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Last modified: 31 May 2022 13:05

Course Overview

Hastings, Waterloo, Gettysburg and Tsushima – the names of famous battles are well known and remembered today. The history of warfare continues to inspire video games, novels and TV documentaries. But what can we learn from battles and wars academically, and how do we research them? This course will introduce recent approaches to studying global military history with a focus on the human experience in times of war.

Course Details

Study Type Undergraduate Level 2
Session First Sub Session Credit Points 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits)
Campus Aberdeen Sustained Study No
  • Dr Heidi Mehrkens

What courses & programmes must have been taken before this course?

  • Programme Level 2
  • Any Undergraduate Programme

What other courses must be taken with this course?


What courses cannot be taken with this course?

  • HI2525 The Face of Battle: Historical Perspectives on Warfare (Studied)

Are there a limited number of places available?


Course Description

This course introduces students to key themes and topics in researching the cultural history of warfare. Weekly lectures plus secondary reading assignments will address examples of battles and war scenarios ranging from the middle ages to modern times and with a global outlook. The lectures will use a biographical approach and explore reasons for and experiences of warfare. The tutorials sessions will allow you to work in detail with primary sources and to discuss interpretative approaches taken by scholars in the field.

Contact Teaching Time

Information on contact teaching time is available from the course guide.

Teaching Breakdown

More Information about Week Numbers

Details, including assessments, may be subject to change until 31 August 2023 for 1st half-session courses and 22 December 2023 for 2nd half-session courses.

Summative Assessments

2000 word essay (60%)

500 word primary source analysis (20%)

Tutorial Participation (20%)


Resit: 2500 word essay

Formative Assessment

There are no assessments for this course.

Course Learning Outcomes

Knowledge LevelThinking SkillOutcome
ProceduralAnalyseundertake critical analysis of primary sources in translation
ProceduralEvaluatesearch for, and critically appraise, relevant secondary literature
FactualUnderstanddevelop a basic understanding of key topics in the study of the history of warfare
ProceduralEvaluatedevelop interpretations based on primary and secondary source materials

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