Collaboration with other departments

Our Humanities and Social Sciences (HASS) community

Studying English, History or Politics at our Penryn Campus in Cornwall you’ll benefit from accessible staff, and world-leading interdisciplinary research and teaching from internationally excellent departments at a Russell Group university. We offer a unique learning environment of smaller cohorts; close relationships between students and staff across all three subjects; responsibility to place-based teaching and problem-based learning; cutting-edge interdisciplinary work; and a focus on employability. You will have access to a wider community of lecturers and researchers through staff research seminars, guest lectures, and other events. All this is conducive to a real community of learning where students engage with lecturers and other postgraduate students in meaningful and transformative education.

English at Penryn: You’ll explore literature from the classical, Old English and medieval texts to contemporary and cultural works, combining the traditional lecture and seminar format with more innovative methods such as the creation of literary trails and problem-based learning. Our teaching combines a strong foundation in historically-based core modules with specialisation in a range of innovative options, including creative writing.  Cornwall has inspired many famous authors, playwrights and poets including Daphne Du Maurier, Thomas Hardy and William Golding, and is considered a creative writing hotspot.

History at Penryn: Our programmes incorporate international, economic, social and cultural history. We focus on using history to understand challenges posed by globalisation, ethnic conflict and scientific and environmental change. We also offer a traditional basis in British, European and world history. Our research and teaching reflects the environmental and ecological approaches to history, as well as more traditional cultural, politics, social and economic aspects. We are leading the way in the development of ‘environmental history’. The environmental and ecological approaches to History; history of mankind’s interaction with the natural world; and how history engages with issues of sustainability and climate change. We also have a strong commitment to public history designed to develop employability skills in the context of project work for museums, archives and ‘people’s history’ projects. Our academic staff have strong relationships with museums, galleries and schools, and out teaching will equip you with real world skills.

Politics at Penryn: We focus on some of the biggest political challenges facing the world today; inequality, climate change, the global financial crisis, conflict, the depletion of natural resources and the changing balance in world power. We teach about political systems and theories, and how you can apply these to current world events and major issues, through interactive lectures, small group seminars, close contact with academics, visiting practitioners, field trips, simulations and game exercises. We also encourage engagement with local issues and communities, by running talks with local veterans about the legacies of war and providing consultancy for local political organisations, for example.

Other departments we collaborate with

Geography at Penryn: Our programmes give you an integrated and all-round understanding of subjects, equipping you with the knowledge and skills to address issues facing humans and our planet. You will be taught by expert staff who are actively engaged in research on a wide range of specialisms, including climate change, remote sensing, landscape evolution, energy policy, environment and sustainability, social innovation and cultural landscapes. Teaching and research activities emphasise the value of interdisciplinary thinking – looking beyond traditional boundaries to the complex interactions between human societies and non-human environments. Field work is an integral part of our programmes, taking learning into the field to explore the incredible landscapes in the region and beyond. Several modules, including day and residential field courses in the UK, and overseas1, will allow you to develop key field skills, enable you to put them into practice and gain new research skills. We also offer outstanding analytical and experimental laboratories for environmental change and process studies, including an IT facility housing high-specification computers with the latest Geographic Information Systems and mapping software, designed to support teaching and learning in cartography, spatial mapping and analysis, remote sensing, statistics, and computer modelling. Our facilities are supported by an expert team of laboratory, research and computing technicians.

Our co-delivered interdisciplinary programmes


1Field course destinations are subject to change. Please note, some optional/alternative field courses may incur additional costs.