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British History and Society

Find out about the course and how to apply.

British Studies students sitting in a lecture hall
Develop your understanding of British history and society

This 11-week course will give visiting and exchange students an overview of British history and the way in which contemporary Britain has been shaped and continues to be influenced by its past.

Course description

The unit will cover aspects of British history and society in a thematic rather than chronological way.

Starting with a consideration of the four constituent parts of the United Kingdom and how they came together, the unit will then discuss topics including:

  • the Black Death
  • the end of feudalism and different definitions of the beginning of modern Britain
  • the evolution of the modern English language
  • the Industrial Revolution, urbanisation and demographic change
  • a general history of social policy from the monasteries to the welfare state, and
  • monarchy, parliament and the development of constitutional government.

Having completed the unit, students will be able to:

  • differentiate between approaches to and interpretations of history and the values and assumptions which may underlie these
  • outline major events in Britain over the past 2,000 years and explain their significance
  • chart the development of the constituent parts of the United Kingdom and their coming together, and explain the cultural, economic and linguistic factors involved
  • select current news stories which show the influence of history on 21st century events and explain how a knowledge of history can help contemporary understanding.

Course information

The course will run from Monday 7 February 2022 to Monday 2 May 2022 (excluding 11 & 18 April) from 11:15am to 1:05pm in The Chancellors' Building.

This course carries six credits. In order to be awarded credits, a minimum of 80% attendance is required.

Before signing up please make sure that the day and time do not clash with your academic timetable using your MyTimetable.

Booking for the Semester 2 British Studies courses has now closed.


If you have any questions, please contact us.