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‘The historian’s task is not simply to discover the past but to explain it, and in doing so to provide a link with the present.’ (Eric Hobsbawm)
Join us at London’s top-ranked history department to study the human experience from prehistory to the present across continents and cultures.
We are one of the very few departments in the UK to include archaeologists, classicists and historians working on every period from prehistoric humans to Ancient Greece to medieval, early modern and modern societies. Our expertise encompasses much of the globe, with over 40 specialists in – for example – medieval Byzantium, colonial India and modern China, as well as Ancient Rome, Tudor London, Nazi Germany and much more.
For students, this means that our BA History programme offers a huge range of modules, stretching around the globe and across thousands of years.
As well as deepening your knowledge of the past, you will take a series of ‚How to’ modules. They provide the hub where students come together with staff to explore the study of the past together. This is where you join the conversation and develop the skills needed to research and write history.
You will acquire the analytical skills and critical approaches that enable you to assess historical evidence for yourself and to question accepted wisdom about the past as well as enhancing your career prospects by developing the ability to formulate and communicate your own ideas effectively.
This course is also available for part-time evening study over four years.
- In the 2017 National Student Survey, our history and archaeology courses came top in London for teaching and for overall course satisfaction, and sixth in the country for teaching.
- Arts and humanities at Birkbeck are ranked fifth best in London, 18th in the UK and 87th globally in the 2019 Times Higher Education World University Rankings by Subject.
- Our Department of History, Classics and Archaeology is a world-renowned centre of original, influential research. In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), History at Birkbeck was ranked sixth in the UK for the percentage of our research deemed world-leading or internationally excellent. 94% of our eligible staff submitted research and we achieved 100% for a research environment supporting world-leading and internationally excellent research.
- Our academic staff are international authorities in their respective fields, delivering stimulating teaching.
- Our wide-ranging programmes encompass fascinating periods and areas of study, from human prehistory through to classical civilisation, the medieval and early modern periods, and on to twenty-first-century history, politics and international relations.
- The Department is home to thriving student societies and a number of affiliated research centres that actively run seminars, conferences and other events where some of the world’s best scholars present their latest research.