Reading for a history degree at new College offers an opportunity to study a subject which combines a vast range of human experience with the acquisition of high-level skills in researching, synthesis and communication. It's an excitingly diverse course which can take a student from the Byzantine court to the fall of the Berlin Wall, or from women's religious experience in Anglo-Saxon England to LGBTQ culture in late twentieth-century Europe and North America. In choosing subjects to study, our students benefit from the exceptionally wide range of topics offered by Oxford History Faculty, the largest in Europe.
New College has a strong commitment to the subject, and a successful record in recruiting committed students and obtaining excellent results in the Final Examinations.
While studying, students live and work in New College, with its medieval cloister, chapel and the remains of the Oxford city walls, its seventeenth-century mound and superb gardens.
We would normally expect successful applicants to be taking History at A-Level, or its equivalent qualifications. There is no requirement to have qualifications in foreign languages to apply for the History degree, but obviously they are an asset in subsequent study.
"Studying History at New College means that you are close to the vast majority of History lectures (Examination Schools), as well as the excellent History Faculty Library (Radcliffe Camera). The secluded and well-stocked History rooms inside the college library offer a relaxing place to work, and New College is unique in that it allows students to use the beautiful cloisters as an open and peaceful space for reading.
Most importantly, there is a widespread feeling at New College that History is something that should be enjoyed, and this enjoyment takes precedence over any oppressive pushing for examination results. We are treated as adults who are here because we want to be here, and given the independence to enjoy all aspects of college life while working hard."
Marcus on Tutors:
"What distinguishes History at New College are the tutors. This is not only in terms of the academic insight and knowledge that they regularly offer during tutorials, but the pastoral support that they provide as well. Each New College tutor I have encountered is deeply interested in their students as people and are therefore a great point of contact for any difficulty, academic or otherwise."
Peter on History Joint Honours:
"New College offers you the chance to combine history with modern languages, politics or economics. This interdisciplinary approach allows you to examine subjects in very interesting ways. I have, for example, really enjoyed studying the writings of Martin Luther which has allowed me to combine historical and linguistic skills very effectively."
Professor David Parrott works on sixteenth and seventeenth-century Europe, especially France and Italy.
Dr Alexander Morrison specializes in the history of Russia in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, in particular the Russian conquest of Central Asia.
Professor Christopher Tyerman is a Fellow and Tutor at Hertford College but supports the teaching of medieval at New College as well. His research focus is on the Crusades.
Professor Andrew Meadows specializes in the world of Ancient Greece and teaches a range of Ancient History courses within the College.
For more details about any of our tutors, please see their profiles below.
9-12 for History and History Joint Schools.