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Public History Placement - HIS00050M

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  • Department: History
  • Module co-ordinator: Dr. Geoff Cubitt
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: M
  • Academic year of delivery: 2019-20

Module summary

The Public History Placement module provides students with the opportunity to experience developing a public history project in practice, and to reflect critically upon that practice.

The placement consists of two elements. The first element is a placement hosted by an external partner or applied research project for which the student will complete a specific output (such as a piece of research, an exhibit, a report, or an online resource).  The second element is guided private study towards the final unit of University assessment.

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching cycle
A Spring Term 2019-20

Module aims

The module aims to:

  • Equip students with an experience of a cultural institution that operates in the broad sphere of public history
  • Create opportunities for the students to apply academically-derived models of public history in real-world situations
  • Ensure that the students are involved with practical projects that are related to the presentation of the past in the public sphere
  • Provide the opportunity for students to think critically about interpreting, communicating and presenting the past to the public
  • Encourage students to evaluate public history projects as a means of reflecting upon their own practical work

Module learning outcomes

At the end of the module, students will have:

  • Experienced task-based learning in the field of Public History inside a cultural institution
  • Meaningfully contributed to a practical endeavour (their own assigned task, or as part of a wider team project) related to Public History
  • Demonstrated in writing that they have experienced situations in which they have applied academic knowledge to the practical tasks they have been set and completed
  • Articulated their learning and critically evaluated their assigned project and their part in it

Module content

Teaching Programme:
The placement is primarily independent work undertaken for your host and for your assessment. It consists of 200 hours in total, comprising 120 hours practical experience, 40 hours of private study and 40 hours preparing  the Placement Essay. In addition to their responsible supervisor in the host institution or project, students on placement will have an academic supervisor, with whom they will meet three times in the course of the placement. The second of these meetings will, wherever possible, be held jointly with the host institution supervisor.

Alongside this there are a number of taught sessions to support you, including briefing sessions in the autumn term and three 2-hour classes in the spring term. 


Task Length % of module mark
Placement Essay 4000 Words
N/A 100

Special assessment rules


Additional assessment information

Students are required to keep a Workbook of no more than 3,000 words during the first 4 weeks of the placement. This must be submitted in week 5 of the spring term, and will inform discussion at the second supervisorial meeting. It does not count towards the summative assessment for the module.

Summative assessment is on a 4,000 word Placement Essay, to be submitted in week 1 of the summer term.

For further details about assessed work, students should refer to the Taught Masters Degrees Statement of Assessment.


Task Length % of module mark
Placement Essay 4000 Words
N/A 100

Module feedback

The workbook submitted in week 5 will inform discussion at the second supervisorial meeting.

For the summative assessment task, students will receive their provisional mark and written feedback within 20 working days of the submission deadline. The convenor will then be available during student hours for follow-up guidance if required. For more information, see the Statement of Assessment.

Indicative reading

There are no key texts for this module.

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.