Taught course

Midlands and Local History

University of Birmingham · Department of History

Entry requirements

We require a a good honours degree (usually a 2:1) in a relevant subject (e.g. History, Politics, Cultural Studies, Literature), or other relevant professional or academic experience. For the PG Cert, an A-level in a relevant humanities subject(s) at grade C or above (or equivalent) will also be considered.

A high standard of written English and willingness to read and research are essential requirements. Many students have engaged in historical research and this evidence of interest and commitment is an important part of assessment and each applicant is considered on their merits.

Months of entry


Course content

The MA/PG Dip/PG Cert in Midlands and Local History are the only programmes in the world that focus on the history of the Midlands region and its people.

From the furnaces of the Black Country to the Shropshire Hills, you will explore the region’s development, the changing experiences of local people and their communities, and the role that the region has played in shaping national and global history from the early modern period to the present.

You will be taught be leading academics and will benefit from our world-class facilities and collections, including the Cadbury Research Library and Barber Institute of Fine Arts, as well as field trips to local heritage sites where you can put your classroom learning into practice. Delivered part-time through monthly Saturday schools, these programmes are ideal for students who wish to combine academic study with work, caring responsibilities, or other commitments.

The MA is taught via six modules (three per year over two years) and a supervised dissertation. These include three thematic modules designed to develop your skills in key areas – ‘Introduction to Local History’, ‘Research Skills for Local History’, and ‘Making Midlands History’ – and three modules that correspond to broad chronological blocks from the early modern period to the present. As such, it combines specialist training in key skills with a broad overview of the history of the region over more than five hundred years, from the Reformation and Civil Wars to the Industrial Revolution and the 1980s race riots.

The PG Dip is taught via six modules across two years (but without the dissertation element of the full MA) while the PG Cert is a one-year programme comprised of three modules. Further details of modules can be found on the “Modules” tab below.

Students come from many different backgrounds and previous academic knowledge of history is not required. The programme is suitable if you are a recent graduate; if you are looking to develop higher-level research skills or enhance your knowledge and skills for CPD and/or professional purposes; or if you simply wish to pursue an interest in the local area and its history.

Information for international students

IELTS 6.5 with no less than 6.0 in any band is equivalent to:

  • TOEFL: 88 overall with no less than 21 in Reading, 20 Listening, 22 Speaking and 21 in Writing
  • Pearson Test of English (PTE): Academic 67 with no less than 64 in all four skills
  • Cambridge English (exams taken from 2015): Advanced - minimum overall score of 176, with no less than 169 in any component

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MA
    part time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
  • PGDip
    part time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
  • PGCert
    part time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Postgraduate Enquiry Service