations in the 1920s and 1930s as well as the involvement of students in anti-colonial and anti-racist struggles. Moreover, we will investigate youth politics in the Cold War, the impact of student protests in the 1960s as well as young people’s efforts to address issues such as gender equality or the fate of the environment.

The scope of the module is international, with examples that cover cases from Europe (France, Germany, Russia), Africa (Ghana, South Africa), Asia (China, Japan) and the Americas (Brazil, Mexico, the United States). We will pay particular attention to global aspirations and connections, as we will trace how young activists sought to build ties across national borders. Such efforts will also allow us to consider how various movements imagined and pursued the quest for a different world and a better future.

More information

HI6049 -

Modern India: Making the World’s Biggest Democracy (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module you will learn how the world’s biggest democracy came into being, starting with the successful struggle for independence and going up to the 21st century. You will develop a broad understanding of India’s postcolonial politics, culture, economy and society. Using a diverse range of materials, you will analyse how the British Empire’s ‘Jewel in the Crown’ established itself as a postcolonial democratic republic amidst numerous obstacles, tensions and conflicts.

The first half of the module introduces you to the contemporary history of India through five episodes, which help us to understand key issues like decolonisation, secularism, corruption and liberalisation. The second half of the module considers six themes, exploring how these tell us different things about India in the second-half of the 20th century. Chronologically, the module begins with anti-colonial nationalism of Mahatma Gandhi and others, from around the 1930s onwards. The module then covers almost the entire period of independent India, from the creation of the republic and partition of the subcontinent in 1947, right up to 2019 – the year in which the current Hindu nationalist BJP government won a second consecutive landslide victory, marking for many the demise of India as a secular, multicultural democracy.

The second half of the module covers six major themes: Gender, Caste, Migration, Conflict, Communalism, and Environment. Exploring the recent history of India through these different lenses provides new angles for understanding the ‘world’s largest democracy’ from a range of diverse perspectives.

More information

HI6050 -

From Grand Tours to Dirty Weekends: Travellers and Tourists in Britain, Ireland and Beyond (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module you will discover how the histories of travel and tourism are deeply connected to the making of modern Britain and Ireland. You will explore the history of tourism from its eighteenth-century origins, when seaside towns and spas welcomed their first visitors and British and Irish aristocrats embarked on Grand Tours of Europe. You will learn how British and Irish landscapes were made iconic by Romantic writers, and how the development of steamships, railways, roads, bicycles, and motor travel revolutionised the way in which journeys were experienced and narrated.

You will discover how the royal tourism of Queen Victoria and her descendants helped strengthen the political union of the United Kingdom, and how the tourism industry forged cross-border links, promoted cooperation, and encouraged dialogue between Northern Ireland and the Irish Free State after the Partition of Ireland in 1921. You will also learn how tourism was connected to the expansion of the British Empire, as travellers on Thomas Cook’s tours followed missionaries, traders, and empire builders to the Middle East, Africa, and India. You will consider how Black British travellers have experienced city space and the countryside in different ways to their white counterparts, and the photography of Ingrid Pollard will prompt you to think about the relationship between race and national identity in Britain today.

You will learn about key concepts and debates in the history of tourism, such as mobility, authenticity, landscape and place, gender, post-colonialism, the interaction of ‘hosts’ and ‘guests’, and the growing importance of travel as part of individual and national identity. You will engage with a wide variety of primary source material, from personal travel accounts, guidebooks, and timetables to the rich visual and material culture of postcards, illustrations, paintings, photographs, and poster artwork.

More information

IR6001 -

Active Citizens (Optional,20 Credits)

Questions about the concept of crisis and the nature of crisis provide the starting point for this module. It encourages you to build upon the critical understanding of democracy and governance that you gained in Theories and Practices of Democracy at level 5 and Democrats and Dictators at level 4, but approaches the topic from a different perspective. Against this background, you will explore the range of different ways that citizens, particularly as part of organisations and global social movements seek to influence and, in some cases, challenge the state and/or market. In this respect, the concept of civil society and the dynamics of state, market and civil society relationship are central to this module. Using case studies, the module will consider themes such as anti-globalisation and anti-capitalist movements; the politics of pressure, lobbying and campaigning; think tanks; wealth, power and philanthropy; and the politics of “everyday activism” and volunteering.

More information

IR6002 -

Critical Security (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module I will critically engage with the concept of security. I will especially be introduced to traditional and non-traditional concepts of security. This includes an engagement with traditional notions of security (i.e. state security) and the emergence and increasing political importance of non-traditional security (including, but not limited to, human security, comprehensive security, environmental security, food security, energy security, water security). I will critically evaluate the utility of traditional and non-traditional notions of security. Within the non-traditional security complex, I will examine the different types of security, including their differences and similarities, their usefulness, and through case studies and I will engage with their real-life application and global political relevance.

More information

IR6004 -

Genocide (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module I will analyse how ideas of genocide have evolved throughout the twentieth century. I will be encouraged to consider the political and legal consequences of genocides, and to engage with the socio/cultural/ethno/economic/religious explanations that some key thinkers have forwarded as being causal factors of genocide. I will also examine how policymakers have grappled with the problem of preventing and stopping genocides once they have begun.

More information

IR6005 -

Media Power and Propaganda (Optional,20 Credits)

Most people find out about politics, and what is going on in the wider world, through the media. It is therefore critical to understand how the media functions in contemporary society. This module focuses upon the debate about the role of the media in liberal democracies: is it an independent check on the exercise of power or an instrument by which the powerful manipulate the masses? What is the impact of the media upon individuals: does it inform us or brainwash us? How are the Internet and other new technologies affecting individual’s ability to access alternative sources of information to the established media? What implications do these new media have for states that seek to direct, if not control, the public’s access to information? What role, if any, should propaganda play in a liberal democracy? Using concepts, such as power, and theories of media effects, media performance and interpersonal communication, students will be encouraged to engage with these fundamental questions.

More information

IR6007 -

Politics of Oil and Global Warming (Optional,20 Credits)

Two of the most important problems facing humanity are climate change and energy security. In terms of solutions, a number of very different approaches have been suggested that range from the technological to the radical; how we address and solve these problems is therefore political. This module highlights how energy and resource intensive the average Western way of life is and what this means for climate change and energy security; explores the debate about peak oil (i.e. the point at which cheap and easily accessible oil starts to run out) and considers its political implications; investigates how Western foreign policy has been influenced by the desire to access, if not control, energy sources (e.g. Middle Eastern oil); evaluates the debate about climate change and how politicians have, and could, respond; and assesses the debate about energy policy and how politicians have, and could, respond to the twin demands of tackling global warming while ‘keeping the lights on’.

More information

IR6008 -

Terrorism (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module I will analyse how ideas of terrorism have evolved throughout the twentieth century. This module offers me an opportunity to study in some depth the modern terrorism phenomenon and the methods currently being undertaken to counter it. I will focus essentially on two questions: what, exactly, is terrorism and what can be done about it?

More information

IR6010 -

War Games- Negotiating Security through Simulations (Optional,20 Credits)

‘War Games’ is a module aimed at training students in negotiation techniques through the usage of simulation games. The module has general and specific objectives. At the general level, it aims to provide students with key skills in international negotiations, applied to international organisations’ decision making (including the European Union and the United Nations). It also aims at providing students with a greater knowledge of international organisations’ policies and politics. The last general objective is to allow students to experience negotiation processes through real feel simulations, which will underline the challenges associated with international diplomacy and decision-making. Where the specific objectives are concerned, this module is very much focused on employability and on developing students’ skills for the challenges to the job market. War Games is directly linked to the students’ learning journey through the International Relations and Politics degree and rests on the shoulders of the ‘Global Governance’ and ‘International Conflict and Cooperation’ modules.

More information

IR6011 -

Decolonial Politics (Optional,20 Credits)

This module will give students a theoretical and empirical understanding of decolonial politics. The first part of the module will cover key schools of thought in decolonial theory and the historical context of the five hundred years of European colonialism on which they draw. The second part of the module will apply decolonial theories and concepts to a number of contemporary issues and topics, including humans’ relationship to nature and the climate emergency, indigenous sovereignty, decolonial research methodologies, the case for reparations, and debates around decolonising higher education itself. Students will be encouraged to think and learn through objects and museum exhibits alongside standard, text-based resources, and this aspect of the module is fully integrated into the form of assessment.

More information

YC5001 -

Academic Language Skills for Humanities and Social Sciences (Core – for International and EU students only,0 Credits)

Academic skills when studying away from your home country can differ due to cultural and language differences in teaching and assessment practices. This module is designed to support your transition in the use and practice of technical language and subject specific skills around assessments and teaching provision in your chosen subject. The overall aim of this module is to develop your abilities to read and study effectively for academic purposes; to develop your skills in analysing and using source material in seminars and academic writing and to develop your use and application of language and communications skills to a higher level.

The topics you will cover on the module include:

• Understanding assignment briefs and exam questions.
• Developing academic writing skills, including citation, paraphrasing, and summarising.
• Practising ‘critical reading’ and ‘critical writing’
• Planning and structuring academic assignments (e.g. essays, reports and presentations).
• Avoiding academic misconduct and gaining credit by using academic sources and referencing effectively.
• Listening skills for lectures.
• Speaking in seminar presentations.
• Presenting your ideas
• Giving discipline-related academic presentations, experiencing peer observation, and receiving formative feedback.
• Speed reading techniques.
• Developing self-reflection skills.

More information

Modules

Module information is indicative and is reviewed annually therefore may be subject to change. Applicants will be informed if there are any changes.

HI4003 -

The Making of Contemporary Europe (Core,20 Credits)

This module will enable you to learn about the emergence of contemporary Europe by surveying the continent’s history from the 18th century to the present. Its thematic overview of the history of Europe and its relationship with the non-European world, will provide you with an introductory knowledge and understanding of global developments. It covers key issues in the social, economic and political transformation of Europe during this period, dwelling on events in Britain and Europe where necessary, but always maintaining an international perspective. You will be encouraged to think in terms of European development as a whole, and not in terms of discrete national histories, and to make comparisons between different parts of the continent, often on a regional rather than a national basis. Many of the important events which are often seen to be rooted in a particular national considerations are nevertheless are also part of broader contexts which transcend national boundaries. For example, the collapse of the old aristocratic order, profound long-term upheavals in the international economy, the spread of communist ideology, and the rise of fascism, to name but a few.

More information

HI4006 -

Late Medieval and Early Modern Europe 1200-1720 (Core,20 Credits)

You will be introduced to the history of late medieval and early modern Europe from 1200 to 1720, and to a variety of topics including the interaction between Jews, Muslims, and Christians, the growing power of the monarchies of England, France, and Spain, and the development of print culture. You will engage with broader themes in medieval and early modern history, such as rural and urban society, the economy, religion, gender, culture, warfare and state formation, and voyages of discovery, and follow these comparatively across period and place. You will also learn about the different types of source material used by historians of this period of European history, such as medieval court records, state documents, popular literature, and visual images.

More information

HI4007 -

Making History (Core,20 Credits)

History is not only characterised by knowledge and understanding of past developments, but also by a broad range of skills and methods that are directly applicable to academic research. Within this wider context, this module will give you a firm grounding in the skills and methods needed for the study of history, introducing you to a range of source materials from a broad chronological spectrum. In so doing, the module explores traditions in criticism and explains the ways in which sources can be read and utilised. The module is structured along five ‘core skills’ blocks (Writing History, Handling Sources, Approaches to History, Researching & Interpreting History, and Feedback and Careers) which progress logically from each other and provide students with ample opportunities to engage with how historians make history. The first block introduces you to how to study and write history through an analysis of the historian’s key skills. The block also develops skills in three areas: (1) writing history; (2) reading history (3) researching history. The second block examines key approaches to historical sources. In addition to allowing you to demonstrate the skills gained in block one, the block concentrates on how to find primary sources, how to read them, and how to deploy them in written work. Block three considers key conceptual approaches to the past, including race, class and gender. Block four draws the skills you have learnt in a concentrated study of a single secondary source book. . The final block introduces you to careers in and beyond History, and asks you to reflect on your progress over the year. You will develop a critical capacity to scrutinize sources and interpretations of the past.

More information

IR4002 -

Democrats and Dictators (Core,20 Credits)

How can we distinguish between democratic and non-democratic regimes? How does the nature of the political system affect the dynamics of rule, representation, accountability and participation in democratic regimes? Similarly, how can we differentiate between non-democratic regimes and how do we explain their existence? How and why do some countries seek to democratise? Why do these efforts succeed in some cases but fail in others? These are the core questions that you will consider on this module, which is organised around four main topics: the conceptualisation of democratic and non-democratic regimes; political systems in democratic countries; the categorisation and governance of non-democratic regimes, and democratisation, paying attention to the role of domestic and international forces. Each of these topics is further underpinned by the themes of rule, representation, accountability and participation, which you will also explore in modules at levels 5 and 6.

More information

IR4003 -

International Conflict and Cooperation (Core,20 Credits)

In this module I will engage with key concepts and theories of International Relations and learn essential academic skills. I will learn about the three standard schools of International Relations thought, i.e. Liberalism, Realism and Marxism, and begin using them to understand states and state practice, as well as the ordering of the international. In this module I will learn to question common sense beliefs about what states are and the status of the powerful (e.g. US, UK) by engaging with academic literature and case studies. Key concepts will include sovereignty, hegemony, war, peace, security etc.

More information

IR4006 -

Thinking Politically (Core,20 Credits)

The aim of the module is to introduce students to the main thinkers, ideas and debates within political philosophy and political theory. The module differentiates between the different branches of politics (i.e. political economy, political philosophy and theory, and political science) before examining the debates about human nature; the nature of society without government; the arguments for and against democracy; justifying the existence of the state and state rule; liberty; equality; how to produce and distribute the goods and services that society needs and desires; and social justice. Furthermore, it links these debates – and the ideas and theories that inform them – to a range of contemporary political ideologies (e.g. conservatism, liberalism, feminism, etc.) and assesses the impact of these upon politics and society more generally.

More information

YC5001 -

Academic Language Skills for Humanities and Social Sciences (Core – for International and EU students only,0 Credits)

Academic skills when studying away from your home country can differ due to cultural and language differences in teaching and assessment practices. This module is designed to support your transition in the use and practice of technical language and subject specific skills around assessments and teaching provision in your chosen subject. The overall aim of this module is to develop your abilities to read and study effectively for academic purposes; to develop your skills in analysing and using source material in seminars and academic writing and to develop your use and application of language and communications skills to a higher level.

The topics you will cover on the module include:

• Understanding assignment briefs and exam questions.
• Developing academic writing skills, including citation, paraphrasing, and summarising.
• Practising ‘critical reading’ and ‘critical writing’
• Planning and structuring academic assignments (e.g. essays, reports and presentations).
• Avoiding academic misconduct and gaining credit by using academic sources and referencing effectively.
• Listening skills for lectures.
• Speaking in seminar presentations.
• Presenting your ideas
• Giving discipline-related academic presentations, experiencing peer observation, and receiving formative feedback.
• Speed reading techniques.
• Developing self-reflection skills.

More information

AD5011 -

Humanities Study Abroad (60 credit) (Optional,60 Credits)

The Study Abroad module is a semester based 60 credit module which is available on degree courses which facilitate study abroad within the programme. You will undertake a semester abroad at a partner university equivalent to 60 UK credits. This gives you access to modules from your discipline taught in a different learning culture and so broadens your overall experience of learning. The course of study abroad will be constructed to meet the learning outcomes for the programme for the semester in question, dependent on suitable modules from the partner and will be recorded for an individual student on the learning agreement signed by the host University, the student, and the home University (Northumbria). The module will be assessed by conversion of graded marks from the host University and, where appropriate, complementary activities as agreed between the student and module tutor.

Learning outcomes on the year-long modules on which the student is unable to attend the home institution must be met at the host institution, and marks from the host are incorporated into the module as part of the overall assessment.

More information

HI5004 -

Affluence and Anxiety: The US from 1920 to 1960 (Optional,20 Credits)

Historians and other researchers have often used the terms of ‘affluence’ and ‘anxiety’ to describe US history and culture from 1920 to 1960. According to a traditional narrative, Americans enjoyed unprecedented ‘affluence’ in the 1920s and in the postwar period, while experiencing great ‘anxiety’ in the context of the Cold War. While useful, these narratives do not fully account for the complexity of this period. In this module, we will ask questions such as: Who took advantage of affluence (pre- and post-WW2)? Who was excluded from it and how? How did American conceptions of affluence fundamentally shape our current climate crisis? Beyond Cold War anxieties, what were Americans, in their diversity, worried about? How did foreign policy anxieties reveal themselves at home? And how did racial and gender anxieties shape US politics and culture?

With these questions in mind, we will assess and analyse major developments and events of the period, including, but not limited to: the roaring 1920s, the Great Depression, the Dust Bowl, the New Deal, World War II, the Cold War, the postwar “economic miracle,” the suburban boom, and the beginnings of the Civil Rights Movement. By narrowing our focus on four crucial decades of the 20th century, we will be able to look at these events from various angles. In accordance with recent developments in the field, we will pay particular attention to historiographical interpretations that emphasize race, gender, sexuality, and class, as well as the environment. This will mean, for instance, that you will not only learn about the anti-communist ‘Red Scare’ of the 1950s, but also about the lesser known ‘Lavender Scare’ that targeted gay men and women working for the US government. Similarly, we will study Rosa Parks’ efforts to desegregate the buses in 1950s Birmingham, but we will also pay attention to ordinary actors of the Civil Rights Movement, such as the African-American youths who desegregated swimming pools and amusement parks.

Primary and secondary source readings, along with classroom activities, will help you to critically engage this key era of American development and develop the interpretive skills of a historian.

More information

HI5005 -

America in the 1960s (Optional,20 Credits)

This module offers you the opportunity to study the domestic social, cultural, political, and economic history of the United States during the “long 1960s” (roughly 1956-1974). Interdisciplinary in approach the module allows you to examine a range of secondary and primary sources – including television, literature, music, film and visual culture – that illuminate the history and culture of the US during this period. The module also encourages you to consider the perils and advantages of dealing with the 1960s as a discrete historical period, involves you in some of the most important scholarly debates in the field, and asks you to consider how the decade has been remembered and misremembered in popular consciousness by exploring later cultural representations and political uses of the 1960s. Key topics include the Cold War and Vietnam; consumerism; the civil rights and black power movements; national and local politics; science, technology and the environment; youth culture; gender and sexuality; identity politics; regionalism; the New Left and the Counterculture; conservatism and the New Right; mass media and popular music.

More information

HI5009 -

Your Graduate Future (Optional,20 Credits)

This module aims to ensure that you will be equipped with employability-related skills appropriate to graduates of History and associated degrees. The module adapts to your interests, whether you choose to pursue postgraduate study, enter the job market seeking graduate level employment, or establish your own enterprise. One of the purposes of Your Graduate Future is to raise your awareness of the wide range of possibilities, and to equip you with the knowledge, the skills and the experiences that may enable you to respond effectively to future opportunities. This module now includes a “Standard Pathway” and a “Law Pathway”, delivered in collaboration with Northumbria School of Law. For the Standard Pathway, in semester 1 you will attend lectures and participate in seminars that will present the intricacies of contemporary job seeking in different sectors. These will include guest lectures. You will then work with a group of your peers on an outward-looking project that will enable you to display your specific skills, to establish and nurture internal and external contacts, and to express your interests in a public outcome of your choice. In semester 2, you will develop your CV and further explore your evolving skillsets by means of engaging on your choice of work experience, volunteering, enterprise planning or a placement abroad. These will take the shape of supported independent activities. Assessment consists of a group project with a public outcome, an individual report reflecting on the scholarly basis of your project and your assessment of the process, and a placement report (at the end of semester 2). Students in the Law Pathway will also attend the lectures, and will follow a bespoke schedule of workshops, seminars, a field visit to The National Archives in London including archival training and a private tour of the archives. They will also undergo two specialised training sessions in Newcastle. Students in both pathways will follow the same assessment pattern, but those in the Law Pathway will work alongside students from the Law School to investigate a historical legal case using original archival material from The National Archives and Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums, and their group project will see them produce public facing history outputs for these external clients, including exhibitions, website blogs, and contributions to their official social media channels. In Semester 2, the ‘Placement’ element will work with Law students to design and stage a reconstruction of the trial itself.

More information

HI5014 -

From Reconstruction to Reunification: Europe, 1945-1991 (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module you will learn about the problems that Europe faced at the end of the Second World War and the factors that led to the economic boom of the post-war years. These developments will be placed in the context of the struggle between the rival socio-political ideologies of liberalism and communism and the emergence of new social movements in Europe between 1945 and 1991. The module deals with the era of extended military and political confrontation between the main rival socio-political systems which defeated fascism and the eruption onto the world stage of 'new social forces' such as feminism and Third-World nationalism. It covers the key developments in European politics and society as well as Europe's relationship with the wider world during the period.

More information

HI5022 -

The Holocaust (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module you will learn about the Holocaust in its full global, historical context. You will engage with the major historiographical debates surrounding the Shoah. Crucially, throughout the module, there will be a dual focus on the Holocaust’s perpetrators and its victims. The breadth of this focus ensures that the module will be interdisciplinary and you will learn how to navigate historical, literary and sociological perspectives on the Holocaust and its memory.

More information

HI5033 -

Civilians and the Second World War (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module, you will learn about the civilian experiences of total warfare during the period of the Second World War (bearing in mind that exact dates of conflict and occupation vary from nation to nation). The class will take an international comparative approach, examining civilian experiences not just on the British ‘Home Front’ but also experiences in America, Germany, Japan, the Soviet Union as well the states under enemy occupation. The module will take a thematic rather than nation based approach to this area of study. Topics including bombardment, childhood, gender, work and labour, domestic life, internment, occupation, collaboration and resistance will all be explored internationally and comparatively. You will engage with a broad range of historical debates and concepts as well as engaging with a wide variety of primary materials including state propaganda, film, radio broadcasts, oral testimony, diaries, memoirs and archival material. This will equip you to think critically about both historiography and primary sources.

More information

HI5034 -

Setting America Right: Conservatism in the United States, 1933 - 2016 (Optional,20 Credits)

This module will explore the history of conservatism in the United States of America from the 1930s to the present day. Beginning with opposition to Franklin Roosevelt and the New Deal, this module will trace the evolution of American conservatism through the era of Republican presidents Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan, and all the way up to the emergence of Donald Trump and the ‘alt-right’. At the heart of this module is a simple question: did the U.S. ‘turn right’ during the twentieth century? In answering that question, you will grapple with the fundamental issue of what it means to be a ‘conservative’ in America and how that label has been used and fought over in different eras and contexts.

You will learn about developments in high politics and at the grassroots, and gain an understanding of conservative movements both within and without the Republican Party. As well as learning about crucial events in recent U.S. political history (such as Barry Goldwater’s transformational 1964 presidential campaign), you will learn about the ways that conservatives revolutionised the nation’s political culture, pioneering innovative electoral techniques such as direct mail and constructing formidable conservative media outlets like Fox News. The module is organised in a broadly chronological way, but you will also explore key themes and movements that span decades, such as the religious right, anti-feminism, and ‘colour-blind’ conservatism.

More information

HI5035 -

Divisive Pasts: Legacies of Conflict and Oppression in the 20th and 21st Centuries (Optional,20 Credits)

This module concerns the ongoing force and power of history: how the past shapes the politics of the present and is deployed in contemporary political conflicts and challenges. It fuses history with politics and culture and will require you to think expansively about differing ways that nation-states negotiate a troubled and/or violent past. The module covers five case studies of countries which have dealt in differing ways with the legacy of conflict: modern South Africa (1994-), post-Franco Spain (1975-), Northern Ireland since the Good Friday Agreement (1998-), post-Second World War Germany (1945-), and Brazil since the end of the military dictatorship (1985-).

Each case study receives two weeks’ focus in lectures and seminars, granting the basics in understanding each example and the ways in which the violence and divisions of the past might be overcome (or not). It will help you consider themes of memory and the divergent ways in which history is commemorated or simply ignored. Similarly, you will consider the efficacy and value of ‘Truth Commissions’ – the contribution of an ‘honest broker’ (or outside perspective) – along with the ways in which debates and disputes at the past take place through culture or literature. Overall, this module will develop your interdisciplinary skills in combining history, politics and culture with the ongoing vibrancy of the past; how it can be understood and interpreted differently, and whether the official political sphere helps or hinders in the process.

More information

HI5038 -

Early Modern Monarchies: Power and Representation, 1500-1750 (Optional,20 Credits)

This module will familiarise you with different aspects of monarchical rule in the early modern period. In particular, it will explore the history of royal courts between c. 1500 and 1750, ranging from England to Poland-Lithuania and covering dynasties such as the Valois and Bourbons, Habsburgs, Tudors and Stuarts, Jagiellonians, Vasas and Wettins. We will look at court intrigue, favourites and faction politics, gender, representation and political agency, ceremony, entertainments, fashion and royal palaces, and diplomacy as means of transnational contacts between royal courts. We will study various European concepts – including kingship and queenship, chivalry, divine right, ritual, and patronage – and consider how these were adapted to suit different styles of monarchies and courts. We will also think about the ways in which European royal houses were a connected network of cultural and political exchange.

You will learn about how early modern royal courts accommodated the needs of different political systems, for example absolute, elective, and parliamentary monarchy, while retaining key characteristics of European royal culture. We will tackle questions about representation in early modern politics and the day-to-day life at these centres of power by applying the most recent approaches from social, political and cultural history, including elements of archaeology, art history, gender history, and history of emotions. The module is organised thematically, but we will think about the degree of change between c. 1500 and 1750, as royal courts adapted to dynastic change and adopted emerging trends, such as the Renaissance, the Baroque and the Enlightenment.

More information

HI5040 -

Dictatorship and Development: Central America, 1912-1996 (Optional,20 Credits)

The tiny countries of Central America form a narrow land bridge between the continents of North and South America. For centuries a quiet

backwater, the region gained international importance in the twentieth century, thanks to the United States’ growing interest in its ‘backyard’ to

the south.

In this module, you will explore Central America’s tumultuous twentieth century via a variety of primary sources. You will use US military

archives to explore the US occupation of Nicaragua from 1912 to 1933, and discover how historians have used oral history to rescue

memories of the El Salvadoran massacre of 1932. In the second half of the course, you will look at how ideas about development intersected

with U.S. informal empire in the region, using CIA and State Department documents to uncover the roots of the civil wars which wracked the

isthmus in the 1980s. Finally, you will learn about the controversy surrounding Rigoberta Menchú’s memoir of the Guatemalan civil war, and

consider how historians navigate conflicting documents and imperfect, contested memories to create credible accounts of past events.

More information

HI5042 -

The Making and Breaking of Industrial Britain, 1770-1990 (Optional,20 Credits)

By the 1880s, Britain was a major coal exporter and the largest centre of ship building and repair globally. Its manufacturing productivity dubbed it, ‘the workshop of the world’, and its import and export tonnage was colossal. Yet, a century later, by 1980, Britain rapidly entered post-industrialisation and the collapse of the vast infrastructural networks, mines and machinery which had facilitated its rapid nineteenth-century industrialisation. This module makes sense of this historical discontinuity, contextualising the dramatic and fast-paced making and breaking of Britain’s industries from the viewpoint of the environments which underpinned these rapid changes. You will analyse how Britain utilised its fortunate natural resources, notably navigable rivers and voluminous coal deposits, to become a powerful, influential driver of wider industrialisation internationally. You will analyse environmental drivers of industrialisation in comparison to other key drivers such as Empire, demography, urbanisation, social change, technology and politics. You will evaluate in depth how a closer engagement with key elements of the natural environment enabled the British and its wider empire to develop trade and industry successfully and to invent globally game-changing scientific and engineering innovations, notably George Stephenson’s locomotive (1814). Organised thematically, and introducing you to environmental history, the module focuses on one natural resource each week (rivers; coal; precious metals; steam; salt; animals; wood; chemicals; stone; and oil). Consequently, you will understand in depth how Britain’s industrialisation was underpinned by a closer, rather than a remoter, relationship between humans and the environment, thus reconnecting Britain’s industrial might to its natural environments.

More information

HI5043 -

Rise of the Russian Empire: the Romanovs, 1613-1855 (Optional,20 Credits)

This module examines major themes in the history of tsarist Russia between two major crises. In 1613, the election of the first Romanov tsar, Mikhail, marked the end of Russia’s ‘Time of Troubles’ when the state nearly collapsed. Two and half centuries later, the then mighty Russian Empire was defeated by Britain, France and the Ottoman Empire in the Crimean War of 1853-56. In between these crises, Russia’s tsars acquired considerable power over their population and a vast empire that extended across three continents.
This module considers how the Romanov tsars were able to construct and consolidate autocratic power and how they exercised it. First, we will look at how the Romanov dynasty was established under the ‘boy-tsar’ Mikhail and then grew stronger under his successors in the 17th century. Next, we will turn to the major personalities of Peter the Great and Catherine the Great who, in a drive to ‘modernise’, drew upon western European technology and culture to shape and strengthen their empire. Yet ‘westernization’ also inadvertently undermined the stability of tsarism in the long-term, contributing to the growth of challenges to autocracy. Thus began a debate about Russia’s place in Europe which continues today. We will then consider how the successors of Catherine the Great, the so-called ‘enlightened despot’, dealt with her legacy by pursuing conservatism then ‘enlightened’ reform alternatively. Another major theme of the course is how, why and with what consequences, both domestic and international, the tsars were able to build an enormous empire, the largest country in the world. By the end of the eighteenth century, it extended from Poland and Finland in Europe, across Siberia in northern Asia, to Alaska in north America. The power of the Tsars, arguably, had reached its zenith by the early 19th century, when, despite victory over Napoleon in the first decades, cracks began to show in the social and cultural fabric of the empire. New forms of intellectual and political resistance to autocracy gradually emerged and the economic system of serfdom began to appear unfit to compete with the industrializing countries of Europe, demonstrated by Russia’s defeat in the Crimean War of 1853-56.

More information

HI5044 -

Power and Freedom: West African History, 1850 to 2010 (Optional,20 Credits)

This module is an introduction to the modern history of West Africa from 1850 to 2010. You will learn about major themes in the history of the region from Senegal to Nigeria, and key debates around how historians and others have represented West Africa. The module considers precolonial West African states, how and why the region was incorporated into European empires, and West Africans’ responses to colonial rule. You will assess how European colonial policies towards West Africa varied across time and space, how Africans challenged colonial rule to win independence in the 1950s and 1960s, and the challenges faced by newly self-governing nations. The module studies the vicissitudes of ‘structural adjustment’ in the region during the 1980s, and democratisation in West Africa from the 1990s.

You will explore the history of West Africa from political, social, and cultural perspectives, building an understanding of how politics affected everyday life, and vice versa. The module has a broadly chronological structure. In some weeks seminars focus on political history, while other weeks address aspects of society and culture including music, dress, and urban life.

More information

HI5048 -

Witches, Knights and Plague: Medieval Europe on Film (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module you will learn about how medieval violence is depicted on film (such as Game of Thrones and Gladiator) and how far it accurately reflects or the realities of life in the Middle Ages. It will also explore how twentieth-century governments (including Stalin) have used depictions of medieval warfare for political purposes.
The module moves on to explore how modern films have depicted relations between Muslims and Christians. We will examine movies such as Kingdom of Heaven and Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves to explore how films have stereotyped Muslims to arouse either hostility or sympathy. It will also examine how recent films about the Crusades have dealt with Christian-Muslim relations in the aftermath of 9/11, as well as the ways in which medieval religious intolerance has been represented in films such as The Da Vinci Code and how historians have responded to these depictions.
The final part of the module explores how filmmakers have portrayed gender on film. In particular, women are frequently depicted in highly sexualised ways in films and TV programmes which draw on medieval imagery. We will also explore how modern ideas about medieval women are represented in films about witchcraft (The Black Death and The Seventh Seal), as well as exploring how filmmakers depict medieval women who transcended their gender such as Joan of Arc who led armies into battle (Joan of Arc: The Messenger).

More information

HI5052 -

History/Film: Using Popular Film as Historical Evidence (Optional,20 Credits)

We know you like films, and we know that you like using them as historical evidence. But are you aware that you need a very particular skill set in order to analyse and write about films properly? If you weren’t but are interested in finding out more, and particularly if you are thinking of using film in your final-year dissertation, then this is the module for you.

This team-taught module invites you to consider a variety of popular film genres, with a specific view towards considering their value to the historian, both as sources about the past AND sources from the past. Key genres that we’ll examine include documentaries, historical dramas, biopics, science fiction, and more. The module tutors will provide you with leading-edge theoretical and methodological approaches through which you will learn how to analyse cinema as a historian.

Learning about the ways in which we might dissect a film will provide you with a range of tools that you can bring to bear on the world around you. For example, you will be able to demonstrate how popular film reflects and attempts to shape popular opinion about key political issues of the time, and how the semiotics of film enable us to move beyond simply responding to film’s plot or its cast.

As this suggests, the module requires you to develop additional analytic skills to those that you would wield when analysing textual documents. It will enable you to move beyond issues pertaining to a film’s factual accuracy (or lack thereof) to consider its emotional truths, its ideological standpoints, the ways in which the filmmakers attempt to convey and disguise political messages, and the way in which audiences are able to absorb, reject, or transform these messages as they see fit. Naturally, it will encourage you to consider the complicated relationship between the past, film, history, Film Studies, and the discipline of History itself. It might even do more…

More information

HI5054 -

Field Notes: Politics and Policy Making in Place (Optional,20 Credits)

“Field Notes” will take you out of the classroom to immerse you in the major issues facing the contemporary world. The North East is a region alive with controversy and contested spaces which speak to larger challenges facing the nation and the global community in the 21st century. Landscapes throughout the region, from the coast to the Northumberland National Park, Newcastle city centre to the banks of the River Tyne, are inscribed with complex histories which intersect with, and inform, ongoing battles over how to manage, protect, and develop these spaces for a future informed by severe social and economic challenges and the upheaval caused by climate change. You will be taken to four different local sites that are at the centre of these larger environmental-social-political and economic battles and learn how to unravel the complex dynamics that underpin these spaces (from the choices made by policy makers at the local, national, and global level, to the role of communities, activist groups, and other stakeholders in shaping these places). You will be asked to complete a range of assessments from a group presentation to a public poster and site report responding to these field trips. Through the module, therefore, you will be taught how to understand the dynamics of place and policy making and most importantly how to apply historical research to contemporary social issues that impact our world today.

More information

HI5055 -

Migration Nation: Britain’s History of Immigration, Multiculturalism and Race (Optional,20 Credits)

This module introduces students to a long overview of migration and British history. This stretches back around five centuries, but the main focus is on the last 200 years. It explores how mobility, transnationalism, and ethnic diversity have played a transformative role in shaping British society, culture, economics and politics. The module considers diversity and difference from the early modern period, however primarily focuses on the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, and the significance of the colonial and postcolonial context. Students will examine patterns of mobility and circulation within the British Empire and how conceptions of subjecthood and citizenship shifted over the twentieth century with the advent of the Commonwealth.

The course will also explore the political dimensions of migration: forms of transnational activism and dissent, issues around political marginalisation and representation, refugees and asylum, and racist and anti-immigrant movements. We will consider the ways in which diaspora communities have transformed the social and cultural fabric of areas to, and from, which they have moved. The module explores the evolution of British multiculturalism, ‘race relations’ and the era of interfaith relations.

The module also introduces students to some of the key concepts and debates in the study of migration, such as diaspora, transnationalism, circulation, mobility and hybridity. Students will be encouraged to engage with a wide range of primary and secondary material, foregrounding the voices and struggles of immigrants, interrogating a full range of historical sources, and reflecting on the extent to which official archives and versions of British history represent – or ignore – the stories of minority communities.

More information

HI5056 -

Al-Andalus to America: Spain and the New World (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module you will acquire in-depth knowledge about the Spanish late medieval period, with all of its captivating myths and influential realities. You will become critically familiar with exciting passages of universal history, including the end of the Reconquest (with the rise of the Spanish Inquisition and the expulsion of Jews and Muslims), the discovery of America, often referred to as an “encounter” of civilisations, and the development of the modern world from an Iberian perspective. You will explore the concepts of religious persecution and clash of civilisations, establishing the links between the political role of the Catholic Church and the development of a “new” continent in America from 1492. Moreover, you will gain an expert understanding of coexistence and conflict between Muslims, Jews and Christians in Spain, including the transformational cultural legacies that Europe and the West owe to Al-Andalus and Sefarad (Muslim and Jewish Spain). You will also gain a nuanced understanding of imperial dynamics between indigenous civilisations, including the Inca and the Azteca, and European settlers in the New World. You will learn about Spain’s Christian and Imperial mandates by using a wide range of translated primary sources, which will include, amongst many others, the Lead Books of Granada, Hernán Cortés’s Letters from Mexico, and Álvar Núnez’s account of his ten years journey from Florida to California, Castaways. You will also be able to evaluate the role of propaganda, from a comparative history perspective, when assessing the key events that took place before and after 1492, and how these shaped the course of modern history.

More information

HI5057 -

People Power before Democracy: The United Kingdom, 1790-1914 (Optional,20 Credits)

How did ordinary people make their voices heard before democracy? In this module you will learn how to answer this question through examining the UK’s ‘long’ nineteenth century (roughly 1790-1914). This was a period in which few men and no women could vote and political institutions were dominated by an aristocratic elite. Yet, this era was characterised by ‘people power’. Mighty movements such as anti-slavery and women’s suffrage mobilised massive numbers of people to make powerful demands for political change. The module explores this topic, firstly through studies of specific movements, such as Chartism and popular radicalism, before providing a broader thematic focus on different types of political practices and activities that were used by ordinary people, such as petitions or meetings and demonstrations. During the course of the module you will learn about the links between these movements and practices and important historical processes such as the development of democracy in the modern UK. During the module you will engage with a variety of historical debates, such as why was there no revolution in the UK?; and with a wide selection of primary sources, including newspapers, official records, and visual images.

More information

IR5003 -

Theories and Practice of Democracy (Core,20 Credits)

What is a democracy? Are elections enough? How can Western European democracy be improved in contemporary society? In this module you will be invited to challenge the traditional view that elections are sufficient for democracy. In doing so, you will explore democracy beyond the ballot box; examining theoretical and contemporary debates and practices surrounding direct and indirect democracy, political representation and participation. Case studies will be used to explore themes such as: citizen participation (e.g. participatory budgeting, consultation, citizen juries, deliberative polls), non-electoral representation, partnership working and governance, in context of the so called shift from government to governance.

There is a key focus on building your employability in the module. As part of the assessment, you will be asked to take part in a participatory budgeting/competitive funding bidding process. Where feasible, this will be based on a real life project remit linked with the goals and objectives of an external organisation. You will learn knowledge and practice skills used in policy-making, public governance, community engagement and developing and assessing successful funding applications. This is relevant to many roles in the public, private and voluntary and community sectors e.g. community and volunteer engagement officers, elected members, fund-raising officers, researchers etc. Employment related skills gained from this include: team-work, presentation skills, creating and justifying arguments, developing and assessing the merits of funding bids, finding and using evidence, using online IT tools and systems, budgeting public funds and developing projects to meet specific criteria.

More information

IR5005 -

Global Governance (Core,20 Credits)

You will learn about global governance and international organisations in theoretical-conceptual terms as mechanisms to steer and solve problems of international/global scope. You will explore one or more international organisation to understand whether and how these organisations are able to meet the demands required for that purpose, studying in depth both their normative and institutional framework. This will include studying the main actors and bodies of an organisation, the organisation’s aspirations set out in the respective charter as well as key policy development over time.

Historic case studies or policy analysis will be used to supplement your understanding of the successes or failures of the international organisation to meet its own aspirations and/or facilitate international cooperation.

Subject to staff availability, the international organisations analysed may include the United Nations, the European Union, NATO, etc.

More information

IR5008 -

Theories of International Relations (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module I will learn how different scholars have thought about and conceptualised international relations. I will study the range of theories of International Relations, including the three main schools of Liberalism, Realism, Marxism and their variants, and post-structural and critical theories. Learning about the different ways in which we can see, understand and explain international relations will provide me with a better range of tools to form my own understanding and explanation of what I observe, study and read, and thus enhance my skills of critical analysis when engaging with academic literature but also when engaging with political events around the world.

Theories covered in this module will include:
• Neorealism, Neoliberal institutionalism, English School, Constructivism, neo-Marxism
• Critical theory, Postmodernism/Poststructuralism, Feminism, Postcolonialism, International Political Theory

More information

IR5009 -

UK Politics Beyond Westminster (Optional,20 Credits)

On this module I will investigate the changing nature of the British political system. This module will develop my understanding of how politics in the UK operates beyond the traditional Westminster Model by focusing on debates about the relationship between identities and politics in the UK. In this module I will gain a clear understanding of the conceptual and theoretical basis of identity through a focus on class and nation. The module enhances my empirical knowledge with a strong historical focus on the changing nature of the British political system. The module will test a number of my assumptions about the nature of the British political system and give me a clearer understanding of the forces of identity and how this shapes political action in the UK.

More information

IR5010 -

Foreign Policy Analysis (Optional,20 Credits)

You will learn about the most significant issues and challenges of our times in the domain of foreign policy. While grounded in IR theory, you will be introduced to foreign policy analysis (FPA)-specific frameworks and levels of analysis such as to systems of governance, decision making structures and models, leadership analysis, the role of the media, public opinion and special interest groups. Empirically, you will learn about the foreign policy of key actors in the international system towards a region or set of issues such as, for example, US and China foreign policy.

More information

IR5011 -

From Bastille to Strasbourg- A Journey through Human Rights (Optional,20 Credits)

On this module you will explore human rights through three main themes: the philosophy of human rights, the implementation of human rights, human rights and globalisation.

In the ‘philosophy of human rights’ section, you will analyse the history of the concept of human rights and its critiques, starting with the first universal declaration in 1789.

In the ‘implementation of Human Rights’ section, you will critically analyse its gradual codification and legal implementation, at an international, European and national levels, and how real protection mechanisms were implemented after the Second World War, and critically evaluate its limitations. You will focus on three areas: the European Convention on Human Rights and the new rights acquired by European citizens to defend themselves against their own State; the rise of constitutional courts, focusing on the development of constitutional democracies as opposed to majority democracies and the frictions such a change has entailed, using France and Britain as case studies; the role the EU has played for the protection of human rights, starting from the So Lange case in Germany that forced the EU to become more attentive to Human Rights to an exploration of the four freedoms and finishing with an analysis of the European Charter of fundamental Rights.

In the ‘Human Rights and globalisation’ section you will examine the challenges human rights face in a globalised world by focusing on the universalist versus relativist debate on the one hand, humanitarian intervention and right to protect on the other.

More information

IR5012 -

Representing Political Violence (Optional,20 Credits)

This module looks at the ways in which political violence is represented in the media, specifically the ways political violence is racialised and gendered. You will look at race and gender as analytical categories in international relations, along with the methodologies that scholars use to research these, and you will apply these understandings to the study of political violence via case studies such as the FARC, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, the War in Iraq, Daesh and Black Lives Matter.

More information

ML5001 -

Unilang - Languages for all - Level 5 Placeholder (Optional,20 Credits)

The 20-credit yearlong Unilang modules (stages 1 – 5 depending on language) aim to encourage a positive attitude to language learning and to develop and practise the four language skills of speaking, listening, reading and writing introducing the basic/increasingly complex grammatical structures and vocabulary of the spoken and written language (depending on stage) and developing your ability to respond appropriately in the foreign language in spoken and written form in simple and increasingly complex everyday situations.

These modules also introduce you to the country and the culture of the country. In doing this, Unilang modules are intended to encourage and support international mobility; to enhance employability at home and abroad; to improve communication skills in the foreign language as well as English; to improve cultural awareness and, at the higher stages, to encourage access to foreign sources.

More information

YC5001 -

Academic Language Skills for Humanities and Social Sciences (Core – for International and EU students only,0 Credits)

Academic skills when studying away from your home country can differ due to cultural and language differences in teaching and assessment practices. This module is designed to support your transition in the use and practice of technical language and subject specific skills around assessments and teaching provision in your chosen subject. The overall aim of this module is to develop your abilities to read and study effectively for academic purposes; to develop your skills in analysing and using source material in seminars and academic writing and to develop your use and application of language and communications skills to a higher level.

The topics you will cover on the module include:

• Understanding assignment briefs and exam questions.
• Developing academic writing skills, including citation, paraphrasing, and summarising.
• Practising ‘critical reading’ and ‘critical writing’
• Planning and structuring academic assignments (e.g. essays, reports and presentations).
• Avoiding academic misconduct and gaining credit by using academic sources and referencing effectively.
• Listening skills for lectures.
• Speaking in seminar presentations.
• Presenting your ideas
• Giving discipline-related academic presentations, experiencing peer observation, and receiving formative feedback.
• Speed reading techniques.
• Developing self-reflection skills.

More information

AD5009 -

Humanities Work Placement Year (Optional,120 Credits)

The Work Placement Year module is a 120 credit year-long module available on degree courses which include a work placement year, taken as an additional year of study at level 5 and before level 6 (the length of the placement(s) will be determined by your programme but it can be no less than 30 weeks. You will undertake a guided work placement at a host organisation. This is a Pass/Fail module and so does not contribute to classification. When taken and passed, however, the Placement Year is recognised in your transcript as a 120 credit Work Placement Module and on your degree certificate in the format – “Degree title (with Work Placement Year)”. The learning and teaching on your placement will be recorded in the work placement agreement signed by the placement provider, the student, and the University.

Note: Subject to placement clearance; this is a competitive process and a place on the module cannot be guaranteed.

More information

AD5010 -

Humanities Study Abroad Year (Optional,120 Credits)

The Study Abroad Year module is a full year 120 credit module which is available on degree courses which include a study abroad year which is taken as an additional year of study at level 5 and before level 6. You will undertake a year abroad at a partner university equivalent to 120 UK credits. This gives you access to modules from your discipline taught in a different learning culture and so broadens your overall experience of learning. The course of study abroad will be dependent on the partner and will be recorded for an individual student on the learning agreement signed by the host University, the student, and the home University (Northumbria). Your study abroad year will be assessed on a pass/fail basis. It will not count towards your final degree classification but, if you pass, it is recognised in your transcript as a 120 credit Study Abroad Module and on your degree certificate in the format – “Degree title (with Study Abroad Year)”.

Note: Subject to placement clearance; this is a competitive process and a place on the module cannot be guaranteed.

More information

AM6005 -

Red, White and Green: The American Environment Through Time (Optional,20 Credits)

The US is a paradox when it comes to nature: it is both the country that invented the national park concept and the biggest carbon dioxide emitter historically; it was the first country to celebrate Earth Day in 1970, but it is also where the hyper consumerist lifestyle first emerged; it is the birthplace of some of the oldest and most important environmental NGOs and of climate denial. How can we make sense of the US and its relationship to nature? Are Americans doomed to destroy the natural wonders of their nation? Can we envision a red, white and green nation that would put science and technology at the service of sustainability and environmental justice?

The module will answer these questions by examining the US’ complicated relationship to nature chronologically. In doing so, we will re-examine and challenge conventional narratives of US history by integrating the role of nature as a historical actor in its own right. Examples of themes covered include: nature and conquest; Native American environments; nature and technology; the wilderness myth; animals in US history; environmental disasters; urban nature; the rise of environmentalism; environmental justice and environmental racism; waste and pollution; toxicities, etc.

The module will approach these themes using the tools of the environmental humanities. Combining historical, visual and literary analysis with insights from ecology and other ‘hard’ sciences, we will achieve a thorough understanding of environmental phenomena in their full complexity.

More information

HI6004 -

The African American Freedom Struggle Since 1945 (Optional,20 Credits)

In this seminar-based module you will study the roots, trajectory, and legacies of the African American Freedom Struggle since 1945. Although the primary focus will be on the movement for racial justice in the US South between roughly 1954 and 1968, that history will be placed in longer chronological and broader national and international contexts. More specifically you will study the grass-roots activities of African Americans engaged in various forms of resistance and protest alongside the histories of the major civil rights groups – the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE). You will interrogate their tactics, examine their often fraught relationships with each other, and assess their achievements and failures in the face of widespread resistance to racial change. You will examine the contributions of the extraordinary ordinary people at the heart of the struggle, as well as those of nationally prominent leaders such as Martin Luther King. In this module you will also analyse the relationship between the civil rights movement and the federal government, address the role of the media and popular culture in shaping both the history and popular understandings of the post-war Freedom Struggle, and examine the international coordinates and impact of the struggles.

More information

HI6007 -

Civil War and Reconstruction (Optional,20 Credits)

You will learn about the causes, events, and results of the U.S. Civil War, a war which took over 620,000 lives; the bloodiest in American history. The Civil War and its aftermath are considered the dividing line between early and modern US history. The War ended the South’s dominance of American politics. It also led to three major constitutional amendments which ended slavery, defined American citizenship, and provided for African American votes respectively which still have implications in American life in the 21st century. The course begins in 1850 by looking at American sectionalism and how and why that caused the founding of the Republican party and the eventual secession of eleven southern states. It then examines the military aspects of the war and explores its social, political, economic, and diplomatic effects. The end of the term will be spent on the political and social aspects of the post-War period known as ‘Reconstruction.’ It will explain how American national identity became redefined during this tumultuous time, especially in popular memory around public commemorations, art, literature and film. You will also analyse the controversial historiography of this period throughout the semester.

More information

HI6010 -

Women, Crime and Subversion in Early Modern Europe (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module you will learn how different scholars have conceptualised and written about women, crime and subversion from 1400 to 1800. You will assess and analyse why and how tensions in the early modern period meant that authorities across Europe directed their attention upon women in specific ways. The influence of the Protestant reformation is examined in terms of its impact upon female behaviour. Female criminality and subversive behaviour will be examined through a variety of theoretical and methodological approaches, including feminist and gender theories. Key concepts at the fore of this module include witchcraft, petty treason, infanticide, female piracy, prostitution, adultery and fornication, lesbianism, the crime of cross-dressing, and women’s strategies in European court systems. You will move beyond areas classified as criminal to behaviour considered as subversive and deviant, such as domestic disorder. You will utilize a wide range of primary sources including court records, the Old Bailey legal records, assize court records and female testimonies from across Europe which will equip you to think critically about academic literature, primary sources and historical interpretation.

More information

HI6022 -

Joint Honours Dissertation (Optional,40 Credits)

The dissertation gives you the opportunity to work on a sustained piece of research of your own (guided) choice and to present that research in an organised and coherent form in a major piece of writing. The module will teach you how to function as an independent researcher, learner and writer. The dissertation represents the culmination of your studies as a Joint Honours student. You will apply the skills developed in your earlier studies to a discrete body of primary sources, working upon a clearly defined topic. In designing and implementing your research project, you will draw on insights and approaches from both of the disciplines that from part of your degree. The dissertation will develop your research skills and allow you to work independently, drawing on the advice and guidance of a designated supervisor.

More information

HI6025 -

Northern Ireland: The 'Troubles' and the Search for Peace (Optional,20 Credits)

You will learn about the origins, evolution and dynamics of one of Europe’s most recent – and deadly – intra-state conflicts. The ‘Troubles’ in Northern Ireland, 1968-98, was marked by their persistence and seeming intractability. With the paramilitary ceasefires in the 1990s, a new era opened; but difficulties remain in moving from a mere absence of violence to a genuine peace. You will examine the dynamics of violence and its impact on the politics and culture of Northern Ireland over a fifty year period, and the significant challenges posed to peace since the Good Friday Agreement of 1998.

More information

HI6027 -

Barricades and Boulevards: Revolution, Culture, and Urban Life in Nineteenth-century Paris (Optional,20 Credits)

This module examines the political, social and cultural history of Paris between 1815 and 1900. You will study different aspects of the history of nineteenth-century Paris – revolution, urban development, popular culture, and artistic life – through a range of primary sources, including contemporary artistic and literary representations of the city. You will assess and analyse the relationship between the city of Paris and political change during this period, with a particular focus on urban insurrection and revolution. You will also explore artistic movements such as Romanticism and Impressionism, as well as the rise of leisure and consumer culture and the urban development of the city, especially during the Second Empire (1852-1870). Throughout the module, you will investigate wider historical debates about urbanisation and the growth of the nineteenth-century European city. In looking at the history of nineteenth-century Paris – the ‘capital of the nineteenth century’, as the German theorist Walter Benjamin described it – from a range of perspectives, this module will enhance your knowledge and understanding of cultural and social approaches to history, and develop your ability to use interdisciplinary methodologies in your study of the past.

More information

HI6031 -

Recording the Past: Making Your Own History Documentary (Optional,20 Credits)

This module will appeal to anyone interested in telling stories. It will help you think about how your existing historical skills can be applied beyond university, while equipping you with experience of project management, team building, and working with a range of non-university stakeholders. This module gives students the opportunity to make their own short audio documentary. Students pitch, script, record, and edit their own documentaries using audio equipment and free, open-source, cross-platform audio software. Students will be given a broad theme (such as the 1970s and the Northeast of England) and will then generate a proposal and ‘pitch’ this to the class. Following selection, groups will then work on developing a script and identifying interviewees. Teams will produce their documentaries by dividing up the production responsibilities, so that students gain not only experience of teamwork but also of making a specific contribution to the project. Across the semester, the class will progress through the stages of pre- and post-production together week-by-week. Portable recording equipment will be made available and students will be (i) instructed on using industry-standard audio equipment; (ii) classes on ethics and oral history techniques; (ii) training on how to use editing software. At the same time, the class will both engage with relevant literature and listen to a range of audio documentary in order to better understand creative and production issues. The emphasis in this module will be both on the finished documentary but also on the process involved and the skills acquired along the way.

[250] words]

More information

HI6032 -

Men of War: Masculinities and Warfare in Britain 1914 -1945 (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module, you will explore the British male experiences of the First and Second World Wars, primarily through the lens of gender and masculinities. The module will examine the male experience in the broadest sense, looking not only at the experience of training, fighting and dying for Britain but also the experiences of various types of civilian men including those excluded from military service, civilian male workers and civil defence volunteers. The module will also examine the after effects of warfare by considering the experiences of those men who returned from war mentally and physically damaged as well as exploring the cultural legacies of the two world wars in Britain. This is a cutting-edge area of historical research. Therefore, you will be engaging with a growing and developing set of historical debates and ideas. Moreover, you will deal with a wide variety of primary materials including state propaganda, film, radio broadcasts, oral testimony, diaries, memoirs and archival material. This will equip you to think critically about both historiography and primary sources.

More information

HI6037 -

Environmental disaster in modern Britain (Optional,20 Credits)

Sometimes it can seem that concern about climate change and the broader environmental crisis is a recent phenomenon whose effects are largely felt in other parts of the world. This module challenges these assumptions. You will learn about the origins of these concerns in their British context through five environmental disasters that shaped Britain after the Second World War. They are the devastating east coast floods of 1953, the collapse of the spoil heap onto a school at Aberfan in Wales in 1966, the wrecking of the Torrey Canyon, an oil tanker, off the Cornish coast in 1967, the near-extinction of birds of prey as a consequence chemical pesticides in the 1950s and 60s, and the hurricane that caused widespread destruction to woods and forests in 1987. You will spend two weeks on each of these case studies. The first week will focus on the event itself and its human and non-human causes and costs. The second week will focus on the event’s long-term political, social, and cultural consequences. Among the questions you’ll consider are: How did public opinion and the media respond to these disasters? What short and long-term effects did they have on government policy? In what ways did these disasters catalyse the development of the modern environmental movement? How has our understanding of what constitutes a natural disaster changed over time? You will learn about the historical development of theories of climate change and you will be able to contextualise historically the environmental crisis that is shaping political culture today and develop a greater understanding of why it is so difficult to agree on possible solutions.

More information

HI6041 -

Russia Between Democracy and Dictatorship: Gorbachev to Putin, 1985-2008 (Optional,20 Credits)

This module explores a tumultuous period in Russian history when the pendulum swung from dictatorship towards increasing democracy and back again. Relatively freer politics and loosening of controls over the media were accompanied by economic dislocation and social instability under Gorbachev and Yeltsin, while conversely, the Putin era saw improved economic performance, stability and some restoration of order alongside the return of a creeping authoritarianism in politics and tighter censorship. Students will investigate why the Soviet regime, which ten years previously had seemed destined to last indefinitely, was so rapidly undermined. We will examine the political struggle that accompanied perestroika, as well as how official Soviet ideology unravelled under the impact of glasnost’ and the opening of public debate. The module considers Gorbachev’s government’s attempt to find economic solutions to stagnation and the disastrous effects of the collapse of faith in the command economy. Also, particular attention is paid to the role that nationalist movements in the Baltic, Ukraine, Transcaucasia and Central Asia played in tearing the Soviet system apart. The module then turns to Russia’s turbulent post-Soviet transition, the ‘Wild Years’, a dangerous and exciting period where, after the USSR legally ceased to exist on 31 December 1991, the new state, the Russian Federation, set off on the road to democracy and a market economy without any clear conception of how to complete such a transformation in the world’s largest country. As well as looking at Russia’s new political system, we will examine the economic reforms introduced as the country underwent ‘shock therapy’ to create a market economy, involving mass privatization, financial crisis, the rise of oligarchs. We will consider the devastating social impact of these policies, as life expectancy plummeted, birth rates collapsed and crime exploded. Students will assess how in these conditions Vladimir Putin, assumed power and explore how his presidency saw economic upswing and improvement in living standards but also a creeping authoritarianism in politics and media controls. Finally, we will investigate Putin’s cultivation of an aggressive, socially conservative Russian nationalism which grew from the shame and international humiliation derived from the catastrophic transition of the former superpower.

More information

HI6042 -

How to Kill a King: Monarchies in Crisis, 1547-1689 (Optional,20 Credits)

Being an early modern king could be dangerous. Over the course of the period, monarchs were executed, assassinated, and deposed. While Mary Queen of Scots and Charles I lost their heads, boy-king Louis XIV pretended to be asleep as the angry Parisian mob entered his bedroom during the Fronde and James I narrowly escaped being blown up by the Gunpowder Plot. Even if not resolved in loss of life or deposition, monarchical crises that gripped early modern Europe posed a significant challenge to royal authority and legitimacy. These moments of crisis were connected to the changing nature of royal power, redefined in clashes between monarchs and their subjects exacerbated by the Reformation, dynastic politics, the changing relationship between monarchs and nobles, the emerging concept of the state and new ideas about how it should be governed. Over the course of this module you will examine monarchical crises through case studies including the executions of Jane Grey and Mary Stuart, assassinations of Henri III and Henri IV, the English Civil War and Glorious Revolution, the Fronde, and the Defenestration of Prague and deposition of the Winter King, Frederick V. We will consider the causes, outcomes, and representations of these crises through a variety of sources, including pamphlets, chronicles, letters, and images. We will also consider the representation of these events in the modern media such as film, television, and fiction writing.

More information

HI6047 -

Dissertation with Public History (Optional,40 Credits)

In this module, you will be provided with the skills to complete a written dissertation and a public-facing output on a topic that you will agree with your supervisors. The dissertation with public history represents an opportunity to apply the skills you have acquired at earlier levels, as well as a chance to develop new skills, both theoretical and practical, associated with public history. In Semester One you will produce the written piece of work. This written piece, which can take the form of a ‘short dissertation’ or ‘extended essay’, may be an analysis of a discrete body of primary sources, a discussion of historiographical controversy, or an intervention in a current debate about the public understanding of the past. In Semester Two you will work with your supervisors to produce a public output (the ‘knowledge exchange’ component), such as a digital exhibition or public history podcast, based on your research for the short dissertation/extended essay. The knowledge exchange aspect may include work with an external partner. The ‘Dissertation with public history’ is an exercise in research and public engagement and is intended to develop your research and communication skills, as well as your ability to work independently. Topics will be supervised by two appropriate tutors, one with subject-specific knowledge, the second with knowledge exchange experience.

More information

HI6048 -

From the Campus to the Streets: Student Activism and Youth Movements since 1900 (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module, we will consider how young people have responded to, and in some cases shaped, major episodes and developments in modern and contemporary history. In examining youth action, we will cover a variety of movements and campaigns. For example, we will discuss the role of communist and fascist youth organisations in the 1920s and 1930s as well as the involvement of students in anti-colonial and anti-racist struggles. Moreover, we will investigate youth politics in the Cold War, the impact of student protests in the 1960s as well as young people’s efforts to address issues such as gender equality or the fate of the environment.

The scope of the module is international, with examples that cover cases from Europe (France, Germany, Russia), Africa (Ghana, South Africa), Asia (China, Japan) and the Americas (Brazil, Mexico, the United States). We will pay particular attention to global aspirations and connections, as we will trace how young activists sought to build ties across national borders. Such efforts will also allow us to consider how various movements imagined and pursued the quest for a different world and a better future.

More information

HI6049 -

Modern India: Making the World’s Biggest Democracy (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module you will learn how the world’s biggest democracy came into being, starting with the successful struggle for independence and going up to the 21st century. You will develop a broad understanding of India’s postcolonial politics, culture, economy and society. Using a diverse range of materials, you will analyse how the British Empire’s ‘Jewel in the Crown’ established itself as a postcolonial democratic republic amidst numerous obstacles, tensions and conflicts.

The first half of the module introduces you to the contemporary history of India through five episodes, which help us to understand key issues like decolonisation, secularism, corruption and liberalisation. The second half of the module considers six themes, exploring how these tell us different things about India in the second-half of the 20th century. Chronologically, the module begins with anti-colonial nationalism of Mahatma Gandhi and others, from around the 1930s onwards. The module then covers almost the entire period of independent India, from the creation of the republic and partition of the subcontinent in 1947, right up to 2019 – the year in which the current Hindu nationalist BJP government won a second consecutive landslide victory, marking for many the demise of India as a secular, multicultural democracy.

The second half of the module covers six major themes: Gender, Caste, Migration, Conflict, Communalism, and Environment. Exploring the recent history of India through these different lenses provides new angles for understanding the ‘world’s largest democracy’ from a range of diverse perspectives.

More information

HI6050 -

From Grand Tours to Dirty Weekends: Travellers and Tourists in Britain, Ireland and Beyond (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module you will discover how the histories of travel and tourism are deeply connected to the making of modern Britain and Ireland. You will explore the history of tourism from its eighteenth-century origins, when seaside towns and spas welcomed their first visitors and British and Irish aristocrats embarked on Grand Tours of Europe. You will learn how British and Irish landscapes were made iconic by Romantic writers, and how the development of steamships, railways, roads, bicycles, and motor travel revolutionised the way in which journeys were experienced and narrated.

You will discover how the royal tourism of Queen Victoria and her descendants helped strengthen the political union of the United Kingdom, and how the tourism industry forged cross-border links, promoted cooperation, and encouraged dialogue between Northern Ireland and the Irish Free State after the Partition of Ireland in 1921. You will also learn how tourism was connected to the expansion of the British Empire, as travellers on Thomas Cook’s tours followed missionaries, traders, and empire builders to the Middle East, Africa, and India. You will consider how Black British travellers have experienced city space and the countryside in different ways to their white counterparts, and the photography of Ingrid Pollard will prompt you to think about the relationship between race and national identity in Britain today.

You will learn about key concepts and debates in the history of tourism, such as mobility, authenticity, landscape and place, gender, post-colonialism, the interaction of ‘hosts’ and ‘guests’, and the growing importance of travel as part of individual and national identity. You will engage with a wide variety of primary source material, from personal travel accounts, guidebooks, and timetables to the rich visual and material culture of postcards, illustrations, paintings, photographs, and poster artwork.

More information

IR6001 -

Active Citizens (Optional,20 Credits)

Questions about the concept of crisis and the nature of crisis provide the starting point for this module. It encourages you to build upon the critical understanding of democracy and governance that you gained in Theories and Practices of Democracy at level 5 and Democrats and Dictators at level 4, but approaches the topic from a different perspective. Against this background, you will explore the range of different ways that citizens, particularly as part of organisations and global social movements seek to influence and, in some cases, challenge the state and/or market. In this respect, the concept of civil society and the dynamics of state, market and civil society relationship are central to this module. Using case studies, the module will consider themes such as anti-globalisation and anti-capitalist movements; the politics of pressure, lobbying and campaigning; think tanks; wealth, power and philanthropy; and the politics of “everyday activism” and volunteering.

More information

IR6002 -

Critical Security (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module I will critically engage with the concept of security. I will especially be introduced to traditional and non-traditional concepts of security. This includes an engagement with traditional notions of security (i.e. state security) and the emergence and increasing political importance of non-traditional security (including, but not limited to, human security, comprehensive security, environmental security, food security, energy security, water security). I will critically evaluate the utility of traditional and non-traditional notions of security. Within the non-traditional security complex, I will examine the different types of security, including their differences and similarities, their usefulness, and through case studies and I will engage with their real-life application and global political relevance.

More information

IR6004 -

Genocide (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module I will analyse how ideas of genocide have evolved throughout the twentieth century. I will be encouraged to consider the political and legal consequences of genocides, and to engage with the socio/cultural/ethno/economic/religious explanations that some key thinkers have forwarded as being causal factors of genocide. I will also examine how policymakers have grappled with the problem of preventing and stopping genocides once they have begun.

More information

IR6005 -

Media Power and Propaganda (Optional,20 Credits)

Most people find out about politics, and what is going on in the wider world, through the media. It is therefore critical to understand how the media functions in contemporary society. This module focuses upon the debate about the role of the media in liberal democracies: is it an independent check on the exercise of power or an instrument by which the powerful manipulate the masses? What is the impact of the media upon individuals: does it inform us or brainwash us? How are the Internet and other new technologies affecting individual’s ability to access alternative sources of information to the established media? What implications do these new media have for states that seek to direct, if not control, the public’s access to information? What role, if any, should propaganda play in a liberal democracy? Using concepts, such as power, and theories of media effects, media performance and interpersonal communication, students will be encouraged to engage with these fundamental questions.

More information

IR6007 -

Politics of Oil and Global Warming (Optional,20 Credits)

Two of the most important problems facing humanity are climate change and energy security. In terms of solutions, a number of very different approaches have been suggested that range from the technological to the radical; how we address and solve these problems is therefore political. This module highlights how energy and resource intensive the average Western way of life is and what this means for climate change and energy security; explores the debate about peak oil (i.e. the point at which cheap and easily accessible oil starts to run out) and considers its political implications; investigates how Western foreign policy has been influenced by the desire to access, if not control, energy sources (e.g. Middle Eastern oil); evaluates the debate about climate change and how politicians have, and could, respond; and assesses the debate about energy policy and how politicians have, and could, respond to the twin demands of tackling global warming while ‘keeping the lights on’.

More information

IR6008 -

Terrorism (Optional,20 Credits)

In this module I will analyse how ideas of terrorism have evolved throughout the twentieth century. This module offers me an opportunity to study in some depth the modern terrorism phenomenon and the methods currently being undertaken to counter it. I will focus essentially on two questions: what, exactly, is terrorism and what can be done about it?

More information

IR6010 -

War Games- Negotiating Security through Simulations (Optional,20 Credits)

‘War Games’ is a module aimed at training students in negotiation techniques through the usage of simulation games. The module has general and specific objectives. At the general level, it aims to provide students with key skills in international negotiations, applied to international organisations’ decision making (including the European Union and the United Nations). It also aims at providing students with a greater knowledge of international organisations’ policies and politics. The last general objective is to allow students to experience negotiation processes through real feel simulations, which will underline the challenges associated with international diplomacy and decision-making. Where the specific objectives are concerned, this module is very much focused on employability and on developing students’ skills for the challenges to the job market. War Games is directly linked to the students’ learning journey through the International Relations and Politics degree and rests on the shoulders of the ‘Global Governance’ and ‘International Conflict and Cooperation’ modules.

More information

IR6011 -

Decolonial Politics (Optional,20 Credits)

This module will give students a theoretical and empirical understanding of decolonial politics. The first part of the module will cover key schools of thought in decolonial theory and the historical context of the five hundred years of European colonialism on which they draw. The second part of the module will apply decolonial theories and concepts to a number of contemporary issues and topics, including humans’ relationship to nature and the climate emergency, indigenous sovereignty, decolonial research methodologies, the case for reparations, and debates around decolonising higher education itself. Students will be encouraged to think and learn through objects and museum exhibits alongside standard, text-based resources, and this aspect of the module is fully integrated into the form of assessment.

More information

YC5001 -

Academic Language Skills for Humanities and Social Sciences (Core – for International and EU students only,0 Credits)

Academic skills when studying away from your home country can differ due to cultural and language differences in teaching and assessment practices. This module is designed to support your transition in the use and practice of technical language and subject specific skills around assessments and teaching provision in your chosen subject. The overall aim of this module is to develop your abilities to read and study effectively for academic purposes; to develop your skills in analysing and using source material in seminars and academic writing and to develop your use and application of language and communications skills to a higher level.

The topics you will cover on the module include:

• Understanding assignment briefs and exam questions.
• Developing academic writing skills, including citation, paraphrasing, and summarising.
• Practising ‘critical reading’ and ‘critical writing’
• Planning and structuring academic assignments (e.g. essays, reports and presentations).
• Avoiding academic misconduct and gaining credit by using academic sources and referencing effectively.
• Listening skills for lectures.
• Speaking in seminar presentations.
• Presenting your ideas
• Giving discipline-related academic presentations, experiencing peer observation, and receiving formative feedback.
• Speed reading techniques.
• Developing self-reflection skills.

More information

To start your application, simply select the month you would like to start your course.

History and Politics BA (Hons)

Home or EU applicants please apply through UCAS

International applicants please apply using the links below

START MONTH
YEAR

UniStats

Any Questions?

Our Applicant Services team will be happy to help.  They can be contacted on 0191 406 0901 or by using our Contact Form.



Accessibility and Student Inclusion

Northumbria University is committed to developing an inclusive, diverse and accessible campus and wider University community and are determined to ensure that opportunities we provide are open to all.

We are proud to work in partnership with AccessAble to provide Detailed Access Guides to our buildings and facilities across our City, Coach Lane and London Campuses. A Detailed Access Guide lets you know what access will be like when you visit somewhere. It looks at the route you will use getting in and what is available inside. All guides have Accessibility Symbols that give you a quick overview of what is available, and photographs to show you what to expect. The guides are produced by trained surveyors who visit our campuses annually to ensure you have trusted and accurate information.

You can use Northumbria’s AccessAble Guides anytime to check the accessibility of a building or facility and to plan your routes and journeys. Search by location, building or accessibility feature to find the information you need. 

We are dedicated to helping students who may require additional support during their student journey and offer 1-1 advice and guidance appropriate to individual requirements. If you feel you may need additional support you can find out more about what we offer here where you can also contact us with any questions you may have:

Accessibility support

Student Inclusion support




All information is accurate at the time of sharing. 

Full time Courses are primarily delivered via on-campus face to face learning but could include elements of online learning. Most courses run as planned and as promoted on our website and via our marketing materials, but if there are any substantial changes (as determined by the Competition and Markets Authority) to a course or there is the potential that course may be withdrawn, we will notify all affected applicants as soon as possible with advice and guidance regarding their options. It is also important to be aware that optional modules listed on course pages may be subject to change depending on uptake numbers each year.  

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with possible restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors if this is deemed necessary in future.

 

Useful Links

Find out about our distinctive approach at 
www.northumbria.ac.uk/exp

Admissions Terms and Conditions
northumbria.ac.uk/terms

Fees and Funding
northumbria.ac.uk/fees

Admissions Policy
northumbria.ac.uk/adpolicy

Admissions Complaints Policy
northumbria.ac.uk/complaints



If you’d like to receive the latest updates from Northumbria about our courses, events, finance & funding then enter your details below.

* At Northumbria we are strongly committed to protecting the privacy of personal data. To view the University’s Privacy Notice please click here

a sign in front of a crowd
+

Northumbria Open Days

Open Days are a great way for you to get a feel of the University, the city of Newcastle upon Tyne and the course(s) you are interested in.

a person sitting at a table using a laptop
+
NU World Virtual Tours
+

Virtual Tour

Get an insight into life at Northumbria at the click of a button! Come and explore our videos and 360 panoramas to immerse yourself in our campuses and get a feel for what it is like studying here using our interactive virtual tour.

Back to top