Studying History and Theology is an exciting chance to discover how and why our world emerged, alongside the ideas that are shaping religion, faith and spirituality in the 21st century. We provide an intellectually challenging environment which encourages you to question some of the myths, preconceptions and prejudices that surround both subjects.
The size and quality of our History department enables us to offer you a wide range of options across the medieval, early modern and modern periods, and over a vast geographical span. With over 30 full-time academic staff, the department will teach to your interests – whether cultural, social, military, political, economic, or religious history. Moreover, historians in other departments can offer unique insight into Byzantine and African history to broaden your learning opportunities further.
Meanwhile, our innovative Theology department is equally wide-ranging, covering Christianity, Islam and Judaism in detail, as well as Hinduism, Sikhism, Buddhism, Sufism, Pentecostalism, global ethics and the study of the Holocaust.
Both History and Theology seek to produce graduates with an enthusiastic appreciation of the past and spirituality, as well as the range of skills needed to research these fields, and the ways in which they influence contemporary society.
Why study this course
- Taught by experts – You will study alongside some of the finest minds in Theology and Religion. We are ranked 2nd amongst all Theology departments in the UK in the Research Excellence Framework 2014, whilst our History department was ranked 1st.
- Be a part of an exciting department – You will be exposed to a variety of opportunities to enhance your student experience, including regular coffee mornings for staff and students, visiting speakers, lecture series and social events.
- The City of Birmingham – Birmingham is an ideal place to study History and Theology. The city is one of the most racially, culturally and religiously diverse communities in Europe and the University has excellent relationships with the city's faith communities.
- Access to a wide variety of resources from the University Library, which is situated next to the History Department, and the Hilton and Styles Libraries in the Arts Building itself. The University Special Collections houses some 60,000 rare and early printed books and upwards of 2 million manuscript and archive items.
- Our wide variety of modules are very flexible, allowing you to specialise more and more as you progress, culminating in a final-year dissertation that allows you to carry out in-depth, individually-supervised research into topics of your choice.
Open day talks
Three full videos on YouTube of recent open day talks relevant to this course:
Please be aware that the following information is intended to provide prospective students with an indicative guide of the modules offered by the School. However, our research is constantly exploring new areas and directions of study, therefore some modules may be dropped and new ones offered in their place.
In this programme, you study half of your modules (60 credits) in History and half in Theology and Religion (60 credits)
History: The first year is the foundational year in an academic process that will see you progress from being a dependent to an independent learner. You will study modules spanning the early medieval to late modern periods. You can choose either Discovering the Middle Ages and Living in the Middle Ages or The Making of the Modern World 1500-1815 and The Making of the Contemporary World 1815-2000 (20 credits per module). These explore fundamental themes and issues focused on key periods and indicate the kinds of questions historians explore and some of the methods they employ in answering them. You will also study Practising History (A): Skills in History (Autumn semester) and Practising History (B): Approaches to History (Spring semester), which look more closely at the techniques of the historian and at the nature and evolution of key historical debates.
Theology and Religion: Your first year lays foundations, and introduces you to areas that you can explore in depth later. There are three core courses, which provide introductions to Biblical Studies, Christian Theology, and the Study of Religion. Optional courses include introductions to Hinduism, Judaism, Islam and Sikhism, to the study of the Holocaust and to the Arabic, Hebrew, and Greek languages.
History: The second year is an intermediate year that builds on the foundations laid in the first year of study. You engage in Group Research and extend your historical knowledge through two (20 + 20) subject-specific modules chosen from a wide range of available from Option A in the Autumn semester and Option B in the Spring.
Theology and Religion: Here you have more freedom to choose your own subjects for study. These range from the study of the Bible or the Qur’an, to the philosophy of religion, religion, society and politics.
History: The third year represents the culmination of undergraduate study and the final stage of your transition to an independent learner. You hone your historical skills in Advanced Option A or Advanced Option B and you also undertake an in-depth Special Subject module, which is chosen from a variety of available subjects.
This four year route offers you the additional educational benefit of a year of study in an approved University in Europe or in English speaking countries. Students with grades of 2.1 or above in their first year will be asked to apply for the Year Abroad in the first term of their second year and if successful, will go abroad in their third year. In addition to the tutor support given from the host University, students who choose to take a Year Abroad will be allocated a member of staff from the Department of History who will monitor their progress while overseas through regular contact.
Theology and Religion: Again, you have an extensive range of modules from which to choose and can choose do to a dissertation in Theology.
Fees and funding
Number of A levels required: 3
Typical offer: ABB
Required subjects and grades: A Level History, Medieval History or Ancient History at grade A
International baccalaureate update
Please note that we have reviewed our policy on the IB Diploma for 2016 entry and our offers will now focus on performance in Higher Level subjects. For more information and details please read our 2016 IB Diploma requirements.
We welcome applications from international students and invite you to join our vibrant community of over 4500 international students who represent 150 different countries. We accept a range of qualifications, our country pages show you what qualifications we accept from your country.
Depending on your chosen course of study, you may also be interested in the Birmingham Foundation Academy, a specially structured programme for international students whose qualifications are not accepted for direct entry to UK universities. Further details can be found on the foundation academy web pages.
How to apply
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