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HIS3030 : History and Society

  • Offered for Year: 2022/23
  • Module Leader(s): Professor Annie Tindley
  • Lecturer: Dr Adam Morton, Dr Sarah Campbell, Dr Darakhshan Khan, Professor Graham Smith
  • Teaching Assistant: Mr Alex Xavier
  • Owning School: History, Classics and Archaeology
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


This module offers final year history students the opportunity to apply and practice the skills and knowledge gained on their undergraduate programme. In this sense, the aim of the module is to support students to make the transition from history student to historian in society.

In support of this aim, the emphasis throughout will be on communication techniques, competing visions of history, ethics and historical justice, and the relationship between medium, message, and audience. Through a programme of workshops, field visits, and assessed written and presentation work, HIS3030 will encourage students to consider the ways that history matters and makes a difference in the world outside of the university.

Outline Of Syllabus

The module will move away from the old weekly lecture/weekly seminar model. It will be taught through a combination of regular workshops, keynote lectures, and guided field trips that bookend the module.

Weekly topics will explore the ways historical work makes a difference in the public sphere and will provide a scaffold for student progress towards their final assessment.

Workshops will explore the interrelationships between history (the past) and the present, and may cover the following topics:

Careers and History,
Public Engagement,
‘History from below’,

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion501:0050:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture41:004:00Lectures to be divided between staff and external speakers. Contributes to contact hours.
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading481:0048:00N/A
Structured Guided LearningStructured research and reading activities92:0018:00N/A
Structured Guided LearningStructured non-synchronous discussion13:003:00Digital oral presentations - peer review and discussion. Part of contact hours.
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops82:0016:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesFieldwork24:008:00Field Trips
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery22:004:002x2hrs
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study481:0048:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesModule talk11:001:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Field Trips support students to engage with a real world example of public history.

Lectures impart core knowledge and an outline of knowledge that students are expected to acquire and they stimulate development of listening and note-taking skills.

Workshops encourage collaborative working and promote improvements in oral presentation, interpersonal communication and problem-solving skills, research skills and adaptability. They will enable students to gain a sense of the relationship between history as a discipline and the wider societal context; to critically engage with the uses of historical skills and methods; and to understand the ways in which the skill set they have acquired over the course of their degree might be utilised after leaving university. They will have a specific focus on the adaptation of skills developed during the degree to wider social, political and cultural contexts beyond student life.

The surgery invites individual guidance and advice tailored to suit students’ particular needs.

Assessment Methods

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

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written exercise2M501,500 words source analysis
Design/Creative proj2A50Portfolio including a short public history video (3mins), discussion document (750 words) and peer feedback on other students work (3-5 sentences).
Formative Assessments
Description Semester When Set Comment
Design/Creative proj2M1-page group project - design of walking trail.
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The creative project (a digital presentation) is designed around a 'live' public history project and is specifically designed to encourage the students to develop, and to test, skills that will be invaluable when it comes to applying for and engaging in a career.

Module feedback forms and the National Student Survey have both previously indicated that students do not currently feel that the History degree helps them to develop their oral skills. Training for the oral assessment – in the form of a workshop, will be offered as part of the module. Oral presentations are widely practised (and occasionally also assessed) at other points in the degree, but students are not formally trained for them. Students will also have the opportunity to offer peer feedback and to nominate excellent presentations for review by external partners, thus increasing the real-world value of the module.

The essay set during the exam period will allow the students to engage with a particular topic of their choice.

Submitted work tests intended knowledge and skills outcomes and develops key skills in research, reading and writing.

This module can be made available to Erasmus students only with the agreement of the Head of Subject and of the Module Leader. This option must be discussed in person at the beginning of your exchange period. No restrictions apply to study-abroad, exchange and Loyola students.

All Erasmus students at Newcastle University are expected to do the same assessment as students registered for a degree unless they have compelling reasons not to do so. If this is the case, they are offered the alternative of writing one 3,000 word essay to be handed in by 12.00 p.m. of the Friday of the first week of the assessment period. This will replace all assessment work required of other students on the module. In order to take up this option, students need to discuss it with the Study Abroad Co-ordinator and their module leader, having checked with their home university that the new assessment will be accepted by them. The Study Abroad Co-ordinator will have the final say on such issues.

Study-abroad, non-Erasmus exchange and Loyola students spending semester 1 only are required to finish their assessment while in Newcastle. This will require the provision of an alternative assessment before the end of teaching week 12. The alternative form of assessment for all semester 1 non-EU study abroad students will be two 1,500 word essays in addition to the other coursework assessment. The essays should be set so as to assure full coverage of the course content.

Study-abroad, exchange proper 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