Develop your critical abilities within two vibrant departments of like-minded students and expert scholars and gain a strong understanding of how History and Religious Studies intersect and influence one another. History's core first year module is designed to extend and deepen your knowledge of the past and introduce you to major historical topics and themes from the ancient world to the present day. You will gain insights into how historians conduct research and interpret the past and develop your own research, essay-writing and presentational skills. Many History students choose to take additional, specialised modules on topics ranging from the fall of the Roman Empire to histories of violence and empire in the modern world. In your second and third years you design your own degree, focusing on the themes, periods and nations which interest you the most, with options that include British, European, American, Asian and Middle Eastern history, from the eighth century BC to the twentieth century. The first year of a Religious Studies degree provides an introduction to the growth and development of the world’s major religious traditions and their primary characteristics. It also provides an overview of some of the forms religious belief takes in the contemporary world, as well as some of the problems and opportunities it faces. There is also a cross-cultural and inter-religious examination of key issues in the study of religion relating to, for example, ethics, politics, gender, and the character of the religious life. In the second and third years there is a range of optional modules on topics addressing a broad spectrum of subjects that provide an opportunity to study, in more depth, the world's major religious traditions and to debate the role of religion in the modern world. As well as developing skills in critical thinking, the courses enable a deeper awareness of cultural diversity and an informed understanding of the principal challenges facing religions. Key areas of analysis include: religion and violence; religion and gender; religion and politics; philosophy and religious thought; religion in relation to secularism and multiculturalism; interpretations of sacred texts; and new religions. You will also have the opportunity to spend Year 3 on placement with a public, private or voluntary organisation in the UK or overseas. This experience will boost your employment prospects and will help you to decide on your career direction and the kind of organisation in which you want to work once you graduate. You will be doing a real, responsible job – with all the satisfaction that brings. Our Placements Team will support you in finding and applying for a suitable placement that will support your professional development. Applying for a placement is a competitive process and the preparatory modules you will complete in years one and two are designed to give you the best chance of success in your placement applications. You will also be provided with dedicated workshops, 1:1 appointments with careers professionals as well as opportunities to speak with employers here on campus. During the placement year you will remain a Lancaster University student which means that you will still be eligible for a student loan, have access to facilities such as the library and receive discounts on transport and council tax. Your tuition fee will be reduced to 20% during the placement year. The placement will enhance your understanding of the connections between theory and practice and this will benefit your final year of study. This is an exciting opportunity to build up experience and transferable skills, as well as to make contacts with potential employers, which will place you a step ahead in the graduate recruitment market.