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2015/16 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

HIST3708 Britain, The Empire and the Wider World, c. 1815-1914 (Part 2)

20 creditsClass Size: 28

Module manager: Dr Catherine Coombs

Taught: Semester 1 (Sep to Jan) View Timetable

Year running 2015/16

This module is approved as a discovery module

Module summary

This module examines the role of the British in various regions of the world in the nineteenth century. It examines the actions of the British in India, sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America, China and the 'White Dominions' of Canada, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa between 1815 and 1914. It also examines the mentalities and cultural policies that underpinned such actions. Emerging from the Napoleonic Wars in 1815, the British enjoyed a period of unprecedented political and economic growth, and the relative peace that followed up until the First World War facilitated the construction of the biggest empire the world had ever seen.This module focuses on the infrastructural developments that took place in those differing regions already mentioned, and the localised patterns of resistance that developed in the face of this. The module examines economic, political and cultural history, as well as looking at some of the theories that historians have used in attempting to come to terms with such a vast and multi-faceted enterprise.


On completion of this module, students will be able to:

1) Analyse and evaluate conflicting historical interpretations;
2) Acquire a knowledge of the practice and theories of imperialism;
3) Synthesise secondary literature.

Skills outcomes
Further enhances Common Skills listed below:

- High-level skills in oral and written communication of complex ideas.
- Independence of mind and self-discipline and self-direction to work effectively under own initiative.
- Ability to locate, handle and synthesize large amounts of information.
- Capacity to employ analytical and problem-solving abilities.
- Ability to engage constructively with the ideas of their peers, tutors and published sources.
- Empathy and active engagement with alternative cultural contexts.


This module offers students the opportunity to study historical processes of British overseas expansion in the 'long nineteenth century', and to extend their knowledge of British history to other continents and civilisations.

This module requires closer study of the workings of British expansion within particular regions of the empire and assesses the impact of British overseas expansion upon societies outside Europe. It covers the following regions and issues: the late nineteenth-century partition of Africa; the Indian Mutiny of 1857, and early Indian nationalism; the growth of settler societies in Australia, New Zealand and Canada; the mid-nineteenth century rebellions in China; and debates about 'informal imperialism' in South America.

Teaching methods

Due to COVID-19, teaching and assessment activities are being kept under review - see module enrolment pages for information

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours178.00
Total Contact hours22.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Private study

- Exam preparation
- Researching, preparing, and writing assignments
- Undertaking set reading
- Self-directed reading around the topic.

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Contributions to class discussions, one-to-one meetings, and an assessed essay.

Methods of assessment

Due to COVID-19, teaching and assessment activities are being kept under review - see module enrolment pages for information

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Essay1 x 2,000-word assessed essay, due by 12 noon Monday of teaching week 930.00
Online AssessmentOnline VLE exercise10.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)40.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Exam typeExam duration% of formal assessment
Standard exam (closed essays, MCQs etc)2 hr 00 mins60.00
Total percentage (Assessment Exams)60.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 23/02/2016


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