HUMN 3104 Historical Methodologies

Credit Points 10

Legacy Code 102766

Coordinator Bridget Brooklyn Opens in new window

Description The unit is an overview of Western historical thought and writing, from Herodotus to Foucault, demonstrating different approaches to historical knowledge. We examine some of the many ideas and sources that have influenced historical writing as well as some of the enduring questions, such as 'What is historical truth?' and 'Can history ever be objective?' Our exploration will include both close reading of texts and more 'hands-on' exercises to gain insight into different historical methodologies.

School Humanities & Comm Arts

Discipline History

Student Contribution Band HECS Band 4 10cp

Check your HECS Band contribution amount via the Fees page.

Level Undergraduate Level 3 subject

Pre-requisite(s) Any two of the following subjects -
HUMN 1054 OR
HUMN 1059 OR
HUMN 1039 OR
HUMN 2042 OR
HUMN 2067

Equivalent Subjects HUMN 3083 - Theories and Methods of History


Students are required to have completed two of the three Level 1 and 2 History and Political Thought or Modern History core units.

Successful completion of 80 credit points of study in currently enrolled program.

Assumed Knowledge

Students are expected to have completed prior study in either the History and Political Thought or Modern History majors and to understand the conventions of essay writing and referencing in history.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:

  1. Recognise key developments in European historiography over several centuries.
  2. Analyse important debates over historical writing, such as the question of historical truth.
  3. Evaluate the ways in which historical ideas are communicated to the public at large, and the role they play in matters of community identity.
  4. Interpret the challenges posed by different types of historical sources.
  5. Assess the ways in which historical knowledge is developed.

Subject Content

Historians of classical and medieval Europe.
The emergence of social history.
The development of alternative histories of class, race and gender.
Facts, interpretation, objectivity and the postmodern challenge.
Ideas of historical time.
Contested histories, including the Australian frontier wars.
Oral history and oral tradition, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander oral forms in Australian history.
Interpreting sources
Public history
History and the creative imagination.


The following table summarises the standard assessment tasks for this subject. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated, where there is a difference your Learning Guide takes precedence.

Item Length Percent Threshold Individual/Group Task
Portfolio 500 words for each summary 30 N Individual
Essay 2,000 words 40 N Individual
Final Exam 2 hours 30 N Individual

Teaching Periods




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Penrith (Kingswood)


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Parramatta - Victoria Rd


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