Geography and History BA (Hons)
Course code L72H
What is special about this course?
Geography is the study of the Earth and the link between physical and human landscapes, it explores the relationships between people, place and the environment, and how these vary between places; History is the study of the past and investigates the cultural, political, social and economic history of Britain, Europe and the Atlantic World.
Combining these subjects will allow you to fully explore how the world has changed, is changing and how it will change in the future.
Through Geography, you will look at issues such as land use, planning and development, globalisation, climate change, energy, and tourism, in order to examine human relationships with the environment. Through History, you will first follow a broad approach to the study of history from the medieval to the modern period, before examining in-depth particular topics of history, and specific places, periods and themes which utilise the research specialisms of your teaching team.
Geography graduates are among the most employable, with skills developed in presenting ideas in reports and oral presentations, in data collection and analysis, and in the use of specialist mapping and statistical software. Each year, you will also build on your historical analytical and research abilities through a series of skills modules.
- Delivered by tutors with years of experience of teaching by video conference, online and at a distance, and can be studied from home, full or part-time to suit your circumstances
- Exciting new modules based on staffs' cutting-edge research are offered at upper level, including a flagship Public History module in the third year, with a range of guest speakers
- You will benefit from access to recognised experts on the academic staff in both disciplines, whose own research interests are reflected in the modules they teach
- You can choose to specialise in Scottish History at the upper levels to enable you to exit with a Geography and Scottish History degree
- Individual modules can be studied for personal or professional development, which may be of particular interest to teachers looking to diversify their portfolio
- Opportunities to volunteer at local museums and archives, and occasional (voluntary) field trips in the university's region also enhance the experience of your degree
- According to the UK's Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA), Geography graduates are among the least likely to be unemployed. More than 90 per cent are in work or further study within six months of graduating (Times Higher Education 2017)
- Develop an understanding of subjects relevant to many areas of employment, including: renewable energy; energy efficiency; waste management; tourism; rural and community development; agriculture; local government; planning; archive and library sector; and environmental and heritage organisations. A significant number of geography and history graduates also move on to careers in finance, marketing and law, or to further postgraduate study, teaching and research
We offer modern student accommodation at a number of our locations.
- 3 Scottish Highers at grades BBC or above or
- 2 A levels at grades BC or above
- At least 2 should be from the list of required subjects
- Additional qualifications and experiences will be considered on an individual basis
- HNC Social Science (12 SCQF credits) with 3 additional SCQF credits at level 7, which is equivalent to 120 degree credit points, and at least grade C in the Graded Unit, will be considered for direct entry to year two
Year 1 - CertHE
You will study the following modules:
- Introduction to human geography (S2)
- Overview of energy use (S1)
You will study the following core module:
- What is history? (S1)
Plus, one of the following modules:
- People, protest and power: themes in modern British history (S1)
- A middle age? Europe c. 1100-1500 (S2)
- Empire, Environment, and Identity: Scotland 1600-2000 (S2)
You will also choose two further option modules from other humanities subjects (including the history options above).
Year 2 - DipHE
You will study the following modules:
- Atmosphere, weather and climate (S2)
- Introduction to geographical information systems (S2)
You will study the following core skills module:
- Historians and history (S2)
Plus a choice of one of the following three modules:
- A curious age: European society and culture, 1500-1750 (S1)
- Court, kirk and burgh in Medieval and Early Modern Scotland
- Themes in American history
You will also choose two further option modules from other humanities subjects (including the history options above). Please note that if you are a direct entrant to second year, we strongly advise that you take the Level 7 core module – What is History? – as one of your options. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss.
Year 3 - BA
You will study one of the following modules:
- Advanced social research methods (S1)
- Public history (S2)
You will also study a further five modules from those listed below, ensuring a balance of three History and three Geography modules in total. You may take one Scottish History module in place of one History module.
Option modules may include:
- Assessment of the environmental impacts of development (S2)
- Climate change (S1)
- Sustainable tourism and the environment (S2) OR Advanced social research methods (S1)
Option modules may include:
- A study of things: material culture of medieval and early modern Europe
- Alps, hills and plain? Central Europe to 1918
- Crime, custom and conflict, 1700-1850
- Crown-Magnate relations in later medieval Northern Scotland
- Queer Britannia: gender, sexuality and performative identities in Britain, 1800-1950
- Scots in North America
- The Jacobites: patriots, rebels or opportunists?
- War and chivalry in medieval Britain and France
- Dynastic decline and religious violence: Valois France, 1550-1610
Students wishing to specialise in Scottish History at Level 10 and exit with a BA (Hons) Geography and Scottish History are advised to take at least one Scottish history module, plus undertake a Scottish topic for their Public History project, or two Scottish history options.
Year 4 - BA (Hons)
You will complete a dissertation in either Geography or History.
You will also study one option module from your chosen dissertation subject, plus three option modules from the other subject. Please see notes below if you wish to specialise in Scottish History.
Modules may include:
- Sustainable energy and waste minimisation (S1)
- Geo-political Development Issues (S1)
- Sustainable agriculture systems (S2)
Modules may include:
- Death and destruction: the social impact of the Thirty Years’ War (1618-1648)
- Fight the power: music and the politics of Black America
- The Scottish Highlands before Culloden (1603-1707)
- Chaos and conflict?: 'Civil wars' in high medieval Scandinavia
- Reaching the estate of manhood in later medieval and early modern Europe
- Noble, rebel, king: Robert Bruce and medieval Scotland
- The empire strikes back: how the British Empire shaped Scotland
- The Highland wars: origins, aftermath and interpretations
- War cruel and sharp: a military history of the Hundred Years' War
If you wish to exit with a BA (Hons) Geography and Scottish History, you must undertake a Scottish history dissertation plus one further Scottish history or history module OR, if you are undertaking a Geography dissertation, two of the three History modules must be in Scottish history topics.
How will I study my course?
- Part-time (structured)
- Part-time (unstructured)
- You will learn through a combination of video-conference lectures and tutorials, and online study via the university's virtual learning environment (VLE), with support from your tutors.
How long will my course last?
- Full-time: 4 years @ 40 hours per week
- Part-time (structured): 8 years @ up to 20 hours per week
- Part-time (unstructured): variable
Number of hours per week indicates the total number of hours you should dedicate to the course, which includes time spent in lectures and your own time spent on individual study and research.
Where can I study my course?
- North, West and Hebrides
Students based near to one of the listed campuses may choose to apply to, and be enrolled and supported by, their local campus. All other students should apply to, and will be enrolled and supported by, UHI North, West and Hebrides.
Find out more about fees, fee waivers and funding options.
UHI has a number of scholarships, bursaries, awards, and discretionary fund opportunities available to new and current students. Please use the A-Z of funds or use the filter to see which ones may be relevant to you. All students are welcome to apply.
Further information on funding your studies is also available, please see the attached link or contact the relevant UHI partner.
If you wish to attend an optional Geography residential weekend, or to join other field trips, contributions will be required towards the overall costs incurred. The cost will vary depending on the event, your location and the amount of other funding available towards the event (for example, HISA contributions to the Student Society Residential weekend may reduce costs for individual students). Attendance at these face to face events is optional and not essential for completion of the course.
What can I do on completion of my course?
Once you have successfully completed your BA (Hons) Geography and History course, you might like to consider careers in:
- Government departments and development agencies
- Economic development and planning departments of local authorities
- Renewable energy, energy efficiency and waste management roles
- Natural and rural heritage organisations
- Museum and heritage sector
- Archive and Library sector
- Further postgraduate study or research
- Community enterprises and community energy groups
- Community land initiatives
- Voluntary sector development posts
- International non-governmental organisations
- Research in business and corporate sector
- Student association and related support roles
Can I progress into further study?
You may wish to progress from BA (Hons) Geography and History to a research degree such as MRes, MPhil or PhD, or to one of the following courses:
- MLitt History
- MLitt History of the Highlands and Islands
- MLitt History and Archaeology of the Highlands and Islands
- MLitt Coastal and Maritime Societies and Cultures
- MLitt British Studies
- MSc Sustainable Mountain Development
- MSc Sustainable Rural Development
- MSc Net Zero Communities
- MSc Sustainable Energy Solutions
- MLitt Island Studies
- MLitt Archaeological Studies
- MLitt Highlands and Islands Literature
- MLitt Orkney and Shetland Studies
- MLitt Scottish Heritage
- MLitt Viking Studies
- MSc Interpretation: Management and Practice
- MSc Archaeological Practice
- MSc Tourism
- MA Health and Wellbeing
- MEd Tertiary and Higher Education
- MSc Leadership and Management
- Masters in Business Administration (MBA)
- MSc Applied Social Sciences: Globalisation and Crime
Is there more information available online?
You can use the above QR code to connect directly to the course details.
Apply for Geography and History BA (Hons)
- Applications to this course are now closed for September 2023 entry. Applications for September 2024 will open in September 2023. Please revisit this page then to apply.
We are delighted that you are thinking about studying at the University of the Highlands and Islands. We operate a fair and open admissions system committed to equality of opportunity and non-discrimination. We consider all applications on merit and on the basis of ability to achieve, without discrimination on grounds of gender, age, disability, ethnicity and socio-economic background. We welcome applications from all prospective students and aim to provide appropriate and efficient services to students with disabilities.