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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of History, Classics and Archaeology : Lifelong Learning (HCA)

Undergraduate Course: Empires: from the Achaemenid (6th century BCE) to the British (LLLE07036)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of History, Classics and Archaeology CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 7 (Year 1 Undergraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits10 ECTS Credits5
SummaryA survey of global history through the lens of some of the most influential empires in world history. From the Achaemenid Empire (6th century BCE) to the British Empire, this course looks at the rise and fall of empires to discern commonalties and contrasts and to assess their enduring influence.
Course description The history of world is marked by the rise and decline of major global empires, each set within a unique geographical and temporal milieu, and contributing differently to the global stage. Chronologically run, this course focuses on ten of the most influential historic empires, providing a world history course that encourages students to think globally. Beginning with the Achaemenid Empire and ending with the British Empire, students will analyse the political, economic, social and military features of individual empires, and assess their impact on global history; students will compare empires, and assess the web of historic patterns that emerge.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2016/17, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  18
Course Start Lifelong Learning - Session 2
Course Start Date 16/01/2017
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 100 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 20, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 2, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 78 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) One, 2,000-word essay to be submitted after the end of the course.
Formative exercise of a practice essay submitted mid-way through the course (non-compulsory).
Feedback Students will receive written feedback for their formative assessment practice essay, submitted mid-way through the session. They may discuss this with the tutor; students may contact the tutor for an informal discussion of progress at any time in the session. Students will receive detailed written feedback on their assessed work submitted after the end of the course.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. demonstrate an understanding of the key features of the major empires in history, including their social, political and economic impact, and their place within the history of empires;
  2. demonstrate through oral contribution in classes, and through the assessment where applicable, an ability to analyse the primary sources, and to handle critically the secondary sources;
  3. demonstrate, through oral contribution in classes, and through the assessment where applicable, an ability to conduct research and to structure ideas;
  4. demonstrate, through oral contribution in classes and through the assessment where applicable, an ability to organize their own learning and to manage their workload.
Reading List

Burbank, J., Cooper, F., 2010. Empires in World History: Power and the Politics of Difference. Princeton: Princeton University Press
Howe, S., 2002. Empire: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford: Oxford Paperbacks


Marriott, E., 2012. The History of the World in Bite-sized Chunks. London: Michael O'Mara
McLaughlin, R., 2014. The Roman Empire and the Indian Ocean: The Ancient World Economy and the Kingdoms of Africa, Arabia and India. Barnsley: Pen and Sword.
Axworthy, M., 2008. Iran: Empire of the Mind: A History from Zoroaster to the Present Day. London: Penguin
Moses, D., 2009. Empire, Colony, Genocide: Conquest, Occupation, and Subaltern Resistance in World History (War and Genocide). New York: Berghahn Books
Hansen. V., 2000. The Open Empire: A History of China to 1600. London: W. W. Norton and Company
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Critical thinking.
Handling and analysis of sources.
Oral discussion.
Time management.
Course organiserDr Sally Crumplin
Course secretaryMiss Zofia Guertin
Tel: (0131 6)51 1855
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