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Study information

Programme Specification for the 2023/4 academic year

BA (Hons) History

1. Programme Details

Programme nameBA (Hons) History Programme codeUFA3HPSHPSCF
Study mode(s)Full Time
Part Time
Academic year2023/4
Campus(es)Cornwall Campus
NQF Level of the Final Award6 (Honours)

2. Description of the Programme

This degree programme brings historical focus to a range of issues and challenges facing societies today. It equips you with the critical skills required in History to understand the power of the past in shaping the present and how we think about the future. You will study how History leads to a better understanding of the historical context of modern issues such as globalisation, ethnic conflict, migration and displacement, scientific and technological change, and the climate and environmental crisis. You will study the forces of state-building, empire, modernity, colonialism, racism and capitalism over time and across geographical space. You will investigate patterns of continuity as well as change and how new, interdisciplinary approaches including histories of place, everyday life, sexuality and postcolonialism have brought complexity and nuance to the interpretation of the main events and transformations found in orthodox histories. Not only will you become confident in analysing and challenging traditional theories and assumptions, you will also develop critical skills in archival research and interpretation.

As with all our History degrees, research is integral to our work as a department and members of staff are nationally and internationally recognised for the intellectual contributions, research activities and publications they have made in their fields. Our expertise is concentrated in the modern period, from the sixteenth century to the present day, incorporating social and cultural history, political and intellectual history, local and global history across a range of geographical areas, including the Far and Middle East, Europe, Ireland and Britain and the Americas. You will benefit from the insights given by staff working at the interface of other disciplines including the political, social and environmental sciences. You will benefit from world-class research-led teaching and will join a close-knit community of scholars and students.

You will study public history and engage in employability opportunities including work experience with museums, galleries, heritage institutions and similar organisations. From your first-year of study, lecturers and tutors will help you to gain a range of research and transferable skills including independent research, critical approaches to narrative and interpretation, verbal and written communication, and collaborative working.

3. Educational Aims of the Programme

1. Offer you an excellent Honours-level education in History.
2. Introduce you to a wide range of historical problems and the main analytical and critical approaches of the discipline.
3. Produce graduates who can engage imaginatively in the process of understanding and analysing complex and sophisticated problems in the discipline by critical approaches that blend detailed and broad levels of analysis.
4. Develop independent critical thinking and judgement.
5. Foster a range of academic and personal skills necessary for further study or employment after your degree.

This programme is intended to help you develop your research and analytical skills required in History through a structured framework of study.

The programme aims to:

4. Programme Structure

5. Programme Modules

The following tables describe the programme and constituent modules. Constituent modules may be updated, deleted or replaced as a consequence of the annual programme review of this programme.

You may take optional modules as long as any necessary prerequisites have been satisfied, where the timetable allows and if you have not already taken the module in question or an equivalent module.

You may take elective modules up to 30 credits outside of the programme in any stage of the programme as long as any necessary prerequisites have been satisfied, where the timetable allows and if you have not already taken the module in question or an equivalent module.

Stage 1

90 credits of compulsory modules, 30 credits of optional modules

Compulsory Modules

CodeModule Credits Non-condonable?
HIC1604 New Approaches to History 15No
HIC1602 Crafts of Research and Writing 15No
HIC1603 Public History 15No
HIC1007 People's History: Sources and Skills 15No
HIC1306 World History: Globalisation 15No
HUM1005 Climate Emergency - An Introduction to Environmental Humanities 15No

Optional Modules

CodeModule Credits Non-condonable?
HIC1305 World History: Science, Environment and Sustainability 15No
HIC1605 European History: Politics and Society 15No
HIC1010 Foundations of Environmental Humanities 15No

Stage 2

30 credits of compulsory modules, 90 credits of optional modules


Compulsory Modules

a - You must select either HIC2200 or HUC2002.

CodeModule Credits Non-condonable?
HIC2200 Public History Project [See note a above]30No
HUC2002 Perspectives on Sources: Independent Study Project in the Humanities [See note a above]30No

Optional Modules

CodeModule Credits Non-condonable?
HIC Stage 2 History Option Modules 2023-4
HIC2006 American Slavery since Abolition (1865-to the Present) 15 No
HIC2028 Art and Archaeology in Post-Colonial Nations 15 No
HIC2034 Iron and Steel and Society 15 No
HIC2316 The Occult in Victorian Britain 15 No
HIC2324 Organised Crime in USA 15 No
HUC2012 The Age of Unreason? Modernity and its Discontents 15 No
HUC2013 Enlightenment and the Age of Reason: Philosophy, Politics, Society 15 No
HUC2015 Revolution and Abolition: History and Legacies of the Atlantic Slave Trade 15 No
HUC2016 Rule, Britannia? Politics and Political Thought in Britain and Ireland from the Glorious Revolution to Peterloo 15 No

Stage 3

30 credits of compulsory modules, 90 credits of optional modules

Compulsory Modules

CodeModule Credits Non-condonable?
HIC3040 General Third Year Dissertation 30No

Optional Modules

CodeModule Credits Non-condonable?
HIC Final Stage History Option Modules 2023-4
HIC3004 Hippies: The US Counterculture of the 1960s 30 No
HIC3006 Indigenous Heritage and Belief 30 No
HIC3300 Britain and the Telecommunications Revolution 30 No
HIC3303 The Three Klans: Ethno-Politics in the 19th and 20th Century US 30 No
HIC3313 Gender, Power and Identity in Early Modern England 30 No
HIC3316 The Environment and Everyday Life in Modern Britain 30 No
HIC3513 Landscape, History and Heritage in Britain Since the Sixteenth Century 30 No
HUC3016 Irish Stories: History, Politics, Literature and Heritage 30 No
HUC3045 Myth in the Modern World: From the Classics to Conspiracies 30 No
HUC3048 Writing Nature 30 No

6. Programme Outcomes Linked to Teaching, Learning and Assessment Methods

Intended Learning Outcomes
A: Specialised Subject Skills and Knowledge

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)
On successfully completing this programme you will be able to:
Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs) will be...
...accommodated and facilitated by the following learning and teaching activities (in/out of class):...and evidenced by the following assessment methods:

1. Demonstrate detailed knowledge of core subject areas in History, and a specialised knowledge in certain areas.
2. Demonstrate an understanding of the philosophical problems confronting historians
3. Demonstrate an awareness of approaches taken to historical research; evaluate the professionalism and scholarly value of historical texts; evaluate the reasons for changes in historiographical approaches.
4. Use different types of historical sources; evaluate different and complex types of historical source; use primary sources in a professional manner.
5. Demonstrate an appreciation of the recurring themes in history, tracing the key developments within a topic and relating them to an overall conception of the subject matter.
6. Define a suitable research topic and pursue it to completion.

ILOs 1-5 are developed in stages 1 and 2 of the programme through lectures, seminars, workshops, student study groups and guided archival work. The degree of knowledge and competency in handling the themes and issues of historical study will increase over the course of the programme, culminating in the third year when specialisation is developed in optional modules. Optional modules at second and third year most closely relate to staff research specialisms. Teaching methods vary according to each module. Some modules will be team-taught, others will be taught by individual staff. 


ILO 6 is developed in the Independent Research Methods Project at stage 2 and the Dissertation at stage 3.

Your learning is further developed through engagement with assessments, following guidance from tutors and lecturers and through feedback on work submitted.

The assessment of knowledge and skills is through a combination of presentations and participation in seminars, participation diaries, log-books, web-based assessments, creative portfolios, essays, research projects, and the final year dissertation.

Intended Learning Outcomes
B: Academic Discipline Core Skills and Knowledge

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)
On successfully completing this programme you will be able to:
Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs) will be...
...accommodated and facilitated by the following learning and teaching activities (in/out of class):...and evidenced by the following assessment methods:

7. Answer questions concisely and persuasively both orally and in writing.
8. Apply critical skills in the close, detailed analysis of textual and visual material and material culture.
9. Evaluate critically theoretical models and competing views.
10. Demonstrate an awareness of the basic philosophical questions arising from academic research.
11. Comprehend complex terminology and discourses, and deploy such terminology in a comprehensible manner.
12. Plan, execute and present an extended piece of original research.

These skills are developed throughout the programme in all modules, in lectures, reading groups, workshops, fieldtrips, archival work, placements and seminars. They are further developed in independent study, written work, and oral work (both in presentation, seminar discussion and workshop activities), and reinforced through the range of core and optional modules across all stages.

ILOs 7-9 form the backbone of all modules taken at all stages, but the level of complexity develops according to stage

ILOs 10-11 are developed throughout the programme in lectures, seminars, workshops and continuous assessment.

Intended Learning Outcomes
C: Personal/Transferable/Employment Skills and Knowledge

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)
On successfully completing this programme you will be able to:
Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs) will be...
...accommodated and facilitated by the following learning and teaching activities (in/out of class):...and evidenced by the following assessment methods:

13. Demonstrate critical, creative and independent thinking.
14. Demonstrate confidence and flexibility in identifying and solving complex problems.
15. Demonstrate proficient use of electronic information retrieval and management tools, and access information from a variety of sources.
16. Demonstrate effective interaction within a group.
17. Demonstrate effective self-management (autonomy, time management, self-motivation, self-reflection, seeking and using feedback, personal responsibility, self-criticism).

Personal and key skills are delivered through all modules, and developed in lectures, workshops, study groups, tutorials, archival work, placements and other learning activities throughout the programme.

ILOs 13-15 are developed through the processes of acquiring subject knowledge and core academic skills (see A and B above).

ILO 16 is developed through group work in parts of the syllabus and more generally in group discussions in academic seminars.

ILO 17 is developed by student progression through a learning and teaching programme that is gradually more self-managed and the personal tutor and Personal Development Planning systems. Independent study forms a major part of our learning and teaching programme, most notably in the stage 2 project and the final stage dissertation.

The assessment of these skills is maintained throughout the three-year programme. Through a combination of presentations and participation in seminars, log-books, participation diaries, creative portfolio work, web-based assessments, essays, archival work and projects, group work and final year dissertation or placement.

ILOs 13-15 are assessed primarily through summative and formative essays and other written assignments, assessed presentations, project work, the dissertation and examinations.

ILO 16 is assessed throughout the programme in collaborative assignments and assessed group presentations.

ILOs 16-17 are assessed indirectly throughout the programme, in that where modules require the development of these skills, it would be very difficult to achieve a good mark in the assessments without having developed such skills.

7. Programme Regulations


Full details of assessment regulations for all taught programmes can be found in the TQA Manual, specifically in the Credit and Qualifications Framework, and the Assessment, Progression and Awarding: Taught Programmes Handbook. Additional information, including Generic Marking Criteria, can be found in the Learning and Teaching Support Handbook.

8. College Support for Students and Students' Learning

You will have an academic personal tutor for your entire programme of study who is available at advertised ‘office and feedback hours’. There are induction sessions to orientate you at the start of your programme. A personal tutoring system will operate with regular communication throughout the programme. Academic support will be also be provided by module leaders. You can also make an appointment to see individual teaching staff.

9. University Support for Students and Students' Learning

Please refer to the University Academic Policy and Standards guidelines regarding support for students and students' learning.

10. Admissions Criteria

Undergraduate applicants must satisfy the Undergraduate Admissions Policy of the University of Exeter.

Postgraduate applicants must satisfy the Postgraduate Admissions Policy of the University of Exeter.

Specific requirements required to enrol on this programme are available at the respective Undergraduate or Postgraduate Study Site webpages.

11. Regulation of Assessment and Academic Standards

Each academic programme in the University is subject to an agreed College assessment and marking strategy, underpinned by institution-wide assessment procedures.

The security of assessment and academic standards is further supported through the appointment of External Examiners for each programme. External Examiners have access to draft papers, course work and examination scripts. They are required to attend the Board of Examiners and to provide an annual report. Annual External Examiner reports are monitored at both College and University level. Their responsibilities are described in the University's code of practice. See the University's TQA Manual for details.

(Quality Review Framework.

14. Awarding Institution

University of Exeter

15. Lead College / Teaching Institution

Faculty of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (HASS)

16. Partner College / Institution

Partner College(s)

Not applicable to this programme

Partner Institution

Not applicable to this programme.

17. Programme Accredited / Validated by


18. Final Award

BA (Hons) History

19. UCAS Code


20. NQF Level of Final Award

6 (Honours)

21. Credit

CATS credits


ECTS credits


22. QAA Subject Benchmarking Group

[Honours] History

23. Dates

Origin Date


Date of last revision