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Module

HIS2313 : The Sea in History

  • Offered for Year: 2021/22
  • Module Leader(s): Professor Stella Ghervas
  • Lecturer: Dr David Hope, Dr Jen Kain, Dr Anton Caruana Galizia, Dr Jane Webster
  • Owning School: History, Classics and Archaeology
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semesters
Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0

Aims

This is a survey module in maritime and oceanic history from the beginnings of European encounter with the Americas (1492-) to the early twentieth century, with a particular focus on seas in the Northern hemisphere (the Mediterranean, the North and the Baltic Seas, the Atlantic and the Arctic). Each lecture will cover noteworthy geographical and historical aspects of a specific sea or ocean, from the Mediterranean Sea to the Arctic. The seminars will provide an opportunity for students to delve deeper into one subject or human activity related to the sea: from geography and environment to shipbuilding, navigation, exploration and migration. This module is designed as a path for students to connect with the Maritime Humanities Hub (MHH) initiative of the School.

Outline Of Syllabus

Indicative Lecture Topics

The Sea as a Historical Character
The New Thalassology
European Exploration in the Atlantic after 1492
The “Triangular” Trade
Corsairs and Pirates of the Mediterranean
The Nordic Shipping: Crews and Ports
From Sail to Steam: The Beginnings of Modern Fleets
The Wars for Control of the Baltic Sea Trade, 17th-18th centuries
Survival in the Arctic Marine Environment: Fishing and Hunting Expeditions
The Black Sea and the Russian Colonisation
War at Sea: From the Turbine Revolution to the Naval Arms Race


Indicative Seminar Topics

“A Sea of Words”: An introduction to Sail Ships
Fernand Braudel and the Mediterranean
The Black Sea Flood Question
The Baltic and the Hanseatic League
Newcastle and Shipbuilding
Shipbuilding from the Caravel to the Clipper
A Life at Sea in the Atlantic: Documentary Sources for the Life Experiences of Sailors c.1600-1800
The Northern Sea Route
The Voyages of James Cook: Journals and Scientific Legacy
Whaling in the Arctic

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Structured Guided LearningLecture materials111:0011:00Part of student contact hours (e.g. 1 hour of case study/lecture/documentary analyses), asynchronous
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion661:0066:00Preparation time for two assessments components
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture111:0011:00Weekly lecture: assumption is PiP or as necessary.
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading651:0065:00Seminar preparation (reading)
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching111:0011:00Weekly seminar: assumption is PiP or as necessary.
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study361:0036:00General consolidation activities
Total200:00
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

SEMINARS encourage independent study and promote improvements in oral presentation, interpersonal communication, problem-solving skills, research skills and adaptability.

LECTURES enable students to gain a wider sense of historical argument and debate and how such debates operate, which also allows them to develop comparisons between different historiographical debates

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay2M301000 words
Essay2A701750 words
Zero Weighted Pass/Fail Assessments
Description When Set Comment
Written exerciseM500 word essay plan for 1st assessment
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Work submitted during the delivery of the module forms a means of determining the student’s progress. Summative assessment tests knowledge outcomes and develops skills in research and reading.

Formative exercises may also be set for this module. They will be un-assessed, but will be discussed in the seminars and will feed into the assessed work.

Written Exercises intend to provide an introduction to the course content as well, as a starting point for the students’ academic writing on a regular basis.

Seminars are designed to provide students with an opportunity to discuss historical issues relating to the course, thereby developing their skills of critical reading, thinking and expression. Students are thus expected to do more than just attend seminars: they should involve themselves in the discussion. The emphasis during seminars is thus upon personal participation rather than passive listening


All Erasmus students at Newcastle University are expected to do the same assessment as students registered for a degree.
Study-abroad, non-Erasmus exchange and Loyola students spending semester 1 only are required to finish their assessment while in Newcastle. This will take the form of an alternative assessment, as outlined in the formats below:

Modules assessed by Coursework and Exam:
The normal alternative form of assessment for all semester 1 non-EU study abroad students will be one essay in addition to the other coursework assessment (the length of the essay should be adjusted in order to comply with the assessment tariff); to be submitted no later than 12pm Friday of week 12. The essays should be set so as to assure coverage of the course content to date.

Modules assessed by Exam only:
The normal alternative form of assessment for all semester 1 non-EU study abroad students will be two 2,000 word written exercises; to be submitted no later than 12pm Friday of week 12. The essays should be set so as to assure coverage of the course content to date.

Modules assessed by Coursework only:
All semester 1 non-EU study abroad students will be expected to complete the standard assessment for the module; to be submitted no later than 12pm Friday of week 12. The essays should be set so as to assure coverage of the course content to date.

Study-abroad, non-Erasmus exchange and Loyola students spending the whole academic year or semester 2 are required to complete the standard assessment as set out in the MOF under all circumstances.

Reading Lists

Timetable