History and Politics

BA, 3-4 years

This is for you if... you are interested in the complementary disciplines of History and Politics. You will develop an understanding of the historical roots of our society's economic, political and social structures.

Course Description

  • As part of the University of Leicester’s commitment to being a leading academic institution, we regularly review and update our degrees and modules to ensure that they reflect the most up-to-date research, knowledge, ideas and teaching practices, as well as taking into account student feedback. We also have to take into account the availability of key teaching staff where this will impact on the delivery of the course.  As a result, if there are major changes to the course that you have applied for, we will contact you as soon as possible and will ensure that any disruption to your studies is minimised.

You will explore global developments through the complementary disciplines of history and politics. The balanced combination of history and politics enables you to develop an informed awareness of the contemporary world and a clear understanding of the historical roots of its ideas and problems, as well as its social, economic and political structures.

The History and Politics BA has been designed to give students an understanding of issues such as the theory and practice of international relations. By studying domestic and foreign policies it is possible to understand how political progress or conservatism has led to the most prolific events in modern history. You aren't confined to modern history though, as you will have plenty of flexibility to choose which periods of history you study in your option modules.

We are one of the largest History Departments in the UK. The expertise of our staff is wide-ranging, with active research in a vast choice of subjects and periods covering all parts of the world. This expertise and the high proportion of course options within the degrees mean that you have real choice.

We have an outstanding and international reputation for teaching and research. This research feeds directly into our teaching, creating a vibrant and exciting learning atmosphere and allowing our students to benefit from the most recent thinking.

Key Facts
Typical offer
UCAS code
Start date
September 2018
Politics and International Relations, History

Admissions enquiries
+44 (0)116 252 5281

Course enquiries
+44 (0)116 252 2587

School of History website

View Key Information Sets

Why Leicester?

Our staff teach and research across a wide range of topics - from medieval to modern periods and across all the continents. This is reflected in the diversity and breadth of modules that you can study.

Our New History Lab brings together staff and students every fortnight to discuss history over tea and cake. Guest speakers have included newsreader Julie Etchingham and historian Melvyn Bragg.

The University Library contains some fascinating historical archives, including the East Midlands Oral History Archive, featuring 30 years of recordings dating back to the Victorian period. 

More than 90% of our research has been designated internationally significant, meaning our academics are among the world's best in their subjects. 

Course Structure

Year 1

Year 1

In your first year you will divide your time equally between History and Politics which will enable you to get a firm grounding in the major events of modern history and the core concepts of politics and international relations.

Core modules

Option modules

Choose two History option modules from:

Plus one Politics module from:

  • Comparative European Politics
  • Order and Disorder: International Relations from 1989 to the Present

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Year 2

Year 2

In your second year the majority of your modules will be elective so that you have the chance to choose from a wide range of modules according to your historical or political interests.

You must take a research method module in order to prepare for writing your dissertation in your third year. You will need to decide if you wish to write about history or politics and take the appropriate module - 'The Historian's Craft' for history or 'Political Analysis' for politics.

Core modules

Option modules

Choose either two option modules from the Politics list or one option module from the Politics list plus one module from the History list.

Politics option modules:

  • Foreign Policy Analysis
  • Latin American Politics
  • Political Ideas
  • Political Parties in Contemporary Britain
  • Sex and Gender in Global Politics

History option modules:

  • Race and Ethnicity
  • All Bourgeois Now? Class in History
  • Global Cities
  • Radical Histories
  • Anglo-Saxon England to Alfred
  • Jack-the-Ripper: Crime, Popular Culture and Policing in Victorian Times
  • Madness, Monarchy and Politics in Georgian Britain
  • Origins of a Global Economy
  • From News to History
  • Revolutionary England
  • Rise and Fall of the Soviet Union
  • Stormtroops, Iron Guard and Arrow Cross: Fascism and Genocide in Eastern Europe, 1938-1945
  • Enter the Dragon: Modern Chinese History 1839 - 1989
  • The rage of party: politics, religion, and culture in the reign of Queen Anne, 1702-1714
  • Americas Plural: Latin America and the United States

Plus two option modules from: 

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Year Abroad (optional)

Year Abroad (optional)

If you want to, you can spend your third year studying abroad at one of our partner institutions (eligibility is dependent on your academic performance in Years 1 and 2). Alternatively, you can opt to continue studying at the University and complete your degree in three years.

Studying abroad is not just for people who are interested in travelling and meeting new people. It is about acquiring life skills that are becoming increasingly significant for a wide range of jobs in our modern globalised society. Whether you go on to work in the private sector, the state sector, a non-governmental organisation or become self-employed you will find the experience invaluable. Find out more from our International Office.

Please note that a year spent abroad still incurs a tuition fee, but this is much lower than for a normal year at Leicester. See our Fees and Funding section for details.

The School of History has links with several European universities, administered through the European Erasmus scheme. If you are eligible for a loan from Student Finance you can apply for a travel grant from them. During your second year at Leicester you will receive appropriate language training.

  • For the latest information on the future of the Erasmus scheme at UK universities please see our Brexit microsite 

We have links with the following universities:

We also have links with some universities outside Europe. If you are receiving financial assistance from Student Finance your support will continue and you may also be eligible to apply for additional travel grants or scholarships. We have links with the following universities:

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Final Year

Final Year

In your final year you will have even more freedom to direct the course of your degree. The only compulsory module is a dissertation which you can write on a subject of your choice. You can choose to focus more on history or politics or continue to study both subjects equally.

Core module

Option modules

If you take a History dissertation, you can take either: 

  • one History module and three Politics modules
  • OR two History option modules and two Politics option modules
  • OR one History special subject and two Politics option modules

If you take a Politics dissertation, you can choose from:

  • one Politics moduke and three History modules
  • OR two Politics modules and two History modules
  • OR two Politics modules and one History special subject
  • OR one Politics module, one History module and one History special subject

History special subjects:

  • After Hitler
  • Beauty, Sex & Science: Whose Body is it Anyway c. 1550-2015?
  • Church, State and Belief in Soviet Russia
  • From Gin Lane to Westminster
  • Genocides and Mass Violence in Europe and its Colonies
  • Ideals of Womanhood in Nineteenth Century America
  • Israel/Palestine: the Story of a Land, 1882 to the Present
  • Poverty and Welfare in Britain 1597 to the Present
  • The British Anti-Slavery Movement, 1787-1833
  • The Cause: Women’s Suffrage
  • The French Revolution, 1789-1804
  • The Presidency of Franklin D Roosevelt

History option modules:

Politics option modules:

  • American Political Development
  • Climate Change: Ethics, Issues, Justice
  • Contentious Politics in Europe
  • Democratization and EU Enlargement in Post-Communist Europe
  • Feminism
  • Global Justice and Human Rights
  • International Migration in the Age of Securitisation
  • Parliamentary Studies
  • Political Participation in Britain
  • Political Parties in Western Democracies
  • Politics and the Environment
  • Politics of the International Drug Trade
  • South African Foreign Policy
  • South African Politics
  • Technology, Politics and War
  • The American Presidency
  • The Changing Character of War
  • The Conservatives: Crisis and Recovery
  • The Political Legacies of Conflict in Northern Ireland
  • The Politics of Contemporary British Foreign Policy
  • The Politics of Counter-Terrorism
  • The Politics of Nuclear Weapons
  • The Politics of Slavery

    Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

    Major/Minor Degrees

    Major/Minor degrees enable you to create your own degree. You can study a core area in depth (your major subject), while also exploring an additional area (your minor subject).

    Why not complement your Major with a subject that you enjoyed before, or which has vocational elements that can boost your career prospects? Alternatively, you may want to try something completely new that you’ve always been interested in, like a language.

    Find out more

    Teaching and Assessment

    You will be taught by a variety of methods, ranging from large lectures to seminars to individual tutorials. Lectures are used to provide historical narrative and to raise key historical questions and areas of debate. Seminars are where you share your opinion about those debates and put forward your interpretation of history. In your first year you will normally have around ten contact hours per week, with more emphasis being placed on small group teaching and independent study as you progress through your degree.

    Assessment is through exams and coursework (both long and short essays), source analyses, group projects and presentations. Approximately two thirds of your final degree mark will be based on your coursework; one third on your exams.

    You will have regular meetings with your personal tutor to discuss progress in your studies. Your personal tutor will also provide a sympathetic ear for all matters of personal concern, whether they be academic, financial, housing, career or social issues.

    Entry Requirements

    • A/AS-levels: ABB at A-Level. We prefer A-Level History, though this is not essential. Two AS-Levels considered in place of one A-Level. General Studies is accepted.
    • EPQ with A-levels: BBB at A-Level + EPQ at grade B. We prefer A-Level History, though this is not essential. Two AS-Levels considered in place of one A-Level. General Studies is accepted.
    • Access to HE Diploma: Pass relevant diploma with 45 credits at level 3 including some at distinction.
    • International Baccalaureate: Pass Diploma with 30 points including grade 6 in one Higher Level subject.
    • BTEC Nationals: Pass Diploma with DDM. Please contact department regarding eligibility.

    Other national and international qualifications considered. If you do not meet the entry requirements for this course, you can apply for the International Foundation Year run by our dedicated International Study Centre. The ISC provides academic and English language support to help you progress to your chosen undergraduate degree at the University of Leicester.

    Second Year Entry may be possible with suitable qualifications.

    Selection Process

    When considering your application, we will look for evidence that you will be able to fulfil the objectives of the course and achieve the standards required. We will take into account a range of factors including previous exam results.

    Applicants are not normally interviewed. If you receive an offer you will be invited to visit the School of History.

    English Language Requirements

    IELTS 6.5 or equivalent. If your first language is not English, you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. If you do not yet meet our requirements, our English Language Teaching Unit (ELTU) offers a range of courses to help you to improve your English to the necessary standard.

    International Qualifications

    Find your country in this list to check equivalent qualifications, scholarships and additional requirements.

    Countries list

    Fees and Funding

    • Starting in 2017

      • £9,250 in your first year. After 2017/18, the tuition fee you pay may increase annually in line with inflation (RPIX) and is subject to government regulations. (RPIX is a measure of inflation in the UK, equivalent to all items in the Retail Price Index (RPI) excluding mortgage interest payments.)
      • Year Abroad: your fee will be £1,250 for that year.

      Starting in 2018

      • TBC

      Find out more about scholarships and funding.


    • Starting in 2017

      • £15,290 per year

      Year Abroad: your fee will be £3,822.50 which is 25% of the full-time tuition fee.

      Starting in 2018

      • TBC

      Find out more about scholarships and funding.

    Career Opportunities

    We offer several practical or placement modules so that you can gain hands-on experience in your chosen career path. For instance, our 'History in the Classroom' module includes practical teaching experience by incorporating a placement in a local school.

    The final year 'Parliamentary Studies' module is approved and co-taught by staff at the Houses of Parliament. You will have an opportunity to visit Parliament as part of this module. 

    We routinely develop paid internship opportunities for our students to gain additional, relevant work experience during their degrees. Roles such as research assistance, conference organiser, and editorial assistant have been offered in recent years.


    Our Career Development Service is here to support you, with advice on interviews, CVs, work experience, volunteering and more. From Freshers’ Week to Graduation and beyond, they are here to help you reach your professional goals.

    Course Qualification Duration UCAS Code Availability
    History and Politics BA 3 years full-time VL12 Apply Now
    History and Politics with Year Abroad BA 4 years full-time VL12 Apply Now
    History and Politics
    3 years full-time
    UCAS Code
    History and Politics with Year Abroad
    4 years full-time
    UCAS Code

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