Reading the Past - HIST8780

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Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2024 to 2025
Autumn Term 7 30 (15) Erik Mathisen checkmark-circle


This module investigates the nature of historical research at its highest level. While postgraduate students are expected to become highly specialised researchers in their own particular field or subfield, this module encourages them to consider history as a wider discipline and to broaden their approach to evidence and interpretation. Students will be expected to engage with a variety of intellectual viewpoints and methodological approaches to the discipline, and consider the impact that other disciplines have had on the study of History. A number of dissertation workshops will be arranged to help students with their dissertations.


Contact hours

Total contact hours: 20
Private study hours: 280
Total study hours: 300

Method of assessment

Main assessment methods
Portfolio 100%

Reassessment methods
Like for like

Indicative reading

The University is committed to ensuring that core reading materials are in accessible electronic format in line with the Kent Inclusive Practices.
The most up to date reading list for each module can be found on the university's reading list pages:

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 Demonstrate a systematic understanding of key topics in historiography
2 Engage with theoretical questions regarding the study and research of history, demonstrating a critical awareness of current debates and insights in the field.
3 Demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of techniques and methods available to historians
4 Engage in level-specific historical research and critically evaluate current scholarship in historiography

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

1 Exercise a professional critical capacity to assess both historical and contemporaneous evidence, compelling the presentation of arguments in a coherent and structured way to a variety of audiences and/or using a variety of methods.
2 Deal with complex issues both systematically and creatively.
3 Communicate their own ideas effectively to a variety of audiences and/or using a variety of methods.
4 Exercise initiative and personal responsibility in reflecting on their own learning, planning their use of time, and identifying appropriate directions for further study.


  1. Credit level 7. Undergraduate or postgraduate masters level module.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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