BA Archaeology & Ancient History and History

Start date
September
Duration
3 Years
UCAS code
VV14
Course Type
Undergraduate, Joint Honours combined
Fees

We charge an annual tuition fee.
Fees for 2019/20:
£9,250 (Home/EU)
£17,640 (Overseas)
More detail.

Our Archaeology & Ancient History and History degree is taught in an intellectually challenging and stimulating environment, focused on ensuring you are a fully supported and active learner.

You will explore the ancient civilisations of Egypt, Western Asia, Greece and Rome, the prehistoric and historic societies of Europe and Britain though to the Middle Ages, and then follow events around the world almost to the present day. You will have the chance to investigate unfamiliar territory and to question some of the myths, preconceptions and prejudices that surround the three disciplines. By interpreting historical and archaeological evidence together, you can build a rounded picture of the life and culture of these societies.  

You will be taught by ancient historians specialising in the period, archaeologists whose expertise covers north-west Europe, Classical Greek and Roman societies, early medieval states in Europe and the Mediterranean and historians whose interests are global in cultural, social, diplomatic, military, political, economic or religious history.

We place a distinctive emphasis on the combination of archaeological and historical approaches in the study of the ancient world, and the range of expertise available across the three disciplines ensures that a wide choice of periods, countries and cultures may be studied.

I love the course at Birmingham because of the wide range of modules I'm offered. First year compulsory modules cover such different and interesting areas of ancient history, literature and archaeology that I don't feel restricted in my learning.

Jessica

Why Study this Course?

  • Breadth of expertise - While many Ancient History programmes focus on Greece and Rome, at Birmingham you will have the opportunity to study the Near East in equal measure.
  • Taught by experts – You will study alongside some of the finest minds at Birmingham. Times Higher Education ranked the Department of History 1st in the country for its performance in the latest Research Excellence Framework exercise, while the Department of Classics, Ancient History and Archaeology ranked in the Top 5.
  • Exceptional learning resources – You will have access to a range of learning resources including environmental and material culture teaching collections; the Classics, Ancient History and Archaeology Museum; the Eton Myers Collection; and the Danford Collection of African Art and artefacts.
  • Flexibility – You will be able to specialise as you progress, culminating in a final year dissertation that allows you to carry out in-depth research into topics of your choice.
  • Be a part of an exciting department – You will join a lively environment with many opportunities to enhance your student experience, including the highly active Birmingham Ancient History, Classics and Archaeology Society (BACAS), which organises events such as film nights and museum trips throughout the academic year.

Open day talks

Modules

Please note: You will take 120 credits of modules in each year of study. The modules listed on the website for this programme are regularly reviewed to ensure they are up-to-date and informed by the latest research and teaching methods. Unless indicated otherwise, the modules listed for this programme are for students starting in 2019. On rare occasions, we may need to make unexpected changes to compulsory modules; in this event we will contact offer holders as soon as possible to inform or consult them as appropriate.

Joint Honours flexibility

Every degree programme at the University is divided into 120 credits of study for each year of the programme. In the first year of a Joint Honours programme, you will study 60 credits in each subject as you learn the core elements of the disciplines. We recognise that students on Joint Honours programmes might come to favour one subject slightly more than another. To account for this, we have added more flexibility into the second and final years of our programmes. In the second year, you can stick with the 60-60 split between the two subjects or shift to a 80-40 credit weighting, effectively a major/ minor combination. You can either go back to 60-60 in the final year, maintain the same 80-40 split or reverse the major and the minor and go to a 40-80 weighting.

First year

Archaeology & Ancient History Compulsory modules

  • Project A + B (10 credits + 10 credits)
  • World Archaeology (20 credits)

Optional modules

  • One 20 credit Archaeology and Ancient History option

Descriptions of Archaeology & Ancient History modules (compulsory and optional)

History Compulsory modules

  • Practising History A: Skills in History (10 credits)
  • Practising History B: Approaches to History (10 credits)

Choose one of these two modules:

  • Discovering the Middle Ages (20 credits)
  • Reformation, Rebellion and Revolution: Making of the Modern World 1500-1800 (20 credits)

Choose one of the following modules:  

  • Living in the Middle Ages (20 credits)
  • The Making of the Contemporary World: Modern History c.1800 to the Present (20 credits)
  • War and Society (20 credits)
  • United States History 1865-2000*(20 credits)

*please note numbers on this module may be capped

Descriptions of History modules (compulsory and optional)

Second year

Archaeology & Ancient History

  • 80 credits – Artefacts and Material Culture (20 credits); Mediterranean and European Archaeology (20 credits); choose up to 40 credits of CAHA optional modules and ancient languages
  • 60 credits - Artefacts and Material Culture (20 credits); Mediterranean and European Archaeology (20 credits); choose up to 20 credits of CAHA optional modules and ancient languages
  • 40 credits - Artefacts and Material Culture (20 credits); Mediterranean and European Archaeology (20 credits)

Descriptions of Archaeology & Ancient History second year modules (compulsory and optional)

History

  • 80 credits - Group Research; History Option A and B; choose from either History in Theory and Practice, Research Methods or *Professional Skills *please note: places on this module are limited   
  • 60 credits – Group Research; History Option; choose from either History in Theory and Practice, Research Methods or *Professional Skills    *please note: places on this module are limited   
  • 40 credits – Group Research; History Option 

Descriptions of History second year modules (compulsory and optional)

Final year

Archaeology & Ancient History

  • 80 credits – Seminar III (choice of seminar topics) (20 credits); Independent research project/Dissertation (20 or 40 credits depending on department); choose optional modules and ancient languages in the Department of Classics, Ancient History and Archaeology (CAHA) to make up the remaining credits to 80.
  • 60 credits – Seminar III (choice of seminar topics) (20 credits); Independent research project/ Dissertation (20 or 40 credits depending on department). Depending on which Department you choose to do your dissertation in and your balance of study, you can also choose optional modules from our wide range of options.
  • 40 credits - Seminar III (choice of seminar topics) (20 credits); plus another CAHA 20 credit module

Descriptions of Archaeology & Ancient History modules (compulsory and optional)

History 

  • 80 credits – either Special Subject A and B or History Dissertation; History Advanced Option A and B
  • 60 credits – either Special Subject A and B or History Dissertation; History Advanced Option
  • 40 credits – either Special Subject A and B or History Dissertation

Descriptions of History modules (compulsory and optional)

Fees

For UK students beginning their studies in September 2019, the University of Birmingham will charge the maximum approved tuition fee per year. The fees for your first year of study will therefore be £9,250. Visit our tuition fees page for more information.

Fees for 2019/20 are as follows:

  • Home / EU: £9,250
  • Overseas: £17,640

Eligibility for Home/EU or Overseas fees can be verified with Admissions. Learn more about fees for international students.

For further information on tuition fees, living costs and available financial support, please see our pages on undergraduate fees and funding.


For EU students applying for the 2020/21 academic year

The UK Government has confirmed that EU students will continue to be eligible for 'home fee status' for entry in September 2020, and will continue to have access to financial support available via student loans for the duration of their course. For more information take a look at the gov.uk website.

Tuition fees when studying abroad

For those spending a whole academic year abroad (where available):

  • Students who are classed as home/EU for fees purposes are required to pay 15% of their normal annual tuition fee
  • Students who are classed as overseas for fee purposes are required to pay 50% of their normal annual tuition fee

For those studying abroad for just one semester (where available), normal annual tuition fees apply.

Note - Study abroad opportunities vary between courses; please see the course description for details of study abroad options offered.

How To Apply

Standard offer

International Requirements



Number of A levels required:
3
Typical offer:
ABB
Required subjects and grades:
A Level History, Medieval History or Ancient History at grade A

IB Diploma:
6,5,5 in Higher level subjects plus 32 points overall.

BTEC qualifications:

  • BTEC Extended Diploma: DDM, plus an A at A-level in the required subject/s mentioned above.
  • BTEC Diploma: DD, plus an A at A-level in the required subject/s mentioned above.
  • BTEC Subsidiary Diploma: D, plus AB at A-level, including an A in the required A-level subject/s mentioned above.

Other qualifications are considered - learn more about entry requirements.

International Students

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 one of our foundation pathways, which offer specially structured programmes for international students whose qualifications are not accepted for direct entry to UK universities. Further details can be found on Birmingham International Academy web pages.

The Ancient Greeks believed that the gods were angry with humans and decided to wipe them all out in a great flood. One man survived, Deucalion. His son Hellen was born from the Earth and he is the first Greek.

Dr Andrew Bayliss

University of Birmingham students are part of an academic elite and learn from world-leading experts. We will challenge you to become an independent and self-motivated learner, qualities that are highly sought after by employers.

You will have a diverse learning experience, including:

  • lectures
  • small group tutorials
  • independent study
  • and peer group learning, such as delivering presentations with your classmates

Support

You will have access to a comprehensive support system to help you make the transition to Higher Education.

  • Personal tutors - You will be assigned your own personal tutor who will get to know you as you progress through your studies. They will provide academic support and advice to enable you to make the most of your time here at Birmingham.
  • Wellbeing officers - We have dedicated wellbeing officers who provide professional support, advice and guidance to students across a range of issues. They can meet with you to discuss extensions, disabilities, reasonable adjustments, extenuating circumstances, or talk through any problems you might be experiencing, and help you access wider support on campus and beyond.
  • Academic Skills Centre - The centre aims to help you become a more effective and independent learner through a range of high-quality support services. The centre offers workshops on a range of topics, such as note-taking, reading, academic writing and presentation skills.
  • Academic Writing Advisory Service (AWAS) - the AWAS team will provide guidance on writing essays and dissertations at University-level. You will receive individual support from an academic writing advisor and meet with postgraduate tutors who specialise in particular subjects. Support is given in a variety of ways, such as small-group workshops, online activities, tutorials and email correspondence.
  • Student experience - Our Student Experience Team will help you get the most out of your academic experience. They will offer research opportunities, study skills support and help you prepare for your post-university careers. They will also organise social events, such as field trips, to help you meet fellow students from your course.

During your first year it is important that you have a smooth transition into university. You will be able to talk to your tutors about this and discuss if there are particular areas where you need support.

Teaching staff

Students at the University of Birmingham are taught by a mixture of professors, senior lecturers, lecturers and doctoral researchers, thereby receiving a rich diversity of academic knowledge and experience. Many of our teaching staff have published important works about their areas of expertise, whilst others have taught at international institutions and can offer unique perspectives of their subjects.

You can find out more about the members of staff (including their qualifications, publication history and specific areas of interest) in their academic profiles linked below.

Contact hours

In your first year, you can expect to have 9-12 contact hours, depending on your module choices. These will consist of a mixture of lectures and small-group teaching. 

In your second year, you can expect to have 8-12 contact hours, depending on your module choices. These will consist of a mixture of lectures, small-group teaching, and supervision.

In your third year, you can expect to have 8.5-9.5 contact hours, depending on your module choices. As before, these will consist of a mixture of lectures, small-group teaching, and supervision. There are also many additional activities that are also available to students.

Assessment Methods

Assessments - you will be assessed in a variety of ways to help you transition to a new style of learning. At the beginning of each module, you will be given information on how and when you will be assessed. Assessments methods will vary with each module and could include:

  • coursework, such as essays
  • group and individual presentations
  • and formal exams

Feedback - you will receive feedback on each assessment within four weeks, so you can learn from each assignment. You will also be given feedback on any exams that you take. If you should fail an exam, we will ensure that particularly detailed feedback is provided to help you prepare for future exams.

Year one

The above data provides an indication of the type of activity a student is likely to undertake during a typical pathway on their chosen programme of study. The balance of assessment by examination and assessment by coursework depends to some extent on the optional modules you choose. 

For a detailed breakdown of the contact hours associated with each module available on this programme, please visit:  https://intranet.birmingham.ac.uk/as/registry/policy/programmemodule/handbook/index.aspx 

 

Year two

The above data provides an indication of the type of activity a student is likely to undertake during a typical pathway on their chosen programme of study. The balance of assessment by examination and assessment by coursework depends to some extent on the optional modules you choose. 

For a detailed breakdown of the contact hours associated with each module available on this programme, please visit:  https://intranet.birmingham.ac.uk/as/registry/policy/programmemodule/handbook/index.aspx 

 

Year three

The above data provides an indication of the type of activity a student is likely to undertake during a typical pathway on their chosen programme of study. The balance of assessment by examination and assessment by coursework depends to some extent on the optional modules you choose. 

For a detailed breakdown of the contact hours associated with each module available on this programme, please visit:  https://intranet.birmingham.ac.uk/as/registry/policy/programmemodule/handbook/index.aspx 

 

Our unique degrees are designed to provide both academic excellence and vocational development – a balance that is highly sought after by employers in today’s competitive graduate market.

By studying Ancient History & Archaeology and History at the University of Birmingham, you will acquire skills highly sought after by employers within the graduate job market:

  • Understanding complex information
  • Writing clearly and effectively
  • Building a case to critically assess a particular point of view
  • Independent thought
  • Ability to communicate to a variety of different audiences
  • Strong research methods

You will be in high demand and well placed to forge a rewarding career in a variety of spheres, including:

  • Law
  • Education
  • Media
  • Publishing
  • Local government
  • International Development
  • Museums and charities
  • Cultural and heritage organisations

Therefore studying this degree programme at the University of Birmingham opens the doors to a wide range of careers. Some graduates will go onto undertake further study and research in pursuit of higher degrees. 

Developing your career

Employers target University of Birmingham students for their diverse skill-set and our graduate employment statistics have continued to climb at a rate well above national trends. If you make the most of our wide range of opportunities you will be able to develop your career from the moment you arrive.

  • Careers events - we hold events covering careers in teaching, event management, marketing and working with charities to help you meet potential employers and learn more about these sectors.
  • Global Challenge - you can apply to work overseas on an expenses-paid placement during your summer vacation through our Global Challenge initiative.
  • Work experience bursary - we encourage you to apply your skills in the workplace by undertaking internships in the summer. Our work experience bursaries allow you to apply for funding to support you during unpaid internships.
  • Cultural Internships - our innovative Cultural Internships offer graduates the opportunity for a six month paid internship at a leading cultural institution in the West Midlands. These internships will give you professional experience to set you apart in a competitive graduate market. Our current partners include Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery, Birmingham REP, Birmingham Royal Ballet, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Ironbridge Gorge Museums Trust, Library of Birmingham.

There are also internships available at our own cultural assets, such as Winterbourne House, the Lapworth Museum, and the Barber Institute of Fine Arts.

Extra-curricular activities

To enhance your career prospects even further, you will need to think about engaging in some extra-curricular activities to broaden your skills and network of contacts.

  • Undergraduate Research Scholarship Scheme - our College of Arts and Law Undergraduate Research Scholarship Scheme enables interested students to work on a current academic research project being run by one of our academic researchers. Undergraduate research scholars gain work experience over the summer after their first or second year and have the chance to develop skills in both collaborative and independent research.
  • Personal Skills Award - our employer-endorsed award-winning Personal Skills Award (PSA) recognises your extra-curricular activities, and provides an accredited employability programme designed to improve your career prospects.
  • Guild of Students - there is a vast number of student groups and volunteering opportunities offered by the Guild of Students, which cover a wide variety of interests.