Year of entry2017
Start dateOctober 2017
Three years full-time
Three to four evenings a week, October to June
This programme is offered jointly by our and our , 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 two 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.
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 a world-renowned centre of original, influential research. In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), History at Birkbeck was ranked sixth 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.
- 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 21st-century history, politics and international relations.
- Our Department of Politics is over 40 years old and has a reputation for the excellence of its teaching and its internationally significant research.
The programme consists of 12 modules of 30 credits each, for a total of 360 credits. There are three 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 two disciplines.
- In Year 1, you take two compulsory Politics modules and two compulsory History modules.
- In Year 2, you take one compulsory History module and choose one Level 5 Politics option module from either Contemporary British Politics OR Transformations in Modern Politics, one further Level 5 Politics option module and a Level 5 History option module.
- In Year 3, you choose a Level 6 History option module, a Level 6 Politics option module and two additional Level 6 option modules from either History or Politics.
Year 1 History compulsory modules
Year 1 Politics compulsory modules
Year 2 History compulsory module
Year 2 Politics compulsory modules (choose one)
- Contemporary British Politics
- Transformations in Modern Politics: Democracy, Conflict and Globalisation
History indicative option modules
- Body Politics: Health, Illness and Death in Britain
- Contested Nation: Germany, 1871-1918
- Crime, Poverty and Popular Protest in England, 1500-1800
- Family, Society and Culture in Britain 1832-1918
- Later Medieval London 1450-1560: Community Politics and Religion
- Literature, Culture and Society 1914-1945
- Popular Culture in American History, 1870 to the Present
- Sexuality, Society and the State in Britain, 1914-2000
- The Athenian Empire
- The Colonial Gaze: Western Perceptions of Asia, Africa and the Middle East, 1600-1960
- The Empire of Letters: Correspondence in the Roman World
- The Ottoman Empire
- The Third Reich
- Work and Play in Early Modern Britain
Politics indicative option modules
- American Politics and Foreign Policy
- Capitalism and the Politics of Markets
- Comparative Studies of Islamist Movements
- Empires: An Historical Sociology of International Relations
- Food, Politics and Society
- International Migration and Transnationalism
- Nationalism, Ethnicity and Religious Conflict
- Politics and the Middle East
- Politics, Power and Human Nature
- Russian Politics and Society, 1905 to Today
- Social and Political Theory
- War and Modern Society
We welcome a wide range of qualifications, from the UK and abroad, and we will also consider your non-academic achievements.
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
The UCAS tariff system has changed for courses starting in September 2017 and is now calculated using a new number system. This means applicants applying for courses from October 2016 will see entry requirements and offers expressed using the new tariff.
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 and finance
We are committed to doing everything we can to help you finance your studies.
FeesFull-time home/EU students: £ 9250 pa
Full-time overseas students: £ 13000 pa
Teaching and assessment
Our innovative, engaging teaching is designed to support students who are juggling evening study with work and other daytime commitments.
Teaching will be through a mixture of lectures, seminars and one-to-one tutorials.
Most modules are assessed through a balance of examination (held in the summer term) and coursework, with coursework usually comprising two essays of c.2000 words for each module taken.
Every module you take includes some form of assessment and, in addition, an attendance requirement, so you will need to attend at least 60% of classes in order to pass.
You can choose whether or not to pursue a final-year dissertation project.
Careers and employability
To help you get ahead in your career, we offer free advice and training and our recruitment consultancy, Birkbeck Talent, can connect you with employers.
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 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.
How to apply
Once you've found the course that's right for you, here's what to do next to get your place at Birkbeck.
How to apply
If you are applying for a three-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.
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.
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.
Life at Birkbeck
Birkbeck offers a unique combination of evening study and a matchless central London location, right in the geographic and academic centre of the city, giving you exceptional opportunities.
Most of our students live in private accommodation, but we also offer student accommodation and access to the professional services of the University of London Housing Services.
The Birkbeck experience
Birkbeck is different: our classes are held in the evening, so your days are free - to study, work, volunteer or just do your own thing.
Birkbeck is committed to doing everything we can to help you finance your studies. Find out about what is available, how to apply and the advice and support we provide.
How to apply
Once you've found the course that's right for you, here's what to do next to get your place at Birkbeck. We can give you the advice and support you need.
Discover more about our comprehensive range of student services, which offer all the support and assistance you need.
Boost your career
Discover how Birkbeck's unique evening teaching, coupled with our comprehensive careers and employability services, can help you get ahead in a highly competitive job market.
Fees and payment
With government loans for undergraduate and postgraduate study, fantastic financial support packages and flexible payment options, there’s never been a better time to study at Birkbeck.
There are lots of ways to come and visit us and meet our staff and former students, including Open Evenings, Open Days and guided campus tours. Discover more here.
Launching the first art school MBA
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Book launch: Caring in Crisis? Humanitarianism, the Public and NGOs
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Keynes Library, Birkbeck School of Arts
Book launch: Novel Politics. Democratic Imaginations in Nineteenth-Century Fiction by Professor Isobel Armstrong
Keynes Library, Birkbeck School of Arts, 46 Gordon Square, London WC1H 0PD
Hong Kong academic lecture series and reception
British Council Hong Kong
Sam Wanamaker Playhouse
Student Rebecca Clossick on research into early modern indoor theatre.
Podcast: The Beirut Triology
Jocelyne Saab talks about her Beirut Trilogy, lauded at the 2017 Essay Film Festival.
Will de-cluttering save the planet?
Professor Frank Trentmann looks at what's being done to reduce our high-consumption lifestyles.