SHE Level 2
SCQF Credit Points 20.00
ECTS Credit Points 10.00
Module Code M2V324402
Module Leader Janet Greenlees
School Glasgow School for Business and Society
Subject History
  • A (September start)

Summary of Content

This module examine s how social, political, cultural and economic forces in the post 1914 era have shaped the course of the past 100 years, forging the contemporary world in which we live. Drawing upon the research expertise of History staff at Glasgow Caledonian University, the focus is upon developments within Europe and America, although the global ramifications of these upheavals is given due attention. Structurally, the module entwines a chronological approach with thematic sessions. Summary of how PRME-related issues / topics are covered in this module The study of contemporary history provides us with a historical understanding of current issues and debates. If we wish to forge graduates who are sensitive to the importance of global social responsibility and sustainability, it is imperative that they are able to contextualise and conceptualise the need for such an approach by analysing how inequalities in the contemporary world have arisen via a study of the recent past.


Indicative content Total War Progress or Decline? The Interwar Years Dictatorships, the Holocaust and the Post-war Crisis of Modernity Empire, Commonwealth and Post-colonialism Equal Citizens? Gender, Race and Class in the Twentieth Century Health, Work and the State From an Era of Protest to the Cold War Shifting the balance of power Writing the History of the Western World

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module, the student should be able to:1 Use diverse primary source types to understand the historical narrative of the twentieth century;2 Critically evaluate the work of leading historians in the field, and key debates in the secondary literature;3 Understand the leading patterns of social, cultural, political and economic change occurring in the western world over the last 100 years.

Teaching / Learning Strategy

This module combines two one- hour lectures per week and a weekly one-hour seminar. Students will be given directed secondary reading for seminars, which will be utilised to provide closer, critical examination of particular issues and themes raised in the course syllabus, and will provide opportunities for discussion and questions. Seminars will also be used to examine and discuss primary source materials, enabling students to develop their source analysis skills. Resources and materials for the module will be provided via GCU Learn.

Indicative Reading

-567 Key Books and Journals -567 P. Addison and H. Jones (eds), A Companion Guide to Contemporary Britain, 1939-2000 (2005) T. Borstelmann, The 1970s: A New Global History from Civil Rights to Economic Inequality (2011) P. J. Cains and A. G. Hopkins, Crisis and Decolonisation, 1914-1990 (1993) F. Carnevali, J. M. Strange and P. Johnson, Twentieth-Century Britain: Economic, Cultural And Social Change (2007) D. Ellwood, The Shock of America: Europe and the Challenge of the Century (2012) M. Gilbert, A History of the Twentieth Century: The Concise Edition (2002) J. Glover, Humanity: A Moral History of the Twentieth Century (2012) A. Green and K. Troup (eds), The Houses of History: A Critical Reader in Twentieth-Century History and Theory. E. Hobsbawm, The Age of Extremes: The Short Twentieth Century, 1914-1991 (1995) M. Mazower, Dark Continent: Europe's Twentieth Century (1998) J. Merriman, A History of Modern Europe Vol. 2: From the French Revolution to the Present (2009) J. M. Roberts, The Penguin History of the Twentieth Century (2000) W. LaFeber, America, Russia and the Cold War History Workshop Journal Journal of British Studies Journal of Contemporary History Journal of Imperial and Commonwealth Studies Journal of Social History Social and Cultural History Twentieth-Century British History American Historical Review Online sources: Internet Modern History Sourcebook ( <> ) The American Yawp <>

Transferrable Skills

By the end of this module students will have gained competence in the following key areas: -360b7 Understanding of historical debates b7 Ability to analyse and evaluate primary sources b7 Excellent writing skills, including correct referencing b7 Excellent research skills Effective time and workload management

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Seminars (FT) 12.00
Assessment (FT) 20.00
Independent Learning (FT) 144.00
Lectures (FT) 24.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Course Work 01 n/a 50.00 35% 2000 essay
Course Work 02 n/a 50.00 35% 1000 word group wiki