Study a unique history course in a uniquely historic city. Explore history in all its variety and controversy from the late 15th century to the early 21st century, investigating a range of British and European topics, with additional options available in American and African history, with an emphasis on social and cultural history. Engage with primary and secondary sources to carry out your own in-depth research into the aspects of history that fascinate you the most. And think about how the events and developments of the past continue to shape our present, and inform our future.
On this course you can:
This course will equip you with skills that are easily transferable to the workplace such as effective communication, organisation and teamwork. You will have the qualities to go into a range of careers such as publishing, marketing, PR as well as roles in the business sector.
Here are some routes our graduates have pursued:
I loved the range of subjects that are on offer at the University as well as the expertise of all the lecturers and tutors. They really made my time here worthwhile and enjoyable. The sports facilities are absolutely fantastic and the clubs and societies are really welcoming and they really do make your time here special.
James Clark, BA (Hons) History 2016
Find out what our students say about studying at Portsmouth, including:
You will begin your studies with an introduction to key concepts and topics. You’ll also develop strong analytical and research skills which you will rely on throughout your studies.
Core units in this year include:
In the 2nd and 3rd year of your degree, there is plenty of scope for you to specialise in areas of history that interest you the most. These topics are taught by members of staff who are specialist researchers in the field – so you are taught by the experts! You will investigate the rich historiography of your chosen topic(s), and get hands-on- experience with primary sources. Units will be delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars and workshops, and assessed in a variety of ways (possibly including essays; blogs, presentations, group projects). From a consideration of early modern ‘criminals’ to a debate about the impact of the First World War on gender relations, there is a great range of specialist teaching and learning available!
You might choose specialist units that cover the following themes:
In addition to these specialist units, you will complete a 10,000 word dissertation (research project) of your own. Your topic might be inspired by the specialist teaching you have undertaken, or you might choose to go for a completely different subject. The choice is yours!
Our teaching approach involves lectures, seminars, tutorials and workshops. We will teach you the skills to carry out your own research, follow your own initiative and confidently present your ideas to others.
The time you spend in teaching activities may depend on the units you select. As a guide, students on this course last year typically spent their time as follows:
There is a clear emphasis on working with your peers to discuss ideas for your coursework. We’ll then assess you in a range of ways to allow you to showcase your learning. Here’s how:
The way you’re assessed may depend on the units you select. As a guide, students on this course last year were typically assessed as follows:
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A suite of rooms with a comfy seating area, desks where you can work, printers, Mac workstations and access to the wireless network so you can log in using your own laptop. There are also several study rooms where you can work on group projects, alongside access to the University 3rd Space.
You will be taught by specialist staff who are actively undertaking research in this field, ensuring your learning keeps you abreast of the latest developments. Staff are members of the Centre for European and International Studies Research (CEISR), the UK's largest research centre of its kind.
Modern, comfortable and a great learning environment, our library offers a wealth of information including 400,000 books, DVDs, maps and thousands of online ejournals and newspapers. Many electronic resources are available anywhere, 24/7 and our friendly staff are always on hand to help.
There are extra costs associated with studying, which you will need to consider when planning your expenditure.
If you wish to purchase recommended texts, rather than borrow from the University Library, the average price is £50-£60. You may be studying up to 6 units a year, each with a standard recommended text.
We recommend that you budget £75 a year for costs of photocopying, memory sticks, DVDs and CDs, printing charges, binding and specialist printing.
Final year project:
If your final year includes a major project, there could be cost for transport or accommodation related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose to develop.
There may be travel costs for placements undertaken during your course. This will be in the region of £500.
Traditionally you may link a history graduate with someone who works in a museum, archive or library. However, employers from every area of industry value today’s history graduates. You will leave with the ability to analyse and manage large quantities of information, communicate effectively, research in groups or independently and write in a concise and informative fashion. All highly employable assets.
You’ll also possess a firm foundation to study history at Masters or PhD level should you want to continue with your research.
Roles our graduates have taken on include:
This course allows you to take the Learning From Experience (LiFE) option, which means you can earn credits towards your degree for work, volunteer and research placements that you’re involved in alongside your study.
The School of Social Historical and Literary Studies can offer you a number of work experience opportunities in a range of local organizations during your degree course. Currently these include projects at the National Museum of the Royal Navy and the New Theatre Royal, with local government departments and political groups, and a number of our students have worked on small research projects for the local community.
To make sure you take the right steps on your career path, we’re here to give you help, support and advice throughout your study. Even after you’ve graduated, we continue to give you support for up to five years.
Employers tell us that they want graduates to be able to demonstrate certain skills when they come out of university. Our courses take account of this. We make sure we prepare you for employment through work-related learning, projects, placements and working in simulated environments that are designed to prepare you for the working world.
After graduation there is a considerable amount of careers I could go into. The University helps you develop your career plans and options. I am considering careers in teaching and journalism.
Daniel John Beck, BA (Hons) History student
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To apply, you'll need this course's UCAS code, which is at the top of this page, and the University of Portsmouth institution code – P80.
After you apply, we'll invite you to an Applicant Experience Day where you’ll get to speak to lecturers and meet your future classmates.
Come to an Open Day and explore our course facilities, tour the campus and have a look around our halls of residence.
When you accept an offer to study at the University of Portsmouth, you also agree to our terms and conditions as well as the University’s policies, rules and regulations. You should read and consider these before you apply.