HSMSR1-Historical Skills and Resources

Module Provider: History
Number of credits: 30 [15 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Module version for: 2014/5

Module Convenor: Dr Linda Risso

Email: l.risso@reading.ac.uk

Summary module description:
This module aims to provide students with the necessary methodological, bibliographical and archival skills in preparation for their dissertation work.

This module aims to provide students with the necessary methodological, bibliographical and archival skills in preparation for their dissertation work.

Assessable learning outcomes:
Students will be able to:
•Critically evaluate research methodologies and techniques and their application, especially with respect to the use of a wide range of primary sources
•Work independently on a well-defined set of sources
•Examine critically the value and relevance of the chosen primary sources
•Place the primary sources used in this module within the wider historical and historiographical contexts
•Identify the appropriate bibliographical resources
•Employ a wide range of primary and secondary information to inform a coherent piece of written work
•Present their findings in a clear and logical way to an audience composed of historians, students and archivists.
•Prepare the appropriate visual support material in support of their presentation (PowerPoint)

Additional outcomes:
This module encourages students to work on their own on a set of primary sources and to learn how to manage their project and to select the relevant information among a wide range of primary and secondary sources.

Outline content:
This module is developed in partnership with the Museum of Rural Life (MERL) and Special Collections at the University of Reading. It provides students with hands-on training on primary sources from 1500 onwards. Students will work in the Special Collections Reading Room at MERL. They will first receive three induction sessions from the MA Director and from MERL members of staff. In weeks 4-6 and week 8, they will work on their own on a set of primary sources in the MERL Reading Room while one member of staff will be of assistance to answer any queries they may have and to give advice. Students will have to prepare a 10-minute presentation for week 9 of the Autumn Term. In the Spring Term, they will submit a 4,000 word essay and 300 word Guidance Notes on the primary source they have studied.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
This module offers specific training on primary sources in the form of seminars. Students will also have the opportunity to carry out independent study and to manage their own project through hands-on sessions in the MERL Reading Room. The presentation and the essay will help students develop their oral and written communication skills.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Seminars 8
Project Supervision 8
Guided independent study 284
Total hours by term 300.00
Total hours for module 300.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written assignment including essay 100

Other information on summative assessment:
This module will be assessed by one essay of 4,000 words and one blog entry to be submitted by Monday of Week 1 of Spring Term (full time students) and Monday of Week 3 of the Spring Term (part time or modular students). In Week 9 of the Autumn Term students will give a presentation at MERL.

-5 points for over-length work (above 5% of the word limit)
-10 points for late submission (one week for all students FT, PT or modular)

Formative assessment methods:

Penalties for late submission:
Penalties for late submission on this module are in accordance with the University policy. Please refer to page 5 of the Postgraduate Guide to Assessment for further information: http://www.reading.ac.uk/internal/exams/student/exa-guidePG.aspx

Length of examination:

Requirements for a pass:

Reassessment arrangements:
A further essay of 4,000 words to be submitted by 1st September.

Last updated: 23 April 2014

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