BA Politics and Modern History

The information on this page relates to September 2016 entry. For 2017 information, including grade requirements, please check our prospectus.

A BA Politics and Modern History student's notes and books

In choosing to study the Politics and Modern History degree at Aberystwyth University you will benefit from being taught by two of the longest-established departments in the University, the Department of International Politics and the Department of History & Welsh History. This degree scheme has been designed to allow you to concentrate on recent history and politics, and place the study of political ideas and institutions in the context of historical developments. It combines the expertise of historians and political scientists from two departments that enjoy notable reputations in their respective fields and whose areas of interest span the entire globe. Expand the sections below to find out more...

Overview

The single honours Politics and Modern History degree scheme concentrates on recent history and politics and places the study of political ideas and institutions in the context of an understanding of historical development. It combines the expertise of political scientists and historians in an integrated course structure that allows you considerable latitude in the choice of modules. Teaching will be shared between the Department of International Politics and the Department of History and Welsh History, both of which have established notable reputations for teaching and research in their respective fields.

Why study Politics and Modern History at Aberystwyth?

All our lecturers are active researchers who publish their work, and you will benefit from being taught the latest 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 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.

91% of our 2014 History graduates were in employment or further study 6 months after graduating, a 10 percentage point increase on the previous year (DLHE 2014). The number of those entering professional level work or graduate level education also increased by 15 percentage points over the year, compared with a 2.5 percentage point increase nationally.

These increases reflect our investment in innovative and strategic student-focused employability initiatives which encompass all our academic Institutes and which we firmly believe are likely to improve our employability ratings still further.

Both departments have 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 and political culture.

Both departments offer a number of degree schemes and modules taught entirely or partially through the medium of Welsh. Further details may be obtained from the Departments.

Course Content

Welsh medium modules available

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.

Year 1 Options All Part One students MUST take the Department's Part One core module (through medium of English or Welsh):

Semester 1

Cyflwyno Hanes HA12120

Introduction To History HY12120

Year 1 Options All students MUST take the Department's core module Exploring the International 1 and 2 (40 credits over both semesters)

Semester 1

Cyflwyniad I Wleidyddiaeth Ryngwladol 1 GW12420

Exploring The International 1 IP12420

Semester 2

Cyflwyniad I Wleidyddiaeth Ryngwladol 2 GW12520

Exploring The International 2 IP12520

Year 1 Options Part One students may take the following optional modules

Semester 1

Behind The Headlines IP12620

The Making Of The Modern World: International History Since 1789 IP12820

Understanding The Social World SA10120

Semester 2

War, Strategy And Intelligence IP10320

Approaching The Political IP10820

Year 1 Options Part One students must take a further 40 credits worth of option modules in the Department of History & Welsh History:

Semester 1

Concwest, Uno A Hunaniaeth Yng Nghymru 1250-1800 HC11120

Cymru A'r Byd: Cysylltiadau A Dylanwadau 1860 - 2000 HC11520

Stuart England: War, Political Crisis And Social Change 1629-1714 HY11920

Russia Since 1900 HY12020

Nationalism, Totalitarianism And Democratization: Czechoslov HY12220

Soldiers, Saints & Serfs: England, 1042-1154 HY14320

Conquest, Union And Identity In Wales 1250-1800 WH11120

Semester 2

Y Dirwasgiad Mawr: Hanes Cymharol America A Phrydain HA10620

Argyfwng, Gwrthryfel A Ffydd Yn Ewrop C.1000-1540 HA10820

Oes Y Fictoriaid HA13820

Age Of Magna Carta-england And Its Neighbours C1180-c1280 HY12520

Three Queens And Their Subjects HY12720

Britain And The First World War HY13220

Modernity And The Making Of Asia HY15220

From Revolution To World War: Wales 1789-1914 WH11620

Year 2 Options Students must take the following Degree Scheme Core Module (IP32220 or GW32220) in International Politics in order to be eligible to graduate.

Semester 2

Damcaniaethau Gwleidyddiaeth GW32220

Political Theory IP32220

Year 2 Options Students MUST TAKE the History and Welsh History Year2 CORE module in semester one (in either English or Welsh):

Semester 1

Llunio Hanes HA30120

Making History HY30120

Year 2 Options Year Two students MUST TAKE one 20-credit SURVEY module in Dept. History & Welsh History in semester one:

Semester 1

Concro'r Byd: Tŵf A Chwymp Ymerodraethau Prydain A Ffrainc HA31820

The Challenge To Christendom HY31020

Early Modernity In Europe HY31120

War & Society In History HY31620

Year 2 Options Year Two students should take one other 20-credit module as EITHER SKILLS OR OPTION - therefore should choose one 20-credit SKILLS module in Dept. History & Welsh History in semester two:

Semester 2

Gwrando Ar Hanes: Y Mudiad Hawliau Sifil Yn America HA34720

Investigating Georgian And Victorian Landscapes HY32720

History As Myth-making: The 'myth Of The Blitz' HY33420

Germans And Nazism Since 1933: Reading Public Opinion Surveys, Diaries And Memoirs HY33520

Image Wars In Southeast Asia: Studying 20th Century Propaganda HY33720

Journalism And The Writing Of History HY33920

Medieval Chronicles: Historical Writing In The British Isles 540-1300 HY34020

History In Cartoons: Studying Georgian Satirical Prints HY34320

Seals In Their Context In Medieval England And Wales HY34420

Exploring Nineteenth-century Exhibitions HY34620

Year 2 Options OR Year Two students should choose one 20-credit OPTION module in Dept. History & Welsh History in either semester one or semester two:

Semester 1

Gwrthdaro A Chydfodolaeth: Cymru O’r Normaniaid Hyd Glyndŵr HC32220

Oes Yr Ymerodraeth: Prydain Ac Iwerddon, 1850-1914 HC34320

East & West In The Age Of Crusades, C. 1070 - C. 1290 HY35120

Politics And Society In Twentieth-century Britain HY37620

Science, Religion And Magic HY38620

Germany Since 1945 HY39620

The Atlantic World, 1492-1825 HY39720

Rhyfel Algeria 1952-1964 IE20420

An Age Of Empire: Britain And Ireland, 1850-1914 WH34320

Semester 2

Trosedd, Terfysg A Moesoldeb Yng Nghymru 1750-1850 HC33420

The British Isles And The ‘english Revolution’ HY35720

From Black Death To Great Fire: The British Town 1349-1700 HY36120

War, Famine And Plague: England In The Fourteenth Century HY36720

Expansion, Intervention And Influence: The United States As A Continental Power HY39120

Culture, Society And The Victorians HY39320

The Soviet Union And The World, 1917-1991 HY39520

Crime, Riot And Morality In Wales 1750-1850 WH33420

Civil War And Revolution In Stuart Wales, 1603-1714 WH36220

Available both years Options Students must take 120 of their 240 credits in Part Two (year 2 & final year) in International Politics dept; and should also take 120 credits in their `home' department (usually 60 credits from each per year) -including core module credits

Semester 1

Y Meddwl Cymreig Mewn Syniadaeth Ryngwladol GQ30920

Rhyfel Diarbed, Heddwch Diarbed GQ33420

Amlddiwylliannedd Mewn Polisi Ac Ymarfer GQ33720

Cymru A Datganoli GW35020

Cudd-wybodaeth A Diogelwch Rhyngwladol GW35620

The Vietnam War IP31920

Nato: The Making And Breaking Of Alliances IP33320

European Politics IP33820

The Ethics Of War In Theory And Practice IP34320

Wales And Devolution IP35020

Warfare After Waterloo: Military History 1815 - 1918 IP35320

Intelligence And International Security IP35620

The Past And Present Of Us Intelligence IP36020

Warfare In The 20th Century:technology And Strategy IP36520

Contemporary Latin America IP38720

The League Of Nations IQ32420

Capitalism And International Politics IQ32820

Total War, Total Peace IQ33420

Multiculturalism In Policy And Practice IQ33720

Semester 2

Damcaniaethau Gwleidyddiaeth GW32220

Gwleidyddiaeth Ryngwladol A Bydoedd Anorllewinol GW39220

Theorizing International Relations IP30120

War, Politics And Strategy IP30320

Special Forces: Theory And Practice IP31520

The Cold War IP32020

Political Theory IP32220

Eu Simulation IP34020

Ideas And Practice In American Politics IP34420

The Cuban Missile Crisis IP35520

America At War: A Military History Of The United States IP36920

Britain And Ireland In War And Peace Since 1800 IP38820

International Politics And Non-western Worlds IP39220

Global Economic Governance IQ30820

Espionage Studies IQ31320

Global Health And International Politics IQ32020

Gender And Sexuality In Latin America IQ32320

The Diplomacy Of Decline: Britain & World Politics 1851-2001 IQ32620

Aesthetics, Image And Narrative In Global Politics IQ33620

Final Year Options Final Year Students should take 40 credit CORE module(s) in Dept. History & Welsh History as - DISSERTATION (HA/HY 30340) over both semesters 1&2 OR two 20-credit SPECIAL SUBJECT (HP / HQ) co-requisite modules in semester 1 and corresponding module in semester 2:

Semester 1

Traethawd Estynedig HA30300

Milwyr, Myfyrwyr A Masnachwyr: Teithio A Symudedd Yn Ewrop Ganoloesol (rhan 1) HP34520

Ritual, Kingship And Power In Norman And Angevin England: Methods, Sources & Actors (part 1) HQ33120

Gender In History: The Early Modern Experience (part 1) HQ35220

British Society And The French Revolution, 1789-1795: Initial Reactions (part 1) HQ36420

Romantic Wales, 1780-1847 (part 1) HQ36820

Britain At War 1939-45 (part 1) HQ37520

Stalin And Stalinism (part 1) HQ37920

The Third Reich (part 1): Building The Dictatorship. Regime And Society In Nazi Germany, 1933-1939 HQ38320

The Vietnam War (part 1) HQ38520

Dissertation HY30300

Semester 2

Traethawd Estynedig HA30340

Milwyr, Myfyrwyr A Masnachwyr: Teithio A Symudedd Yn Ewrop Ganoloesol (rhan 2) HP34620

Ritual, Kingship And Power In Norman And Angevin England: Methods, Sources & Actors (part 2) HQ33220

Gender In History: The Early Modern Experience (part 2) HQ35320

British Society And The French Revolution, 1795-1803: The Revolutionary Wars And Napoleon (part 2) HQ36520

Romantic Wales, 1780-1847 (part 2) HQ36920

Britain At War 1939-45 (part 2) HQ37620

Stalin And Stalinism (part 2) HQ38020

The Third Reich (part 2): War And The Holocaust, 1939-1945 HQ38420

The Vietnam War (part 2) HQ38620

Dissertation HY30340

Final Year Options Final Year Students should take 20 credits in Dept. History & Welsh History as - either one 20 credit SURVEY module in semester one:

Semester 1

Concro'r Byd: Tŵf A Chwymp Ymerodraethau Prydain A Ffrainc HA31820

The Challenge To Christendom HY31020

Early Modernity In Europe HY31120

War & Society In History HY31620

Final Year Options OR Final Year students should choose one 20-credit OPTION module in Dept. History & Welsh History in either semester one or semester two:

Semester 1

Gwrthdaro A Chydfodolaeth: Cymru O’r Normaniaid Hyd Glyndŵr HC32220

Oes Yr Ymerodraeth: Prydain Ac Iwerddon, 1850-1914 HC34320

East & West In The Age Of Crusades, C. 1070 - C. 1290 HY35120

Politics And Society In Twentieth-century Britain HY37620

Science, Religion And Magic HY38620

Germany Since 1945 HY39620

The Atlantic World, 1492-1825 HY39720

Rhyfel Algeria 1952-1964 IE20420

An Age Of Empire: Britain And Ireland, 1850-1914 WH34320

Semester 2

Trosedd, Terfysg A Moesoldeb Yng Nghymru 1750-1850 HC33420

The British Isles And The ‘english Revolution’ HY35720

From Black Death To Great Fire: The British Town 1349-1700 HY36120

War, Famine And Plague: England In The Fourteenth Century HY36720

Expansion, Intervention And Influence: The United States As A Continental Power HY39120

Culture, Society And The Victorians HY39320

The Soviet Union And The World, 1917-1991 HY39520

Crime, Riot And Morality In Wales 1750-1850 WH33420

Civil War And Revolution In Stuart Wales, 1603-1714 WH36220

Available both years Options Students must take 120 of their 240 credits in Part Two (year 2 & final year) in International Politics dept; and should also take 120 credits in their `home' department (usually 60 credits from each per year) -including core module credits

Semester 1

Y Meddwl Cymreig Mewn Syniadaeth Ryngwladol GQ30920

Rhyfel Diarbed, Heddwch Diarbed GQ33420

Amlddiwylliannedd Mewn Polisi Ac Ymarfer GQ33720

Cymru A Datganoli GW35020

Cudd-wybodaeth A Diogelwch Rhyngwladol GW35620

The Vietnam War IP31920

Nato: The Making And Breaking Of Alliances IP33320

European Politics IP33820

The Ethics Of War In Theory And Practice IP34320

Wales And Devolution IP35020

Warfare After Waterloo: Military History 1815 - 1918 IP35320

Intelligence And International Security IP35620

The Past And Present Of Us Intelligence IP36020

Warfare In The 20th Century:technology And Strategy IP36520

Contemporary Latin America IP38720

The League Of Nations IQ32420

Capitalism And International Politics IQ32820

Total War, Total Peace IQ33420

Multiculturalism In Policy And Practice IQ33720

Semester 2

Damcaniaethau Gwleidyddiaeth GW32220

Gwleidyddiaeth Ryngwladol A Bydoedd Anorllewinol GW39220

Theorizing International Relations IP30120

War, Politics And Strategy IP30320

Special Forces: Theory And Practice IP31520

The Cold War IP32020

Political Theory IP32220

Eu Simulation IP34020

Ideas And Practice In American Politics IP34420

The Cuban Missile Crisis IP35520

America At War: A Military History Of The United States IP36920

Britain And Ireland In War And Peace Since 1800 IP38820

International Politics And Non-western Worlds IP39220

Global Economic Governance IQ30820

Espionage Studies IQ31320

Global Health And International Politics IQ32020

Gender And Sexuality In Latin America IQ32320

The Diplomacy Of Decline: Britain & World Politics 1851-2001 IQ32620

Aesthetics, Image And Narrative In Global Politics IQ33620

Employability

Career prospects

The Politics and Modern History degree scheme spans the two different, yet complementary, disciplines of history and politics and opens up a range of diverse career options to you on graduation. The Politics component suggests a range of career pathways in the political and public affairs arena, such as Government research officer, social researcher, and Civil Service fast streamer, but would also be useful for such roles as local government officer, journalist, public relations officer, market researcher and work in the diplomatic services. The History component of your degree may lead to opportunities in the fields of archives, or heritage or museum management, or to related and non-related professional employment, including librarianship, records management, journalism, media, advertising, the legal profession, local government, business and finance, and a range of jobs which incorporate research or professional writing.

Transferable Skills

Studying for a degree in Politics and Modern History 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
• team-working, with the ability to discuss concepts in groups, accommodating different ideas and reaching agreement
• 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.

GO Wales
GO Wales is administered by the University’s Career Service, working with local businesses to create paid work placements of a few weeks’ duration for students. It gives you the opportunity to gain valuable work experience which will enhance your CV and make you more attractive to potential employers.

Teaching, Learning and Assessment

What will I learn?

As a student on the Politics and Modern History degree scheme you will divide your time equally between the Department of International Politics and the Department of History and Welsh History.

In the first year you will follow core modules which are designed to ease you into your undergraduate studies. The modules identify new concepts and historical skills, new methods and periods, and some of the most exciting recent historical and political works. You will also choose from a wide selection of optional modules offered by the Departments of History and Welsh History and International Politics.

In the second year, you will take a compulsory module on historical method, which examines the way in which the meaning, methods and writing of history have changed over time. You will also follow one pathway from a choice of three which explore different aspects and periods of history. Alongside this you will select a number of modules offered by the Department of International Politics.

In your third year, as well as choosing a number of modules from an extensive range offered by both departments, you will select a special subject which enables you to study a specific historical topic in depth and allows for an extensive use of original sources, deploying the critical research skills of a practising historian. The dissertation module will allow you to focus on an area of particular interest from either discipline.

How will I be taught?

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 key skills such as information retrieval, interpretation and self-expression. The Politics component of the degree programme adds a political dimension to your contemporary historical studies and allows you to explore stimulating topics from cyber warfare and espionage to international security or internet freedom.

You will be assessed by a variety of methods, including examinations, assessed essays, projects, book reviews, presentations, and a dissertation on a subject of particular interest to you.

You will be assigned a personal tutor 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.

You will also have the opportunity to complete a Personal Development Plan (PDP) at Aberystwyth. This is a structured process of self-appraisal, reflection, and planning, which will enable you to chart your personal, academic and professional development throughout your time at university. By recording your academic performance, and highlighting the skills you already have and those you will need for future employability, the PDP portfolio will equip you with the necessary tools to plan effectively, develop successful approaches to study, and consider your future career options and aspirations.

Student Views

The Politics and Modern History course at Aberystwyth University provided me with an excellent opportunity to experience the expertise of two fantastic departments. The VI35 course is tailored especially for students who are fascinated about how our world has changed over time, and the important political components of that change. The ability to choose from an extended list of modules in both departments has allowed me to focus on the aspects of historical and political change that I find the most interesting. Furthermore, the staff and their expertise have provided me with an exceptional learning experience and outstanding student support. Alan Donaldson

Key Information Set