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Study contemporary British history at an advanced level in a strong research environment. Choose from a wide range of options, taught by experts in the field. The programme includes economic, social, cultural, political and diplomatic history. Leads to careers in research, journalism, the civil service, politics, teaching and finance. We provide a unique course covering contemporary historiography and research methods.
Comparative approach to contemporary British history.
Unique location in the heart of the British administrative centre with unrivalled access to library and archival resources and easy access to resources in Europe, as well as wide range of contemporary history experts at ICBH.
Students attend the regular research seminar in Contemporary British History and have full access to ICBH's other exciting activitites, such as our oral history programme, History & Policy, conferences and research projects
Annual residential workshop for ICBH MA and PhD students at Cumberland Lodge, Windsor Great Park
Specialist historiography and research methods course for contemporary history, including oral history, and expert dissertation supervision in contemporary political, economic, social and diplomatic history.
Application status Open
Duration One year FT, two years PT, September to September.
Study mode Full-time, Part-time
Credit value UK 180/ECTS 90
Course intake Variable.
Course leaders Professor Richard Roberts
Course contact for further information Postgraduate Admissions Team, Admissions Officetel: +44 (0)20 7848 7429 fax: +44 (0)20 7848 7200
Postgraduate Admissions Team, Admissions Officetel: +44 (0)20 7848 7429 fax: +44 (0)20 7848 7200
Course contact email firstname.lastname@example.org
Awarding institution King's College London
Faculty Faculty of Social Science & Public Policy
Department Institute of Contemporary British History
Visit our admissions webpages to view our English language entry requirements.
General entry advice
2:1 undergraduate degree (or equivalent overseas qualification) in history, politics or a relevant discipline, e.g. public policy, law or social science.Evidence of achievement of an academic level comparable to at least 2:1 honours standard through past studies, and where previous study, work or experience (for example, in government or NGO service) has made the applicant a suitable candidate, will also be considered.
We may wish to interview applicants, either in person or over the phone if they are normally resident overseas. Once references and transcripts are received, we aim to process all applications within four to six weeks although this may take longer in February, March and over holiday periods.
Please submit a one page personal statement with your application, explaining why you wish to apply for this programme and why you feel it matches your interests, academic background, and, if relevant, your career plans. Please also list the optional modules in which you are interested.
The deadline for applications is 01 April 2016 for 2016 entry. Prior to this date all applications will be given equal consideration and considered on their individual merits. After this date applications will be considered subject to the availability of places, thus we encourage you to submit your application as soon as possible. Please note that funding deadlines may be earlier.
This programme provides training in and experience of historical analysis of issues of importance for the understanding of contemporary Britain. It focuses upon the study of British history over the past century, but assumes that British history must be understood in relation to other countries and regions, in particular the Empire/Commonwealth, Europe and North America.
Alongside the development of techniques, skills and knowledge relevant to the interests and research needs of individual students of contemporary history, the programme aims to equip students for both independent research and analysis in primary and secondary material, and writing at an advanced level, thus fostering students’ intellectual development and independent learning ability required for continuing professional and personal development.
It is principally taught by staff within the Institute of Contemporary British History, including Professors Pat Thane, Richard Roberts and Roger Mortimore and Dr Andrew Blick and Dr Michael Kandiah, who between them offer expertise in political history, social and demographic history, economic history, financial history, international history and diplomatic history.
To provide a distinctive programme suitable both for those intending to proceed to a PhD and for those who wish to study contemporary British history at an advanced level, preparing them for careers in journalism, the civil service, consultancy, teaching, publishing and elsewhere.
Britain since 1900: Politics, Society, Economy, Culture, International Relations
Contemporary History in Practice
Dissertation of 15,000 words based on primary sources.
Britain 1900-45: Politics, Society, Economy, Culture, International Relations;
Britain since 1945: Politics, Society, Economy, Culture, International Relations;
Contemporary History in Practice – covers methodologies in theory and practice, and contemporary historiography, including oral history.
Students choose three additional 20-credit modules from the following:
Anglo-American Relations since 1945 (Michael Kandiah)
Britain and Europe since 1945: Diplomacy and Defence (Michael Kandiah)
Britain and the Cold War (Michael Kandiah)
British Political History, 1895-1945 (Vernon Bogdanor)
British State Welfare and the State of Welfare in Britain 1900-45 (Pat Thane)
British State Welfare and the State of Welfare in Britain 1945-2010 (Pat Thane)
Election campaigning, public opinion and politics in Britain 1945-2010 (Roger Mortimore)
Europe as an Issue in British Politics since 1945 (Vernon Bogdanor)
Financial Crises in History (Richard Roberts)
Financial History of the City of London 1850-2000 (Richard Roberts)
Gender and British Society 1900-45 (Lucy Delap)
Gender and British Society 1945-2000 (Lucy Delap)
History & Policy (Lucy Delap)
Leadership and coordination in UK central government (Andrew Blick)
Parties, Voters and Political Culture in Britain 1900-45 (Roger Mortimore)
The Armed Forces, State and Society 1815-2010 (Virginia Preston)
The British Constitution in Crisis, 1910-2010 (Robert Blackburn, Vernon Bogdanor)
The Evolution of British Government since 1945 (Robert Blackburn, Vernon Bogdanor)
Not all courses are available in all years.
Students may also take agreed optional modules in other departments at King's and other colleges in the University of London.
Dissertation:A 15,000 word compulsory dissertation based upon primary sources and supervised by one of our expert contemporary historians.
I chose to study at King’s for my MA because it’s a world center for academic research and because the Institute of Contemporary British History is based here. As a result, there is a strong community of academics with varying specialties with whom to work with. The opportunity to attend talks and seminars from well renowned historians in my area of study, such as Pat Thane, the course convener, as well as newer academics undertaking exciting research has been fantastic and I have loved making connections with other academics.
The course in Contemporary British History is brilliant as it gives its students the chance to get to grips with the history of Britain in the twentieth century as a whole, in its political, social and economic context, as well as specialist studies based on your own interests. My own research is going to look at race relations and multiculturalism in Britain by exploring the experience of mixed race marriages in Britain in the 1940s and 50s.
Through the MA, I have been able to work with the innovative History and Policy project, also based at King’s, which connects historians with policy makers. This included an expert workshop day involving such people as Anthony Seldon and Lord Chilcott. This was a hugely enjoyable experience, and was particularly relevant to me as I hope to go into the Civil Service once I have finished my MA.
"I publish widely in the areas of social and economic history, Labour party history, women’s history and demographic history. Central London is a wonderful location in which to study contemporary history, with access to archives, libraries and the institutions."
In the heart of London
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£9,000 p.a. (2016/17)*
£17,550 p.a. (2016/17)*
£4,500 p.a. (2016/17)*
£8,775 p.a. (2016/17)*
*This tuition fee is subject to annual increases.
Please visit our web pages on fees and funding for more information.
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