Prospective Students

Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in English and History (PAC Code: DC340)


Fact File

CAO Code: DC340
Type of degree: Part-time/Modular
Contact: Open Education Office

Understanding the Course:

The DCU Bachelor of Arts in English and History is a Level 8 (on the National Framework of Qualifications), honours degree programme, which provides students with a focused, tailored course of education in the English and History subject areas.

This programme offers students great flexibility in that they can vary the number of modules they register for in a given year to match the other responsibilities in their life. Given that registering for a module means committing to the workload associated with that module this flexibility allows a student to only take on the work they can accommodate in a given year. When deciding how much work to take on students should consider the time needed to: study learning materials; actively participate in tutorials; and the time they need to set aside to interact with tutors and other students in the online discussion forums. Students on this programme also have a good degree of flexibility in terms of time, place and pace of studying as they do not have to attend campus-based classes on a regular basis.

At the beginning of the academic year, students are provided with access to a suite of self-study learning materials and resources, along with reading lists for required textbooks. Studying Literature and History necessarily involves spending a lot of time reading academic material.

Students are supported academically through a variety of means. When studying a module students are supported by a dedicated Tutor. Each module has a blend of face to face and virtual tutorials. Tutorials are activity-based, participatory sessions where Tutors facilitate review and discussion of the material students have been studying. Face to face tutorials are held on DCU campus, usually on Saturdays, while virtual tutorials take place using 'live', online classroom technology. Students can partake in these virtual classroom tutorials at home, work or anywhere with a broadband internet connection. All that is required is a computer with a webcam and headset. These tutorials are recorded so they can be viewed again later, and usually take place on weekday evenings or on Saturdays. Attending the majority of tutorials/workshops is voluntary, with attendance at a small number of tutorials/workshops being mandatory. Students are also supported in online discussion forums. These discussion forums, which can be found within DCU's virtual learning environment Loop, is the key medium through which students communicate with their Tutor and fellow students. Regular participation in these discussion forums is very important. In addition, students have access to a number of support services that are used to find answers to questions and resolve any issues or problems they may be experiencing.

In each module students will be given several opportunities, throughout the academic year, to demonstrate their learning through assessment work. The form that these assessments take depends on the module, but may include essays, case studies, group work, contributions to online forums and discussions, multiple choice questionnaires, learning journals and/or end of year examinations. All continuous assessment work is submitted online. Students can sit their end-of-year examinations in an examination center in Dublin, Cork or Galway.

About You:

This programme is designed to develop students' knowledge and understanding of the English and History subject areas, and is therefore tailored to be suitable for anyone who wishes to specifically study these subjects; whether for personal or professional reasons. This Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in English and History programme offers you the attractive opportunity to obtain a DCU undergraduate degree through online learning, which is more open and flexible than if you registered for a full-time, or part-time, campus-based programme.

Course Structure:

The English and History subject areas are each presented as a suite of six modules (see below for further details), which cover different aspects of that subject, for example Land, Politics & Society in Independent Ireland in History or The Renaissance in Literature. To complete the Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in English and History a student needs to successfully complete the twelve modules from these two subjects. Students may elect to exit with a Diploma in English and History on successful completion of eight modules, if they do not wish to progress to the full degree qualification.

BA in English and History Module Structure

Please note that the programme is under constant review and there may be changes to the structure, content and presentation of the programme in future years.

Each module is awarded 15 European Credit Transfer System (ECTS) credit points. These points are accumulated towards your award of degree. 180 ECTS credit points are required for the Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in English and History and 120 ECTS credit points are required for the Diploma in English and History.

How Long does it take to Complete the Course?

It is possible to complete your degree in a minimum of four years, however, this would be a 'full-time' studying commitment. The Diploma can be completed in a minimum of three years with a similar commitment. The greater the number of modules successfully completed each year, the quicker you obtain your degree. In the first year of study a student can only select the two foundation modules. After the foundation modules have been completed a student can select from one to four modules per year. The number of modules you undertake each year will depend on your individual circumstances. The Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in English and History must be completed within an eight year registration period.

Getting Started on your Programme:

The first module in each subject area aids students in becoming accustomed to studying at third level and to that specific subject area. These modules are designed to:

  • Introduce students to the specific subject area and get them started on their journey of acquiring knowledge about that subject.
  • Facilitate students in developing the study skills necessary to succeed in the subject (for example, essay writing, sourcing and recording information, structuring assignments), and at third level in general.
  • Introduce students to the wide range of resources that are made available to them, for that subject.
  • Facilitate students in their acquisition of skills in using information and communications technologies (ICTs) to enhance their learning in that subject.
  • Enable students to demonstrate their achievement of the necessary skills and knowledge through a range of different types of assessment tasks, for example essays, reports and/or learning portfolios.

Programme Subject Areas:

The History subject stream equips students with a wide range of skills and techniques upon which historical research and writings are based. Students will engage in the critical examination of historians' works, and the evaluation of primary sources, and will acquire the conceptual tools with which our view of the past is shaped. The modules provide perspectives on major themes in Irish and European political, economic, social, and cultural history from the close of the Middle Ages to the twentieth century.

Please click here for a description of each module presented on the History stream.

The Literature subject stream equips students with the skills and techniques to discriminate between literature and other forms of writing and representation, taking account of contemporary perspectives in criticism and theory, including feminism, historicism and post-modernism. Irish, British, American, and other literature in English will be evaluated in terms of their contribution to cultural formation. Students will encounter competing ideas about writing and literature, within different historical and national frameworks.

Please click here for a description of each module presented on the Literature stream.

What modules are running in 2016-2017:

All modules in the Literature and History Subject Areas are running in the 2016-2017 academic year.

Module Selection:

While this programme's modular structure provides you with the flexibility to choose how many modules you commit to studying in any one academic year, there are rules relating to module registration that you must be familiar with in order that you can make a fully informed decision about which modules you wish to take. For example, some modules must be completed before others can be selected, and other modules cannot be taken in combination. Before planning your pathway through the programme (and it is important that you create such a plan) you should view the Guide to Module Selection for the Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in English and History.

View the subjects currently taught on this course (2016 - 2017)

Career Prospects:

The Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in English and History degree programme facilitates those interested in pursuing any kind of work that requires critical thinking skills, high quality written expression, and transferable skills such as organisation and time-management, and these skills and abilities are highly valued by employers. The knowledge and skills you will develop are useful and valuable to have no matter what path you take once you successfully complete your DCU degree programme. Graduates from the Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in English and History programme will be able to go on to a variety of postgraduate programmes and careers in those subject areas. This has already been demonstrated by existing graduates who have, to take the example of one graduate, gone on to complete postgraduate studies in Literature and is now a published author working in an Irish University and is a member of the Humanities Programme Board, helping to shape the development of the degree. Similarly, several graduates of the programme have, in addition to their other work as third-level academics in other institutions, returned to work as tutors, bringing their experience as online-learning students to that work.

Many of those studying on the Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in English and History do so with the ambition of becoming a post-primary teacher, with the Literature and History modules being recognised by the Teaching Council of Ireland for the teaching of English and History at post-primary level.

IT Equipment and Skills required:

You must have regular access to a computer (with Microsoft Office), a broadband Internet connection, a printer and, for virtual tutorials, a basic headset and a webcam. Specifically, you will need access to Microsoft Word, Excel and Powerpoint.

You should also be familiar with using email, browsing the Internet, and using word processing packages like Microsoft Word.

You can find detailed information on the IT skills and equipment required for this programme under the section 'Technology Requirements'.

Entry Requirements:

Applicants aged over 23 years on January 1st in the year of entry are eligible for admission to the programme and are automatically granted a place subject to submission of an application form and deposit.

Applicants under 23 years on January 1st in the year of entry must satisfy the normal minimum degree entry requirements of Dublin City University which are:

Irish Leaving Certificate: Grade C3 in two Higher Level Subjects and Grade D3 in four Ordinary or Higher Level subjects including Mathematics AND English or Irish.

In addition, applicants who are non-native speakers of the English language must satisfy the university requirements for competency in the English language.

How to Apply:

Applications are now open for academic year 2016-2017. You need to first register with PAC in order to make an application.

To apply please go to: and select the Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in English and History (PAC Code: DC340)

PAC will charge undergraduates an application fee of €35.

Recognition of Prior Learning:

The Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in English and History programme allows for Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL), through the granting of module exemptions.

Applicants can apply for a `Specific' exemption if they have covered the full content of a module, to successful completion, in another programme, at a similar award level (but not where that module contributed towards an achieved award as the credits for that module have already been 'cashed in' against that award).

Please note that a student may not present the same ECTS credits as qualification for more than one DCU award. Similarly, a student may not claim an exemption for ECTS credits towards one award that have already been presented as qualification for another award elsewhere at a similar award level.

Please note that applicants will not obtain exemptions on the basis of work experience only.

A maximum exemption total of 60 credits (four modules) may be awarded to applicants with appropriate prior qualifications.

Please see the Exemption Form for more details.

Those interested in applying for exemptions should firstly apply for the Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in English and History programme. Exemption Application forms are available to all applicants upon request or you can download them from the Programme Forms section of our website.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Please see the list of Frequently Asked Questions we have prepared for all applicants.

You can also email us with any questions to: or telephone us directly on 01 700 5481 for further assistance.

Important Dates:

Study Period: 19th September 2016 to mid-May 2017.

Closing Date for Applications: Applications normally close in mid September of each year.

Fee information