History at Queen Mary spans a range of historical approaches and periods. You could study the Black Death, Women and Gender in Medieval Islam, and the Crusades. Or in the modern era you will examine the social, technological and cultural forces that shaped our world. You could investigate topics such as the portrayal of the face in Western art and medicine, the representation of war in contemporary British popular culture or the lifestyle and values of Victorian Britain.
Why study History and Politics at Queen Mary?
In the 2016 National Student Survey,Queen Mary 96% of History and Politics students said that staff are good at explaining things. 91% said staff have made the subject interesting.
In the last Research Excellence Framework (REF 2014), the research environment in the School of History at Queen Mary was ranked among the top 5 departments in the UK. Our academics are internationally renowned in their fields, and our track record in both research and teaching is excellent. We count the former President of the Royal Historical Society and six fellows of British Academy among our number.
Our staff regularly contribute to academic and public life with books, journal papers, and media broadcasts. Broadcasts from History staff include: BBC Two series Ian Hislop’s a Stiff Upper Lip-An Emotional History of Britain, a series in which Dr Thomas Dixon was a consultant and interviewee. BBC Two’s Behind Closed Doors and At Home with the Georgians and BBC Radio 4’s Voices from the Old Bailey by Professor Amanda Vickery. Professor Julian Jackson delivered a programme on Charles de Gaulle called Monsieur Non for Archive on 4; and Dr Tom Asbridge developed and presented The Crusader’s Lost Fort for BBC2’s Timewatch.
Our intellectual diversity is a key feature of our community. This will enable you to study political history alongside the history of art or film. By following cultural and intellectual themes you could investigate topics as diverse as: the lives of Oscar Wilde; the representation of war in contemporary British popular culture; or the Medieval Islamic world.
You will have membership to the Queen Mary Library and the University of London Library, Senate House, both of which have extensive collections. You will also enjoy reading access to the other college libraries within the University of London, and can take advantage of Queen Mary’s London location and ready access to a wealth of other libraries, museums and archives.
In the most recent Research Excellence Framework (REF 2014), the School of Politics and International Relations was rated very highly for the quality of our research. Our staff have diverse research interests, and this is reflected in the choice of modules available to students.
There are huge benefits to studying History and Politics in London, with national political institutions, party headquarters, high-profile international organisations and think-tanks all based here. We are home to the Mile End Institute, which is a forum for the exchange of ideas between government, policy makers, civil servants, and students. Through the Mile End Institute, we have a range of high-profile and inspiring speakers who come to campus. Speakers have included Yvette Cooper MP, Lord Heseltine, Lord Owen, Alistair Campbell, Baroness Williams, Dame Tessa Jowell. There is also a student-run politics society who organise debates and events of their own.
You can choose to apply for a four-year version of this degree with a full year abroad. We have links with universities around the world, including Europe, North America, Australia, and Asia (specific partnerships for each programme may vary).
While there are no extra tuition fees associated with these placements abroad, you will need to cover the cost of your transport to your destination and your living expenses, including accommodation.
Find out more about study abroad opportunities at QMUL.
History compulsory module:
- History in Practice (QMUL Model module)
History modules may include:
- Europe in a Global Context since 1800
- Unravelling Britain: British History since 1801
- Building the American Nation 1756-1900
- Reformation to Revolution: Europe and the World 1500-1800
Politics core module:
- Introduction to Politics
- Political Analysis
- Introduction to International Relations
Students must take one of the following modules:
- Modern Political Thought
- History of Western Political Thought
History modules may include:
- Kingdoms, Empires, and Colonisation in African History
- The American Century: The History of the United States, 1900-200
- From the Tsars to the Bolsheviks: Russia 1801-1921
- A Century of Extremes: Germany 1890 - 1990
- A History of Terror in the Modern Age 1858-2008
Politics modules may include:
- British Politics
- Global Governance
- International Politics of the Developing World
- International Relations: Theories and Contemporary Issues
- War and Security in World Politics
- Comparative European Politics
- US Politics
Compulsory History module:
- History Special Subject and dissertation
Special Subjects may include:
- The French Civil War 1934-1944
- The Kennedy Years
- Making Thatcher's Britain: the Thatcher Revolution, 1975-1997
- The War on Terror
Politics modules may include:
- US Foreign Policy
- Analysing Public Policy
- Globalisation: Issues and Debates
- Gender and Politics
- The Politics of the Post-Colonial Middle East¿
- Twentieth Century Political Thought
- Nationalism & Ethnicity in International Relations
- Parliamentary Studies
- Race and Racism in World Politics
- Utopia and Dystopia: Political, Economic and Literary Dreamworlds
- The Political Economy of South East Asia
- Contemporary Russian Politics
- Political Violence and Liberal Modernity
- Global Ethics
- The European Union
- The Politics Research Project
- The Political Life of Security Methods
General Admission Entry Requirements can be found below.
2018 Entry requirements
|A-Level||Grades ABB at A-Level. This must include A-Level History. Excludes General Studies and Critical Thinking.|
|IB||International Baccalaureate Diploma with a minimum of 32 points overall, including 6,5,5 from three Higher Level subjects. This must include History at Higher Level.|
|BTEC||See our detailed subject and grade requirements|
|Access HE||We consider applications from students with the Access to Higher Education Diploma. The minimum academic requirement is to achieve 60 credits overall with 45 credits at Level 3, of which 15 credits must be at Distinction and 15 credits at Merit or higher. This must include at least 6 Level 3 credits in History modules at Distinction.|
|GCSE||Minimum five GCSE passes including English and Maths at grade C or 4.|
|EPQ||Alternative offers may be made to applicants taking the Extended Project Qualification.|
|Contextualised admissions||We consider every application on its individual merits and will take into consideration your individual educational experiences and context. More information on how academic schools and programmes use this information as part of the admissions process, can be found on our contextualised admissions pages.|
General Admissions Entry Requirements
English Language Proficiency
All applicants to QMUL must show they meet a minimum academic English language standard for admission and to be successful on the course, to the indicated levels for the area of study. See our guidance on English Language requirements for all degree programmes.
Vocational and Other Qualifications
The College accepts a wide range of qualifications such as Access and Foundation programmes, vocational awards, Irish Leaving Certificate, Scottish Highers and other Baccalaureates. You are advised to contact the Admissions team (firstname.lastname@example.org) before making an application so that we can give individual advice.
Admission is based on academic merit and on the proven ability of the applicant to achieve success on their chosen programme of study. Every application to Queen Mary is considered on its individual merits with personal statement and reference taken into consideration.
If you are taking a combination of qualifications at Level 3, we will consider your academic profile and may make offers on a case-by-case basis. You are advised to contact the Admissions team (email@example.com) before making an application so that we can give individual advice.
Subject to the policy of the programme, it may be possible for students to join undergraduate degree programmes at the beginning of the second year of a three or four year degree programme or, sometimes, the beginning of the third year of a four year programme. Please note, not all schools will consider advanced entry. You are advised to contact the Admissions team (firstname.lastname@example.org) before making an application for individual advice.
If you are applying for advanced entry on the basis of a post A-Level qualification, such as the BTEC HND, you should apply via UCAS in the usual way. If you wish to transfer your degree studies from another UK higher education institution, you will be considered on the basis of your original A-Level or equivalent qualifications, current syllabus, academic references and results.
We typically expect you to have achieved a 2.1 standard on your current programme and have already met the standard equivalent first year entry requirements. Applications must be submitted via UCAS.
European and International Applicants
Our students come from over 162 countries and we accept a wide range of European and International Qualifications for entry, in addition to A-Levels, the International Baccalaureate and BTEC qualifications. Please see our International Admissions webpages for further details of our academic requirements, and information regarding how we assess the equivalence of your qualification.
Applicants will typically be expected to be taking academic subjects relevant to the programme of study. You are advised to review the A-Level and IB requirements for an indication of these subjects. If you are at all unclear, the Admissions team (email@example.com) is happy to advise you further.
For any other enquiries directly relating to our entry requirements, please contact the Undergraduate Admissions Office directly.
Telephone: +44 (0)20 7882 5511
See our information and guidance on how to apply.
Learning and teaching
Learning and Teaching:
Most modules are taught in a one-hour lecture followed by a one-hour seminar each week. All of our seminar-based classes are capped at 15 students. Some modules will include extended field trips such as visits to art galleries, museums, the Houses of Parliament and longer study visits, for example study visits to other cities. In your final year you will take a Special Subject that is taught as a two-hour-long seminar. Most students have eight hours of classes per week. This is supplemented by one-to-one discussions in staff office hours and feedback sessions.
For every hour spent in classes you will be expected to complete a further 2-3 hours of independent study. Your individual study time could be spent preparing for, or following up on formal study sessions; reading; producing written work; completing projects; and revising for examinations.
The direction of your individual study will be guided by the formal study sessions you attend, along with your reading lists and assignments. However, we expect you to demonstrate an active role in your own learning by reading widely and expanding your own knowledge, understanding and critical ability.
Independent study will foster in you the ability to identify your own learning needs and determine which areas you need to focus on to become proficient in your subject area. This is an important transferable skill and will help to prepare you for the transition to working life.
Assessment is typically by a mixture of examination and coursework, but some modules are assessed entirely on coursework. Coursework may take the form of essays, diaries, case-studies or book reviews. Some modules use screen or slide tests as part of their assessment. Oral presentations may also contribute to your overall mark. You will be provided with feedback to help you improve your performance and understanding of the subject. In the final year you will have the opportunity to work on a special subject research dissertation. These special subject modules are worth half your final year mark and allow you to work closely on primary source material and carry out your own research in a specialised area which particularly interests you.
Fees and funding
Fees are charged at a Home/EU rate for UK and EU nationals, and an overseas rate for International students - find out more about how your tuition fee status is assessed.
You can either take out a Tuition Fee Loan (see Funding section below) to pay your fees or, if you are paying them yourself, you can pay in instalments.
Tuition fees for a year abroad or placement year on a full time undergraduate course will be a proportion of the full fee for the year in which you commence your time abroad or placement.
For information on field trip and other course related costs which are not included in your tuition fee, please contact the relevant Department/School.
See more general information about fees.
Tel: +44 (0)20 7882 7676
Queen Mary has a substantial package of scholarships and bursaries which will benefit around 50 per cent of our undergraduate student body.
Scholarships and Bursaries available at Queen Mary for Home/EU Students
There are a number of scholarships and bursaries available each year for home students. Visit our Bursaries and Scholarships page for more information.
Visit our Advice and Counselling website for more information about financial support.
Scholarships available at Queen Mary for International Students
There are a number of Scholarships available each year for International Students including bursaries and scholarships in a range of subject areas.
Find out more about international scholarships.
Some International students may also be eligible for a fee reduction.
Loans and Grants available to help with tuition fees and living costs
Student Finance England administers all grant and loans for your studies if you normally live in England.
Through Student Finance England, you can apply for (figures relate to programmes starting from September 2016):
- A Tuition Fee Loan of up to £9,000 to pay all or part of your fees
- A Maintenance Loan of up to £10,702 to help pay your living costs like rent, food and travel
- Extra grants if you have a disability or you have children or an adult dependant
- You might get a grant to cover some travel expenses if you normally live in England but study away from home. If you’re a medical or dental student you might also qualify for help with the costs of attending clinical placements in the UK.
Visit Student Finance Information to find out more about:
- How to apply for student finance
- What eligibility rules apply, including if you already have a degree or previous higher education study
- What the income thresholds are and how much you might personally get for each element of Student Finance
- What to do if you have problems getting your Student Finance
Other financial help on offer at Queen Mary
We offer one to one specialist support on all financial and welfare issues through our Advice and Counselling Service, which you can access as soon as you have applied for a place at Queen Mary.
Our Advice and Counselling Service also has lots of Student Advice Guides on all aspects of finance including:
- Additional sources of funding
- Planning your budget and cutting costs
- Part-time and vacation work
- Money for lone parents
For more information visit the Advice and Counselling service website, or call +44 (0)20 7882 8717.
Graduates from Queen Mary’s BA History and Film Studies programme go on to work in a wide variety of careers spanning the media, government and politics, academia, business, finance, the charity sector and legal services.
The national 2014-15 destination survey confirmed that 93% of graduates from the School of History were in employment or study six months after graduation with 80% of this group already working or studying at graduate level. Graduates from Queen Mary’s School of History also have a strong earning power, with a median salary of £21,406.
The broad range of skills gained through programmes in the School, coupled with multiple opportunities for extra-curricular activities and work experience, have enabled students to move into careers and postgraduate study such as:
|Parliamentary Research Service||Parliamentary Officer|
|BDO||Tax Dispute Resolution Trainee|
|Liberal Democrats||Senior Campaign Organiser|
MSc Democracy & Comparative Politics
|LSE||MSc Political Theory|
|Cass Business School||MSc Management|
We offer a series of workshops and events to help students to identify career options, train them in recruitment & selection methods and offer networking opportunities. These are tailored to the needs of students from History and will be run by the School’s Careers Consultant.
In the past year the programme included the History Futures day enabling students to explore a variety of careers in just one day. In addition there are events and workshops throughout the year, such as those exploring careers in Journalism, Publishing and Teaching. Events planned will help students to explore careers in Law, Marketing and Public Affairs.
History students are be able to access dedicated Careers resources to build their career related knowledge of options and opportunities, or to develop their employability skill set.
Read more about our careers programmes and range of work experience opportunities on the QM Careers pages.
Name: Mehmed Gokcel
Studying: BA History and Politics
Why did you choose History at QMUL?
I was impressed by the wide variety of modules offered and the quality of the academics
Are there any modules that you have particularly enjoyed, and why?
I particularly enjoyed the teaching of Europe in Global Context from the 1800s as it gave me a good sense of a rich period of modern history.
What do you enjoy about being a student here?
The academic environment is satisfying and the ease of reaching and discussing with our professors is great!
What is (or are) your favourite thing(s) about being based in the East End?
The East End is home to a rich cultural mashup with the most diverse food cuisines. Brick Lane is a very good representation of this.