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Aims and Assessment

Aims and Objectives

  • Obtaining knowledge of the processes which made the early modern world increasingly interconnected
  • Engaging with key concepts such as “clash of civilizations”, “middle ground”, “contact zone”, “go-between” and “transculturation”
  • Critically examining the notion of European exceptionalism in world history
  • Analysing a range of textual and visual sources through a multi-disciplinary lens
  • Processing primary and secondary source material and communicating ideas both orally and in writing
  • Developing research skills, historiographical engagement, presentation skills, and critical analysis through individual and group work


This module will be assessed through individual and group work as follows:

  • Applied task: digital group project (40%)
  • 3,000-word essay (50%)
  • Seminar contribution (10%)

    Seminar Contribution

    As a module consisting entirely of 2-hour seminars, seminar participation is essential. This consists of arriving prepared by doing the weekly readings and thinking about the set seminar questions in advance, as well as through active contribution to class discussions led by the tutor or fellow students. Additionally, each student will on one occasion introduce one of the required readings to the group to open the discussion. Seminar contribution will be assessed via a structured self-reflection that encourages you to reflect on your participation and engagement in the seminars and online activities and asks you to self-evaluate your contribution at the end of the module. You should submit the completed self-reflection form on Tabula.

    Digital Group Project: (Video) Blog

    In groups of 3 to 4 students you will present a focused case study pertaining to the theme of border-crossing in the early modern world, using a variety of media. You should structure the discussion of your chosen individual, community, or concept around a relevant historical question. The digital group project should take the form of a textual and visual presentation of your findings in a blog (e.g. Wordpress) or video (e.g. on Youtube or Vimeo).

    - This exercise does not have a set length, to allow you the flexibility to include that information necessary to explain and document your findings. As an indication, you may think of 10-15 minutes of video content or 3,000 words of blog text.

    You are encouraged to cover the following:

    • Justification of your chosen topic and question
    • Explanation of your findings and why they matter
    • Potential for further research

    NOTE: each group member must submit the project via Tabula individually. Please upload a document containing the weblink to your project (if e.g. on Wordpress or Youtube).

    Example Group Project Video: Pocahontas

    3,000-word Essay

    Your essay (3,000 words) should be framed around a relevant historical question related to the theme of the module, which may be one of the weekly seminar questions or a question of your own choosing. You may consider adopting a comparative perspective, e.g. by incorporating examples and materials from different time periods and/or from different parts of the world. Make sure to consult me to check whether your question is suitable.

    Your essay should engage with both secondary literature and primary sources. These may overlap with materials analysed in the Digital Group Project, yet substantial development is required. Essays should be submitted via Tabula in accordance with Departmental rules. See Tabula for submission deadlines.

    20-point Marking Scale