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Undergraduate study

V100 BA/His (V104 BA/HisFY for Year 0 entry)


Course overview

The BA (Hons) History degree course at Teesside University allows you to explore a broad range of historical themes and periods. You can also focus on a particular area of study, such as modern and contemporary European history, the ancient world, social and cultural history, early modern history and modern Irish history.

To understand the present fully, we must look to the past. History is concerned with how the world came to be the way it is, and why. It is one of the most popular, respected and enduring academic disciplines. You get an overview of history from ancient civilisations to contemporary history. You develop your understanding of the nature of historical enquiry, including the relationships between sources, theory and interpretation. During your degree course, you acquire key transferable skills including critical thinking, and verbal and written communication – all highly valued by employers.


Course details

Year 1 introduces you to the practice of history. In Year 2 you develop your historical knowledge and research skills. In your final year you extend your historical knowledge and skills, taking a much greater responsibility for your own learning.

The degree programme is structured in such a way that after Year 1 you may choose either to study modules from a broad range of historical themes and periods, or to select options which enable you to focus on one particular area of study, such as:

  • modern and contemporary European history
  • social and cultural history
  • modern Irish history.
  • the ancient world

Course structure

Year 0 (foundation year) core modules

Academic Study Skills Toolkit

This module will assist you in developing the personal and academic skills that you will need for undergraduate study. It focusses on developing skills such as information retrieval, evaluation, critical thinking, note taking, presentation skills and group work.

Contemporary Issues in Social Sciences

This module will introduce you to the historical and contemporary development of social science disciplines and will provide examples of theoretical challenges and the ways in which research is applied in society. You will gain an understanding of the critical differences between disciplines and how interdisciplinary research is fostered through collaboration. You will also be introduced to academic standards, ethical guidelines and research protocols, personal development planning and to a range of study and transferable skills relevant to your degree course and beyond.

Fake News: Propaganda and Polemics, Past and Present

This module provides you with the opportunity to develop your skills in thinking critically about the information and analysis presented in an array of media in today’s digital world, drawing on the methodologies of a range of disciplines within the social sciences, humanities and law. You will explore examples of the debates over fake news in both the past and present, and look at how fake news can be used to both support and undermine the status quo, enabling you in the process to become more savvy and engaged citizens.

Historical and Popular Crime, Justice, Law and Psychology

This module introduces you to the history of crime and justice, using media representations and crime fiction as a way of exploring crime over time, including aspects such as changes in society, law and education in this context.


This module allows students to identify an area of interest related to their undergraduate degree and to explore this through a small scale research project where students will be required to produce an analysis of an area of focus.

Teesside: History, Literature, Culture, and Society

This module provides you with an opportunity to adopt an interdisciplinary approach to the Teesside region. You will learn about Teesside’s history, culture and society through the examination of various topics which will give you a deeper understanding of the region, both past and present.


Year 1 core modules

English Reformation, 1520-1560

This core module provides a foundation for all level 5 and 6 modules in late-medieval and early modern history. It offers an intensive study of one of the major turning points in English and European history: the revolution in church and state, known as the English Reformation, which took place in 16th century.

European History 1850-1918

The period between 1850 and 1918 can be characterised as an era of political, social, economic and cultural transformation. This module provides a survey of these developments, examining industrialisation, population growth, urbanisation and the emergence of mass politics. It was also a period of change in terms of international politics, with the creation of new states, such as Italy, Germany and Romania, and the rise of the new imperialism. These developments contributed to the tensions that led to the outbreak of the First World War in 1914, a conflict that would destroy much of the pre-war order.

European History 1917-1991

The period between 1917 and 1991 was characterised by a struggle between competing political, economic and social systems. This module surveys these struggles. Consideration is given to the emergence of authoritarian and totalitarian dictatorships in interwar Europe, above all in Italy, Germany, Spain and the USSR. Following the defeat of fascism in the Second World War, the Cold War led to the division of Europe into two mutually hostile blocs with fundamentally different political, economic and social systems. And within each bloc institutions were developed to allow for military and economic integration: North Atlantic Treaty Organization, European Coal and Steel Community, European Economic Community in the west, Warsaw Treaty Organization and Council for Mutual Economic Assistance in the east. The communist Eastern bloc collapsed in the revolutions of 1989 and the USSR finally ceased to exist at the end of 1991. The module ends with an overview of developments since 1991.

Twentieth-century Britain

The module provides an overview of Britain during the 20th century, from the tensions and reforms of the Edwardian era to the age of Margaret Thatcher. It takes a largely chronological approach, emphasising the impact of two world wars on British politics and society, the implications of the introduction of the welfare state and Keynesian economic policies during the consensus period, and the shift towards neo-liberal forms of governance in the late 20th century. At the same time the module emphasises longer-term trends such as the growth of the state; secularisation; immigration; and the emergence of new personal freedoms, particularly for women.

Victorian Britain

The module examines the history of Britain in a period of rapid social, cultural, political and economic change. As the first industrial nation at the hub of an expanding global empire, Britain experienced unprecedented growth in terms of both the population and the urban environment, producing extremes of wealth and poverty. The module explores the incomplete and contested processes which saw the emergence of a modern class society by the end of 19th century, using themes such as democratisation, the emancipation of women, the development of commercialised leisure and the declining but still vibrant role of the Christian churches in society.


and one optional module

Ancient Greece: History, Culture and Society

This module offers you an introduction to social and cultural history by studying the ancient Greek world of the 5th and 4th centuries BC. As culture is a multi-dimensional phenomenon the module examines many aspects of it in the ancient Greek context. You consider politics, material culture such as buildings and sculpture, technologies, city life, religion morality, gender relationships, education, intellectual life, literature and drama.

Fault Lines: US Politics Since 1974

Politics in the United States are more divided now than they have been for quite some time – or so goes a popular theory. This module explores the factors that have led to the current political situation in the US, where republicans and democrats are embroiled in a political struggle and culture war that centres on issues surrounding women’s rights, immigration, healthcare, climate change and science, taxation, the media, the powers of Congress, and the presidency. It examines the idea that the divisions among the political elite and most politically-active are mirrored within US society as a whole.

The Making of Modern Ireland

An introduction to the political, social, cultural and economic history of modern Ireland, and the major debates in the historiography of modern Ireland. Particular stress is placed on the revisionist controversy, a debate about the relationship between professional historiography and popular perceptions of Irish history. The module looks at a number of key events and themes in modern Irish history including the 1798 Rebellion, Act of Union, Great Famine, Land War, Anglo-Irish relations, emigration, nationalism, unionism and partition.


Year 2 core modules

War and Society 1

You explore the impact of the First World War on the societies of the major combatants. You explore how the world’s first total war influenced social change, either by accelerating or preventing it, and whether any social changes that occurred due to the war had lasting effects. It does all this in a transnational and comparative framework.

War and Society 2

You explore the relationship between war and social change by conducting a case study of a particular war as part of a small group, working under the supervision of a tutor. This module emphasises group work and presentation skills, as well as individual writing.


and four optional modules

Careers for Historians

This module provides you with an opportunity to enhance the skills and personal attributes that help with employability after graduation. You have the opportunity to undertake a work-based project with an employer or a voluntary organisation. These organisations may be related to the heritage and/or public history sector, but are not restricted to this category. The placement, which will last for up to six weeks, must be recognised as providing an experience that corresponds to graduate employment. You are assessed by a written self-reflective exercise evaluating your work-based project demonstrating your enhanced transferable skills. In addition you present your work-based project verbally in an assessed practice interview.

Chaucer's England

This module examines life and society in 14th-century England using a modern verse translation of Geoffrey Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales as its key text. We explore some of the central themes that recur in the tales – youth and old age; religion and the church; courtly and bawdy behaviour; relationships between men and women – and consider how these themes might be used to interpret aspects of late-medieval life. We will also consider other survivals from the period, including literary works like The Vision of Piers Plowman, The Book of Margery Kempe, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight and The Paston Letters; the architecture of religious buildings; art; and elements of landscape and townscape, as we attempt to discover how far The Canterbury Tales might be said to mirror the age in which they were written.

From Easter Monday to Good Friday: Radicalism in Ireland, 1916-1998

This module examines the development of radical political ideas in Ireland in the 20th century, and their impact on Irish society. You look at the development and course of ideologies such as nationalism, republicanism, unionism, socialism, feminism and loyalism; analyse the individuals and movements that sought to pursue these ideas; and assess the nature of their impact throughout Irish society as whole.

Labour Pains: The Rise (and Fall?) of the Labour Party Since 1945

This module examines the rise of the Labour Party from the formation of its first majority government in 1945 up to the challenges the facing the party in the present day. It will explore the history of the Labour Party by analysing ideological development of the party both inside and outside of government, whilst also considering Labour’s relationships with its membership, trade unions and the public. You will enhance your skills and knowledge of using primary sources through the exploration of party manifestos, conference proceedings, polling data and key speeches. Through the study of Labour from Attlee to Corbyn this module will examine the successes and failures of the party alongside an analysis of the shift to (and later away from) New Labour and the challenges facing the party in the modern day.

North-Eastern England, 1500-1700

This module examines political and religious conflicts and changes in north-eastern England by focusing on the rising of the northern earls in 1569 and the civil wars of the 1640s. It will also concentrate on the dramatic rise of the coal trade, especially in the 1580s and 90s, and its impact on north-eastern society. And it will review the traditional notion of the north-eastern counties as isolated and backward. You explore these elements in relation with one another to try and arrive at a broad understanding of this particular corner of the kingdom.

Patronage, Popery and Power in the Age of Pepys

This module will examine post-restoration England through the eyes of Samuel Pepys. His diary provides a social and political commentary on the later Stuart monarchy. You will study the content for the Restoration; the Royal Society, Fire of London and reconstruction of the city, court politics, the cult of the Royal mistress, religious conflict, parliamentary ambitions, naval expansion and Royal absolutism.

Rome: from Foundation to Fall

This module will examine Roman history, culture, art, philosophy and literature from the mythical foundations of the city of Rome in 753 BC, through the Punic Wars with Carthage, the Social Wars and Civil Wars of the Late Roman Republic up to the establishment of the Roman Empire under Augustus and to the end of the Julio-Claudian Dynasty. Quarter will be given to the later Empire and its decline and dissolution in the 4th/5th centuries AD. We shall consider how the Romans viewed their own history, society and destiny through primary sources illuminated by contemporary historiography. We shall look carefully at the works of Roman historians, poets and philosophers as well as art and architecture, taking into account Hellenistic Greek influences on all of these. Relevant areas under consideration will include ancient Europe and the Mediterranean as well as North Africa and the Near East. The student will gain a greater understanding of Roman history in general as well as, more specifically, social and material culture of this ancient civilisation that so greatly influenced subsequent history in the West and beyond.

Russian Revolution

This module analyses an event of world-historical proportions and its aftermath: the Russian Revolution. Focusing on the origins, development and socio-political aftermath, this module pays close attention to the course of the revolutions in Russia (later the Soviet Union) at the end of the Tsarist regime, under Lenin, and then under Stalin. It charts the revolutionary changes engendered by the ‘dictatorship of the proletariat’ in the USSR and its subsequent effects on global politics.

Sport and Leisure in 19th-century Britain

This module explores the modernisation of sport and leisure in Britain in the second half of the 19th century. It examines the social, economic and political forces that led to the codification of sport and greater regulation of leisure during this period. It was common practice to depict sporting activities as enhancing the character as well as physical wellbeing. Sport was seen as a way of fostering the practices and principles that matched the needs of imperial and modernising societies. You consider the ways in which gender, social class and education determined how leisure time was spent and explore the ways in which industrialisation and commercialism impacted on the built sporting landscape.

Terrorism and Political Violence


Final-year core modules


An opportunity for you to engage in a piece of advanced historical research. It prepares you for the workplace by enabling you to apply all the skills you have acquired and developed during the course of the history degree. You prepare a presentation to be delivered and discussed in a professional manner which will satisfy the knowledge exchange agenda and provide interview experience. A final individual project – comprising an abstract and culminating in an extended piece of historical enquiry that engages with primary sources and/or the historiography in the manner of a scholarly article –demonstrates your research skills, reflexivity and overall intellectual maturity.

History in Depth

This core module is designed to build on skills developed in the core modules – War and Society and Explorations in History – at Level 5. You choose from an extensive portfolio of options across a broad geographical and temporal range offered by experts in the field to undertake an in-depth study of a particular theme or period in history based on an increased focus and engagement with primary source material. Accordingly, you are encouraged to develop your own research skills as well as enhancing your historiographical capacity to emerge as critical, creative and confident graduates.


and two optional modules

Images of Alexander

This module examines the life, historical circumstances and historiographical debates surrounding Alexander III of Macedon (Alexander the Great) and considers his contemporary and later reception in art, literature, media and popular culture. We attempt to separate the man from the myth while examining the contrasting views expressed in primary and secondary sources. But we are also interested in the image of Alexander and the impact that it has had, and still has, on successive generations. Analysis of primary historical texts figure prominently into this module as do the historiographical issues presented by the study of this extraordinary individual. The module also entails historical material from North Africa, Middle East, India and Afghanistan and so has global and international applications.

Napoleon: Emperor and Legend

This module examines how Napoleon forged an empire that dominated Europe as well as his own legend and well as the impact of that legend on 19th-century France. You use a wide range of primary sources, from the Emperor’s own letters, declarations and memoirs, to cartoons and pamphlets published abroad in opposition to him, to works of art produced for him and about him after his death. Themes include the formation of the Napoleonic Empire, creation of the Napoleonic legend, the legend after Napoleon’s death, and the Black Legend created by Napoleon’s enemies.

Nazism and the Holocaust

The module provides an overview on a major issue of world history that continues to generate general interest, historical debate and controversy. It raises questions of chronological sequence, of particular events and their origins, and of differing perspectives for the same series of documented historical events. It considers how historians have recounted and explained the Holocaust. The first part of the module considers the evolution of Nazi racial policy through the accession of Hitler and the Nazis to power, the growth of anti-Semitic policies in Germany and Austria in the middle and late 1930s, the impact of war and of the administration of Poland on policies and practices, to full blown genocide with the invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941. You also cover recent historical interpretations of the underlying motives and timings of these developments. The second portion shifts from perpetrator policy to Jewish reactions and subsequent debates by historians.

Spain in Conflict: The Spanish Civil War

This module examines the origins of the Spanish Civil War (1936-39), distinguishing between long-term structural causes and more immediate causes. You discuss the reaction of the international powers and the reasons for, and implications of, intervention by Germany, Italy and the Soviet Union; as well as the reasons for British and French non-intervention. It charts the course of the conflict; the politics and power struggles of the opposing sides (Nationalist/Republican); the contribution of foreign volunteers; and the political consequences, both domestically and internationally, of Nationalist victory. Finally, you consider the legacy of the war on Spanish society.

The Early Stuart Age, 1603-1660

This module focuses on England in the period between 1603 and 1642 from a variety of angles. It looks at the legacy of Elizabeth Tudor, the accession of James Stuart and the ramifications of ruling multiple kingdoms. You consider the structure of early Stuart government from the perspective of the crown and the localities. You explore relations between varieties of Protestantism and Roman Catholicism, particularly regarding their impact on society. England's place in the wider European context is traced, especially its involvement in the Thirty Years’ War. The reign of James I is contrasted with that of Charles I. Finally, you examine the causes of the English Civil War in relation to ongoing debates in the long-term and current historiography.

The Troubles

The politics of the past have been violently contested in Northern Ireland. This module addresses the specific problems that face historians of a divided society. It discusses historiography and assesses the reliability of primary and secondary source material at times of crisis. The Troubles were televised and reported across the world. You look at the importance of representation and propaganda. And you examine in detail the outbreak and development of conflict by employing a variety of sources including official reports and correspondences, newspapers, pamphlets, posters, memoirs, film and television programmes.

Voices from the Street: Popular Culture 1920-1970

You examine oral history as a research method for historians. You are introduced to a broader understanding of what constitutes history – who is written for and why? You examine theoretical and influential case study texts to develop an understanding of how collecting eye-witness accounts of historical periods and events has transformed the scope of historical research on a broad range of themes in society including childhood, family, working lives, culture, race and immigration, and politics.

There is an oral history research component to this module. You work as part of a group on a topic relating to life in the North East of England in the post-1945 era. Possible examples include working lives, industrial decline, youth culture, gender and class, ethnic and religious identity. You develop your knowledge and understanding of an aspect of 20th-century social history. You also develop your knowledge of oral history by conducting interviews and analysing transcripts of those conducted by others in the class.


Modules offered may vary.


How you learn

The course makes use of a variety of teaching methods including classes, lectures, seminars, tutorials and group work.

How you are assessed

Modules are continuously assessed so that you receive regular feedback to help you improve your skills and abilities. Methods of assessment include essays, critical reviews, small group presentations, bibliographical exercises, primary source evaluation, conventional and seen examinations.

Our Disability Services team provide an inclusive and empowering learning environment and have specialist staff to support disabled students access any additional tailored resources needed. If you have a specific learning difficulty, mental health condition, autism, sensory impairment, chronic health condition or any other disability please contact a Disability Services as early as possible.
Find out more about our disability services

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Entry requirements

Entry requirements

A typical offer is 96-112 tariff points from at least two A levels (or equivalent).

For entry to Year 0 (Foundation Year) a typical offer is 32-64 tariff points and above from at least two A levels (or equivalent), and GCSE grade 4 (grade C) or equivalent in English and maths.

For additional information please see our entry requirements

International applicants can find out what qualifications they need by visiting Your Country

You can gain considerable knowledge from work, volunteering and life. Under recognition of prior learning (RPL) you may be awarded credit for this which can be credited towards the course you want to study.
Find out more about RPL



Career opportunities

A variety of career paths will be open to you, including law, accountancy, social work, librarianship, journalism, public relations, teaching, retail management and local government work.


Information for international applicants


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Entry to 2020/21 academic year

Fee for UK/EU applicants
£9,250 a year

More details about our fees

Fee for international applicants
£13,000 a year

More details about our fees for international applicants

What is included in your tuition fee?

  • Length: 3 years or 4 years with a foundation year
  • UCAS code: V100 BA/His
    V104 BA/HisFY for Year 0 entry
  • Semester dates
  • Typical offer: 96-112 tariff points

Apply online (full-time) through UCAS



2020 entry

Fee for UK/EU applicants
£4,500 (120 credits)

More details about our fees

  • Length: Up to 6 years
  • Attendance: Daytime
  • Enrolment date: September
  • Semester dates

Apply online (part-time)



Teesside University library has an impressive collection of relevant material which is continually renewed. Study history and you can access the North East Film Archive and a comprehensive Green Archive.


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