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Careers – University of Reading

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  • Set yourself apart

    Develop the skills, knowledge and experience to springboard into your future career


96% of History graduates are in work or further study within six months of graduating (Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) survey 2016-17).

Our focus goes beyond your degree - we place a great deal of importance on preparing you to embark upon a successful career after you graduate. Stand out in an increasingly competitive job market with relevant experience, transferable skills and expert guidance. We support you to achieve a successful career in your chosen field, with employability modules and work placements built into your course.

employability modules

We offer a range of modules dedicated to helping you decide Mara Oliva's students handling artefactsupon, and achieve, the career you want. Our second-year module, "My career: working it out", is designed to help you develop strategies for building a successful career after university.

We also offer placement modules built into the structure of your degree to help you gain relevant workplace experience; our "History Education" module provides students with a two-week placement within a secondary school, and our "Discovering Archives and Collections" module is a ten-day placement allowing students to explore a career in historical research, archives and heritage sectors.

professional placement year

Our students have the opportunity to undertake a professional placement year in their penultimate year of study by transferring to a 4-year degree. A placement year will allow you to grow your skills, professional network and confidence, as well as explore your career options. Graduating with a year's worth of experience will help you stand out in a competitive graduate job market and you might even return from your placement year with a job offer from your placement provider.

Two current History students successfully secured year-long placements with the Treasury through this scheme.

Find out more about the professional placement year and meet some of our students. 

"It was really helpful when the careers team at the university came and spoke to us. They brought a History graduate with them - it was really enlightening to hear about the path she had followed, and to know that the careers team were there to help us.”

Dan Lewis

BA History

gain essential skills

Our courses offer you the opportunity to develop essential transferable skills, desirable to employers in a range of fields, such as the ability to: think clearly and critically, research and analyse data, communicate with confidence, and work effectively both individually and in teams.

"Be positive and confident. There are a lot of employers who want and need the skills of history graduates.”

Rhys Williams

BA History graduate

A recent CBI Education and Skills Survey found that "employers focus above all on the attitudes and aptitudes that will enable graduates to be effective in the workplace", including teamwork, analysis, literacy and communication skills - all of which you will develop as part of your history degree at Reading.

We encourage all students to engage with the many opportunities offered by the University of Reading Careers Service.

Build a strong network of contacts

Our staff have partnerships with a variety of prestigious institutions, both locally and throughout the UK. We work closely with employers and partners across an extensive range of fields, and these links offer our students the opportunity to apply for professional placements.

Our current staff partnerships include:

Historic Royal Palaces (HRP) Wellcome Trust
English Heritage Berkshire Record Office
Reading Museum Reading University's Special Collections
Reading Borough Libraries National Archives
Museum of English Rural Life National Trust
Parliament National Maritime Museum

graduate destinations

Previous graduates have used their History degree as a springboard for various employment sectors such as accountancy, banking and commerce, law, publishing, information science, museum work, teaching and social work. Many also enter the business worlds of retail, marketing, sales and computing, while others enter civil service and governmental roles.

Examples of recent graduate employers include:

Parliament Welsh Assembly
MI5 Victoria and Albert Museum
Barclays Bank HSBC
John Lewis Admiral
The British Museum  Sun Microsystems
Macmillan Publishers Siemens Financial Services
Museum of English Rural Life The Football Association
NHS Morgan Stanley
Nestle Rowntree Various schools


Boost your career prospects with a History degree

Past students have entered a wide range of exciting, rewarding and prestigious careers. Discover what doors your degree could open.

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