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BA (Hons) History

Studying our past to reveal the future

Year of entry: 2020

UCAS code

V100

Institution code

Y50

Length

3 years full-time (plus optional placement year)

Typical offer

AAA-A*AB (full entry requirements)

Start date

September 2020 (term dates)

UK/EU fees

£9,250 per year (2020/21)

International fees

£17,890 per year (2020/21)

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History gives you an in-depth view of the world. It enhances your understanding of the forces that play a part in economies, societies, cultures, power and faith.

Historians are critical readers of evidence. They understand how to construct knowledge. They're quick to recognise context. And they're adept at constructing engaging arguments and proposing alternative solutions.

Study in detail the topics that interest you, as well as exploring themes which span across the centuries. With more than 45 academic staff, the breadth and quality of the modules we offer will ensure that you'll find your niche.

World top 50

We're a world top 50 department (QS World Rankings) and 7th in the UK (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020).

A huge range of modules

Our courses cross the globe and take in nearly two thousand years of history, from the fall of Rome to the present day.

Course content

The BA in History progresses from broad to specialised topics. Core modules in the first year introduce you to the broad sweep of history across time and place and historical problems. You develop this in the following years, which cultivate expertise, leading up to your 10,000-word dissertation

Study abroad

There are opportunities for you to spend time abroad during your course:

Year 1

Your first year will introduce the study of History at a degree level. You'll develop research skills and study prominent periods of interest.

Core modules

Option modules

  • Period Topic (20 credits): choose one from around 15 options which may change from year to year.

Academic integrity module

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

Year 2

Your second year will be about preparing for your final dissertation and reports. You'll begin to design your project and learn how to use the tools needed to complete it. You'll also broaden your knowledge on a particular theme or period.

Core modules

Option modules

  • Histories and Contexts: choose two modules (20 credits each), typically from around eight options.
  • Explorations: choose two modules (30 credits each), typically from around 18 options.

Year 3

In your final year of the BA in History, you'll participate in Special Subject seminars focusing in depth on a historical process or problem. You'll also complete your dissertation, demonstrating the research skills you have learned during your time here.

Core module

Option modules

  • Comparative module (40 credits): choose one from around 12 options; these will allow you to examine an important theme in a comparative historical and geographical context.
  • Special Subject module (40 credits): choose one from around 16 options; these are an advanced, source-based course on specific historical topic, taught through seminars.

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 broad and deep understandings of historical scholarship, ranging from the medieval to the modern period, and a sophisticated appreciation of the origin and use of different approaches to interpreting the past.
  • Approach problems in a critical and questioning fashion, including the evaluation of the arguments of others and the assessment of the value and significance of different forms of evidence.
  • Analyse complexity by engaging with a range of perspectives, making comparisons and connections between different periods, places and societies, and assessing the relative importance of different factors that have shaped an event.
  • Demonstrate highly developed research skills, including identifying useful material, understanding sources in context, producing a research methodology and constructing meaningful and productive research questions
  • Have the versatility to interpret and deploy a variety of different types of information including digital resources, material culture, visual imagery, texts, databases and statistical information
  • Convey ideas with clarity and precision in both written and verbal form and make sophisticated, original and persuasive arguments based on evidence, including the production of an extended piece of writing.
  • Know how to extend their own knowledge and skills and manage their time effectively so that they can successfully execute a programme of work, alone or in a group, or lead a project without supervision
  • Use awareness of the multiple processes, issues and events that have shaped the modern world at both the local and global level to contribute to their communities and workplaces with an appreciation of the origins and value of diversity and difference.

Fees and funding

Annual tuition fees

UK/EU International
£9,250 £17,890

Additional costs

You will have to pay for the cost of printing some assignments for submission as assessed work in Years 2 and 3.

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'll confirm more funding opportunities for students joining us in 2020/21 throughout the year.

Department funding

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 study and learn with academics who are active researchers, experts in their field and have a passion for their subjects. 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

We believe that students learn better – and think better – when engaging with others. 

Small group teaching remains at the core of our BA in History, rising to 100 per cent in Year 3. Our tutors work closely with small student groups in seminars and weekly discussions. 

Timetabled activities

In your first year, you can expect:

Lectures4 hours per week
Seminars4 hours per week

These figures are based on an average student in an average week. Your contact hours will vary throughout the year due to your module choices, non-compulsory classes, exam periods and changes to scheduled activities.

Around your timetabled hours you'll work independently guided by your tutor. History students are the University's most frequent users of the library. You may spend time working with primary sources, accessing archives or working with academic librarians. The skills of independent research and analysis that you develop will not only be pivotal for your course but are also highly valued by employers.

You may also take part in extra activities such as our seminar series featuring visiting speakers and our own staff and students. All faculty members also offer regular student hours in which students are free come in and discuss any issues relating to their courses, career and development.

In the UK, full-time students are expected to spend 1,200 hours a year learning. That's about 40 hours of classes and independent study each week during term time. Everyone learns at a different rate, so the number of hours you spend on independent study will be different to other students on your course.

Teaching location

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

Over half of your teaching will take place in the Spring Lane building on campus. Other seminars and lectures will take place in buildings across 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.

  • 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 exams42%8%33%
Coursework58%92%67%

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

Careers and skills

Some 60 per cent of our graduates are in employment six months after completion of their studies. Many of our students also move on to postgraduate study.

Career opportunities

Our graduates have gone on to work in the following sectors:

  • Education
  • Law
  • Social work and justice
  • Politics and government
  • Finance
  • Media
  • Business, commerce and public relations

Transferable skills

York History students graduate with a wide range of valuable transferable skills. These include:

  • critical thinking
  • excellent communication skills
  • project management
  • independent, high-level research skills
  • ability to work with a variety of media and sources
  • time management
I like teaching courses that are based on my own research, such as the Explorations modules in Year 2 and the Special Subject in Year 3, which make me consider my research topics in a new light.
Henrice Altink
Senior Lecturer in Modern History

Entry requirements

Qualification Typical offer
A levels

AAA/A*AB including an A in either History or Classical Civilisation

Access to Higher Education Diploma Obtain Access to HE Diploma with 39 credits at Distinction including at least 9 credits in History-related units and 6 credits at Merit or higher
BTEC National Extended Diploma DDD with an additional A Level or equivalent qualification in either History or Classical Civilisation at grade A
Cambridge Pre-U D3, D3, D3 including History
European Baccalaureate 85% overall, including 85% in History
International Baccalaureate 36 points including Grade 6 in History at Higher Level
Other international qualifications Equivalent qualifications from your country

Alternative offers

Meeting the following additional criteria may qualify you for an alternative offer.

Criteria Adjustment
Widening participation If you successfully complete one of the following programmes, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to one A level grade (or equivalent) below our typical offer: Next Step York, Realising Opportunities. More about widening participation.
Contextual offers If you have experience of local authority care or live in an area with low progression to university, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to two A level grades (or equivalent) below our typical offer. More about contextual offers.
EPQ If you achieve A or higher at EPQ, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to one A level grade (or equivalent) below our typical offer.

English language

If English isn't your first language you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. We accept the following qualifications:

Qualification Minimum requirement
IELTS 6.5, with a minimum of 6.0 in each component
PTE Academic 61, with a minimum of 55 in each component
GCSE/IGCSE/O level English Language (as a first or second language) Grade C
C1 Advanced and C2 Proficiency 176, with a minimum of 169 in each component
TOEFL 87 overall, with a minimum of 21 in each component
Trinity ISE III Merit in all components
Duolingo Minimum overall score of 110

For more information see our undergraduate English language requirements.

If you've not met our English language requirements

You may be eligible for one of our pre-sessional English language courses. These courses will provide you with the level of English needed to meet the conditions of your offer.

The length of course you need to take depends on your current IELTS scores and how much you need to improve to reach our English language requirements.

After you've accepted your offer to study at York, we'll confirm which pre-sessional course you should apply to via You@York.

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 also consider applications for deferred entry and requests, after taking up an offer, to take a gap year.

We encourage mature students to email the Admissions Tutor for consultation and advice.

Next steps

Contact us

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Department of History

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