BA, 3-4 years

This is for you if... you want to delve into the past and understand how the movements, ideas, and people that shaped the past are still affecting the present and informing our future.

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.

The History BA will give you the opportunity to explore a wide range of historical periods from medieval to modern, and locations from Europe to Asia. Within this scope you will discover the various approaches from which history is often viewed. Political, cultural, intellectual, social, economic, and international perspectives will all come into play as you explore the web of factors that contributes to our understanding of history.

As one of the largest history departments in the UK, we can offer you a broad choice of periods and subjects, from the fifth century to the contemporary world, and from English local history to globalisation.

Your first year will be spent acquiring foundational skills and knowledge, as well as exploring areas of history that particularly interest you. As your degree progresses, you will specialise increasingly in topics that inspire you as well as learning the essential elements of the historian’s craft. With experts in a plethora of topics, you will always be able to find modules that pique your curiosity and quench your thirst for knowledge – from peopling Australia to the history of alcohol in America.

Key Facts
Typical offer
UCAS code
Start date
September 2018

Admissions enquiries
+44 (0)116 252 5281

Course enquiries
+44 (0)116 252 2587

School of History website

View Key Information Sets

Why Leicester?

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. 

Our staff expertise covers history from every part of the globe and from the medieval to modern periods. This is reflected in the diversity and breadth of modules that you can study.

You will be taught by academics at the forefront of their fields. Their enthusiasm and the opportunity to contribute your own ideas makes for an exciting learning environment.

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, a module called 'Making History' will equip you with the skills necessary to be an effective and informed History student. This is taught partly in small groups by your personal tutor. You will also study core modules on medieval and early modern history, and on modern history, to provide a strong foundation for your degree as a whole.

Core modules

Option modules

Choose 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 2

Year 2

In your second year you will continue to mould your degree around your interests and strengths, choosing from a wide range of option modules, as well as developing a greater understanding of important ideas and theories of the discipline. Your critical analysis and team-working skills will be tested in the core module Perceiving the Past. You will also develop greater research and problem-solving skills in our The Historian’s Craft module, which prepares you for your dissertation.

Core modules

  • Perceiving the Past
  • The Historian's Craft

Option modules

Choose two option modules from:

  • All Bourgeois Now? Class in History
  • Gender History
  • Global Cities
  • Histories of Medicine
  • Histories of Violence
  • Race and Ethnicity
  • Radical Histories
  • Religious History

Plus a further two option modules from:

    • A World Connected: Welfare, Economy and Government since 1945
    • Americas Plural: Latin America and the United States
    • Anglo-Saxon England to Alfred
    • Blood, Position, and Power: The Nobility of Later Medieval England, 1066-1485
    • Class Struggle and the Industrial Revolution
    • Classical and Post-Classical Latin
    • Deviance and Disorder in the Early Modern City
    • Domestic Revolutions: Women, Men, and the Family in American History
    • Enter the Dragon: Modern Chinese History, 1839-1989
    • From Beer to Fraternity: Alcohol, Society, and Culture in North America
    • From News to History
    • Heritage Placement
    • History Imperialism and Decolonisation
    • History in the Classroom
    • Jack-the-Ripper: Crime, Popular Culture and Policing in Victorian Times
    • Living with Dictatorship
    • Madness, Monarchy and Politics in Georgian Britain
    • Origins of a Global Economy
    • Revolutionary England
    • Rise and Fall of the Soviet Union
    • Slavery, the Civil War, and Reconstruction in the United States
    • Stormtroops, Iron Guard and Arrow Cross: Fascism and Genocide in Eastern Europe, 1938-1945
    • The Rage of Party: Politics, Religion, and Culture in the Reign of Queen Anne 1702- 1714

    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 the third year you will specialise in the historical topics that interest you most. You will study a detailed Special Subject reflecting the particular research strengths of your tutors and write an original dissertation on a topic that interests you. The dissertation is written with expert guidance from your supervisor.

    Core module

    • Dissertation

    Option modules

    Choose one option module from:

    • After Hitler
    • Beauty, Sex and Science: Whose Body is it Anyway? C1550-2015 
    • Church, State and Belief in Soviet Russia
    • From Gin Lane to Westminster 
    • Genocides and Mass Violence in Europe and its Colonies in the Twentieth Century
    • 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

    Plus two option modules from:

    • Brave New World
    • Cities and the Making of Modern South Asia, c. 1750-1950
    • Clothing and Fashion in Historical Perspective: Case Studies of Modern European History in Transnational Context
    • Facing Modernity: Jews in Central Europe
    • Food, Diet and Health in Early Modern Europe
    • Fourteenth Century Crisis 
    • Making Nazis: Propaganda and Persuasion in the Third Reich, 1933-1945 
    • Political Satire 
    • Slavery in the Americas
    • The British Abroad: Europe, the Atlantic and the Formation of Britain in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries
    • The Civil Rights Movement, 1945-1968
    • The Imperial Economy: Britain and the Wider World, 1815-1914
    • The Medieval Natural World
    • The Transformation of Leicester, 1945-1980
    • The USA and the Vietnam War
    • Theatres of Conflict: Ireland in the Nineteenth Century 
    • What Difference Did the War Make? British Society and the Great War, 1900-1939
    • When Two Dragons Fight: China and Japan at War in the Twentieth Century
    • Women in American Society from Civil War to First World War

    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

    We teach through 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. The first year normally sees about ten contact hours per week, and greater emphasis is placed on small group teaching and independent study as you progress through the degree.

    Assessment is through exams and coursework comprising long and short essays, source analyses, group projects, and both group and individual 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 academic, financial, housing, career or social.

    Independent learning

    When not attending lectures, seminars or other timetabled sessions you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. Typically, this will involve reading journal articles and books, working on individual and group projects, undertaking research in the library, preparing coursework assignments and presentations, and preparing for exams. To help with your independent learning, you can access the Library and our social study spaces in halls of residence.

    Overall workload

    Typical workload hours for History courses in 2016/17:

    Year 1: 14% of your time is spent in timetabled teaching and learning activity

    • Teaching, learning and assessment: 168 hours
    • Independent learning: 1032 hours

    Year 2: 14% of your time is spent in timetabled teaching and learning activity

    • Teaching, learning and assessment: 168 hours
    • Independent learning: 1032 hours

    Optional year abroad: If you’re spending a year abroad, your contact hours will vary depending on the institution you’re studying at.

    Final year:14% of your time is spent in timetabled teaching and learning activity

    • Teaching, learning and assessment: 168 hours
    • Independent learning: 1032 hours

    While your actual contact hours may depend on the option modules you select, the above information gives an indication of how much time you will need to allocate to different activities for each year of your course.

    Academic support

    Our Student Learning Development Team provides help in the following areas:

    • study and exam skills
    • academic writing
    • presentations
    • dissertations
    • numerical data skills
    • referencing sources

    Our AccessAbility Centre offers support and practical help for students with dyslexia or other specific learning difficulties, including physical, mental health or mobility difficulties, deafness, or visual impairment.

    Teaching staff

    You will be taught by an experienced teaching team whose expertise and knowledge are closely matched to the content of the modules on the course. PhD research students who have undertaken teacher training may also contribute to the teaching of seminars under the supervision of the module leader. Our teaching is informed by the research we do. You can learn more about our staff by visiting our staff profiles.

    Research Stories

    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.
    • Access to HE Diploma: Pass relevant diploma with 45 credits at level 3, 30 of which must be at distinction.
    • International Baccalaureate: Pass Diploma with 30 points including grade 6 in one Higher Level subject.
    • BTEC Nationals: Pass Diploma with DDM.

    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

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

    The School routinely develops paid internship opportunities for our students to gain additional, relevant work experience during their degrees. Roles such as research assistant, 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 BA 3 years full-time V100 Apply Now
    History with Year Abroad BA 4 years full-time V100 Apply Now
    3 years full-time
    UCAS Code
    History with Year Abroad
    4 years full-time
    UCAS Code

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