At Kent, we aim to use our study of history to make a difference to society today. Our intention is to foster greater public understanding of our local, national and international histories, and to help to create a more nuanced understanding of issues such as colonialism, historic environments, revolution, popular culture, war and science.
All our undergraduate programmes are carefully crafted to offer a wide range of modules and the flexibility to tailor your degree programme to the areas that you are most interested in. There are very few core modules, to ensure that you get as much choice as possible. You learn within a challenging academic environment and are encouraged to study widely and formulate your own opinions while being guided and taught by our world-class academics.
We invite you to regular talks from visiting speakers, and the student-led History Society organises lectures, social events and European trips each year. You have opportunities for work experience, and to study abroad.
Access to primary sources
To develop your skills as a historian, it is vital to have access to a wide range of historical evidence and opinion. In addition to the University's own extensive library collection, our students have privileged access to the Canterbury Cathedral Library and Archives. Here, you have the opportunity to work with unique primary sources including medieval and early modern manuscripts and books. The University is also home to the British Cartoon Archive and holds a rare and complete set of British official histories of the two world wars.
Supportive student environment
The School provides a welcoming environment, with our student support team available to provide both academic and pastoral support throughout your academic career. All undergraduate students in the School of History are also allocated an academic adviser, who is an important source of advice and guidance relating to your academic work and development.
The School of History is a dynamic, research-led department where postgraduate students have the opportunity to work alongside academics recognised as experts in their respective fields. We achieved ‘world-leading’ results in the Research Excellence Framework 2021 as the only History department in the UK to achieve a perfect score of 100% ‘world leading’ for both the impact of its research and its research environment. This extraordinary achievement was certified in Times Higher Education which ranked History at Kent as 1st in the UK.
Our research centres offer a range of taught programmes and research supervisory specialisms.
The strength of the School of History’s degrees means our graduates are highly sought after; 93% of respondents to the national Destination of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) survey in 2017 were in work or further study within six months of graduation. Career prospects for history graduates are wide ranging, with our students launching careers in everything from teaching to business, research to politics.
We are committed to providing programmes that equip our students with the transferable skills and knowledge essential to the workplace. For example, historians develop excellent skills of analysis, assessing multiple and often conflicting sources before condensing opinions into concise, well-structured prose. Our graduates are self-motivated, with the ability to work independently, demonstrating to potential employers that they respond positively to challenges, work to tight schedules, and manage heavy workloads.
The day after results day I was offered a full time job as a trainee oral historian, working for Eastside Community Heritage. My History degree has come in handy at work, and I am proud to be able to directly put it to use.
The School of History is based at our Canterbury campus. Just a half-hour walk from the campus brings you to the medieval heart of the city and its UNESCO World Heritage sites of Canterbury Cathedral, St Augustine’s Abbey and St Martin’s Church. For students of military history in particular, the University’s proximity to mainland Europe offers easy access to sites such as the battlefields of the Western Front.
On the campus itself you will find a general store, a bookshop, bank, cinema, theatre, medical centre, pharmacy and sports facilities, as well as restaurants, cafés and a nightclub. The beautiful setting offers plenty of tranquil spaces to study and relax.