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BAModern History and International Relations

University of Essex
United Kingdom, Colchester
Tuition fee To be confirmed
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You obtain a thorough grounding in the fields of modern history and international relations, and will explore how these disciplines influence one another.

You take introductory modules in international relations and politics alongside your history modules in your first year, and continue to combine modules in modern history and international relations in your second and third years. There is a range of options to choose from in both departments and you choose to write your final-year dissertation in either politics or history.

In your history modules you investigate the intersection of the ideas, cultures and economics of different people over the last 200 years of western history. You’re introduced to the relationship between today’s ‘modern’ world, which assumes the significance of political liberty, global interdependence and sexuality, and events and ideas which originated in the 18th and 19th centuries.

This course should also interest you if you want to understand how the international system works, how decisions are made and how lines are drawn. You’ll gain a foundation in politics, while the study of international relations develops your research and critical analysis skills, while teaching you methods of analysis and giving you awareness of the world system.

You have the opportunity to indulge your interests in modern history and international relations by selecting modules from a wide range of specialisms, including:

- Conflict and security studies
- Politics of the Middle East
- The spread of communist-inspired revolutions in China, Russia, and Latin America
- The origins and consequences of the Cold War
- Imperialism in India and Africa

Our Department of History has developed a strong research and teaching profile, with the majority of our research rated as ‘world leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’ (REF 2014). We provide you with opportunities to explore local history, and have strong links with the Essex Record Office, one of the best county record offices in the UK. You can also explore more international topics; our corridors are truly cosmopolitan, with an international research team and a high proportion of international students.

Our Department of Government is one of the most prestigious in Europe, with an outstanding record of teaching, research and publication. We are rated top in the UK for research (REF 2014), and have consistently been the highest-rated politics department in the country since national assessments began.

Programme structure

Year 1

The Making of the Modern World 1776-1989
Introduction to Politics
Introduction to International Relations
Democracy: Forms and Futures
Co-Operation and Conflict
Becoming a Historian
From Disunity to Unity? An Introduction to the History of Europe in the 20th Century (optional)

Year 2

Making Histories: Concepts, Themes and Sources
International Relations: Theories and Approaches
History Works: Beyond Your BA
Conflict Analysis
The U.S. Presidential Election (optional)
Human Rights in Historical Perspective (optional)
South Africa: The Road to Apartheid (optional)
The European Union: Institutions and Policies (optional)

Final year

Placement-Linked Project (optional)
Authoritarianism (optional)
The Analysis of Conflict and Peace (optional)
The United States and the Vietnam War (optional)
Crime and Punishment: England in Comparative Perspective 1650-1900 (optional)

Career opportunities

Many of our graduates go into subject-related fields such as teaching, museum curation and archiving, while others have gone on to do very different things, including journalism, law, politics and civil service.

Some of our recent graduates have found employment as:

A librarian
An editorial assistant
A careers officer
A business development manager
A digital services consultant

Apply now! Fall semester 2021/22
This intake is not applicable

Application deadlines apply to citizens of: United States

Apply now! Fall semester 2021/22
This intake is not applicable

Application deadlines apply to citizens of: United States