HS0PE-Perspectives in the Humanities

Module Provider: History
Number of credits: 40 [20 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn / Spring / Summer module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2020/1

Module Convenor: Prof David Stack

Email: d.a.stack@reading.ac.uk

Type of module:

Summary module description:

One of the key features of the Humanities is the willingness and ability to understand any given problem, event, object, or text from a variety of perspectives. These different perspectives might be historical (understanding a question or individual within a given historical context); moral (understanding a choice or dilemma from different ethical or religious viewpoints); or self-reflective (understanding how our own viewpoint and experiences influence our selection and interpretation of evidence).

Each week the module will introduce students to new case studies that extend their appreciation of these different points of views, and the techniques needed to identify, analyse, and compare different perspectives.


The aim of this module is develop each student’s awareness of a range of perspectives, in order to better equip them for the study of Classics, History, and Philosophy.

This will be achieved through the use of a series of case studies, drawn from all three subject areas, which will develop the skills common to them all, and introduce students colleagues and approaches from across the School.

Assessable learning outcomes:

By the end of this module, students will be:

  • · Able to carry out research at undergraduate level, including discovering complex information and evidence and responding imaginatively to research tasks.

  • · Able to present information within wider contexts.

  • · Able to analyse material and articulate their ideas, in writing and orally.

  • · Able to plan their written and oral output effectively .

  • · Able to manage their study time productively.

  • · Confident in the use of the university’s VLE and other learning technologies.

  • · Familiar with groupwork and independent study techniques at university.

Additional outcomes:

  • · Achieving a good understanding of identity as it is examined at undergraduate level.

  • · The ability to plan an assignment and reference it correctly.

  • · Working effectively in groups for study.

  • · Demonstrating knowledge of the relationships between different genres and different media.

  • · Planning forward for a BA programme at Part 1.

  • · Grasping the learning that takes place from a wide variety of sources, with the aid of various learning events, including lectures, seminars and workshops.


Outline content:

The module will explore four key themes in appreciating different perspectives in the Humanities: reading and researching; thinking and discussing; presenting and representing; and ethics and empathy. Each of these elements will be explored through a range of case studies and a diverse set of source materials, including texts, manuscripts, artworks, films, objects, and exhibitions. The module will be delivered in four half-term blocks, by staff from across the departments of Classics, History , and Philosophy.

Global context:

This module comprises sources and case studies from across the globe, and its four themes are relevant to the historical and philosophical study of any region or system of thought.

This module is especially suitable for students who have been studying outside the UK and need to become familiar with the methods of teaching and learning in UK HE institutions.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

The module will take students through a week-by-week programme of lectures, seminars, workshops and guided independent study tasks, over two terms.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 30 30
Tutorials 2 2 4
Guided independent study:      
    Wider reading (independent) 24 24
    Advance preparation for classes 76 76
    Other 48 48
    Essay preparation 24
    Reflection 8 4
Total hours by term 180 188 32
Total hours for module 400

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written assignment including essay 100

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

Written assignment, including essay:

A learning journal for the module, in which students will make two 300-word entries per half term (total of four entries per term; eight across the year: 2,400 words in total). The entries will be marked each half term.

Two 1,000 word essays. (One submitted at the end of the first week of spring term; the other submitted at the end of the second week of the Summer Term).


Learning Journal: 40% (10% each half term).

Essays: 60% (30% each essay).


Formative assessment methods:

Students will be asked to produce formative work in each of the four ‘half-term’ blocs, which will be reviewed in class. In the autumn term (weeks 1-5) they will be asked to produce a short bibliography on a chosen topic, and (weeks 7-11) to frame a set of questions for discussing a chosen topic. In spring term (weeks 1-5) they will work in groups to deliver a joint presentation, and (weeks 7-11) submit a plan ahead of their summer term essay.

Penalties for late submission:

The Module Convenor will apply the following penalties for work submitted late:

  • where the piece of work is submitted after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for that piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day[1] (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.
The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at: http://www.reading.ac.uk/web/FILES/qualitysupport/penaltiesforlatesubmission.pdf
You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

Assessment requirements for a pass:

40% overall

Reassessment arrangements:

By resubmission of coursework.

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

Last updated: 4 April 2020


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