BA

Modern and Contemporary History

BA Modern and Contemporary History Code V191 Register for an Open Day Register for an Open Day

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Key Facts

Code V191
  • Typical A-level offer

    BBB with B in any subject

  • Course Length

    3 Years

Further details on entry requirements

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The Modern and Contemporary History degree covers the period from the French Revolution to the present day. It explores an era marked by mass participation, whether in politics, war or culture. It illuminates the contradictions of modernity- characterized by utopian experiments and their often nightmarish outcomes, by the proclamation of human rights, genocide and ethnic cleansing, and by the promise of reason, science and technology.

Student Satisfaction and Employability Results

Department of History and Welsh History: 91% student satisfaction (NSS 2018)

99% of our graduates were in work or further study within 6 months, 6% more than Historical & Philosophical studies graduates nationally (HESA 2018*)

Overview

Why study Modern and Contemporary History at Aberystwyth University?

  • History has been taught in Aberystwyth since 1872, making our department the oldest in Wales and one of the foremost in Britain.
  • Our degrees are innovative ensuring you can get the best qualification.
  • In the latest National Student Survey, the department of History and Welsh History scored 92% overall student satisfaction, this demonstrates how your student experience at Aberystwyth University can be memorable and cherished. (NSS, 2017).
  • Our subject areas range from early to modern history, political history, social history, economic and cultural history.
  • In addition to a fine University library, as a History student at Aberystwyth, you will have access to the National Library of Wales. One of only five copyright libraries in the United Kingdom, with over six million books, maps, prints and manuscripts, this prestigious library is situated within a five-minute walk of the Department. You will find this an especially valuable and helpful resource when studying your special subject and writing your dissertation in your final year.
  • Discover another part of the world, new culture and opportunities through our Erasmus + and International Exchange programmes. For further details on destinations please visit our Study Abroad website.
Our Staff

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

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.

Core

Module Name Module Code Credit Value
Introduction to History * HY12120 20
History for Life HY12320 20

Options

Module Name Module Code Credit Value
America and Britain During the Great Depression HY10620 20
America: From Colony to Superpower HY15620 20
Conquest, Union and Identity in Wales 1250-1800 * WH11120 20
Crisis, Rebellion and Faith: Europe 1000-1517 HY11320 20
Manners & Misdemeanours:Polite Society in 18th Century Engla HY12820 20
Age of Magna Carta-England and Its Neighbours C1180-C1280 HY12520 20
Britain, Germany and the Great War HY13520 20
Modernity and the Making of Asia HY15220 20
The Black Death HY12620 20

* Also available partially or entirely through the medium of Welsh

Core

Module Name Module Code Credit Value
Dissertation * HY30340 40

Options

Module Name Module Code Credit Value
An Age of Empire: Britain and Ireland, 1850-1914 HY36920 20
British Society and the French Revolution, 1789-1795: Initial Reactions (Part 1) HQ36420 20
British Society and the French Revolution, 1795-1803: The Revolutionary Wars and Napoleon (Part 2) HQ36520 20
Crime, Riot and Morality in Wales 1750-1850 * WH33420 20
East & West in the Age of Crusades, c. 1070 - c. 1290 HY35120 20
European Society and the Medieval Mind 1200-1500 HY35820 20
Expansion, intervention and influence: The United States as a continental power HY39120 20
From the Second Empire to the Third Reich: Weimar Germany 1914-1933 HY38420 20
Media and Society in Twentieth Century Britain HY37520 20
Medieval London: national capital, international city HY38020 20
Ritual, kingship and power in Norman and Angevin England: methods, sources & actors (Part 1) HQ33120 20
Ritual, kingship and power in Norman and Angevin England: methods, sources & actors (Part 2) HQ33220 20
Science, Religion and Magic HY38620 20
The Atlantic World, 1492-1825 HY39720 20
The English Reformation, 1520-58: Revolution and Counter Revolution HQ35020 20
The English Reformation, 1558-1648: Consolidation and Conflict HQ35620 20
The Great Divergence: Europe and Asia, c.1300-c.1800 HY36320 20
The Irish in Britain, c.1815-70 (Part 1): Migration and Settlement HQ35420 20
The Reign of Edward II, 1307-27 (Part 2): Sources HQ34620 20
The Rise of Modern Medicine, c.1750-2000 HY37320 20
The Third Reich (Part 1): Building the Dictatorship. Regime and Society in Nazi Germany, 1933-1939 HQ38320 20
The Third Reich (Part 2): War and the Holocaust, 1939-1945 HQ38420 20
The Vietnam War (Part 1) HQ38520 20
The Vietnam War: The View from Southeast Asia HQ38720 20
The irish in Britain, c. 1850-1922 (Part 2): Community and Conflict HQ35520 20
The reign of Edward II, 1307-27 (Part 1) HQ34520 20
Women and Gender in Britain, c.1800-1950 HY37920 20

* Also available partially or entirely through the medium of Welsh

Employability

What career prospects are there for a Modern and Contemporary History graduate?

Our graduates have been successful in securing a profession in many different fields, including:

  • Education;
  • Law;
  • Archivists;
  • Publishers;
  • Politicians;
  • Civil Servants;
  • Media;
  • Armed Forces;
  • Entrepreneurs.

As a department we are very proud of our notable and esteem alumni:

  • Dr Tim Brain, former Chief Constable of Gloucestershire
  • Guto Bebb, Member of Parliament
  • Dr Joanne Cayford,  BBC 
  • Berwyn Davies, Head of the Welsh Higher Education Office Brussels
  • Iwan Griffiths, Sports reporter for the S4C (Welsh language broadcast channel)

Heritage sector student placements

Our department has strong links with the heritage sector, and an established portfolio of student placements. In the past, students have spent up to three weeks at the National Library of Wales (including Welsh-medium opportunities), the Royal Commission on the Ancient & Historic Monuments of Wales, and the Society of Antiquaries of London. These placements provide the opportunity for ‘hands-on’ experience and insights into the heritage sector, and are very valuable for the CV!

Tweets from 2014 Society of Antiquaries’ placement students:

‘Got to see three copies of the Magna Carta at once today!’ ‘Kudos to Aber Uni for helping me get the placement, can't wait for tomorrow’ 

International opportunities: Erasmus & the Study Abroad programme

Having a range of experiences is very valuable for life after university, and excellent opportunities are provided by the Erasmus or Study Abroad schemes. History & Welsh History have established Erasmus exchange programmes with universities in Germany, Prague, Budapest and Norway. The Department also has links with a number of American colleges.

Alumni mentoring and graduate talks 

The Alumni Mentoring Scheme will enable you to make contact with past graduates in a range of careers in a safe and supportive environment. History & Welsh History also arranges talks from alumni at different stages of their careers. Recent talks include ‘From university to a career in cultural heritage: first steps’, presented by a recent graduate who now has a place on a prestigious Tate Gallery traineeship.

Teaching & Learning

What will I learn?

The breakdown below will provide you with an illustration of what you may study during the three year degree scheme.

In your first year you may discover:

  • New concepts and historical skills;
  • New methods and periods;
  • Russian History;
  • Britain and the Frist World War;
  • Exciting recent historical works;
  • Our choice of other modules which reflect a broad chronological and thematic range.

In the second year you may explore:

  • Historical method, which examines the way in which the meaning, methods and writing of history have changed over time;
  • Crime, Riots and Morality in Wales (1750-1850);
  • The Victorian Culture and Society;
  • an insight into the historian’s craft;
  • our different topics and periods from our extensive module list.

In your third year you may study:

  • A special subject which enables you go into in depth research, using original sources all of which enabling you to deploy the critical; research skills of a practising historian;
  • The British Society and the French revolution;
  • Russia and Stalinism;
  • Germany and the Nazi regime;
  • The Vietnam War.

 How will I be taught?

The different modes of learning, teaching and assessment employed by History & Welsh History department will enable you to develop skills in small group presentation (seminars and oral assessment), formal writing (essays), research and the development of ideas in written form (a dissertation), and working as part of a team (seminars and student conferences, such as the annual Gregynog Medieval Colloquium). History & Welsh History also maintains individual academic tutorials for all students - rare outside Oxbridge - and has a supportive system of personal tutors. Through this one-to-one contact, you will be able to discuss possible careers, or perhaps further study, with academic mentors.

Student Views

With a wide range of modules to choose from I was able to pursue the things I was interested in as well as discovering aspects to History I previously had not thought I would ever be able to look at. Being able to study everything from the industrial revolution to niche subjects was the kind of experience that drew me to Aberystwyth, and you don't find that anywhere else! John Samuel Hewish

Discover More

Typical Entry Requirements

A Levels BBB with B in any subject

GCSE requirements (grade C min):
English or Welsh

BTEC National Diploma:
DMM-DDM

International Baccalaureate:
28 points overall

European Baccalaureate:
70-75% overall

The University operates an inclusive admissions policy and our offers can vary. Please refer to our country-specific pages for details of the international qualifications we accept. For further information, contact ug-admissions@aber.ac.uk

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