About the course

Our Politics and History programme gives you the opportunity to study current challenges in national and international politics while gaining an understanding of the wider historical context of our modern world. 

The course brings together the two naturally close disciplines of Politics and History through a focus on political history. Studying history and politics in tandem will develop your ability to understand how people lived and thought in the past, and the ways in which they act politically in the present.

You’ll study with a top history department – we’re ranked first in the country for the social and cultural impact of our research - and be taught by political historians working at the cutting edge of their research disciplines.

Alongside core politics modules in your first year introducing you to contemporary British politics and international relations theory, you’ll study history modules that will give you an insight into the making of the modern world, such as campaigns for freedom and equality and America from Hamilton to Trump. 

Modules devised for this joint degree such as Political History: Milestones, Change and Continuity provide a bridge between history and politics. In your second year you’ll continue this interdisciplinary approach with a module on Nation and Identity, which examines the growth of new states and the political landscape of interwar Europe.

Just as an historical approach brings breadth and depth to your study of politics, the theories of political science you’ll study in our core politics modules will give you the analytical tools to explore the implications of major historical events, alongside their socio, economic and political impacts. 

In your final year, you demonstrate your research skills by producing a dissertation on a topic of your choosing. Previous students have been inspired by their year of study abroad, while others have worked on women code breakers at Bletchley Park, the Notting Hill riots, and vice and sexuality in 17th -century London. You’ll also have the option to follow an oral history project, or study modules ranging from the challenges and opportunities of Brexit, to terrorism and security, to the politics of gender.

Fact sheets 2019 Course fact sheet 1 BA (Hons) Politics and International Relations
Programme specifications 2019 Programme specification 1 BA (Hons) Politics and International Relations 2019 Programme specification 2 BA (Hons) History 2019 Programme specification 3 BA (Hons) Politics and International Relations

Why choose this course?

We give you:

  • A flexible programme of study across two complementary disciplines that allows you to concentrate on areas you find especially interesting
  • Exceptional teaching by academics conducting world-leading research
  • Innovative courses that enable you to understand the rewarding connection between these two disciplines
  • Transferable skills built through [work placements, internships and] extra-curricular activities
  • The chance to study for a year at one of our many partner institutions across the world

Course details

What job can I get?

Employability is central to everything we do. Our history students can take up a work placement in a local museum, archive or heritage site, while our Politics and International Relations programme offers an optional year-long work placement, giving you practical experience and valuable transferable skills. Your studies in history and politics will help you to analyse issues critically, think creatively and present arguments convincingly – all skills useful for careers in political advocacy, government or non-governmental organisations, the media, marketing, teaching, the law, civil service, and the voluntary sector.

Teaching methods

Our history and politics students benefit from being part of a diverse and active academic community. Our interactive seminars and workshops help you find your feet in the academic environment, and establish ways of working confidently, creatively and collaboratively. We see our students as fellow researchers, and we place a great deal of importance on sharing and developing skills. 

You will have the opportunity to get involved in activities that will complement your studies. Not only do these enhance your experience, they also make for a more impressive CV. We offer extra-curricular modules in debating and model United Nations, while our renowned staff-student Oral History team has taken students to Australia and produced a BBC Radio 4 documentary, which was commended at the 2018 Royal Historical Society Public History Awards.

Study Abroad

Taking a year’s study abroad at one of our many partner universities is an excellent opportunity to broaden your understanding of the world. Living in another country opens up fresh perspectives and helps create global citizens. For our history and politics students, immersing yourself in a host country enhances your learning, giving you a greater appreciation of other cultures and societies, and a deeper understanding of their everyday lives.

Structure

  • Level 4
    Module Credits Compulsory/optional
    Belief and Disbelief: Faith, Magic and Medicine, 1500 - 1800 15 Credits Compulsory
    Introduction to Politics 30 Credits Compulsory
    International Relations Theory 30 Credits Compulsory
    The Fight for Rights: Freedom and Oppression, 1790s-1990s 15 Credits Compulsory
    Historians' Toolkit 15 Credits Compulsory
    Africa and the World, 1450-1850 15 Credits Compulsory
    Cashing In: Traders and Consumers, 1600 - 2001 15 Credits Optional
    Introduction to Strategy 30 Credits Optional
    Contemporary British Politics 30 Credits Optional
    Introduction to Public History 15 Credits Optional
    The Heritage Industry in Britain 15 Credits Optional
    Leisure and Lifestyle: 20th Century American Music, Sport and Entertainment 15 Credits Optional
  • Level 5
    Module Credits Compulsory/optional
    Graduate Skills 0 Credits Compulsory
    Comparative Political Systems 30 Credits Optional
    Modern Political Philosophy 30 Credits Optional
    Security and Governance 30 Credits Optional
    We, the People: Democratic Theory and Practice 15 Credits Optional
    The State in the 21st Century 15 Credits Optional
    Political History: Milestones, Change and Continuity 15 Credits Optional
    Hearth & Heart: Family Life in the Long Eighteenth-Century 15 Credits Optional
    Propaganda in Twentieth-Century War and Politics 15 Credits Optional
    Nation & Identity: Newly Independent States in Interwar Europe, 1918-1939 15 Credits Optional
    Making a Historical Documentary 15 Credits Optional
    Making Histories: Public History Work Experience 15 Credits Optional
    USA 1861 to 1969: From Civil War to Civil Rights 15 Credits Optional
    Postcards from the Empire: Experiences of British Imperialism 15 Credits Optional
    Maladies and Medicine in Early Modern Europe 15 Credits Optional
    Crime and Society in England, 1550-1750 15 Credits Optional
    The Age of the Cold War, 1945-1991 15 Credits Optional
    Doing History: Investigating the Historians' Craft 15 Credits Optional
  • Fees & funding

    Fees 2019

    UK/EU Students

    Full time
    • £9250 for the 2019/2020 academic year

    International Students

    Full time
    • £12350 for the 2019/2020 academic year

    Discounts are available for International students if payment is made in full at registration

    *Tuition fees are charged annually. The fees quoted above are for the specified year(s) only. Fees may be higher in future years, for both new and continuing students. Please see the University’s Fees and Finance Policy (and in particular the section headed “When tuition fees change”), for further information about when and by how much the University may increase its fees for future years.

    View detailed information about tuition fees

    Read more about additional fees in the course fact sheet

    Other financial support

    Find out more about other financial support available to UK and EU students

    Living costs / accommodation

    The University of Hertfordshire offers a great choice of student accommodation, on campus or nearby in the local area, to suit every student budget.

    View detailed information about our accommodation

    Entry requirements

    UCAS points A Level BTEC IB requirement
    104 BCC DMM 104 points

    How to apply

    Course length
    • Full Time, 3 Years
    • Sandwich, 4 Years
    Locations
    • University of Hertfordshire, Hatfield

    2020

    Start DateEnd DateLink
    23/09/202031/05/2021Apply online (Full Time/Sandwich)
    21/09/202031/05/2021Apply online (Full Time/Sandwich)

    2021

    Start DateEnd DateLink
    20/09/202131/05/2022Apply online (Full Time)
    23/09/202131/05/2022Apply online (Full Time/Sandwich)
    21/09/202131/05/2022Apply online (Full Time/Sandwich)
    Optional Sandwich Placement or Study Abroad year
    We welcome applications from international and EU students