Taught course


Open University · Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences

Entry requirements

You must hold an honours degree to study for our MA in History course. Your degree need not be in history, but you must have the basic skills expected of a graduate in that area. The first module brings you up to date with the latest ideas and approaches in history but does not offer remedial undergraduate training for those without a history-related bachelors degree or inadequate experience. If you do not hold an honours degree then the Advanced Diploma in Local History (COXR305) , offered in collaboration with the Oxford University Department of Continuing Education is accepted as an alternative entry qualification to this degree. This course would provide suitable preparation if your degree is not in history or a closely related subject (for further information please visit our collaborative schemes website ). In all cases before you enter the degree you should be confident that you will be able to: write clear, concise, grammatically correct and accurately spelt prose read large quantities of text quickly, accurately and critically identify different types of sources and assess their reliability argue logically, consistently and sceptically assemble a range of sources into a well-structured piece of writing. If you are in any doubt about whether you possess these skills, or if you would like help to assess your preparedness you can contact us for advice.

Months of entry

October, April, February

Course content

This MA in History provides theoretical and practical training in major themese in local and regional history, research methods, project planing and writing. You'll explore aspects of British and Irish local and regional history between 1750 and 1950, and be introduced to the key themes of poverty and welfare, crime and policing, the role of families, urban history, religion and industrialisation. Using our world-class collection of online primary source materials, you'll be encouraged to produce an independent research project on a topic of your choice.

You will need a computer with internet access to study for this qualification. For most OU qualifications a Microsoft Windows (new since 2007), Apple Mac (OS X 10.6 or later) or Linux computer should be adequate. However, some qualifications require more specific IT equipment, in which case you will need additional software to use an Apple Mac or Linux computer. A detailed technical specification for your modules will be made available when you register. Please note, technical specifications do change over time to match computer developments and the way we teach.

The Open University is the world's leading provider of flexible, high quality distance learning. Unlike other universities we are not campus based. You will study in a flexible way that works for you whether you're at home, at work or on the move. As an OU student you'll be supported throughout your studies - your tutor or study adviser will guide and advise you, offer detailed feedback on your assignments, and help with any study issues. Tuition might be in face-to-face groups, via online tutorials, or by phone.

Fees and funding

Costs are paid per unit not per qualification.

Qualification and course duration


distance learning
60 months
part time
60 months

Course contact details

0300 303 5303