BA (Hons) History

  • Study Abroad Option Available
  • Sandwich Year Option Available
  • International Students Can Apply


UCAS Code:V101
Course Length:3 Years Full-Time
Start Dates:September 2017
Department:Department of English, History & Creative Writing
Location:Edge Hill University
  • History at Edge Hill University ranked top in the North West for overall satisfaction, teaching, academic support and personal development in the National Student Survey 2016;
  • Study Modern History from across the globe in a supportive and research active environment;
  • Research in the department has been rated ‘world-leading’ and ‘internationally excellent’.

We are dedicated to delivering cutting-edge teaching and research in the fascinating field of Modern History – from African-American civil rights to the origins of the Israel/Palestine conflict. Our research has been judged to be ‘world-leading’ and ‘internationally excellent’ (RAE 2008), and our teaching has been praised by the Quality Assurance Agency. We pride ourselves on our student-centred culture and strive to nurture the skills, knowledge and confidence of everyone in our community. Our mission is to help you realise your full potential and become an independent, confident and employable graduate.

Student Profiles

  • David Wilson

    BA (Hons) History
    Choosing Edge Hill was easy as the campus is incredible with great facilities, but, more importantly, the staff are very experienced and at the forefront of research in their chosen areas.
  • Jess Griffith-Evans

    BA (Hons) History
    The tutors are approachable, supportive and always available whenever you might need them - it’s great!
  • Victoria Neacy

    BA (Hons) History
    “I would definitely recommend this degree and have found it really enjoyable, I have learnt about aspects of history that I'd never explored before and engaged in many debates with my fellow students.”
  • Joseph Powell

    BA (Hons) History
    Overall, I feel this course has helped me to develop the knowledge required to be a successful historian, as well as provided me with the skills needed to study any further qualifications I may wish to pursue.
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Department of English, History & Creative Writing

Course in Depth

What will I study?

The course and our research are focused on the History of Britain, Europe, the USA and Asia from the late eighteenth to the early twenty-first centuries. It covers a broad span of political systems, cultures and geographical locations. This period of History provides us with a profound understanding of the world that we live in today and the challenges that we face.

You will learn about the broad spread of Modern History and equipped with historical skills and knowledge will then have the choice to specialise in different areas of the discipline. You might wish to study the history of communism in Eastern Europe, contemporary European politics, the British Empire or the United States.

In the final year of your degree a great deal of emphasis is placed on individual research-based modules. You can, for example, undertake an extended research project on a subject of your choosing, write and produce a 25 minute TV-style documentary on an area of historical debate that particularly interests you, or just undertake regular taught modules.

How will I study?

The programme has been carefully designed to ensure that you develop your confidence, knowledge and skills in a gradual way and in a highly supportive environment. In the first year, you will have invaluable in-depth sessions each week with your personal tutor. We also have an ‘open door’ policy, so that you can have easy access to academic staff outside the classroom. We see our relationship with you as one in which we work together to help you succeed.

You will have access to the latest History resources that will support your learning. You will be able to read newspapers and journals online from the eighteenth to the twenty-first centuries, consult the latest journals, and use websites that are created to support each topic.

How will I be assessed?

You will learn to write essays, critically analyse documents, give oral presentations and take exams. Exams never count for more than 50% of the marks for any module, although the experience of doing exams is invaluable for entry into a wide variety of professions, including law, accountancy, the civil service and many financial and managerial careers. We want you to develop an ability to work independently, so in Year 3, many modules are assessed entirely on the work you produce.

Who will be teaching me?

Our staff are highly experienced and enthusiastic teachers, who research and write History. They are at the cutting edge of the subject, and will share with you their ideas and new interpretations in a wide range of topics. In the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise, 30% of their published research was judged to be either ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally-excellent’.


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Year 1

HIS1010 The Medieval Outlook (20 credits)

The Medieval Outlook focuses on the period between the end of the Roman Empire and the Renaissance. You will learn about the emergence of Europe as a distinct entity, comprised of a variety of peoples with diverse cultures and languages. ‘Christendom’ is often used to describe medieval Europe and we will look at how the Church did indeed give a type of cohesion to the continent. The Church assumed leadership of societies after the fall of Rome and held a deep and powerful influence on the medieval outlook. We will consider how this influence manifested itself through a study of the state, power and authority as well as popular beliefs and the medieval world-view. We will also consider the tensions which arose between the bishop of Rome and the development of more secular authority and culture. The module will predominantly focus on England but will place the country’s medieval past into a broader European context.

HIS1011 The Dawn of Modernity (20 credits)

The Dawn of Modernity focuses on the immense social, political and religious changes which took place in Early Modern England. Reformation of the church, the outbreak of civil war, the emergence of radical sectarian groups and an increasingly politicised people created a rapidly changing society. The module will explore the diverse responses to those changes and the fear that people lived in a ‘world turned upside down’. Although the period can be characterised as one of tension and crisis, you will also consider continuities from the medieval period, and the existence of political and social consensus, climaxing in the restoration of monarchy after the short-lived republic. The module will consider whether we can truly agree with the perception of the early modern period as one of approaching modernity through a study of key developments in church, state and culture during the period 1500-1660.

HIS1012 Europe Re-made (20 credits)

Europe Re-made introduces you to the key developments that transformed European society between 1789 and 1919. At the start of this period, on the eve of the French Revolution, Europe was predominantly an agrarian society with very limited industrial and urban development. In most European states, landed elites were still dominant as a conservative influence resistant to political and social change. By 1919, Europe had been transformed into a society in which state power lay in the hands of urban-based political parties with industry and trade as the dominant forms of economic activity. The module is primarily concerned with the broad political, economic and social influences that caused this transformation which was of immense significance not only for Europe but also for the course of world history during the twentieth century.

HIS1013 Imperialism, Liberation, Globalisation (20 credits)

Imperialism, Liberation, Globalisation examines some of the main events, political and social movements, economic developments and ideologies which dominated the twentieth century around the world. You will study the rise and fall of the great ideologies of Communism, Nazism and Fascism, the causes and outcome of the Second World War and the development of the Cold War between the Super Powers after 1945. The module will also look at international relations and the global economic system after the fall of the Soviet Empire in 1989-1991.

HIS1016 Time Detectives (20 credits)

Time Detectives introduces you to the tools and methods required to become an independent historical researcher. These skills include selecting and interpreting primary evidence, independently locating books and articles, making effective use of digital tools and archives, applying these research skills to a specific historical problem, and producing a clear, convincing and original argument.

HIS1017 History and Society: Theory, Practice and Impact (20 credits)

History and Society: Theory, Practice and Impact introduces you to the conventions of academic history and outlines a range of concepts and ideologies that are regularly employed within historical discourse. The module also examines the way that history and ideas about the past are employed in a wide variety of non-academic contexts, such as politics, popular culture and journalism.

Language modules in French, Spanish or Mandarin, delivered at the Edge Hill Language Centre, are available to study as an integral part of this degree. A single Language module can be studied instead of either HIS1016 Time Detectives or HIS1017 History and Society: Theory, Practice and Impact.

Year 2

You will select six of the following modules:

HIS2020 Communism in Eastern and Central Europe After 1945 (20 credits)

Communism in Eastern and Central Europe After 1945 examines the rise, stagnation, collapse and ongoing legacies of the communist experiment that ruled half of Europe during the decades after the Second World War. The module examines both the Soviet Union itself during the post-Stalinist era and the countries of east-central Europe, allowing you to choose to study the history of Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, East Germany, Hungary, Poland, Romania or Yugoslavia. This history is of growing relevance to you, given that twenty years after its collapse the communist period can now be seen in historical perspective, and given the close relationships which many of the successors to these states have developed with the UK since the enlargement of the European Union in 2004 and 2007.

HIS2022 Urbanisation, Immigration and Economic Crisis: The United States 1880-1941 (20 credits)

Urbanisation, Immigration and Economic Crisis: The United States 1880-1941 examines the processes of cultural, social and economic change in the United States from 1880 onwards. The module examines the causes of such change and their impact on American culture and society. It analyses the reasons why U.S. political leaders and social reformers saw such changes as a threat to core American values, even the very survival of the Republic itself. The responses they advanced to deal with this threat are also assessed. The module concludes by examining the causes of the Wall St Crash, 1929, the ensuing Great Depression and the effectiveness of Roosevelt’s New Deal programmes in addressing the problems that resulted from them.

HIS2023 Mission and Manifest Destiny: U.S. Foreign Policy and Expansionism 1840-1939 (20 credits)

Mission and Manifest Destiny: U.S. Foreign Policy and Expansionism 1840-1939 examines the process of frontier expansion within the United States during the nineteenth century. The module assesses the impact of the move west on native American populations and also the ideological justifications advanced to justify this expansionism, such as mission, manifest destiny and American exceptionalism.

HIS2024 Rise to Globalism: U.S. Foreign Policy Since 1939 (20 credits)

Rise to Globalism: U.S. Foreign Policy Since 1939 examines the rise of the United States as a global superpower from American entry into the Second World War in 1941 through to the present day. It examines the extent to which the ideology underpinning U.S. foreign policy, under successive administrations, has been shaped by American historical experience and values, such as the concepts of American exceptionalism, mission and manifest destiny. You will also study the challenges facing U.S. foreign policy planners from Franklin Roosevelt to Barack Obama and the effectiveness of the various strategies that have been advanced to overcome them. The module examines both the opportunities and limitations on the exercise of American power in the modern world.

HIS2025 The Rise of the British Empire (20 credits)

The Rise of the British Empire focuses on the expansion of the British Empire in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Particular attention is given to the debates amongst historians on these subjects. At the heart of the module are fundamental, and much disputed, questions regarding the nature of imperialism and the process by which Britain attained and lost an empire that at different times stretched across Africa, Asia, America and the Pacific.

HIS2026 The Fall of the British Empire (20 credits)

The Fall of the British Empire explores the reasons behind the end of the British Empire in the twentieth century, from the First World War until the 1960s. Reflecting the scale of the Empire, the module deals with a great variety of territories across the globe, from Australia to Iraq. It provides you with an opportunity to interpret how and why this world-changing process came to pass.

HIS2031 Migration and Mobility in Contemporary European History (20 credits)

Migration and Mobility in Contemporary European History equips you with a better understanding of the historical context behind one of the most controversial issues facing Europe today. By placing current debates within a historical perspective stretching from the late 19th century right up to the present day, the module will enable you to understand political and social issues ranging from refugees to migrant workers, from cosmopolitanism to immigration controls, and from anti-racist activism to anti-migrant backlashes within a longer term context. By also examining the social and political history of daily journeys such as commuting for work, you will be encouraged to take a broad perspective on mobility.

HIS2032 Digital Detectives (20 credits)

Digital Detectives provides extensive practical experience with digital archives and will help you to develop a range of advanced digital research skills. Digital tools and archives are becoming increasingly central to the process of historical research. The module will be taught entirely in computer rooms and will take the form of weekly two-hour workshops. The historical content of the module will be structured around the history of crime and society in 18th and 19th century Britain.

HIS2033 Introduction to Contemporary French History: From the 1930s to the Present (20 credits)

Introduction to Contemporary French History: From the 1930s to the Present covers a subject that is both related to and distinct from the familiar Hitler and Stalin centric stories of 20th century Europe. You will examine the history of contemporary France during turbulent periods of political conflict and social change before, during and following the Second World War and France’s subsequent wars of decolonisation in Algeria and elsewhere, as well as its politics and society today. By taking up this comparatively rare opportunity to study the recent history of an important neighbouring country, which is often stereotyped and misunderstood in the UK, you can develop a wider international awareness.

HUM2000 Independent Project (20 credits)

Independent Project enables you to research and initiate a work-related project with an external agency. The project entails detailed familiarity with a cultural, public sector or voluntary organisation, a contribution to this organisation, the use of skills developed on the degree programme, and a final reflection and self-evaluation which looks ahead to your immediate and longer-term career plans.

MED2258 History on Screen (20 credits)

History on Screen looks at how British, American and German cinemas respectively have represented the historical period up to 1945 on screen, using a combination of contemporary and retrospective film productions. The module will thus explore not only the nature of cinematic representation in general, but also how each nation in turn constructs, or indeed, in the particular case of Germany, reconstructs, national identity through the prism of its past.

If you studied a Language module in Year 1, you may wish to study a further Language module in Year 2. This would form an integral part of your degree in place of one of the optional modules above.

Year 3

You will select a total of 120 credits from the following modules, choosing at least one of HIS3038 Special Subject and HIS3039 Independent Research Project.

HIS3020 Black Life and Black Protest in the United States 1895-1945 (20 credits)

Black Life and Black Protest in the United States 1895-1945 examines African American life and history from the 1890s through to the end of the Second World War. It considers the reasons for the widespread introduction of racial segregation in the United States at the end of the nineteenth century and its impact on African American communities. You will examine the efforts of African American leaders to challenge discrimination, from Booker T. Washington through to Asa Philip Randolph, assessing their strengths and weaknesses. The extent to which developments in this period sowed the seeds for the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s are also considered.

HIS3021 Black Life and Black Protest in the United States Since 1945 (20 credits)

Black Life and Black Protest in the United States Since 1945 analyses the reasons for the emergence of the post-war civil rights movement in the 1950s and 1960s. The contribution of leading individuals within the movement, like Martin Luther King, is also examined together with the life and career of Malcolm X and the Black Power movement of the late 1960s and early 1970s. The module concludes by assessing the legacy of the civil rights era for present day race relations and the extent to which the election of Barack Obama in 2008 means that the United States can now be described as a post-racial society.

HIS3024 Seeds of Conflict in the Holy Land 1840-1923 (20 credits)

Seeds of Conflict in the Holy Land 1840-1923 examines the origins of the Zionist-Palestinian conflict before the commencement of the British Mandate for Palestine in 1923. The module analyses the development of Zionism and Palestinian Arab nationalism under the Ottoman Empire, British support for Zionism in World War I, and the escalation of political conflict and violence by the 1920s. A principal focus will be the impact of the War.

HIS3025 British Rule in Palestine (20 credits)

British Rule in Palestine explores the origins and development of British rule in Palestine, a seminal chapter in the history of the Arab-Israeli conflict, the Middle East and the British Empire. The module focuses on the political objectives and impact of British rule in Palestine, with particular reference to the evolution of the Zionist-Palestinian conflict.

HIS3036 The Special Relationship: Britain and the USA (20 credits)

The Special Relationship: Britain and the USA concentrates on the major diplomatic, economic and cultural meeting points of arguably the two most influential nations of the 20th century. You will study how their relationship – at times good and at times bad – influenced the course of international history. It is a relationship of unparalled closeness and complexity which persists into the present day. By analysing the principle issues that arose between these two competitive yet cooperative states, we may be in a position to judge to what extent the relationship actually deserves the epithet ‘special’.

HIS3037 History: Interpretations and Context (20 credits)

History: Interpretations and Context explores the close relationship that history has with contextual developments within wider British society, in the period from circa 1840 to the present day. The relationship operates in both directions, as history and perceptions of the past act to inform notions of national identity and national values, through popular cultural media. By exploring the relationship between history and wider British society, the module also introduces you to the uses made of the past in a number of areas of employment, such as advertising, TV production, the press, marketing and commerce. You will reflect on how popularly held notions of national identity become points of connection for journalists, politicians and advertisers with the population at large.

HIS3038 Special Subject (40 credits)

Special Subject enables you to pursue independent research within a structure that provides a clear framework of support. The module will guide you through from weekly subject-based sessions to more independent, but supported, study of your chosen extended special subject research. You will have considerable choice of subject matter you wish to research, exploring a range of topics before researching a more defined subject area. The module entails identifying a research question, locating relevant and sufficient primary material, assessing and selecting an appropriate methodology, collecting, organising and analysing your primary sources and writing up your research and findings in an extended essay. You will also develop your verbal skills through an oral exam and preparation for that assignment.

HIS3039 Independent Research Project (40 credits)

Independent Research Project enables you to undertake an extended piece of research, on a topic of your own selection. Extended research is at the heart of history as an academic subject, and this module provides you with an opportunity to independently deploy the skills and knowledge you have acquired. You will frame your own research question(s) and conduct primary research using libraries, archives, digital depositories and other appropriate sources and resources. You will present your case in either written and/or visual form and be able to demonstrate the clear relationship with existing scholarship on your chosen subject.

If you studied Language modules in Years 1 and 2, you may wish to study a further Language module in Year 3. This would form an integral part of your degree in place of one of the optional 20 credit modules above.

Optional modules provide an element of choice within the programme curriculum. The availability of optional modules may vary from year to year and will be subject to minimum student numbers being achieved. This means that the availability of specific optional modules cannot be guaranteed. Optional module selection may also be affected by timetabling requirements.


Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of our published course information, however our programmes are subject to ongoing review and development. Changing circumstances may necessitate alteration to, or the cancellation of, courses.

Changes may be necessary to comply with the requirements of accrediting bodies, revisions to subject benchmarks statements, to keep courses updated and contemporary, or as a result of student feedback. We reserve the right to make variations if we consider such action to be necessary or in the best interests of students.

Entry Criteria

Entry Requirements

120 UCAS Tariff points on the new UCAS Tariff, preferably to include A Level History or equivalent.

Example Offers

Some typical examples of how you can achieve 120 UCAS Tariff points are detailed below.

  • A Levels – BBB;
  • BTEC Extended Diploma (or combination of BTEC QCF qualifications) – Distinction, Distinction, Merit (DDM);
  • Access to Higher Education Diploma – 45 credits at Level 3, for example 24 credits at Distinction and 21 credits at Merit. The required total can be attained from various credit combinations.

Please note, the above examples may differ from actual offers made. A combination of A Level and BTEC awards may also be accepted.

As long as you have a minimum of two A Levels (or equivalent), there is no maximum number of qualifications that we will accept UCAS points from. This includes additional qualifications such as the Welsh Baccalaureate and Extended Project Qualification (EPQ), AS Levels that haven’t been continued to A Level, and General Studies AS or A Level awards.

For further information on how you can meet the entry requirements, including details of alternative qualifications, please visit

EU students can get country-specific information about the University’s entry requirements and equivalent national qualifications at

International students should visit for information on the entry criteria for overseas applicants.

Are there any alternative ways to meet the entry requirements?

If you have the ability to study for a degree but lack the necessary qualifications or confidence, our Fastrack: Preparation for Higher Education course could be for you. This free, seven-week programme provides a great opportunity to enhance your study skills and subject knowledge and demonstrate that you are ready to study a particular subject with us, in lieu of achieving the UCAS Tariff points in the entry criteria.

Upon successful completion of a Fastrack course, you will be well placed to progress onto a corresponding Edge Hill University degree, although additional entry requirements may apply and the availability of specific programmes cannot be guaranteed. For more information, visit

Recognition of Prior Learning

Edge Hill University recognises learning gained elsewhere, whether through academic credit and qualifications acquired from other relevant courses of study or through recognition of an individual’s professional and employment experience (also referred to as ‘experiential learning’).

Previous learning that is recognised in this way may be used towards meeting the entry requirements for a programme and/or for exemption from part of a programme. It is your responsibility to make a claim for recognition of prior learning. For guidance, please consult the University’s Recognition of Prior Learning Policy and contact the faculty in which you are interested in studying.

Career Prospects

What are my career prospects?

You will be prepared for a future career in teaching (further training required), the civil service, business, media and journalism, local government, retail management, law and information management.

How can I enhance my employability?

It is useful to consider, even before you apply, how you will spend your time while studying and make the most of your university experience.

Optional, additional activities may be available on this degree which could help to prepare you for a stimulating and rewarding career. These include:

  • Sandwich Year – you may have the opportunity to apply to complete a sandwich year placement as part of your programme (usually the third year of a four year degree) and gain highly relevant work experience;
  • Study Abroad – you may have the opportunity to apply to spend an additional year (usually the third year of a four year degree) studying or working abroad;
  • Language Learning – you may be able to select language modules in French, Spanish or Mandarin, delivered at the Edge Hill Language Centre, as an integral part of your degree (for which you will gain academic credits). Alternatively, it may be possible to select the language modules as additional study.

Please note, the availability of these additional activities cannot be guaranteed for all students. Depending on availability and the number of students wanting to participate, there may be a competitive application process for sandwich year placements or study abroad opportunities or you may be required to secure a relevant placement yourself.


Tuition Fees

If you are a prospective UK or EU student who will be joining this undergraduate degree in academic year 2017/18, we expect tuition fees to increase to £9,250 per annum but this is currently subject to Government approval. You are advised to check this page regularly and once the position has been confirmed we will update this information. Tuition fees for international students enrolling on the programme in academic year 2017/18 are £11,575 per annum.

Financial Support

Subject to eligibility, UK and EU students can apply for a Tuition Fee Loan from the Government to cover the full cost of tuition fees. UK students may also be eligible to apply for additional funding to help with living costs.

For comprehensive information about the financial support available to eligible UK and EU students joining this programme in academic year 2017/18, together with details of how to apply for funding, please view our Money Matters 2017/18 guide at

Financial support information for international students can be found at


ScholarshipsEdge Hill University offers a range of scholarships with a competitive application process for prospective full-time undergraduate students. These scholarships aren’t linked to academic success and celebrate determination, talent and achievement beyond your coursework, for instance in creativity, enterprise, ICT, performance, sport or volunteering.

Additional scholarships, which you may qualify to receive, reward outstanding grades and are available to eligible UK and EU students.

To find out more about scholarships, to assess your eligibility, and to meet some of our dedicated scholarship winners, visit


How to Apply

Apply online through UCAS at

Visit to find out more about the application process.

Should you accept an offer of a place to study with us and formally enrol as a student, you will be subject to the provisions of the regulations, rules, codes, conditions and policies which apply to our students. These are available at

Visit Us

If you are considering applying to study at Edge Hill University, the best way to gain an insight into student life is to discover our stunning campus for yourself by attending an open day. You can view dates and book your place at

Alternatively, if you are unable to attend an open day, you can find out more about all of our events for prospective undergraduate students, including monthly campus tours, at

Request a Prospectus

If you would like to explore our full range of degrees before you apply, you can order an undergraduate prospectus at

Get in Touch

If you have any questions about this programme or what it’s like to study at Edge Hill University, please contact:

International students should visit or email with any queries about overseas study.

  • Book an Open Day
  • Request a Prospectus
  • Enquire Online
  • Live Chat
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Course Changes

This page outlines any material changes to course content, programme structure, assessment methods, entry criteria, and modes of study or delivery, implemented since 1st September 2015.

9th June 2016 - New Module Added

A Language module is now available as a Year 3 option, providing Language modules were studied in Years 1 and 2.

3rd March 2016 - Change of Modules

There is now the option of selecting a Language module in French, Spanish or Mandarin as an integral part of this degree in Year 1. A Language module is also available as a Year 2 option, providing a Language module was studied in Year 1.

HIS2031 Migration and Mobility in Contemporary European History (20 credits), HIS2032 Digital Detectives (20 credits), HIS2033 Introduction to Contemporary French History: From the 1930s to the Present (20 credits) and HUM2000 Independent Project (20 credits) added as optional modules in Year 2. HIS2021 Slavery, the South and Sectional Conflict: The United States 1800-1877 (20 credits), HIS2027 Crime and Society 1: Transformations in Punishment 1700-1850 (20 credits), HIS2028 Crime and Society 2: Controlling the Criminal Classes 1800-1900 (20 credits), HIS2029 France: The Clash of Left and Right 1934-1968 (20 credits) and HIS2030 Identity and Diversity: Contemporary France from 1968 to the Present (20 credits) removed as optional modules in Year 2.

HIS3036 The Special Relationship: Britain and the USA (20 credits), HIS3037 History: Interpretations and Context (20 credits), HIS3038 Special Subject (40 credits) and HIS3039 Independent Research Project (40 credits) added as new optional modules in Year 3. HIS3022 History, Growth and Context (20 credits), HIS3023 History and Society (20 credits), HIS3026 Dissertation (40 credits), HIS3027 History and IT: Databases and Historical Enquiry and Website Construction (40 credits), HIS3028 Visualising Debate: History Video Project (40 credits), HIS3030 Special Subject 2: Interpersonal Violence Since 1750 (40 credits), HIS3031 Special Subject 3: 1968 and All That: Protest in Western Europe (40 credits), HIS3032 Israel/Palestine: 1948 to the Present Day (20 credits)and HIS3035 Read All About It: The History of Journalism in Britain and America (40 credits) removed as optional modules in Year 3.

28th September 2015 - Change of Modules

HIS1016 Time Detectives (20 credits) replaces HIS1014 Ideology, Theories and Practice (20 credits) and HIS1017 History and Society: Theory, Practice and Impact (20 credits) replaces HIS1015 History and Society: Applications and Employment (20 credits) in Year 1.