Scottish History and Archaeology BA (Hons)

What is special about this course?

If you’re interested in delving into Scotland’s rich and colourful past, this joint honours degree gives you an excellent grounding in the study and practice of Scottish history and archaeology.

You’ll explore Scottish history from the medieval to the modern period focusing on the cultural, political, social and economic links between Scotland and other northern European and Atlantic regions. You will also develop a wide range of archaeological skills such as fieldwork, surveying and post-excavation, with an emphasis on the cultural heritage of the Highlands and Islands. These skills are mapped to the current occupational standards for archaeology, to increase your employability after graduation.

You will learn the theoretical aspects of Scottish history and archaeology through a combination of face-to-face and VC seminars in the classroom, and online study via the university’s virtual learning environment (VLE), supported by your tutors.

Special features

  • A highly practical course focusing on the ‘on-the-job’ skills you need to pursue a career in archaeology or Scottish history
  • Few courses in the UK offer this high level of practical archaeological experience
  • Our studies are linked to the distinctive cultural heritage of the region – what learning experience could be richer and more fulfilling?
  • Some modules can be studied entirely online for personal or professional development

Entry requirements

Entry to year one:

  • 3 Scottish Highers at grade BBC or above, or
  • 2 A levels at grade BC or above
  • These qualifications should normally be achieved in one sitting. At least two should be from the list of relevant academic subjects.
  • Applicants with other relevant qualifications or experience will be considered on an individual basis

Advanced entry to year two:

  • HNC Social  Science (12 SCQF credits) with 3 additional SCQF credits at level 7 which is equivalent to 120 degree credit points, and at least grade C in the Graded Unit will be considered for direct entry to year two.

Access routes

If you do not have the required entry qualifications, you can complete an appropriate NQ or access course

Year 1 - CertHE

History subjects, from which you will choose two, may include:

  • Scottish history, 1066-1603
  • Scottish history, 1603-20th century
  • The Atlantic world, c. 1492-1800: the old world meets the new

You will also choose two archaeology subjects may include:

  • Historic Landscapes
  • World Archaeology
  • Archaeological Theory and Method

You will study two further option modules from a range of history, archaeology and other humanities subjects.

Year 3 - BA

You must undertake an extended writing module in one of the disciplines - a histographical essay or archaeology project.

Depending on whether you opt to do the histographical essay, you will choose two or three history modules which may include:

  • Scotland and Ireland, 1800-1939
  • Crown-magnate relations in later medieval northern Scotland
  • Scots in North America
  • Emigration from the Highlands and Islands since 1750
  • The sovereignty of the sea? pirates, politicians and the evolution of territorial waters during early modern period
  • Scots in Poland, Poles in Scotland

You will also choose two or three archaeology subjects (depending on whether you elect to do the project in this discipline) which may include:

  • Archaeology and Interpretation
  • Pre-history of the Highlands and Islands
  • Archaeological Sciences

Year 2 - DipHE

You will choose two history subjects which may include:

  • Land and people: the Scottish Highlands
  • Scotland, the North Sea and the Baltic
  • Travelling cultures, global diasporas

Archaeology subjects, from which you will select two, may include:

  • Scottish Archaeology
  • Digital Heritage
  • Contemporary Archaeology

You will study two further option modules from a range of history, archaeology and other humanities subjects.

Year 4 - BA (Hons)

You will complete a dissertation in history or archaeology. You will also study one option module from your chosen dissertation subject plus three option modules from the other subject. The following lists show all the options, however they are again available on a rotation basis each year.

History subjects may include:

  • Culture and Christianity in the Highlands and Islands, 1742-1893
  • Merchants, mariners and maritime marauders: Scottish trade in the early modern period
  • A Society at War? Scotland, 1296-1403
  • The Seventeenth Century in the Highlands
  • Noble, Rebel, King: Robert Bruce and medieval Scotland
  • The Highland wars: origins, aftermath and interpretations

Archaeology subjects may include:

  • Funerary and burial archaeology
  • People, Plants and Animals
  • Neolithic Orkney
  • Maritime Archaeology

How will I study my course?

  • Full time
  • Part time (structured)
  • Part time (unstructured)
  • You will study this course through a combination of face-to-face and video conference seminars, as well as online study via the university’s virtual learning environment (VLE)  which is supported by your tutors and student advisor.

How long will my course last?

  • Full time: 4 years @ 40 hours per week
  • Part time (structured): 8 years @ 20 hours per week

Number of hours per week indicates the total number of hours you should dedicate to the course, which includes time spent in lectures and your own time spent on individual study and research.

How much will my course cost?

For students normally domiciled in Scotland or the European Union/EEA (outside of the UK) and with a term time address in Scotland, the following fees apply:

Degrees 2016-17
Full-time (120 credit modules) per year
Part-time (structured) (3 x 20 credit modules) per year £645
Part-time (unstructured per module) (per 20 credit module) £215

Rest of UK students

For students normally domiciled in the rest of the UK (England, Wales and N. Ireland) and with a term time address in Scotland studying this course full time, the following fees apply:

Level 2016-17
Year 1 CertHE £8,000 p.a.
Year 2 DipHE £8,000 p.a.
Year 3 Degree £8,000 p.a.
Year 4 Honours free**

*4th year free only for students studying full-time who have paid for the previous 3 years at the University of the Highlands and Islands.

Part-time (per 20 credit module) -  £1,340 (2016-17)

Fees are payable in advance each academic year unless otherwise agreed.

There are a number of funding options available to UK and EU students to help you pay for your studies and your cost of living whilst studying.


International students

For students who do not normally reside in the UK or European Union and with a term-time address in Scotland, the following fees apply:

Full-time (120 credit modules) per year £10,000
Part-time (structured) (3 x 20 credit modules) per year*** £5,040
Part-time (unstructured per module) (per 20 credit module)*** £1,680

***There is no part-time study option for Tier 4 sponsored international students.

Further information on international course fees.

A no fee increase guarantee is available for self-funding full-time and structured part-time RUK and International undergraduate students for continuous and contiguous study for the same award, up to the permitted standard time limit for the relevant award.

What funding can I apply for?

External scholarships and financial support may be available. Contact your enrolling college for more information.

What can I do on completion of my course?

  • Teaching
  • Research
  • Media
  • Politics
  • Archaeological Contract Units
  • Consultancy
  • Archives & Museums
  • Government agencies and Local authorities
  • Tourism and Heritage management

Can I progress into further study?

You can progress from the BA (Hons) Scottish History and Archaeology to the following postgraduate courses:

Is there more information available online?

You can use the above QR code to connect directly to the course details.

Apply for Scottish History and Archaeology BA (Hons)

I want to start in Aug/Sep 2017 or Jan/Feb 2018

International applicants should apply using the UHI International application form. Please download and print the form, complete and return using the address indicated. More information is available for international applicants at our international student page

We are delighted that you are thinking about studying at the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI). UHI operates a fair and open admissions system committed to equality of opportunity and non-discrimination. We consider all applications on merit and on the basis of ability to achieve, without discrimination on grounds of gender, age, disability, ethnicity and socio-economic background. We welcome applications from all prospective students and aim to provide appropriate and efficient services to students with disabilities.

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