The History and Politics joint degree will appeal to ambitious students interested in developing a deep understanding of politics and political processes rooted in both the past and the present.
Through a selection of modules from the City History and Politics programmes, and core seminars designed exclusively for the joint degree, you will examine key historical and political developments in a range of nations, societies and cultures.
- Work closely with world class academics to develop the tools and techniques of historical research
- Acquire an international and global perspective on politics and power
- Develop skills in independent research, critical analysis, communication, public speaking and policy writing
- Apply your skills to the real-world – work with digital information, engage in independent research projects of your own design, and practice developing policy positions on current events
- Prepare for your future career with an optional work placement and professional development opportunities embedded in the course
- Engage with contemporary politics and policymakers
Gain a strong grounding in modern history, political theory, the history of ideas and the study of politics.
This three-year joint Honours degree balances and blends the study of this complementary subjects, providing an interconnected understanding of them both.
Develop an expert understanding of global history, the principles and ideas that define the study of politics, key concepts and thinkers in political theory, and the foundations of comparative politics.
The Development of the Modern World (30 credits)
This module will introduce you to the history of the modern world, from the global revolutions of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries to the rapidly changing geopolitical dynamics of the twenty-first century.
Introduction to Politics (15 credits)
Introduction to Politics will give you a broad overview of how politics is contemporarily studied as an academic discipline.
Introduction to Political Theory (15 credits)
This module teaches you how to study politics normatively. It covers central ideas in the study of political theory at an introductory level while also considering the distinctive method of study in political theory.
Puzzles of Comparative Politics (15 credits)
This module introduces you to the logic of comparative politics: what is it? What questions can you ask in comparative politics? What does it mean to think comparatively?
Past and Present: History and Politics Core Module Y1 (15 credits)
This module will bring together the disciplines of history and politics to examine the historic roots of contemporary political events.
Conflict, Conquest, and Cultural Encounter in World History (15 credits)
Examines the study of history from a global perspective, prioritising non-Eurocentric ways of understanding the world and examining empires, states, societies, cultures and individuals from a transnational perspective.
From ‘Rule Britannia’ to Brexit Britain: Britain and the World from the Nineteenth Century to the Present (15 credits)
This module will examine the history of the British Isles, the British Empire, and Britain’s relationship with the world in the 19th and 20th centuries.
From Empires to Union: Europe in the Twentieth Century (15 credits)
The module will identify and explain the central themes and events in the political, social, economic and cultural history of Europe during the twentieth century.
International Relations Theories (15 credits)
This module provides you with a focused introduction to a range of theories underpinning the study of global politics. It begins by exploring ‘traditional’ theories and the ongoing debates between them before examining a range of ‘critical’ theories.
The Making of the Modern World Economy (15 credits)
This module provides a theoretically informed overview of how the modern world economy emerged.
Emerging Powers in a Changing World (15 credits)
This module is designed to provide you with an introduction to the dynamic and changing character of global power, with a special focus on rising powers and the challenges they face and constitute to “the West”.
Politics of Britain (15 credits)
This module provides you with an overview of politics in the British modern state, focusing on the key institutions of British politics, political culture and political ideas and ideologies.
Study the ideas and ideologies that have shaped the modern world, situate these ideas in their historical context, and develop an advanced understanding of comparative politics.
Ideas in History: from the Enlightenment to Post-Colonialism (30 credits)
Explores key concepts, thinkers, and texts, considering how influential ideas have arisen out of particular historical contexts, spread within and beyond the nation state, and shaped the past and the present.
Advanced Topics in Comparative Politics (15 credits)
In this module you will engage with several contemporary debates in the field of comparative politics. Some examples of topics that might be covered in this module include state formation; democracy, authoritarianism, and democratisation.
History and Policy: History and Politics Core Module Y2 (15 credits)
Moving beyond academic analysis, you will think about the role of history in public debate and public institutions, and apply historical knowledge to developing concrete solutions and policy recommendations to contemporary issues.
Fifty Shades of Red – Russia in the Twentieth Century (15 credits)
This module introduces you to political, social, and cultural developments in modern Russian history, and encourages you to consider how the Soviet experiment influenced the history of Russia and the world, and how we should relate to it today.
Ordering the World: International Thought in the Twentieth Century (15 credits)
This module explores the history of ideas of World Order in western internationalist thought during the twentieth century.
The American Century: The United States in the Twentieth Century (15 credits)
This module will help you understand and assess the evolving role of the United States as a world power.
Cultures of Benevolence: Philanthropy and Civil Society from 1601 to the Present (15 credits)
The module will examine the many political, economic and social functions of philanthropy and voluntary action from the early modern period to the present day.
The Making of Modern Japan (15 credits)
This module considers how the politics, economics, society, and culture of Japan developed from the mid-nineteenth century to the present, with a particular emphasis on modernisation, diplomacy, conflict, and culture.
India in the 18th Century (15 credits)
This module will examine the period of the great Mughal Empire, and its collapse, reflecting on the nature of the English Company and why it successfully adapted to territorial rule.
Violent Politics (15 credits)
The module will raise and address a number of key questions related to the role of political violence in contemporary politics: E.g. Why do individuals take part in violence? Why do different countries face different types of violence?
Transnational Social Movements (15 credits)
Provides you with a comprehensive introduction to the theory and practice of transnational social movements, and to enable you to assess their nature and impact in respect of a wide range of contemporary global political issues.
States and Markets in an Era of Globalisation (15 credits)
This module discusses the forces that are currently shaping the world economy, with specific emphasis on the diverging political and social responses to globalisation.
Comparative Political Economy (15 credits)
The purpose of this course is to provide a survey of the key political economy concepts, issues, and theories that shape democratic and non-democratic systems.
Politics of the USA (15 credits)
This module provides you with a comprehensive overview of the American political system, focusing on the intersection between the main actors and ideas that shape political outcomes.
Comparative Asian Politics (15 credits)
The module will comparatively examine the historical origins and outcomes of systems of government, strategies of economic development as well as the sources and impact of corruption across Asian states.
Work Placement (15 credits)
This module provides you with the opportunity to exercise in the workplace the skills and knowledge you have gained in the taught modules by undertaking work experience.
Conduct a major piece of independent research, develop their analytical skills in a History and Politics Research Seminar, and choose from a wide variety of specialist modules.
History and Politics Dissertation (30 credits)
The dissertation is a major project which provides you with the opportunity to work on the identification, development and execution of a sustained piece of research in history and politics.
History and Politics Dissertation Research and Writing Skills Core module Y3 (15 credits)
This module will support your work on your Undergraduate Dissertation in History and Politics and help you develop a systematic understanding of key aspects of research design and methodology.
Radicals and Reformers: Left-Wing Politics and Activism in Britain and the World since 1945 (15 credits)
This module will introduce you to left-wing politics, political parties and protest movements in Britain since 1945.
Revolution: Rebels and Riots in the Long Nineteenth Century (15 credits)
Provides an overview of the history of the major revolutionary moments that occurred between the Atlantic Revolutions and WWI, and examines the history of revolutionary movements.
Comparative Empires in the Modern Era (15 credits)
This module explores the history of modern imperialism, focusing on the development of the European, Japanese, and American empires in the 19th and 20th century.
The Holocaust In History and Memory (15 credits)
This module examines the origins, implementation, and aftermath of the Holocaust as it unfolded across the European continent, paying particular attention to the divergent perspectives of perpetrators and victims.
Politics of Forced Displacement (15 credits)
The module addresses key themes in international politics (governance, globalisation, security, international (non)cooperation, regionalism and the global political economy).
Global Governance (15 credits)
This module examines the mechanisms by which collective problems and global issues are managed at the global level in the absence of global government.
International Politics of the Middle East (15 credits)
Provides a critical understanding of the key dynamics shaping the International Politics of the region since 1918, focusing on processes of state and ideology formation, the foreign policy of key states, conflict, external powers, and the impact of globalization.
American Foreign Policy (15 credits)
This module will introduce you to American power in the world and its foreign policy through a combination of theory, institutions, and case studies.
The Global Political Economy of Development (15 credits)
This module bridges international politics and political economy to demonstrate the role of international organizations in promoting domestic political institutions and social welfare policies needed for promoting development.
Political Change in Europe (15 credits)
The module examines a broad range of social and political developments and changes taking place in contemporary Europe, with a focus on the process of European integration and a range of political actors and institutions involved.
Governance in the Global Economy (15 credits)
You will be introduced to key concepts and analytical perspectives to the study of global economic governance, and critically apply these concepts and theories to the analysis of the governance of key areas of the world economy.
The Theory and Practice of Conflict and Peace (15 credits)
This module provides an introduction to how national decision-makers and diplomats have pursued war and peace since the early twentieth century with the aim of applying theory to illuminate key historical cases.
You can apply to take a sandwich year working in a real-world work placement between years two and three of your degree.
Download course specification:
Teaching and assessment
The course is delivered in a supportive, energised department by experienced academic staff who are committed to teaching and mentoring.
Our teaching and learning methods are designed to develop your knowledge and enthusiasm for history and politics while stimulating your engagement and participation in the learning process.
You will learn through a combination of thought-provoking lectures, interactive sessions, practical workshops, and small group seminars. Your learning will be supported by a personal tutorial system.
You will undertake extensive reading and independent study in order to deepen and broaden your knowledge of course content, and learn how to use digital resources in your research and presentation.
Your self-directed learning will be supported in a variety of ways, including online resources and interactive sessions where you will be invited to ask questions and participate in in-depth discussions with other students and teaching staff.
As an interdisciplinary degree, this course will also provide you with the opportunity to expand your learning through a wide range of elective modules from the School of Arts and Social Sciences.
The assessment weighting for year one is 10%, year two is 30% and year three is 60%.
You will be assessed through a variety of methods, which may include coursework, essays, reading reflections, unseen exams, oral presentations, group assignments, and a history dissertation.
Assessment will emphasise both intellectual rigour and skills that will be crucial in your subsequent professional life.
Percentage of the course assessed by coursework
The balance of assessment by examination, practical examination and assessment by coursework will to some extent depend on the optional modules you choose. The approximate percentage of the course assessment, based on 2018/19 entry is as follows:
Most contact hours will take the form of lectures, interactive sessions, practical workshops and small group classes, supported by a personal tutorial system. The number will decrease as you progress and you become more able to direct your own learning. Approximate study time, based on 2018/19 entry is as follows:
Fees and funding
Fees for year 2021/22
The fees indicated are for undergraduate entry in the 2021/ 22 academic year only. Fees for future years may be subject to an inflationary increase, which is normally 2%.
- Fee waivers are available for this course.
- Means tested support is available for 2021/22 entry.
Future finance loans
Future Finance offers students loans of between £2,500 and £40,000 to help cover tuition fees and living expenses. All students and courses are considered. All loans are subject to credit checks and approval for further details please visit our finance pages.
History and Politics graduates go on to work in fields such as:
- public policy and the public sector
- advocacy and NGOs
- international organisations
- the heritage sector
- cultural and creative industries.
You will be well-prepared for your future career aspirations. The course has been designed in consultation with employers from fields including the civil service, public policy research, and the charity sector. Professional development is embedded throughout the program at all levels.
It will equip you with a range of employment-oriented skills, including critical analysis, time management, research, teamwork, oral and written communication, and the work with digital information.
How to apply
Applications for degree courses must be made through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS).
You can apply through your school or college using the Apply system, which enables you to submit your application directly to the UCAS website.
You can apply to up to five universities or institutions on the form. The UCAS code for City, University of London is C60.
Please take care to enter the correct course code when applying, particularly for subjects with a Foundation year or with BEng (Hons) and MEng (Hons) or BSc (Hons) and MSci (Hons) options.
UCAS has implemented an 'invisibility of choices' policy so that, on the initial application and while you are receiving decisions, each institution can see only their entry and not those of other institutions you have chosen. This ensures that your application for a course at City is considered solely on your academic and personal qualities.
You should submit your completed application form to UCAS with a £23 application fee. If you want to apply to City, University of London only, you can make a single choice application at a reduced rate of £12.
For enquiries about the admissions process at City, please contact our Admissions Office
Complete the Admissions enquiry form.
Call: +44 (0)20 7040 8716.
Telephone lines are currently open between 10am - 3pm.
When to apply
Your application for entry in September 2021 should arrive at UCAS between September 2020 and 29th January 2021. Applications that arrive after 29th January 2021 will be considered only at City's discretion.
Address: Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS), Rosehill, New Barn Lane, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL52 3LZ
- from inside the UK 0871 468 0468
- from outside the UK +44 (0)871 468 0468
For callers with hearing difficulties:
- from inside the UK use the Text Relay service on 18001 0871 468 0468
- from outside the UK dial +44 151 494 1260 (text phone) and then ask the operator to dial 0871 468 0468.
Clerkenwell Tales: A Short History