Year of entry2018
Start dateOctober 2018
Four years part-time
Two to three 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. 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.
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.
This programme is also available for.
- Arts and humanities courses at Birkbeck are ranked third best in London and 13th in the UK in the Times Higher Education 2016-17 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.
- 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.
The course structure is as follows:
- In Year 1, you take two compulsory politics modules and one compulsory history module.
- In Year 2, you take two compulsory history modules (one of which must be Exploring the Past) and choose a Level 5 politics option module.
- In Year 3, you choose a Level 5 history option module, a Level 5 politics option module, and an additional Level 6 option module from either discipline.
- In your final year, you choose a Level 6 history option module, a Level 6 politics option module, and a Level 6 option module from either discipline.
Year 1 History compulsory modules (choose one)
Year 1 Politics compulsory modules
Year 2 History compulsory modules (choose two)
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 assess each individual application for potential and talent and admission is by a combination of application and interview.
UCAS tariff points
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.
Both Birkbeck's Certificate of Higher Education in Higher Education Introductory Studies and Certificate of Higher Education in History and Archaeology can lead to exemption from Year 1.
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.
Credits and Accredited Prior Learning (APL)
If you have studied at university previously, you may have accumulated credits through the modules you studied. It may be possible to transfer these credits from your previous study to Birkbeck or another institution. You should discuss this with the Programme Director when you are making your application.
We are committed to doing everything we can to help you finance your studies.
Fees (2017/8)Part-time home/EU students: £ 6935 pa
Part-time overseas students: £ 9750 pa
Teaching and assessment
Our innovative, engaging teaching is designed to support students who are juggling evening study with work and other daytime commitments.
At Birkbeck, almost all of our courses are taught in the evening and our teaching is designed to support students who are juggling evening study with work and other daytime commitments. We actively encourage innovative and engaging ways of teaching, to ensure our students have the best learning experience. In the 2017 Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF), the government’s system for rating university teaching, Birkbeck was allocated a Silver award.
Teaching may include formal lectures, seminars, and practical classes and tutorials. Formal lectures are used in most degree programmes to give an overview of a particular field of study. They aim to provide the stimulus and the starting point for deeper exploration of the subject during your own personal reading.
Seminars give you the chance to explore a specific aspect of your subject in depth and to discuss and exchange ideas with fellow students. They typically require preparatory study.
In addition, you will have timetabled meetings with your Personal Tutor.
Methods of teaching on this course
Teaching will be through a mixture of lectures, seminars and one-to-one tutorials.
Timetables are usually available from September onwards and you can access your personalised timetable via your My Birkbeck Profile online (if you have been invited to enrol).
Indicative class size
Class sizes vary, depending on your course, the module you are undertaking, and the method of teaching. For example, lectures are presented to large groups, with 30 to 100+ students in attendance, whereas seminars usually consist of small, interactive groups of 10 to 30 students, led by an academic.
Birkbeck offers study and learning support to undergraduate and postgraduate students to help them succeed. Our Learning Development Service can help you in the following areas:
- academic skills (including planning your workload, research, writing, exam preparation and writing a dissertation)
- written English (including structure, punctuation and grammar)
- numerical skills (basic mathematics and statistics).
Our Disability and Dyslexia Service can support you if you have additional learning needs resulting from a disability or from dyslexia.
Our Counselling Service can support you if you are struggling with emotional or psychological difficulties during your studies.
Our Mental Health Advisory Service can support you if you are experiencing short– or long-term mental health difficulties during your studies.
Assessment is an integral part of your university studies and usually consists of a combination of coursework and examinations. You will be given time to complete coursework and prepare for exams.
Unseen written examinations are usually taken in the Summer term, during May to June, and, in most cases, are held during the day on a weekday – if you have daytime commitments, you will need to make arrangements for daytime attendance. Exam timetables are published online in March each year.
Methods of assessment on this course
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.
As well as a mark for your coursework and exams, you will also receive feedback from your marker(s) to help you learn, improve and succeed. We encourage you to discuss feedback with your module tutor.
Feedback can come in different forms: notes via Moodle (our online learning environment); a paper copy of a completed feedback form; or in-class or face-to-face feedback. The College Policy on Feedback on Assessment sets out what you can expect from your feedback.
Your department will usually provide you with your marked coursework within four weeks of submission. Your initial mark is provisional until the relevant Board of Examiners has confirmed it.
Your official coursework and exam results will be made available to you via your My Birkbeck Profile online.
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.
Go on to work and/or study:
Data from 55 students.
83% of those surveyed responded
Source: Destinations of leavers from HE record
- Go on to work and/or study
- Now working: 54%
- Doing further study: 18%
- Studying and working: 10%
- Unemployed: 2%
- Other: 16%
Read more of the statistics for this course on the Unistats website.
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
You apply directly to Birkbeck for this course, using the online application link. Please note that online application will open in October 2017.
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
We encourage you to apply as early as possible, though we still consider applications up to the end of September.
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.
Accommodation and living costs
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.
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