The Making of the Modern World (V1228)

30 credits, Level 4

Spring teaching

This module introduces you to a period of momentous social, political and cultural change in world history, focusing on some of the key debates that have preoccupied historians.

We will look closely at important historical controversies, from the birth of the notion of human rights to the Industrial Revolution, the expansion of European empires, the origins of modern nations, and the growing importance of science.

Historians have often taken developments in Europe as defining what it means to be modern – this module questions whether a wider perspective forces us to ask: what (if anything) is “modernity”? Is the concept still a useful one, or does it need to be abandoned?


52%: Lecture
23%: Practical (Workshop)
25%: Seminar


100%: Written assessment (Essay)

Contact hours and workload

This module is approximately 300 hours of work. This breaks down into about 44 hours of contact time and about 256 hours of independent study. The University may make minor variations to the contact hours for operational reasons, including timetabling requirements.

We regularly review our modules to incorporate student feedback, staff expertise, as well as the latest research and teaching methodology. We’re planning to run these modules in the academic year 2023/24. However, there may be changes to these modules in response to feedback, staff availability, student demand or updates to our curriculum. We’ll make sure to let you know of any material changes to modules at the earliest opportunity.


This module is offered on the following courses: