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Social History (MA)

Course Description

Everything we do is aimed at helping you to appreciate the approaches and methods used by historians, and developing your knowledge of historical trends, processes and events over the past 300 years.

You will have the opportunity to explore a range of social and cultural developments in the history of Britain, Europe and the wider world. Throughout your study, you will work in small groups or individually, guided by your expert teaching team. Their historical research in areas such as urban history, the history of crime, environmental history, imperialism, sexuality and gender, migration, popular culture and social movement, is of an international standing and will feed into your learning.

Our teaching will give you the platform to reflect on historical interpretations of the past and conduct your own independent historical research.

- Research Excellence Framework 2014: 38% of our research was judged to be world leading or internationally excellent in the Communication, Culture and Media Studies, Library and Information Management unit.

Visit the website http://courses.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/socialhistory_ma

Mature Applicants

Our University welcomes applications from mature applicants who demonstrate academic potential. We usually require some evidence of recent academic study, for example completion of an access course, however recent relevant work experience may also be considered. Please note that for some of our professional courses all applicants will need to meet the specified entry criteria and in these cases work experience cannot be considered in lieu.

If you wish to apply through this route you should refer to our University Recognition of Prior Learning policy that is available on our website (http://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/studenthub/recognition-of-prior-learning.htm).

Please note that all applicants to our University are required to meet our standard English language requirement of GCSE grade C or equivalent, variations to this will be listed on the individual course entry requirements.


You will develop a range of transferable skills valued by employers in areas such as teaching, local government, administration, management, the civil service, marketing, public relations and the non-profit sector. Your course will also provide you with an excellent grounding should you want to pursue further postgraduate study.

- Teacher
- Historical Researcher
- Lecturer
- Journalist

Careers advice: The dedicated Jobs and Careers team offers expert advice and a host of resources to help you choose and gain employment. Whether you're in your first or final year, you can speak to members of staff from our Careers Office who can offer you advice from writing a CV to searching for jobs.

Visit the careers site - https://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/employability/jobs-careers-support.htm

Course Benefits

You will work in small groups or individually with research-active historians throughout your period of study. Our history team has strengths in many areas and you will benefit from their expertise in urban history, the history of crime, environmental history, imperialism, sexuality and gender, migration, popular culture and social movement history.

Core Modules

Researching Cultures
This is an introduction to research skills and methods, exploring libraries, sources, archives and treatments of history through the theme of war. You will analyse the relationships between literary texts, historical documents, and films, as well as scrutinising how World War Two has been recorded, historicised, fictionalised and dramatised.

Underworlds: Representations of Crime, Police & the Criminal c.1700 to c.1945
You will study the representation of crime, criminals and police during a period which witnessed key changes in the criminal justice system, the rise of a policed society, and the emergence of print culture.

Sexuality, Gender & Popular Culture in Britain 1918-1970
According to some theorists, a preoccupation with sexuality is one of the defining features of Western modernity. You will explore current debates, relevant theoretical approaches and will be introduced to a range of source material including newspaper reports, film and popular literature.

Organised Crime in the Modern World: Global Criminal Cultures
Throughout history, as societies have become more organised, so too have their criminals. You will study a range of criminal organisations, exploring the role organised crime has played in both shaping and reacting to the ebb and flow of power and socio-economic development in the modern world.

European Cities: Making Urban Landscapes & Cultures since c.1945
You will examine urbanisation and metropolitan cultures of the cities within Europe during the second-half of the 20th century. We will ask you to consider the relationship between cities and the social, economic, political and cultural policies of local, national and supranational governments and other governing bodies.

Journeys & Discoveries: Travel, Tourism & Exploration, 1768-1996
This is an opportunity to consider the journeys, voyages and discoveries recounted in travel journals, guidebooks, colonial texts, memoirs and ethnographic studies. You will learn how travel, tourism and exploration has evolved - influenced by innovations in transport, health and media, public tastes, colonial policies and racial attitudes.

A Cultural Revolution? The Sixties in Comparative Perspective
Focusing on cultural, social and political elements of the 'long 1960s' (1958-1975), you will study a wide variety of political movements, social changes and cultural forms - such as music, film, TV, theatre and literature - looking at the United States, Britain and Western Europe, and the wider world.

You will undertake a sustained piece of research in social history on a topic selected by yourself and involving the use of both primary and secondary sources.You will design, plan, manage and complete a sustained research project, presenting your findings both orally and in writing.


- Library
Our libraries are two of the only university libraries in the UK open 24/7 every day of the year. However you like to study, the libraries have got you covered with group study, silent study, extensive e-learning resources and PC suites.

- Broadcasting Place
Broadcasting Place provides students with creative and contemporary learning environments, is packed with the latest technology and is a focal point for new and innovative thinking in the city.

Find out how to apply here - http://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/postgraduate/how-to-apply/

Visit the Social History (MA) page on the Leeds Beckett University website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Paul Eastwood

Having done my undergraduate degree at Leeds Beckett, I wanted to challenge myself further and decided to do my masters. The modules were really interesting and the smaller class sizes meant they were very enriching and involving. My studies taught me how to research effectively and present concisely - these are vital skills in my role with the RSPB.

Paul Eastwood
Membership Development Officer, RSPB


Postgraduate Support Scheme (PSS) - 20+ Awards

To be eligible for a Scholarship from our University you must:•Be progressing from an Undergraduate course for which you were charged the higher tuition fee applying since 2012-13 (i.e. your Undergraduate course began on or after 1 September 2012).
•Be undertaking a Masters course (students on Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diplomas, MA/MSc ‘top-up’ courses, Integrated Masters or any other type of Postgraduate or Professional course will not be eligible).
•Meet the entry requirements of the course you are applying to study.
•Be undertaking a course that is fundable by HEFCE (for example, NHS and NTCL funded courses are not fundable by HEFCE, so students to those courses will not be eligible).
•Be studying full-time or part-time for a maximum of two years (applicants to courses where the duration exceeds 24 months will not be eligible).
•Be domiciled in the UK or European Union (EU).
•Be paying your fees through personal or family resources. If you have your fees paid or part paid through a sponsorship arrangement you would not be eligible for a Scholarship.
•Be able to attend the course applied for in 2015-16.

Value of Scholarship(s)



Leeds Beckett University is offering 105 scholarships, each worth £10,000, to UK and EU students who will be starting Postgraduate taught Masters courses in September 2015. The Postgraduate Scholarship Scheme is part of a Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) initiative, aimed at widening access to Masters courses by removing barriers to Postgraduate education for students from under-represented groups. Included in this scheme are 15 scholarships to support Women in Science.

Application Procedure

You must make an application for a Scholarship alongside your application for the Masters course. Your application will be considered against the eligibility criteria stated at http://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/pss/.All applications for a Scholarship must be received by the University by 31 May 2015.You must complete the PSS application form and supply the relevant supporting evidence by 31 May 2015. Failure to submit by the deadline and/or provide the necessary supporting evidence will mean that the application will not be considered.To apply for this scholarship, please complete the online form at: http://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/pages/postgraduate-support-scheme-apply/

Further Information


Entry Requirements

Please check our site for the most up-to-date entry requirements (View Website).

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