• UCAS Code: VL12
  • Status: Fully Approved
  • Start date: October 2016
  • Duration:

    3 years full-time

  • Attendance:

    3-4 evenings a week

    October to June

  • Location:

    Central London

Programme overview

This programme is offered jointly by our Department of History, Classics and Archaeology and our Department of Politics, which gives you the opportunity to study current political ideas and events in combination with an understanding of the wider historical context of the modern world. The study of history and politics develops the ability to understand how people lived, acted and thought in the past, and the ways in which they act politically in the present. We encourage you to assess written and material evidence, to question accepted histories and explanations, and to construct and present your own arguments.

The course includes a wide variety of options across both disciplines, from the history of Asia, Middle East, Africa, Europe and Britain, to the study of social and political theory, the analysis of authoritarianism and repressive regimes, and parliamentary democratic practice. The degree provides a mix of core modules which establish disciplinary approaches and methods, and a choice of option modules that allow you to pursue particular themes that interest you. You will gain a mix of skills drawn from the 2 disciplines: the ability to analyse data of different types, to understand the context and meaning of events, and to relate the study of the past to current political issues and developments.

This course is also available for part-time evening study over 4 years.

How to apply

If you are applying for a 3-year, full-time undergraduate degree at Birkbeck, you have to apply through UCAS (the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service). To apply, go to the UCAS homepage and click on 'Apply and Track'. You will have to register, giving UCAS a few personal details, including your name, address and date of birth, and then you complete an application form.

We assess each individual application for potential and talent, and admission is by a combination of application and interview.

Need help with your application? Watch videos featuring our academic experts giving advice on applying to Birkbeck and answering some of the most frequently asked questions.

Birkbeck offers a range of free face-to-face advice and support to help you make a successful application.

Birkbeck can give you all of the information and help you need to complete your application form, including our online personal statement tool, which will guide you through every step of writing your personal statement.

UCAS Code

VL12

Application deadlines and interviews

15 January is the first UCAS deadline and the majority of university applications through UCAS are made by then. We welcome applications outside of the UCAS deadlines, so you can still apply through UCAS after 15 January, depending on the availability of places. We also take late applications via the UCAS Clearing system in August.

Read more about key dates for UCAS applicants.

Why study this course at Birkbeck?

  • Arts and humanities courses at Birkbeck are ranked third best in London and 11th in the UK in the Times Higher Education 2015-16 World University Subject Rankings.
  • Our Department of History, Classics and Archaeology is ranked in the top 5 nationally and is a world-renowned centre of original, influential research.
  • Our academic staff are international authorities in their respective fields, delivering stimulating teaching.
  • Our wide-ranging programmes encompass fascinating periods and areas of study, from human prehistory through to classical civilisation, the medieval and early modern periods, and on to twenty-first-century history, politics and international relations.
  • We run 2 initiatives to help you settle into your studies: a compulsory study skills short course for first-year BA students that will equip you with the core skills needed to analyse and interpret archaeological and historical evidence and to communicate your ideas effectively; and the provision of a personal tutor, with whom you can discuss your academic progress and any problems you encounter during the course.
  • The department is home to thriving student societies and a number of affiliated research centres that actively run seminars, conferences and other events where some of the world's best scholars present their latest research.
  • Our Department of Politics is over 40 years old and has a reputation for the excellence of its teaching and its internationally significant research.
  • Birkbeck Library has an extensive history collection, including the major specialist journals, and access to online materials.

Course structure

The programme consists of 12 modules of 30 credits each, for a total of 360 credits. Full-time students must complete these in 3 years and part-time students in 4 years. There are 3 kinds of module: compulsory Level 4 modules in core skills; Level 5 option modules which develop knowledge across broad areas of study; and Level 6 option modules which provide focused study on advanced topics. You take a balance of modules between the 2 disciplines.

  • In Year 1, you take 2 compulsory modules from politics and choose 2 Level 5 option modules from history.
  • In Year 2, you take 1 compulsory history module, 1 compulsory politics module, a Level 6 history option module and a Level 6 politics option module.
  • In Year 3, you take a Level 6 history option module, a Level 6 politics option module and 2 additional Level 6 option modules, chosen from either history or politics.

Read more about our current teaching timetable.

Year 1 Politics compulsory modules

Year 2 History compulsory module

Year 2 Politics compulsory modules

History indicative option modules

Politics indicative option modules

Entry requirements

We welcome applicants without traditional entry qualifications as we base decisions on our own assessment of qualifications, knowledge and previous work experience. We may waive formal entry requirements based on judgement of academic potential. 

UCAS tariff points

260

The UCAS tariff score is applicable to you if you have recently studied a qualification that has a UCAS tariff equivalence.

Alternative entry routes

Access to Higher Education Diploma with a minimum of 15 credits achieved at Merit or Distinction in humanities or social science units.

International entry requirements

If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests.

If you don’t meet the minimum IELTS requirement, we offer pre-sessional English courses, foundation programmes and language support services to help you improve your English language skills and get your place at Birkbeck.

Visit the International section of our website to find out more about our English language entry requirements and relevant requirements by country.

Fees

Full-time home/EU students: £ 9000 pa
Full-time overseas students: £ 13000 pa

Payment and Fees Discounts

Flexible finance: pay your fees in monthly instalments at no extra cost. Enrol early to spread your costs and reduce your monthly payments.

Fees discount: Birkbeck offers a generous package of fee reductions and cash bursaries for new undergraduates and Certificate of Higher Education students. Also, if you are a member of a union that is recognised by the Trades Union Congress (TUC), you may apply for a 10% discount off your tuition fees.

Funding and Financial Support

With a student loan, you will pay nothing upfront. Find out about loans, cash bursaries and fee reductions and check if you are eligible.

Careers and employability

Graduates can pursue careers in journalism, education and politics. This degree may also be useful in becoming a higher education lecturer, museum/gallery curator, civil service fast-streamer or charity officer.

Find out more about these professions.

Graduates from our BA history degrees have gone on to work with the Museum of London, Historic England, the National Archives, the BBC, ITV, Thomson Reuters, Routledge publishing, Parliament, the Foreign Office, and a host of schools and colleges. Other careers include work in local government, finance and the charity sector.

Find out more about the destinations of graduates in this subject.

We offer a comprehensive Careers and Employability Service to help you advance your career, while our in-house, professional recruitment consultancy, Birkbeck Talent, works with London’s top employers to help you gain work experience that fits in with your evening studies.

Teaching and assessment

Teaching

Teaching will be through a mixture of lectures, seminars and one-to-one tutorials.

Assessment

Most modules are assessed through a balance of examination (held in the summer term) and coursework, with coursework usually comprising 2 essays of c.2000 words for each module taken.

You can choose whether or not to pursue a final-year dissertation project.

Our research

Birkbeck is one of the world’s leading research-intensive institutions. Our cutting-edge scholarship informs public policy, achieves scientific advances, supports the economy, promotes culture and the arts, and makes a positive difference to society.

Birkbeck’s research excellence was confirmed in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework, which placed Birkbeck 30th in the UK for research, with 73% of our research rated world-leading or internationally excellent.

In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), History at Birkbeck was ranked 6th in the UK for the percentage of our research deemed world-leading or internationally excellent. 94% of our eligible staff submitted research and we achieved 100% for a research environment supporting world-leading and internationally excellent research.

Read about Birkbeck research that crosses disciplines and focuses on pressing questions within the social sciences and humanities.

Further study opportunities

We offer a variety of Master's degrees in both history and politics, including an MA Contemporary History and Politics.

Not ready to do a degree?

We can support you to get on to the undergraduate course that’s right for you.

If you are not ready to study an undergraduate degree, check out our Certificates of Higher Education and short courses for another way into study.

Key Information Set