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2022/23 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

ARAB1150 Early and Medieval Islamic History

20 creditsClass Size: 50

Module manager: Dr Fozia Bora

Taught: Semesters 1 & 2 (Sep to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2022/23

This module is approved as a discovery module

Module summary

This module offers a stimulating and broad overview of the history of the Arab world, from the advent of Islam in the 6th century up to the Ottoman conquest of Egypt in the 16th. We will examine this history in political, social and intellectual terms, using a variety of source materials including historiography (chronicles and biography), archaeology and coinage. Teaching takes the form of lectures and seminars, and will include multi-media resources (film, journalism, podcasts) where possible. The module offers an essential historical contextualisation of the role of Islam and Middle Eastern culture in the modern world.


To survey and analyse the political, social and intellectual history of Islam in the Arab world, from the sixth century CE up to the end of the Mamluk period in 1517.

Learning outcomes
By the end of the module, students are expected to have reached competence in the following in their study of Islamic history:
- formulating a research question
- carrying out research using peer-reviewed scholarly materials
- using footnotes/in-text references and compiling a bibliography
- writing a well-structured essay offering a convincing argument, in clear, well-expressed English
- presenting your research orally to a live, interactive audience
- collaborating with your learning colleagues on a research question

Skills outcomes
Source analysis
Synthesising modern and historical interpretations of events
Examining historical texts against contexts


This module will examine the formative period of Islam including the life and career of the Prophet Muhammad, the development of the Islamic caliphate and the 'Rashidun' era; the scope and success of the Islamic conquests; the Crusades; institutions of learning in the Islamic world; the role of women in the Middle Eastern history; Islamic Spain; and the rise and fall of successive Arab dynasties, including the Umayyads, ‘Abbasids, Saljuqs, Fatimids, Ayyubids and Mamluks.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours168.00
Total Contact hours32.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Private study

200 hours including the contact hours and also hours spent on student preparation for essays, seminars and the final exam.

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Student progress will be monitored using the following methods:
- Written / oral assignments
- Designated feedback sessions (one per semester)
- Student questionnaires
- Personal tutee appointments
- Tutor office hours

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Essay1500 word Essay60.00
Essay750 word Review Essay40.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

These two coursework elements ensure that there is one summative assessment per 10 credits, as per School norms.

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 29/04/2022 15:22:21


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