The University of Southampton

RV21 BA German and History (4 years)

History explores a rich array of past cultures – ancient, medieval and modern. It sharpens your insight into how societies functioned in the past, encouraging a more critical awareness of the problems of the present.

Introducing your degree

If you have a passion for language and history than our BA German and History degree course is for you. Studying German alongside History not only improves your employability but provides graduates with a life skill and a fluency in a widely spoken language. On this degree course you also have the fantastic opportunity to spend a year abroad in a German-speaking country, allowing you to really learn both the language and culture.


What is this?(More Information)This information is based on historical data and may have been aggregated. Find out more.

View the programme specification document for this course

Programme Structure

This combined degree provides a broader understanding of the functioning of past societies, while emphasising linguistic training and the study of contemporary culture in German.

As a language student you will be allocated to a stage of language proficiency in our unique system of seven language levels. This is designed to place you at the stage most appropriate to develop your spoken and written skills, enabling you to make rapid progress in your chosen languages. In all years of study you will benefit from our wide range of resources. You will use the excellent facilities in the Centre for Language Study and in our German and Spanish Resources Rooms, including extensive multimedia facilities and online/streaming resources.

  • In year 1,students normallytake a 50/50 balance of core modules in both subjects. However, you may take up to 15 credits per semester in the form of an alternative subject from elsewhere.
  • In your second and final year, you will have a choice of modules from both subjects, with the option of taking up to 25% of your programme in an alternative subject. A special module in year two will prepare you for your year abroad and for the academic work you will complete during this year.
  • The third year is spent in a German-speaking country which offers you a unique opportunity to enhance your linguistic and cultural proficiency. You can spend your year abroad as an English language assistant in a school, studying at one of our partner universities or on a work placement. Most students of German go to Germany, a smaller number go to Austria, and some have also chosen to spend a year in Switzerland. Our current German-speaking ERASMUS partners are the Universities of Potsdam, Hamburg, Freiburg, Bayreuth, Frankfurt, Marburg, Tübingen, Siegen, Cologne and Vienna. While abroad you will also conduct an investigative project, supervised by a tutor at Southampton.
  • The final year leaves you with a large range of options in both subjects, taking into full account that you may wish to specialise in an area that most suits your interests and combines well with what you have studied so far. You may choose to complete a dissertation in either subject.

View the programme specification document for this course

Key Facts

  • We possess many collections of original historical documents, including the Wellington, Palmerston and Mountbatten papers and the Parkes Archives
  • The chance to spend a year studying at universities abroad, including France, Holland, Poland and Canada
  • Courses in many fields rarely taught in most other UK universities, such as East and Central European history, South East Asian history and Jewish history

Entry Requirements

Typical entry requirements

A Levels:
GCE A-level

AAB to ABB including Grades AB in German and History (or a related subject*).

Applicants taking the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) will also be made an alternative offer one grade below the standard offer, conditional on an A grade in the EPQ.

We accept all A levels except General Studies.

International Baccalaureate34 points, 17 at higher level, including 6 in higher level German and 6 in higher level history (or a related subject*)   

*Related subject includes subjects such as English, Philosophy, Religious Studies or Classical Civilisation or other humanities based essay writing subjects. Students applying without History will need to make a case in their personal statement.

International applications

We welcome applications from international students. Helpful information on applying, meeting a University representative in your country, or improving your English language levels can be found on the International Office website. If English is not your first language you will be required to pass an approved English test. We normally ask for an overall IELTS score of 6.5 with not less than 6.5 in Reading and Writing, 6.0 in Listening and Speaking.

Alternative qualifications

We welcome applications from candidates offering qualifications other than A and AS levels (including BTEC, European Baccalaureate, International Baccalaureate, Irish Leaving Certificate and Scottish Highers). You will be expected to attain an equivalent standard in other qualifications approved by the University to an A level applicant. Contact us for further information on equivalencies for these qualifications and others not listed here.

Contextual Offers

The University of Southampton is committed to widening participation and ensuring that all students with the potential to succeed, regardless of their background, are encouraged to apply to study with us. The additional information gained through contextual data supports our admissions teams to recognise a student’s potential to succeed in the context of their background and experience. Students who flagged in this way will be made an offer which is lower than the typical offer for that programme.

A typical contextual offer is ABB from three A levels including Grades AB in German and History (or a related subject*) or an equivalent standard in other qualifications approved by the University.

Please see our contextual admission pages for more information.

Selection process:
Average applications per place:

Selection is normally based on actual or predicted grades plus the reference and personal statement on your UCAS application. Exceptionally we may ask you to come for an interview before making an offer.

This page contains specific entry requirements for this course. Find out about equivalent entry requirements and qualifications for your country.


Typical course content

In all years of study you will benefit from our the wide range of resources (including extensive electronic and televisual facilities).

Your year abroad is an opportunity to improve linguistic and cultural proficiency in your chosen language and to demonstrate your ability to work independently over a sustained period.

Innovation modules outside of your subject area

Our Curriculum Innovation Programme offers you the chance to take optional modules outside of your chosen subject area. This allows you to personalise your education, to develop new skills and knowledge for your future. Modules range from "Living and working on the web" to "Business skills for employability".

View the Curriculum Innovation modules for this course

Learn a language

Some of our courses also give you the option of taking a language module, which can count towards your degree. These modules cover ten languages and range from absolute beginner to near-native speaker level.

View the language modules on offer for this course

Year 1

In each semester you will be required to follow four modules (a total of eight modules over the year). Two modules in each semester (or one double) will be taken in History, the other two in each semester will be taken in Modern Languages. One module in each semester will be your German Language course.


One compulsory double module in Semester 1. Choose two optional History (HIST) modules in Semester 2.
Also compulsory GERM9011 for semester 1 and 2.
You must do one German module in semester 1 and one Modern Language module in semester 2.
Choose one optional Modern Languages module (GERM / LING / LANG) in each semester

Semester One

HIST1151 compulsory double module plus German Language compulsory module and one German module.

Compulsory language module:
GERM9___ German Language

World Histories: Contact, Conflict and Culture from Ancient to Modern
Modern German Culture
Introduction to German Linguistic Studies
German History, Politics and Society
Semester Two

Compulsory language module: Two History Cases and Contexts modules (two single modules) plus German Language module (compulsory) and one Modern Language module.

Compulsory language module:
GERM9___ German Language

A Tudor Revolution in Government ?
Who is Anne Frank?
The French Revolution
Russia in Revolution:1905-1917
Tudor Rebellions
God's Own Land: Exploring Pakistan's Origins and History
Pope Innocent III: Power, Politics and Pastoral Care
The Reign of Philip II, King of Spain and Portugal (1556-1598)
Henry V111: Reputation and Reality
Emperor Constantine the Great: From Just Church to State Church
The Politics of Disobedience: Gandhi in India and the World
The Long Summer? Edwardian Britain 1901-1914
Heroes and villains: Culture and the British Empire, 1870-1914
Consuls, dictators and emperors: Roman politics in the first century BC
Siena to Southampton:Medieval Towns and Cities
Revolutionary America
From Shah to Ayatollah: The Establishment of the Clerical Power in Iran (1979 to Today)
Joan of Arc: History behind the Myth
The Real Downton Abbey
Alexander the Great and his legacy
The Roman Army in Britain: Liife on the Northern Frontier
Wonderful things: World history in 40 objects
Reading Culture
Reading the City
Elements of Linguistics: Sound, Structure and Meaning
Applications of Linguistics

Year 2

Choose one optional Modern Languages module (GERM / LING / LANG / FILM2008) in each semester. You much choose at least one optional GERM module or FILM2008 in the year.
LANG2010 is a compulsory fifth semester two module for all second year students taking a Modern Languages degree, whether single or combined honours.

Semester One

History module (double module) plus German Language module GERM9069/GERM9070(compulsory) and one Modern Language module OR FILM2008

Compulsory language module:
GERM9___ German Language


Managing Research and Learning
Vienna and Berlin: Society, History and Culture 1890-present
Looking Beyond the Holocaust: The Impact of Genocide on Contemporary History
Stalin and Stalinism
The Struggle of the Czechs: From Serfdom to Stalinism
Imperialism and Nationalism in British India
Cleopatra's Egypt
The British Atlantic World, 1600 - 1800
Plague, Fire and Popish Plots: The Worlds of Charles II
The Space Age
Knights and Chivalry
Celebrity, Media and Mass Culture, Britain 1888-1952
Treason and Plot: A History of Modern Treason in Europe
Nelson Mandela: A South African life
Building London 1666 – 2012
Islamism – from the 1980s to the present
Britain's Global Empire, 1750-1870
Wellington and the war against Napoleon
Evolution of US Counterterrorism
Napoleon and his legend
Self-inflicted - Extreme Violence, Politics and Power
Roman Emperors and Imperial Lives: between biography and history, praise and blame
The Life and Afterlife of the Vikings
Globalisation: Economics, Politics, Culture and the Nation State
Ethnography for Language Learners
Auto/biography, Testimony and Biography
Discourse Analysis
Sound and Voice

Year 3

You will spend the year abroad in a country where one of the chosen languages is spoken, either as:

  • an English language assistant
  • studying on a university course
  • on an approved work placement

Investigative Project:
Independent study project (6,000 words) supervised by a member of staff

Further information:
Year abroad

Year 4

Choose one Modern Languages module (GERM / LING / LANG) in each semester. At least one optional module in the year must be a GERM module.

Semester One

History Dissertation students Semester 1.
HIST Special Subject part 1 (double module) OR HIST Alternative History (double module) plus German Language (compulsory) and one Modern Language module.
Other students Semester 1.
HIST Special Subject part 1 (double module) plus German Language module (compulsory) and one Modern Language module OR LANG3003 (German dissertation).  

Compulsory language module:
GERM9___ German Language

Discourses of Identity: A Study of Identity Formation in Border Communities in the Contemporary and Former Germany/ies
Language and the City
France under the Nazis, 1940-1944 (Part 1)
The Third Reich. Part 1
The Holocaust: Policy, Responses and Aftermath. Part 1
The Vietnam War in American History and Memory. Part 1.
Society and Culture in the Late Russian Empire, 1881-1917. Part 1
Crime and Punishment in England c. 1688-1840
Refugees in the Twentieth Century. Part 1.
Alternative Histories: Between Private Memory and Public History.
Alternative Histories: Music and History
Alternative Sexualities
Fashioning the Tudor Court. Part 1.
Conflict, Transformation and Resurgence in Asia: 1800 to the present
Alternative Histories: Cultures of Migration
Alternative Histories: Travellers' Tales
The Wars of the Roses - Part I
Forging the Raj: The East India Company and Britain's Asian World, 1
When the Lights Went Out: Britain in the 1970s, Part 1: 1970-1974
The rise and fall of the British Empire in Africa: Conquest, colony, and rebellion, 1900-60, part 1
Alternative Conquests: Comparisons and Contrasts
The Bible and History
World War 2: The Home Front - Part 1
World War II: The Global Perspective - Part I
Love and sexuality in Twentieth Century Europe, Part 1
Racism in the United States Part 1
Nuclear War and Peace, Part I
Alternative histories: Homes and houses: challenging the domestic
Translation: Theory and Practice
Second Language Acquisition Theory
Advanced Syntax
Language Teaching Theory and Practice
Semester Two

History dissertation students Semester 2:
HIST3021 History Dissertation (normally written under the supervision of the Special Subject tutor) (double module) plus compulsory German Language module and one Modern Language module.
Other students Semester 2:
HIST Special Subject part 2 (double module) (Corequisite part 1 of the same Special Subject) plus German Language module (compulsory), one Modern Language module OR LANG3003 (German dissertation).

Compulsory language module:
GERM9___ German Language

Minorities and Migrants: Exploring Multicultural Germany
France under the Nazis, 1940-1944 (Part 2)
The Third Reich. Part 2
The Holocaust: Policy, Responses and Aftermath. Part 2
The Vietnam War in American Memory and History. Part 2.
The Late Russian Empire: Society, Ethnicity and Culture. Part 2
Crime and Punishment in England c. 1688 - 1840
Refugees in the Twentieth Century. Part 2.
Fashioning the Tudor Court. Part 2.
The Wars of the Roses - Part II
Forging the Raj: the East India Company and Britain's Asian World, 2
When the Lights Went Out: Britain in the 1970s, Part 2: 1974-1979
The rise and fall of the British Empire in Africa: Conquest, colony, and rebellion, 1900-60, part 2
World War 2: The Home Front - Part 2
World War II: The Global Perspective - Part II
Love and sexuality in Twentieth Century Europe, part 2
Racism in the United States part 2
Nuclear War and Peace, Part II
Public Service Interpreting
Audiovisual Translation
Writing in a Second Language

Please note: This specification provides a concise summary of the main features of the programme and the learning outcomes that a typical student might reasonably be expected to achieve and demonstrate if s/he takes full advantage of the learning opportunities that are provided. More detailed information can be found in the programme handbook (or other appropriate guide or website).

Fees & funding

Tuition fees

Course fees for 2017/18 full-time UK and EU undergraduate students are typically £9,250 per year. Tuition fees for international students differ between each course. Most part-time courses cost 50% of the full-time fee.

View the full list of course fees


Scholarships, bursaries or grants may be available to support you through your course. Funding opportunities available to you are linked to your subject area and/or your country of origin. These can be from the University of Southampton or other sources.

Explore funding opportunities

Costs associated with this course

Students are responsible for meeting the cost of essential textbooks, and of producing such essays, assignments, laboratory reports and dissertations as are required to fulfil the academic requirements for each programme of study.

There will also be further costs for the following, not purchasable from the University:

Printing and copyingWhere possible, coursework such as essays; projects; dissertations is likely to be submitted on line. However, there are some items where it is not possible to submit on line and students will be asked to provide a printed copy. The University printing costs are currently: A4 - 5p per side (black and white) or 25p per side (colour) A3 - 10p per side (black and white) or 50p per side (colour) Please Note: Paper sizes not recognised by the printing devices will prompt you to select the size and then charge a minimum of 50p per black and white copy and a maximum of £1 per colour copy. You can pay for your printing by using the money loaders or by using print copy payment service by going to The University Print Centre also offers a printing and copying service as well as a dissertation/binding service.
StationeryYou will be expected to provide your own day- to-day stationary items, e.g. pens, pencils, notebooks, etc.). Any specialist stationery items will be specified under the Additional Costs tab of the relevant module profile.
BooksWhere a module specifies core texts these should generally be available on the reserve list in the library. However due to demand, students may prefer to buy their own copies. These can be purchased from any source. Some modules suggest reading texts as optional background reading. The library may hold copies of such texts, or alternatively you may wish to purchase your own copies. Although not essential reading, you may benefit from the additional reading materials for the module.
EquipmentComputer Discs or USB drives- Students are expected to provide their own portable data storage device. Software Licenses- All software is provided Hardware- It is advisable that students provide their own laptop or personal computer, although shared facilities are available across the University campus.
PlacementsStudents on placement programmes can expect to cover costs for health and travel insurance, accommodation and living expenses; travel costs; visa costs. This will vary depending on which country you are travelling to. Specific details on what additional costs there will be are detailed in the individual module profiles which can be found under the modules tab of the programmes details of your programme.

In some cases you'll be able to choose modules (which may have different costs associated with that module) which will change the overall cost of a programme to you. Please also ensure you read the section on additional costs in the University’s Fees, Charges and Expenses Regulations in the University Calendar available at

Career Opportunities

Employability is embedded into course modules from the first year onwards, right from the first lecture. We carefully explain the skills being taught and offer a number of optional employability modules and career workshops.

Your skills in intercultural communication, listening and language will be highly valued by employers.

A year abroad can give you the chance to achieve something away from education-centred activity, such as gaining relevant work experience to help form your future plans. Additional opportunities include summer internships with major local employers, including placements funded by the University. With many employers now expecting extracurricular or voluntary experience, this can prove vital.

Learning & Assessment

A humanities degree at Southampton offers you the wide and varied learning experience you should expect from a leading research university. We are committed to providing a relevant, modern and above all enjoyable experience which will ensure you graduate with the skills and understanding you need to start a career in any number of industries.

Led by academic staff, your teaching will allow you to engage with and contribute to the world-leading research carried out at Southampton as it happens. Our staff value your opinion and views: lectures are typically followed by a small group seminar which gives you the opportunity to explore ideas and themes that you feel are particularly relevant. You will find yourself challenged intellectually and exposed to new ideas, approaches and perspectives. Visiting speakers from international universities and successful professionals are a frequent part of our lecture series.

Your course will be incredibly flexible to suit your personal aims and objectives. Within your degree there will be a wide and fascinating range of modules related to our specialisms led by academics passionate about their research who want to engage you in their experience. You can choose subjects from beyond your degree to fashion the knowledge and experiences that you think will best help you in the career in front of you. Each module has a home on our virtual learning environment which serves as a starting point to find out more about each subject and undertake independent research to develop your understanding to a greater depth.

You will be assessed by more than simply essays and exams. Depending on the modules you choose, you will work in groups and teams; make presentations; submit group projects; undertake fieldwork; create portfolios and manage larger research projects such as dissertations. Your academic advisor will be available to provide regular and supportive advice, guidance and feedback on your progress.

You will find the key skills employers seek - such as time management, problem solving, team work, deadline and project management, cultural awareness, working on initiative and independently, relationship building and analysis - embedded in your learning. Above all, you will learn to communicate ideas and enthusiasm to a wide range of audiences in a way that is relevant and that they can understand.

Our courses have many unique and exciting opportunities such as visiting Chawton House Library – the former home of Jane Austen, the Broadlands Archive containing the papers of Palmerston and Mountbatten, research active fieldwork placements, placements in schools and colleges as part of your degree such as international writing in schools, the student associates scheme and our extended project mentoring module. All our students have the opportunity to spend a semester, a year or a summer at one of our international partner universities to experience a new culture.

Study Locations

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