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First Year

Current Stage 1 Students

You are very welcome to stage one (first year) History. As a stage one student undertaking history you will have chosen between 1 and 4 of our modules (see below). These are designed to provide you not only with an introduction to the discipline of history, but also a sense of key periods in the past.  Full details of the modules are available through UCD Course Search.

 Core Module

History students are required to take this module

HIS10390 Creating History

Module Coordinator: Professor Tadhg Ó hAnnracháin (tadhg.ohannrachain@ucd.ie)

This is a module about the importance of critical thinking to the study and the writing of history. It will examine the relationship between what happened (or what might have happened) in the past and how we think about it now. We will attempt to look behind the scenes of the history books, articles, documents, films and other sources that you will encounter during the course of your studies and ask how history is written and debated. Also, we will ask what history is, what an historian is and what exactly do they do?

Optional Modules
HIS10070: The Making of Modern Europe, 1500-2000

Module Coordinator: Professor Sandy Wilkinson (sandy.wilkinson@ucd.ie)

This course offers a sweeping introduction to some of the momentous changes which have taken place in Europe over the past five hundred years. It explores some of the major landmarks in Europe's social, political, and economic development: the development of European Empires, religious change, witchcraft, the industrial revolution, democratic change, war in the modern world, the Cold War and socio-cultural change since 1945. There will be one lecture every week which will introduce students to these themes, but the heart of the course lies in the seminars. Here, students will be encouraged to challenge interpretations of the past, to debate ideas and to draw on primary evidence.


HIS10080: Rome to Renaissance

Module Coordinator: Dr Roy Flechner (michael.staunton@ucd.ie)

This course provides an introduction to European history during the middle ages, from the fall of Rome in the fifth century to the Renaissance of the later fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. The middle ages, once dismissed as a time of stagnation and superstition, is now regarded as an exciting period of ferment, innovation and creativity. The social, political and cultural foundations of modern Europe were established in the middle ages, and the modern era cannot be understood without an awareness of this formative millennium. But equally, the study of the middle ages often means encountering the strange and unfamiliar, and this too is an essential part of being a historian. This course will study the period by focusing on a range of significant events which illustrate some of the most important developments of the period. These include the sack of Rome by barbarians, the influence of the Irish on the conversion of Europe to Christianity, the trial of Joan of Arc, and Columbus's 'discovery' of America. By the end of the semester not only will you have a grounding in medieval history, society and civilisation, but you will have experience of dealing directly with historical evidence, and evaluating and interpreting it in order to reach conclusions about events and people from the past.

HIS10310: Ireland's English Centuries

Module Coordinator: Dr Ivar McGrath (ivar.mcgrath@ucd.ie)

In 1460 Ireland was a patchwork of lordships including an English Pale, by 1800 the country was poised to enter a United Kingdom with England and Scotland. In 1460, all Irish people shared the common religion of Western Europe, by 1800 three groups – Catholics, Protestants and Dissenters dominated. In 1460, only a tiny number did not speak Irish, by 1800 English was spoken by well over half the population. During these 340 years Ireland experienced massive transfers of land-holding, invasions, bitter civil war and a huge expansion of population. This module explains the complex blend of identities, allegiances and social changes that shaped the past and continue to shape the Irish present.

HIS10320: From Union to Bailout

Module coordinator: Dr Susannah Riordan (susannah.riordan@ucd.ie)

This course takes students through two centuries of modern Irish history, examining key events, themes and milestones from the Act of Union between Britain and Ireland in 1800 to the collapse of the Irish economy in the early twenty-first century. It covers political, social, economic and cultural dimensions of Irish history during tumultuous times, the experience of Anglo-Irish relations, Catholic emancipation, famine, the evolution of Irish nationalism and unionism, the land war, the revolutionary upheavals of the early twentieth century, the impact of partition, the quest for sovereignty in the Free State, the experience of life in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland, and continuity and change in the latter part of the twentieth century.

School Support

We take student support very seriously in the School of History and have a range of points of contact and support depending on your requirements. The university also provide a range of professional supports should you need them through your time with us (see next section).  Please remember that asking for help is NOT a sign of weakness but of self-confidence and strength.  

Stage One Coordinator

Nathan Millin is the Support Coordinator in the School of History and is available to help students with any general questions or personal problems they may have. Students are very welcome to contact Nathan by email to make an appointment: nathan.millin@ucd.ie

Module Coordinator

The role of the module coordinator is to oversee all aspects of the module and please first refer any questions about a module to the relevant module coordinator. If for any reason you are having problems contacting or getting a response from a coordinator please feel free to contact history@ucd.ie 

Stage 1 Tutors

One of the most important roles of the tutors is to be a source of support and guidance to students and to monitor and advise on your progress. You may contact your tutor by email.

The School Office (Room K107)

E-mail: history@ucd.ie       Telephone: +353 (01) 716 8375

The School Office is an extremely important part of the School, it is the administrative hub of School activities. Office hours are Monday to Friday 10:00 – 12:00 and 14:00 – 16:00. The School's Administrators will help with any questions regarding student administrative or organisational matters.

Personal well-being and good health are central to academic achievement and over the course of your studies you may experience personal problems that may affect your academic work - perhaps an illness, a bereavement, loneliness, financial difficulties or relationship problems. While we would wish to support you as much as we can, and always feel free to talk us, there are issues that require certain professional supports and expertise. We can advise on where you might get most appropriate support if you wish. As a starting point the University provides a range of advice, support and resources to help students tackle such problems (these services are listed below) and you should consider availing of these if you require advice or assistance on any matter.  Please feel free to avail of these (see below) but always, if you are able, also let the School know if you are having difficulties. Remember the sooner an issue is identified and the appropriate people are made aware the more likely it is that it can be dealt with and we can help you.

UCD Student Advisers

Provide support to students throughout their university experience

UCD Chaplains

Provide both religious and pastoral care

UCD Student Health and Counselling Service

Provides on-campus medical, psychological and psychiatric care,

UCD Access Centre

Provides advice and support to students with disabilities, long term medical conditions or specific learning difficulties (e.g. dyslexia)

UCD Student Support

Provides a wide range of practical supports and links

Unfortunately, most of us at some stage will suffer from illnesses that affect our ability to meet deadlines or fully achieve our potential. If you find yourself in health or other difficulties (e.g. bereavement; family problems) it is very important that you contact the School as soon as possible. The School of History and UCD generally have a variety of excellent support services for students who are in need (see other sections on this page).

It is important that you advise us of problems as early as possible; if at all possible, tell us in advance of the deadlines that you are concerned about. Please note that any issue relating to extenuating circumstances submitted to the School is dealt with in strictest confidence by staff.

Problems of various kinds may be taken into account in marking work, or considering whether or not a late penalty should apply for an essay. It is important that you speak to the tutor or module co-ordinator. They will ask you to:

  • Complete a school copy of an Request for late submission of coursework form during open office hours
  • Provide an original medical certificate or other supporting documentation in addition to the declaration. This will be placed on file, and may be taken into consideration in assessing your work.