BA(Hons) History (with Foundation Year)

A History degree student sitting on the floor with crossed legs, reading a course text book
Entry year
Course code
School of Arts
Tariff points
Four years full-time; five years sandwich
Full-time; sandwich
Programme leader
Foundation Year: Dr Britta Martens; years one to three: Dr Rose Wallis and Dr Martin Simpson

Please note there are no vacancies on this course for September 2023

Please be aware that we will no longer be offering this course from September 2024 onwards.

Page last updated 15 August 2023


Our BA(Hons) History covers medieval to contemporary history in Britain, Ireland, Europe, America and Africa. We use primary sources to develop critical thinking and apply historical perspectives to real-world situations.

Accreditations and partnerships:

Why study history?

History isn't just about facts. It's about the human experience in all its diversity. It's also about acquiring a sense of enquiry, which will sustain you during and after your studies.

History is a long-established discipline, much respected by employers because of the critical skills it gives you.

Understanding the past equips us to engage more intelligently with the present and to play a more valuable and informed part in society, whatever career path you decide to follow.

Why UWE Bristol?

BA(Hons) History shows you how to interrogate the past and expand your knowledge through challenging academic study.

Our staff are passionate about teaching and research. They'll help you deepen your historical knowledge and develop your critical thinking.

Besides traditional forms of assessment such as essays, you'll have the opportunity to build practical skills, using software and editing tools, to make your own films, documentaries and websites.

Nurture your imagination and creativity, and build on your fascination with the social, economic and political forces that have shaped history across centuries and continents.

Using primary sources from the start, explore events in their historical contexts and gain a unique insight into the important global issues of today.

Study a broad spectrum of history, working on individual and group research projects. Gain skills and experience that will help you succeed in your studies and in your chosen career.

Take a look at the UWE History Community blog, a fantastic forum for student talent and creativity.

There are many opportunities to engage with Bristol's culture and fascinating history. We have strong links with Bristol's museums, galleries and archives, including M ShedWatershed, the Arnos Vale Cemetery Trust and the National Trust.

In year three, you could negotiate a work placement with a local cultural provider, spending six months gaining real-world skills, experience and contacts.

Where can it take me?

The heritage sector, in particular, continues to grow dynamically and to attract history graduates.

However, graduates also enter into and succeed in a wide range of other sectors, including publishing, advertising and marketing, education, communications, IT, law, broadcasting, tourism and more. Many go on to further study. 

Watch: The learning and teaching experience



The optional modules listed are those that are most likely to be available, but they may be subject to change.

Year zero (foundation year)

You will study the following compulsory modules:

  • Academic Skills for Arts and Humanities
  • Thought, Ideas and Myths: past, present and future
  • Bristol, Arts and Culture
  • The Power of Words.

You will study the Foundation year alongside students from other Arts, Creative Industries and Journalism courses.

The normal expectation is that you must pass all Foundation year modules before progressing to Year one.

Year one

You will study:

  • A Global History of Europe
  • Early Modern British History: Reformation to the Rebellion
  • Europe and the World Order 1914-1945
  • Europe in the Age of Enlightenment and Revolution
  • History and Evidence 
  • Modern British History
  • The Global Cold War, 1945-1989
  • Working with History. 

Year two

You will study:

  • History in Practice
  • Making History

Plus, six optional modules from:

  • Chocolate, Spices, and Slavery: The World Comes to Britain, c.1497-1688
  • Crime and the Courts: Law, Criminal Justice and English Society from the Eighteenth-century
  • Exploring the Slum: Poverty and Urban Society in Nineteenth and Twentieth Century Britain
  • Fascism in Europe, 1922-39: Italy, France, and the Spanish Civil War
  • International History of Africa
  • Memory, Place and Identity: An Introduction to Heritage
  • Nazi Germany: Roots, Rituals, and Race   
  • One Nation Divisible: US History, 1914-Present 
  • Pirates, Merchants, and Colonisers: Britain and the World, c.1497-1688
  • Punishment: Penal Policy in England
  • Russia in Revolution 1917-1921
  • Sex and the Social Order: Gender and Sexuality in Modern Britain
  • Southeast Asia's Twentieth Century
  • The Defence of the Indian Empire, 1815 to 1947
  • The Global Seventies: Counter-Revolution. Experimentation and Crisis
  • The Global Sixties: Utopia, Protest, Revolution
  • The Search for Order: US History, 1789-1914 
  • War and Memory I: Icons, Myths, and Memorials in Britain and Europe since 1936 
  • War and Memory II: European Field Trip 
  • War, Revolution and Diplomacy: Britain and the Middle East, 1815 to 1914.

Placement year (if applicable)

If you study on the four year (sandwich) course, you'll spend a year away from the University on a work or study placement after Year two.

You'll complete a placement learning module.

See the Placements and Fees sections for more information.

Final year

You will study:

  • Applied Historical Research.

Plus, three optional modules from (or two if you have completed a study year abroad or placement year):

  • Crowds, Disorder and the Law in England, 1730-1820
  • Heritage in Practice
  • History in the Public Space
  • International Politics in North Africa and the Middle East
  • Mafias, Mythologies and Criminal Networks: The United States and the Globalisation of Crime
  • Resistance to Fascism and Nazism in Western Europe: The Spanish Civil War and Occupied France, 1936-1945
  • Stalin and Stalinism
  • Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy: Politics and Religion and Society in Britain, 1640-1660
  • Un-ruling the World: Global Decolonisation
  • Youth and Youth Culture in Modern Britain.

The University continually enhances our offer by responding to feedback from our students and other stakeholders, ensuring the curriculum is kept up to date and our graduates are equipped with the knowledge and skills they need for the real world. This may result in changes to the course. If changes to your course are approved, we will inform you.

Learning and Teaching

Our history community is welcoming and supportive. We rank consistently highly in the Research Excellence Framework (REF) and the National Student Survey (NSS).

Learn through lectures, seminars, workshops and tutorials, using a range of digital resources.

Develop as a trainee professional, craft your skills as a researcher and develop strong enterprise skills.

You'll work with academics and partners helping to shape new thinking in the field, learn to communicate your ideas clearly and succinctly, and build practical and academic skills you can take into any career.

Consider the uses of history outside of academia, take up placement opportunities and work on meaningful projects with heritage organisations.

Many optional modules incorporate field trips locally, nationally and internationally (there is a week-long field trip element to the War and Memory module - previously trips have been to Madrid and Paris). This is an important opportunity to engage with, and experience, history outside of the seminar room.

Complete a traditional style dissertation or work on a more practical project, such as a website, documentary or education materials, with a historical focus.

The course is linked to the Regional History Centre, which engages the public in, and shares knowledge about, local history and heritage.

See our full glossary of learning and teaching terms.

Approximate percentage of time you'll spend in different learning activities*:

YearScheduled learning and teaching studyIndependent studyPlacement study

*Calculated from compulsory and optional modules (where applicable) each year

Get involved

Join our thriving History Society. You'll have plenty of opportunities to get involved and it'll look great on your CV.

Take part in trips and social events throughout the year, visiting places of historical interest. Regular socials include trips to historic pubs in Bristol.

Sharpen your skills writing for UWE Bristol student media. Publications include the Western Eye and Westworld, blogs such as UWE Bristol Lingo, and the English Society's Cellar Door magazine.


You can expect to be assessed through essays, document tests and exercises, assessed seminar papers and presentations, book and article reviews, projects, a dissertation and exams.

Some modules are almost entirely based on coursework or project work and others have split assessment with up to 50% of the module assessed by formal examination.

See our full glossary of assessment terms.

Approximate percentage of marks awarded by each assessment method*:

YearWritten exam assessmentCoursework assessmentPractical exam assessment

*Calculated from compulsory and optional modules (where applicable) each year


Professional accreditation

Upon completion of the History in Practice module, you'll be awarded the Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) Level 3 Award in Management awarded by the City and Guilds of London Institute.


Students who get work experience often find that their degrees are more marketable among employers. Experience also hones your skills, industry knowledge and professional network, making you a sought after graduate.

If you choose the five year (sandwich) course, you'll spend a year away from the University on a work placement after Year two.

We have strong links with Bristol's museums, galleries and archives, including M ShedWatershed, the Arnos Vale Cemetery Trust and the National Trust.

Our award-winning careers and employability service will guide and support you to find the right placement.

Study facilities

You'll study at Frenchay Campus, which houses a library with over 60,000 history books and an impressive number of history journals. It also contains an extensive collection of historical primary material. You'll also have access to a wide variety of digital archives and library materials.

Learn more about UWE Bristol's facilities and resources.

Get a feel for the English, History and Writing facilities we have on offer here from wherever you are.

History community

History at UWE Bristol is a welcoming and supportive community. Staff are active published researchers whose research feeds directly into their teaching, with several internationally recognised leaders in their fields. We rank consistently highly in the Research Excellence Framework (REF) and the National Student Survey (NSS).



An excellent range of options for all of the Bristol campuses and the city centre.


A stunning city for student living with all the qualities to make you want to stay.

Sports, societies and activities

There is more to your experience here than study. Choose to make the most of it and try new things.

Health and Wellbeing

We provide support in the way you need it.

Campus and facilities

Discover our campuses and the wealth of facilities provided for our students.


Careers / Further study

Graduates with a background in history and English are highly employable, recognised for their transferable skills and broad knowledge.

Tailoring what and how you study, you can shape the course towards your chosen career path.

You could find work in the heritage industry, leisure and tourism, local and central government, publishing, education, journalism, the health service, the armed forces and emergency services, the legal professions, financial services or education.

Get inspired

Our award-winning careers service will develop your employment potential through career coaching and help find you graduate jobs, placements and global opportunities.

We can also help find local volunteering and community opportunities, provide support for entrepreneurial activity and get you access to employer events.

Visit our Employability pages to learn more about careers, employers and what our students are doing six months after graduating.


Supplementary fee information

Your overall entitlement to funding is based on how long the course is that you're registered on. Standard funding is allocated based on the standard number of years that your course lasts, plus one additional year.

You'll apply for funding each year that you study and Student Finance will take into account how long the course is in each year that you apply. So if you register for the five year course and then transfer to the four year course, the number of years you can apply for funding will change. Student Finance will reassess your funding based on how many years you have been in study, not just those years for which you received student finance.

Always seek advice before taking any action that may have implications for your funding.

Learn more about funding.

Additional costs

This refers to items you could need during your studies that aren't covered by the standard tuition fee. These could be materials, textbooks, travel, clothing, software or printing.

Learn more about costs.


Typical offers

  • Tariff points: 64
  • Contextual tariff: See our contextual offers page.
  • GCSE: Grade C/4 in English Literature or Language, or equivalent. We do not accept Level 2 Key Skills, Functional Skills or Certificates in Adult Literacy and Numeracy as suitable alternatives to GCSEs.
  • English Language Requirement: International and EU applicants are required to have a minimum overall IELTS (Academic) score of 6.0 with 5.5 in each component (or approved equivalent*).

    *The university accepts a large number of UK and International Qualifications in place of IELTS. You can find details of acceptable tests and the required grades you will need in our English Language section. Please visit our English language requirements page.

  • A-level subjects: No specific subjects required.
  • EDEXCEL (BTEC) Diploma: No specific subjects required.

    For information on required Guided Learning Hours please see our minimum entry requirements page.

  • Access: No specific subjects required.
  • Baccalaureate IB: No specific subjects required.
  • Irish Highers: No specific subjects required.
  • T Levels: No specific subjects required.

Entry requirements

If you exceed the entry requirements you may be eligible for BA(Hons) History.

International applicants

If you are an international student your recommended route of study for this degree is through our International College, which upon successful completion to the required level and with good attendance, guarantees entry to Year one of the degree.

Read more about entry requirements.

How to apply

Read more about undergraduate applications.

Read more about international applications and key international deadline dates.

For further information


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