Birkbeck, University of London has opted into the TEF and received a Silver award.
The BA Contemporary History and Politics is offered jointly by our Department of History, Classics and Archaeology and our Department of Politics, 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. HIGHLIGHTS
- The Department of History, Classics and Archaeology was ranked top in the UK for intellectual stimulation in the 2019 National Student Survey and first in London for teaching quality. It is an international centre of excellence. Since 2001 it has consistently been in the top ten departments evaluated by the Research Excellence Framework (REF).
- Birkbeck is also a distinguished centre of research and teaching excellence in politics. The Department of Politics is over 40 years old and has a reputation for the excellence of its teaching and its internationally significant research.
- Our academic staff are international authorities in their respective fields, delivering stimulating teaching.
- Our courses are designed to encourage independent thinking and hone your argumentative, analytical and critical skills, while our teaching uniquely moves across the boundaries between subjects; encompassing, among others, economics, history and sociology.
- We are home to thriving student societies and a number of affiliated research centres that actively run seminars, conferences and other events where some of the world's best scholars present their latest research.
For information about course structure and the modules you will be studying, please visit Birkbeck’s online prospectus.
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.
How to apply
If your application is completed by the following date, it’s guaranteed to be considered:
15 January*If you apply after this deadline, universities or colleges don’t have to consider your application if they’ve filled their spaces, so the sooner you apply, the better!
Points of entry
The following entry points are available for this course:
- Year 1
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.
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. 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. Birkbeck's Certificate of Higher Education in Higher Education Introductory Studies and in History and Archaeology can lead to exemption from Year 1.
Please click the following link to find out more about qualification requirements for this course
Fees and funding
|Northern Ireland||£6935||Year 1|
|Channel Islands||£6935||Year 1|
Additional fee information
Birkbeck, University of London
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Course contact detailsVisit our course page
Birkbeck Student Advice Service
0203 907 0700