Skip to content
Home>Study at York>Undergraduate>Courses>History/History of Art (BA)

BA (Hons) History/History of Art

Combining artistic movements with the movement of time

Year of entry: 2019

UCAS code

VV13

Institution code

Y50

Length

3 years full-time (plus optional placement year)

Typical offer

AAB (full entry requirements)

Start date

September 2019 (term dates)

UK/EU fees

£9,250 per year (2019/20)

International fees

£17,120 per year (2019/20)

Visit us

Get to know us better and find out what studying and living in York is really like.

Meet us

An integrated art and history degree will enable you to understand the forces that have shaped past societies and cultures, along with the artworks and artistic movements which those societies have produced.

This joint degree brings together two humanities disciplines to develop your skills in research, analysis and presentation. We offer an exceptionally wide variety of specialist options that range from the study of medieval churches to the history of twentieth century Japan. 

You'll gain expertise in the interpretation of visual forms of evidence such as paintings, architecture and material culture along with the ability to produce in-depth analysis of historical texts. You'll graduate as a highly-skilled, creative communicator, ready to make a valuable impact in a wide variety of industries.

Highly ranked

The History of Art is a Top 5 UK department (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2019).

Course content

Students normally divide their modules equally between the History and History of Art departments. This may vary slightly if you take an elective module in another department.

Study abroad

You can apply to study abroad during your second year, either for the whole year or just a term.

Year 1

This year of the degree is designed to help you ground your historical knowledge. Your modules will also provide you with a broad background to help you think about art in historical contexts.

History

You'll choose one of the following modules:

History of Art

You'll choose one of the following modules:

Academic integrity module

In addition to the above you will also need to complete our online Academic Integrity module.

Year 2

This year will help you to develop the tools you will need to use in your final dissertation. You'll also get the chance look behind the scenes of a museum and learn the art of curatorship.

History

You'll study one core module (10 credits):

You'll choose one Histories and Contexts module (20 credits). You'll typically be able to choose from around eight options:

You'll also choose one Explorations module (30 credits). We usually offer around 18 options for you to choose from:

History of Art

You'll choose one intermediate seminar module (20 credits) in the Autumn Term. You'll typically have around 5 options to choose from. Recent examples include:

In the Spring Term, you'll either choose a further intermediate seminar module (20 credits), or a Museology and Curatorship module (20 credits).

Recent intermediate seminar options have included:

You'll also complete a dissertation training module (20 credits), building the skills you'll need when you embark on your dissertation in the third year. You'll develop your ability to work independently and design imaginative research strategies. You'll learn to how to devise a topic for your dissertation and gain crucial insight into conducting academic research.

Year 3

Your final year will be all about preparing your final dissertation, which bridges the two subjects you will have studied. You'll also be introduced to the latest research in both fields.

You'll complete a dissertation spanning both History and History of Art:

History

You'll choose a Special Subject module in History (40 credits), typically from around 16 options. These are an advanced, source-based course on specific historical topic, taught through seminars.

History of Art

You'll also choose a Special Subject module in History of Art (40 credits). You can choose to study this in either the Autumn or over the Spring and Summer Term. There are around five options per term.

Please note, modules may change to reflect the latest academic thinking and expertise of our staff.

Learning by design

Every course at York has been designed to provide clear and ambitious learning outcomes. These learning outcomes give you an understanding of what you will be able to do at the end of the course. We develop each course by designing modules that grow your abilities towards the learning outcomes and help you to explain what you can offer to employers. Find out more about our approach to teaching and learning.

Students who complete this course will be able to:

  • Communicate knowledge of past societies and their art and architecture, employing different conceptual, theoretical and methodological approaches to understanding the past and its visual legacies. 
  • Take a critical and questioning approach to existing interpretations of textual and visual sources, and assess the value and significance of texts and visual and material culture. 
  • Contextualise visual material in order to explore its meanings and significance while also using this material to extend our understandings of a particular time and place. 
  • Make connections and comparisons between the ideas, cultures and societies of different time periods and places around the world.
  • Carry out an original and independent investigative project using textual and visual sources, including identifying relevant primary material, developing methodologies, interpreting sources in context and constructing meaningful research questions. 
  • Convey complex ideas with clarity and precision and make sophisticated and persuasive arguments based on both visual and textual evidence.
  • Work well both independently and in collaboration with others, managing time effectively, meeting deadlines and taking an analytical approach to extending their own knowledge and skills.

Fees and funding

The fees and funding figures below are for 2019 entry. If you take a year abroad or year in industry you'll pay a reduced rate of fees for that year.

Annual tuition fees

UK/EU International
£9,250 £17,120

UK/EU or international fees? The level of fee that you will be asked to pay depends on whether you're classed as a UK, EU or international student.

Fees for subsequent years

  • UK/EU: further increases within the government fee cap will apply in subsequent academic years. We will notify you of any increase as soon as we can.
  • International: fees for international students are subject to annual increases. Increases are currently capped at 2% per annum.

More information

For more information about tuition fees, any reduced fees for study abroad and work placement years, scholarships, tuition fee loans, maintenance loans and living costs see undergraduate fees and funding.

Funding

We offer a number of scholarships to help cover tuition fees and living costs.

Home/EU students

International students

Living costs

You can use our living costs guide to help plan your budget. It covers additional costs that are not included in your tuition fee such as expenses for accommodation and study materials.

Teaching Excellence Framework Gold Award

“Students from all backgrounds achieve consistently outstanding outcomes”

The TEF Panel, Office for Students, June 2018

Our Gold Teaching Excellence Framework award demonstrates our commitment to the delivery of consistently outstanding teaching and learning for our students.

Teaching and assessment

You’ll work with world‐leading academics who’ll challenge you to think independently and excel in all that you do. Our approach to teaching will provide you with the knowledge, opportunities, and support you need to grow and succeed in a global workplace. Find out more about our approach to teaching and learning.

Teaching format

At every stage of your degree, we're committed to research-led teaching. We emphasise engagement over memorising facts. That's why we include seminars, discussion groups, specialist workshops and field trips in our curriculum.

  • In seminars and the weekly discussion groups that accompany lectures, tutors work closely with groups of 10-16 students.
  • All History modules use online materials in a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE).

Overall workload

As a guide, students on this course typically spend their time as follows:

Year 1Year 2Year 3
Lectures and seminars192 hours144 hours108 hours

The figures above are based on data from 2016/17.

The rest of your time on the course will be spent on independent study. This may include preparation for lectures and seminars, follow-up work, wider reading, practice completion of assessment tasks, or revision.

Everyone learns at a different rate, so the number of hours will vary from person to person. In UK higher education the expectation is that full-time students will spend 1200 hours a year learning.

Teaching location

You will be based in both the Department of History on Campus West.

Most of your teaching will be in Vanbrugh College. Your remaining contact hours will take place in other locations on Campus West.

About our campus

Our beautiful green campus offers a student-friendly setting in which to live and study, within easy reach of the action in the city centre. It's easy to get around campus - everything is within walking or pedalling distance, or you can always use the fast and frequent bus service.

Assessment and feedback

Your first-year work doesn't contribute toward your final marks. We recognise that students are only beginning to develop over the course of their degree. 

From Year 2 onward, formal assessments contribute toward your degree. In your third year, your 10,000-word dissertation focuses on a specific topic of your choice.

  • Before formal assessment in many modules, you'll write a procedural or practice essay. You will receive extensive written feedback on this essay, which will help you in your formal assessment.
  • Assessments range from research essays, to collaborative projects, to open 'take-home' examinations.
  • Your dissertation should be a topic that is interesting to you. Don't be afraid to explore.

Percentage of the course typically assessed by coursework and exams

Year 1Year 2Year 3
Written exams54%40%47%
Coursework44%57%50%
Practical exams2%3%3%

The figures above are based on data from 2016/17.

Careers and skills

History and History of Art graduates are valued in the workplace for their ability to take the lead in project work and undertake independent research. They are critical thinkers, highly skilled in the evaluation of visual and written material, and creative communicators of their ideas. 

Career opportunities

Our graduates have gone on to work in sectors such as:

  • Museum curatorship
  • Journalism
  • Law
  • Diplomacy and government
  • Media
  • Arts administration
  • Teaching

Transferable skills

You'll develop a range of transferable skills including:

  • critical thinking
  • sophisticated verbal and written skills
  • independent research skills
  • analysis of a variety of media
  • time management

Entry requirements

Qualification Typical offer
A levels

AAB, including A in either History or Classical Civilisation

  • We don't accept A levels in General Studies.
Access to Higher Education Diploma Obtain Access to HE Diploma with 36 credits at Distinction including at least 9 credits in History-related units and 6 credits at Merit or higher.
BTEC BTEC National Extended Diploma (QCF): DDD. We accept a range of BTEC qualifications equivalent to 3 A Levels. An additional A Level or equivalent qualification in either History or Classical Civilisation is required alongside any BTEC qualification.
Cambridge Pre-U D3, D3, M2 in three Principal Subjects, including D3 in History
European Baccalaureate 80 per cent overall, including 85 per cent in History
International Baccalaureate 35 points, with a Grade 6 in History at Higher Level
Irish leaving Certificate H2,H2,H2,H2,H3,H3, H1 in History
Scottish Highers / Advanced Highers AAAAB at Higher Level
AB at Advanced Higher Level, including an A in History
EPQ

We recognise the value of this qualification although it will not be included as a condition of entry. It may be taken into consideration when you receive your results.

English language

IELTS
6.5 with a minimum of 5.5 in all units

Pearson (Academic PTE)
61 overall with 51 in all parts

Cambridge Advanced English (CAE)
Grade A

Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English
Grade C

Applying

To apply to York, you will need to complete an online application via UCAS (the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service).

All applications must be made through UCAS. We look for intellectual curiosity, open-mindedness, and analytical ability.

We usually only interview mature candidates and candidates with special circumstances and/or qualifications.

Next steps

Contact us

Get in touch if you have any questions

Learn more

Department of History, Department of History of Art

Related courses

Discover York

Accommodation

We offer a range of campus accommodation to suit you and your budget, from economy to deluxe.

Student life

Explore campus and city life and hear what our current students have to say about living here.

The city

Lively, full of culture and beautiful, York is regularly voted one of the best places to live and visit in the UK.