BA History and Politics

history and politics

The History and Politics course enables students to set contemporary political problems in their historical perspective. It will teach you to approach the study of the past with the conceptual rigour derived from political science.  

The Oxford course benefits from the expertise of leading political theorists and historians in the history of political thought. It offers the chance to choose from a broad range of subjects across the two disciplines. It is possible, for example, to combine medieval history options with analysis of contemporary political systems. The thematic approach taken to European and World history teaching in the first year strengthens and complements the combination of these two subjects.  


Year 1 (Prelims) 

As a first-year student, you will study a wide range of time periods, places and methods. You will be introduced to new ways of studying history and politics, and you will learn crucial academic skills. You will study:  

  1. History of the British Isles or European and World History

  1. Introduction to the Theory of Politics or Theories of State 

  1. A paper on Historical Methods: Approaches, or Historiography, or Foreign Texts, or Quantification

  1. Introduction to the Practice of Politics 


Years 2 & 3 (Final Honours School) 

In the final two years of study you have enormous choice. Some students range widely over time and space, others prefer to develop focused specialist interests, but you are all trained to do original research in history or politics. You will study: 

  1. History of the British Isles and/or European and World History 

  1. Two core subjects in Politics 

  1. A combination of History Further Subject/History Special Subject/Politics Option papers 

  1. A dissertation based on original research in History or Politics 

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Studying History and Politics gives you the opportunity to share papers with PPE-ists and also straight History students, it’s the perfect balance between contextual depth and scientific analysis of world events. 

Shamime Ibrahim (BA History and Politics)