Strand: Course identity
Abstract: This paper will explore the redevelopment and initial delivery of the redesigned module Making History 2, a core module for first year History students. The module was redesigned with three objectives in mind: emphasise the skills development involved through doing a history degree to students in their first year; enable students to engage with libraries and sources outside of the University, including those at local archives for a piece of independent research; and guide the students in understanding the relationship between academic and public history. To achieve this, students would be expected to work in small groups to undertake a small research project on any aspect of Sheffield history they were interested in between 1750 and 1950. Emphasis was placed on originality and areas of Sheffield’s history which were under-researched. From their research the students would have to produce an essay-style write up of their project individually, and an un-assessed poster for a history exhibition as a group. The poster exhibition would be open to the public, with posters being judged as part of a competition by a local historian. Their assessment also included a reflective element in which the students were encouraged to evaluate their performance as part of a group, and to explore their skills development through doing the project. The skills primarily developed from undertaking their projects include, but is not limited to: team work; autonomy; research skills; writing skills; and planning and organisation. Students would also write a short essay critically evaluating different approaches to public history. The paper will highlight the approach taken to delivering the module, and be supplemented by data gathered during the course of its delivery.
While the approach outlined is tailored for delivery with History students, it is anticipated that attendees will be able to take away ideas on how to emphasize the skills developed through doing a degree with first year students. The paper will highlight one possible approach to introducing employability to students, and offers a means of helping students develop their skills and to seek resources outside of the University while undertaking their studies.
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surveyed at the start of the module and will be surveyed at the close of the module, assessing their skills development and perspectives on employability.
292 SHU L&T Conference June 2013