Please note: 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 2018. On rare occasions, we may need to make unexpected changes to compulsory modules after that date; in this event we will contact offer holders as soon as possible to inform or consult them as appropriate.
In the first year of a Joint Honours degree programme study is split equally between the two disciplines. Following this you have the option to alter the balance of your study, meaning that you could change to a major-minor weighting. In your final year you have the option to maintain your second-year balance, switch your major subject to your other discipline or revert to an equal balance. If you wish, you can maintain an equal balance throughout your degree. This flexibility allows you to tailor the course throughout your degree programme, once you have had the time and experience to consider where your strengths and interests lie. The list of modules below are based on studying half of your modules (60 credits) in Geography and half in History (60 credits).
The modular structure of the degree allows you maximum flexibility in developing your own interests without channelling you into decisive choices too early. In the first year you will be exposed to the main principles of human and physical geography, to global environmental issues, and various practical skills. You will also explore contemporary urban issues using Birmingham as a real-world laboratory. You will study modules spanning the early medieval to late modern History periods. You can choose one of the following survey modules, Discovering the Middle Ages or Reformation, Rebellion and Revolution: the Making of the Modern World 1500-1800. You then choose one of the following survey modules, Living in the Middle Ages or The Making of the Contemporary World: Modern History c.1800 to the Present or War and Society or United States History 1865-2000 (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 and Practising History (B): Approaches to History, which look more closely at the techniques of the historian and at the nature and evolution of key historical debates.
Choose one of these modules:
- Discovering the Middle Ages
- Reformation, Rebellion and Revolution: the Making of the Modern World 1500-1800
Choose one out of these modules:
- Living in the Middle Ages
- The Making of the Contemporary World: Modern History c.1800 to present
- War and Society
- United States History 1865-2000
You are now introduced to specialist techniques in Geography such as computer cartography and the use of databases and spreadsheets. You learn how to develop a research proposal, which may be the starting point for your dissertation in the final year. Training in more advanced fieldwork skills is provided by courses held in European centres. You also choose from optional modules in many different branches of Geography. You engage in a Group Research module and extend your historical knowledge through a subject-specific Option module chosen from a wide range available in the Department of History. You can then choose one of the following 20 credit modules: History in Theory and Practice, Research Methods and may also be able to take a Professional Skills module (please note that places on this module are limited).
Compulsory modules (History)
- Group Research
- Option (History)
Choose from one of the following:
- History in Theory and Practice
- Research Methods
- Professional Skills (please note: places on this module are limited)
Examples of Geography Options (there are no compulsory modules for second year Geography):
- Ecological Systems
- Geomorphological Processes
- Hydroclimatology: Climate and Water
- Cultural Geography
- Environmental Transfer Processes
- Environmental Assessment and Management
- Reconstructing Quaternary Environments
- Social and Political Geography
You can apply to study abroad for a year in an approved university around the world. If you achieve a grade of 2.1 or above in your first year then you will be invited to apply for a Year Abroad in your second year. If your application is successful, you will go abroad in your third year and return to us for your final year.
Find out more.
In your final year you select from a wide range of modules that provide the more specialised knowledge and skills in the areas of Geography that appeal to you. The third/final 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 (20 credits). You can choose between an in-depth Special Subject module (20+20 credits), which is chosen from a variety of available subjects or a History Dissertation (40 credits). Joint Honours students taking a Special Subject can substitute an Advanced Option for a Joint Honours History Dissertation (20 credits).
Examples of Geography options (there are no compulsory modules for final year Geography):
- Applied Micrometerology
- Biodiversity and Conservation Management
- Contemporary Issues in Urban Development and Planning (for Geographers)
- Global Quaternary Climatic Change
- Cultural Geographies of Development
- Environmental Justice
- Environmental Protection
- War and Peace in the Middle East
- Wetland Environments
- Landscape and Urban Ecology
- Post-Socialist Transformation: Moscow
- Professional Placement for Geographers
- Regenerating Urban Communities (for Geographers)
- Restoration of Freshwater Systems
- Weather, Climate and Society
- Welfare, Work and Wealth
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.