History (Ancient and Modern)

I can’t imagine any other history course at Oxford (or anywhere else, for that matter) being able to remain quite so fresh for three whole years, whilst helping to create a broad and comprehensive picture of human development across the ages. Being able to draw comparisons between Alexander’s tactics and Gaugamela and Marlborough’s at Blenheim is not only impressive, it’s also genuinely useful and it feels rather good, too. I’ve taken full advantage of the breadth and flexibility of the AMH course in choosing my options, but some of my course-mates consider themselves to be “ancient historians who dabble”. There’s no wrong way to do AMH, so, if you want to learn about “like…all of history”, pick AMH. You won’t regret it.

Joe, Corpus Christi, student from 2011

The most common response you get when you tell people that you study Ancient and Modern History (AMH) is “Isn’t that like… all of history?”. Funnily enough, that’s not too wide of the mark. AMH is defined by freedom, flexibility and variety. Oxford considers ‘Modern History’ to be anything after the fall of the Western Roman Empire, so you’ll have access to all of the papers open to ‘normal’ historians, alongside a plethora of ancient options, too. Picture a sort of pan-historical pick and mix, if you will. It’s also worth noting that not having any Latin or Greek isn’t a hindrance at all; even Oxford tutors are progressive enough to know not everybody gets the chance to learn Latin at school!

What helped inspire your love of the subject?

The Very Short Introductions series are brilliant and cheap! I would recommend reading some historical literature to bring alive what you're studying.

Rachael, Christ Church, student from 2013

Tell us about your interview?

I had two interviews. The first was with 3 tutors and focused on a passage I was given an hour before the interview. You had to explain what you thought was going on, and relate it to your views.

My second interview focused on my school work with two tutors. There were factual questions as well as interpretation ones.

Rachael, Christ Church, student from 2013

Applicants that might be offered a place are invited for interview in December.

Find out more

Course length: 3 years
Students per year: 15

Make sure you read the official prospectus entry for the course which contains entry requirements, full course structure, additional interesting resources and full details of the application process.

If you're going to apply, you'll want to check which Oxford colleges offer this course.

You might also find it helpful to hear from students studying History or CAAH (or even consider applying for those courses!).