BA

German / History

Key Facts

Code RV21
  • Typical A-level offer

    BBB with B in any subject. B in German unless to be studied as a beginner

  • Course Length

    4 Years

Further details on entry requirements

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In choosing to study History and German Degree at Aberystwyth University you will combine two valuable subjects. You will immerse yourself in a broad range of historical periods, and gain an understanding of how and why the world has evolved the way it has. This course is student-focused and you will be able to build on your existing knowledge of history whilst pursuing what fundamentally interests you. Our History graduates are sought by employers for their highly-developed research, analysis, teamwork and communications abilities.

It will also provide you with a thorough understanding of the German language, and a deep understanding of the literature and culture. You will benefit from the experience and enthusiasm of the expert staff in both departments. You will emerge with real world capabilities, enabling you to shape your future and develop the career you deserve.

Top 10 in the UK for student satisfaction in the subject area of German (NSS 2016)
Top 10 in the UK for student satisfaction in the subject area of History (NSS 2016)

Department of History and Welsh: 95% student satisfaction (NSS 2016)

92% of undergraduates from the Department of History and Welsh History who graduated in 2015 were in employment or further education six months after graduating (DLHE 2015)

Department of Modern Languages: 96% student satisfaction (NSS 2016)

96% of undergraduates from the Department of Modern Languages who graduated in 2015 were in employment or further education six months after graduating (DLHE 2015)

  • Overview
  • Modules
  • Employability
  • Teaching & Learning

Overview

History has been taught at Aberystwyth since the foundation of the University in 1872, making it the oldest History department in Wales and one of the foremost in Britain. The interests of our lecturers span the period from antiquity to the modern world, so we can provide you with a broad range of political, social, economic and cultural history modules from all periods. All our lecturers are active researchers who publish their work, and you will benefit from being taught the latest historical theories and techniques. In the most recent Research Excellence Framework (2014) assessment the university was placed in the top 50 institutions for research power and intensity. It submitted 77% of eligible staff and 95% of the university's research was of an internationally recognised standard.

In addition to a fine University library, as a History student at Aberystwyth you will enjoy full membership of the National Library of Wales. One of only five copyright libraries in the United Kingdom, with over six million books, maps, prints and manuscripts, it is situated within a five-minute walk of the Department. You will find this especially valuable when studying your special subject and writing your dissertation in your third year. Through our close association with the National Library we are also able to offer you exciting work placement opportunities there. 

You will find a very friendly and welcoming community in the Department, and the lively History Society organizes a programme of guest lectures, visits to places of interest and social events throughout the year. The Department has established links with a number of universities overseas, so we can also provide you with the opportunity to spend a period of time abroad immersing yourself in a different and exciting historical culture. 

Your third year will be spent abroad, either studying at a university, working as an English assistant in a school, working in other employment, or in a combination of these possibilities. Within the Erasmus framework the University currently enjoys special links with the universities of Augsburg, Heidelberg, Düsseldorf and Salzburg.

Language skills are vital to the UK’s economic, political and strategic interests and languages graduates are in demand by employers. Whilst you will have acquired the same skills as other Arts graduates, you will have one major advantage compared to other students: you will have lived independently in a foreign country, and have learnt the important social skill of intercultural communication. Employers value the independence, the social confidence and the high level of linguistic skill acquired.

Our Staff

Department of History and Welsh History lecturers are all qualified to PhD level, and most also have a PGCHE.

All of the lecturers in the Dept of Modern Languages are qualified to PhD level and are research active. We also employ language tutors, some of whom have a PhD, and all of whom are experienced teachers. We occasionally employ native-speakers from our partner universities abroad (lectors) who come to us highly recommended on the basis of their academic achievement at the home university, and many of whom have trained as teachers. The fourth group is part-time staff who are employed on the basis of their expertise in a particular specialist area.  

Modules

Please note: The modules listed below are those currently intended for delivery during the next academic year and may be subject to change. They are included here to give an indication of how the course is structured.

German Language
Making History
An Introduction To Variation In German
Extended Essay Module
The Language Of Economics
German-speaking Refugees In Literature And Culture
Short Prose In German
Teaching English To Speakers Of Other Languages
Early Modernity In Europe
The Challenge To Christendom
War & Society In History
Exploring Nineteenth-century Exhibitions
Germans And Nazism Since 1933: Reading Public Opinion Surveys, Diaries And Memoirs
History As Myth-making: The 'myth Of The Blitz'
History In Cartoons: Studying Georgian Satirical Prints
Image Wars In Southeast Asia: Studying 20th Century Propaganda
Investigating Georgian And Victorian Landscapes
Journalism And The Writing Of History
Medieval Chronicles: Historical Writing In The British Isles 540-1300
Seals In Their Context In Medieval England And Wales
An Age Of Empire: Britain And Ireland, 1850-1914
East & West In The Age Of Crusades, C. 1070 - C. 1290
Germany Since 1945
Politics And Society In Twentieth-century Britain
Science, Religion And Magic
The Atlantic World, 1492-1825
Civil War And Revolution In Stuart Wales, 1603-1714
Crime, Riot And Morality In Wales 1750-1850
Culture, Society And The Victorians
Expansion, Intervention And Influence: The United States As A Continental Power
From Black Death To Great Fire: The British Town 1349-1700
The British Isles And The ‘english Revolution’
The Soviet Union And The World, 1917-1991
Trosedd, Terfysg A Moesoldeb Yng Nghymru 1750-1850
War, Famine And Plague: England In The Fourteenth Century

Modules delivered partially or entirely through the medium of Welsh

Llunio Hanes
Concro'r Byd: Tŵf A Chwymp Ymerodraethau Prydain A Ffrainc
Gwrando Ar Hanes: Y Mudiad Hawliau Sifil Yn America
Gwrthdaro A Chydfodolaeth: Cymru O’r Normaniaid Hyd Glyndŵr
Oes Yr Ymerodraeth: Prydain Ac Iwerddon, 1850-1914
Rhyfel Algeria 1952-1964

Employability

Your BA in History with German opens up a range of exciting opportunities for employment and further training. While many History graduates take up careers directly linked to their subject such as working in the fields of archives, heritage or museum management, others find employment in a wide range of related and non-related professional employment, including librarianship, records management, journalism, media, advertising, the legal profession, local government, business and finance, a range of jobs which incorporate research, professional writing, the police force, the military, public relations and personnel management. The research and analytical skills you will develop during your degree also provide a sound basis for postgraduate study and for a career in academia. 

Modern linguists are statistically amongst the most employable graduates. Many of our European Languages graduates go on to teach the languages they themselves have learned and a high proportion of them go into administrative and managerial posts. Many students also choose to do postgraduate work in a range of different fields, e.g. MBA or translating and interpreting. Others have found jobs in areas such as the Civil Service, tourism, social work, librarianship, publishing or broadcasting. Our degrees also take our students across the world. 

Transferable Skills 

Studying for a BA in History with German will equip you with a range of transferable skills which are highly valued by employers. These include:

 • the ability to express ideas and communicate information in a clear and structured manner, in both written and oral form 

 • effective problem-solving and creative thinking skills

 • the ability to work independently

 • time-management and organisational skills, including the ability to meet deadlines 

 • self-motivation and self-reliance 

 • evaluating and organising information 

 • research skills 

Year in Employment scheme (YES) 

The University operates a Year in Employment Scheme (YES), which offers you a fantastic opportunity to take a year out between your second and third year to work in an organisation in the UK or overseas. YES provides a very rewarding and worthwhile experience, both personally and professionally, and can help you to stand out from the crowd in a very competitive job market. The University’s Career Service will help you to explore your options and secure a suitable work placement.

Teaching & Learning

You will be able to tailor your study through careful selection from a range of elective modules, both in History and, to a lesser extent (as German is the Minor subject), in the European Languages Department.

In your first year we offer a core module designed to ease you into your undergraduate studies. If you have studied History before, it will set your previous historical studies in a wider context; if you have not taken History at A level, it will serve as an ideal introduction to the subject. The module identifies new concepts and historical skills, new methods and periods, and some of the most exciting recent historical works. You will also be able to choose other modules from a wide selection reflecting a broad chronological and thematic range, so you can study the topics that appeal most to your own personal interests.
In your second year, you will take a module on historical method, which examines the way in which the meaning, methods and writing of history have changed over time. You can also choose from an extensive list of modules designed to broaden your knowledge, give you an insight into the historian’s craft and focus more closely on different topics and periods.
In your fourth year, as well as choosing a number of modules from a wide range, you select a special subject which enables you to study a specific historical topic in depth and allows an extensive use of original sources, deploying the critical research skills of a practising historian.

The aims of the History syllabus are to communicate the variety and excitement of current approaches to the academic study of History, and to teach such key skills as information retrieval, interpretation and self-expression. You will be assessed by a variety of methods, including examinations, assessed essays, projects, presentations, and a dissertation on a subject of particular interest to you.

The Department is committed to teaching through individual tutorials and small-group seminars alongside traditional lectures, and to delivering innovative and high quality teaching that will allow you to realise your potential, and to meet your learning expectations. Some preparatory reading in advance of your seminars will enable you to fully engage in the more detailed discussions and sharing of ideas that take place, and the small numbers of students in each seminar group means that you will receive a lot of attention from the lecturers. The one-to-one tutorial gives you the opportunity to receive individual attention and useful feedback from your lecturer on the coursework that you have submitted. Coursework will develop your capacity to research, analyse and present an argument clearly and coherently, while seminars will help you hone your presentation skills.

You will be assigned a personal tutor in each Department throughout your degree course, who will help you with any problems or queries, whether these are academic-related or personal issues. You should feel free to contact them at any time for help and advice.
German, with over 90 million speakers, is the language of the greatest economic power in Europe. It is available both for beginners and for advanced students. Beginners follow an intensive course in the first year, including guided and independent work in the Language Resource Centre. In the second year beginners and advanced students are taught together.

The core German module in each year is devoted to language work. You acquire and consolidate the three skills: writing, speaking and listening. In the first year, especially, in lectures and small groups, we seek to consolidate your knowledge of German grammar and to impart the necessary terminology to enable you to talk about the German language. Various methods are used to raise your languageawareness and to improve your linguistic skills, e.g. translating into and out of German, free composition and grammar exercises. You will also get plenty of oral practice and the opportunity to hone your listening skills. The workshops give you the chance not only to speak German, but to practise your presentation skills and to learn more about the cultural context in which the language is used.

In addition to the core language module, students who take German as a Minor subject with History will also be able to choose one 10-credit elective module in each year, enabling them to learn about aspects of the German economy and political system, culture or literature.

Entry Requirements

A Levels BBB with B in any subject. B in German unless to be studied as a beginner

GCSE requirements (grade C min):
English or Welsh

BTEC National Diploma:
DMM-DDM with specified subject

International Students

International Baccalaureate:
30-32 points overall with 5 points in German at Higher Level unless to be studied as a beginner

European Baccalaureate:
70-75% overall with 70% in German unless to be studied as a beginner

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