Bachelor Essay in History

Undergraduate course

Course description

Objectives and Content

The course will provide students with a deeper insight in historical method and research through the writing of an original historical paper, the bachelor essay.

The students choose one of the varying themes that are taught at the Department in the semester. The course encompasses the whole historical period, from the Antiquity to contemporary history. The themes may change from semester to semester. The Department announces the themes that are offered before the start of the semester.

The course is mandatory in a specialization in history.

Learning Outcomes


After successful completion of the course, the student has good knowledge of, and is familiar with the historiography and central theories about, the topic of the bachelor essay.


The student demonstrates an original ability to develop, delineate and formulate fruitful historical research questions related to the theme. The student demonstrates the ability to survey research literature and eventually also original source material of relevance for the theme. The bachelor essay demonstrates the ability of the student to analyze research literature/sources, to position the literature in a relevant historiographical field, and to draw his/her own conclusions based on this.

General competences:

The student has basic competence in developing and executing a longer, written original research paper. The ability of the student to participate in academic communication will be demonstrated through the exchange of written responses with fellow students. The bachelor essay demonstrates the student's ability to original academic reasoning, synthetizing and documentation.

ECTS Credits


Level of Study


Semester of Instruction


Place of Instruction

Access to the Course

The course is open to students enrolled at the University of Bergen.

The different themes in HIS250 have limited capacity. Students who wish to take HIS250 must apply for admission to specific themes. Contact for information.

Compulsory Assignments and Attendance

The course has four compulsory requirements:

  1. The students are required to meet (contact) their designated tutor prior to the submission of project draft, cf. below (2.).
  2. Project draft. The draft consists of a presentation of the theme, a preliminary disposition and a discussion of relevant research literature. This draft serves as the basis for tutoring.
  3. Essay drafts that are responded on by tutor and fellow students.
  4. Written responses to essay drafts by fellow students. Constructive criticism and original, well thought-out responses are emphasized.

All four requirements must be passed before the essay can be submitted for assessment. All compulsory requirements must be passed in the same semester. Passed compulsory requirements are only valid in the teaching semester.

Deadlines for the submission of compulsory requirements are announced at Mitt UiB in the beginning of the semester.

Forms of Assessment

The assessment consists of a tutored paper (the bachelor essay) and an oral examination.

The bachelor essay must consist of approx. 6000 words.

The oral examination may adjust the grade of the bachelor essay with a maximum of one grade letter.

The bachelor essay can be submitted in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English.

Grading Scale
Grades will be set using a scale of A to F. Grade A is the highest passing grade. Grade F is a fail.
Reading List
The student selects a syllabus of c. 1200 pages. The tutor must approve the syllabus.
Course Evaluation
The course unit will be evaluated regularly.
Examination Support Material