Churchill's Army: the British Army in the Second World War - HIST7670

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Module delivery information

This module is not currently running in 2023 to 2024.


The module will explore the nature of the British Army in the Second World War. How it reacted to the crushing defeats of 1940 in France and 1942 in the Far East before transforming itself into a war-winning force. It will take a broad approach to military history, studying the political, economic and cultural realities behind the force.


Contact hours

Total contact hours: 30
Private study hours: 270
Total study hours: 300

Method of assessment

Main assessment methods:

Essay 1 3,000 words 12%
Class presentation 10-minutes 8%
Essay 2 3,000 words 12%
Exam Prep Essay 1,000 words 8%
Examination 2 hours 60%

Reassessment methods:
Reassessment Instrument: 100% coursework

Indicative reading

Indicative Reading List:

Alan Allport, Browned Off and Bloody-Minded: The British soldier goes to war 1939-1945 (2015)
Christopher Bayly and Tim Harper, Forgotten Armies: The Fall of British Asia 1941-1945 (2004)
John Buckley, Monty's Men: The British Army and the Liberation of Europe (2014)
Jeremy Crang, The British Army and the People's War, 1939-45 (2000)
Jonathan Fennell, Combat and Morale in the North African Campaign (2011)
David French, Raising Churchill's Army: the British Army and the War against Germany, 1919-1945 (2001)

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

The intended subject specific learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

1 To provide students with the skills needed to understand, evaluate, contextualise and communicate effectively their knowledge of history.
2 To provide students with an understanding of the combat effectiveness, social structure and political complexion of the British Army in the Second World War.
3 To expose students to the disciplines of political, social and military history and their various methodological approaches.
4 To test and improve skills appropriate to level 5 and 6 students by setting them specific, differentiated tasks.

The intended generic learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

1 Students will acquire the skill to communicate complex concepts effectively both orally and through written work. They will acquire the ability to further develop skills they have already gained, which will be of use to them in future study or occupations.
2 To provide students with communications skills (S of H, Transferable Skills 1), the ability to integrate numerical and statistical information (S of H, Transferable Skills 2), and to provide skills in information technology
3 The course will test problem solving skills and sharpen the ability to work both independently and with groups.


  1. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  2. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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