History BA (Hons)

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If you are applying for this course from outside the UK/EU, click apply now

Course starts: 16 September 2019Apply now

If you are applying for this course from within the UK/EU, click apply now

Course starts: 16 September 2019Apply now

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Discover past worlds. Analyse conflicting perspectives, truths and ideologies. Gain career-ready skills in research and communication.

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Studying History is studying humanity. As the philosopher R. G. Collingwood noted: 'History is for human self-knowledge... the only clue to what man can do is what man has done. The values of history, then, is that it teaches us what man has done and thus what man is.'

A rich knowledge of History sheds light on contemporary politics, ideology, culture – every facet of modern life.

With a degree in History you'll gain a deep knowledge of British, European and World histories, and develop excellent skills in analysis, communication, and research.

Why us?

  • 'World-leading' research in History, according to the latest Research Excellence Framework (REF)
  • Our History courses are 6th in the UK for Satisfaction with course, according to The Guardian University league tables 2018
  • Our History courses are in the top 25% in the UK for Organisation and management, according to the National Student Survey 2018

Course structure

You will be taught by staff who are passionate about their subjects, produce world-leading research, and throughout your degree, will provide you with one-to-one support. A typical week will include lectures, seminars, independent study, and group work.

Your progress will be measured by a range of assessment methods, including essays and exams.

Part-time study

If you study this course on a part-time basis you will typically complete 40-80 credits in a year, rather than the 120 credits of full-time students. All modules are taught during the day, and you will be studying alongside full-time students.

Year 1 (national level 4):

Core modules

  • Introduction to the study of History (20 credits)
  • History in Practice (20 credits)
  • Approaches to History (20 credits)

Optional modules (choose four)

  • English Social History, 1500-1750 (20 credits)
  • Introduction to American Studies (20 credits)
  • Democracy and Tyranny (20 credits)
  • Foundations of Modern Europe, 1600-1900 (20 credits)
  • Industry, Economy and Society: Britain 1750-1970 (20 credits)
  • Britain since 1945 (20 credits)
  • Elective module (20 credits)


Some modules have prerequisites. Read more about what this means in our Help and Advice article.

Year 2 (national level 5):

Optional modules (choose six)

  • Local and Regional History (20 credits)
  • Britain’s Age of Reform (20 credits)
  • Experiencing Twentieth Century Europe (20 credits)
  • European Political Ideas (20 credits)
  • British Politics and Government (20 credits)
  • Early Modern Political Thought (20 credits)
  • The American Century (20 credits)
  • Protest and Terror (20 credits)
  • Modern Language (such as French, German or Chinese) (20 credits)
  • Special Project (20 credits)

Final year (national level 6):

Core modules (Dissertation plus one other module)

  • Dissertation (40 credits)
  • North East England: 1815-1914 (40 credits)
  • Radicalism, Republicanism and Revolution 1400-1800 (40 credits)
  • The Civil Rights Movement in the USA (40 credits)

Optional modules (choose two)

  • Contemporary Issues in American Culture and Society (20 credits)
  • Contemporary Issues in Historical Perspective (20 credits)
  • Northumbria in the Age of Bede (20 credits)
  • Heresy, Intolerance and Beyond: Early Modern Europe, 1550-1765 (20 credits)
  • Mass Movements and Ideologies (20 credits)
  • The English Working Class, 1750-1950 (20 credits)
  • Europe from Revolution to World War, 1917-1939 (20 credits)
  • Modern Language (such as French, German or Chinese) (20 credits)

The Reg Vardy Centre,
Sir Tom Cowie Campus,


  • You can access free Wi-Fi throughout the University campus, so you can work from anywhere. If you don't want to carry a laptop around, just use one of the University’s PCs or Apple Macs. We have hundreds of computers for you to use in the Murray Library, St Peter's Library, and the David Goldman Informatics Centre. If you ever have any technical problems, just ask the friendly helpdesk team.

    IT provision
  • We’ve got thousands of History books and e-books, with many more titles available through the inter-library loan service. We also subscribe to a comprehensive range of print and electronic journals so you can access the most reliable and up-to-date academic and industry articles.

    Library resources which you might find particularly useful for Historical Research MA include:

    • House of Commons Parliamentary Papers including bills, registers and journals
    • Early English Books Online, which provides digital images of virtually every work printed in England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland and British North America during 1473-1800
    • Eighteenth Century Collections Online, which provides 136,000 full-text publications from 1701-1800
    • Periodicals Archive Online, which provides digitised literary journals
    • Archival Sound Recordings with over 12,000 hours of recordings
    • JSTOR (short for ‘Journal Storage’), which provides access to important journals across the humanities, social sciences and sciences
    • Lexis, which provides access to legal information as well as full-text newspaper articles
    • Nineteenth Century British Library Newspapers, with full runs of 48 titles
    Library Services - history
  • The University’s Murray Library is home to the physical archive of the North East England Mining Archive and Resource Centre. This contains mining records, technical reports, trade union records and health and safety information.






    Mining Archive and Resource Centre


You'll be based at The Reg Vardy Centre, situated on the award-winning St Peter's riverside campus. The location benefits from dedicated library services and has superb transport links with the city centre and City Campus.

Entry requirements

Our typical offer is

  • GPA 3.0 or above from High School Diploma along with one of the following at the required grade - SAT I and SAT II, ACT or Advanced Placement

If your qualification is not listed above, please contact the Student Administration team at admissions@sunderland.ac.uk for further advice.

We also require three passes at GCSE grade C or above, which must include Mathematics and English Language, or an equivalent qualification, for example; a minimum of Level 2 Key Skills in Communication and Application of Number. If you have studied for a new GCSE for which you will be awarded a numerical grade then you will need to achieve a grade 4 or above.

If English is not your first language we will require an International English Language Testing System (IELTS) with an overall score of 6.0 and at least 5.5 or higher in each component: reading, writing, listening and speaking. An alternative approved Secure English Language Test (SELT) can also be considered if the applicant's element scores are equivalent to those required for IELTS.

Fees and finance

The annual fee for this course is:

  • £9,250 if you are from the UK or EU and studying full-time
  • £6,935 per 120 credits if you are from the UK or EU and studying part-time
  • £11,500 if you are from outside the EU and studying full-time (part-time is not available to international students)

If you are not sure whether you qualify as a UK, EU or international student, find out more in our Help and Advice article.

Take a look at the Your Finances section to find out about the scholarships and bursaries that may be available to you.

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This information was correct at the time of publication.

The Sir Tom Cowie Campus at St Peter's by night


History is a very well-respected degree. You will graduate with the ability to research and analyse complex material, think critically about ideas and arguments, and communicate clearly.

These skills transfer to a wide range of sectors, including education, finance, law, politics and the Civil Service. Many graduates teach History in colleges and schools. Other graduates go on to work in museums and archives.

History Lab

History Lab is a student-run society which organises history-related guest lectures, discussions, and social events. It’s a chance to hear about little-known histories – recent topics include political caricatures in 19th Century France, pharmacy in Ancient Egypt, and sedition in 17th Century America.


  • The facilities were fantastic and the lecturers were incredibly supportive.
    Daniel Tye course

    Daniel Tye

  • Studying the past is so important as it can really help us to understand the world we live in today.
    Leanne Smith

    Leanne Smith

  • The best thing about the course has to be the lecturers and the passion with which they teach.
    Toni Lawson, History graduate

    Toni Lawson

Meet our academics

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