Department of History


The subject matter of History, distinguishing from other Humanities and Social Sciences, Consists of the attempts of human beings in the past to organize life materially and conceptually, individually and collectively, while the object of studying these things is to widen students’ experiences and develop qualities of perception and judgment. History provides a distinctive education by providing a sense of the past, an awareness of the development of different values, systems and societies and the inculcation of critical yet tolerant personal attitudes. History’s reciprocal relationship with other disciplines can have an important influence on the experience of the student of the subject.  

The programme seeks to

  • Give students a thorough understanding of Nigerian history and historiography planted firmly in the context of African history and historiography.
  • Educate students on historical movements of global importance from other continents to enable them acquire better knowledge of the world and thus promote world peace.
  • Make students comprehend the historical forces and developments which have shaped and are still shaping lives of the people of Nigeria, Africa and the world entirely.
  • Develop a sense of commitment and capacity to consciously relate to these forces and developments in such a way that Nigerian and African unity, independence and prosperity can be achieved.
  • provide the students with advantages usually associated with historical training, viz: critical and analytical faculty and balanced judgment needed particularly in administrative and managerial responsibilities.  

Admission and Graduation Requirements

The admission requirements are basically the same as general faculty requirements. Credits in English language and history, or government at senior secondary school certificate level or equivalents are required. The degree programme has a 4 –year (8 semesters) duration in the case of SSCE Holders.  

Graduation Requirement

To graduate, a student must pass a minimum of 120 units including all compulsory courses.   

Learning Outcome  

a. Regime of Subject Knowledge

The study of History at the undergraduate level is characterized by a diversity of periods, cultures, methodologies and conceptual assumptions but there are a number of central requirements which can be specified. These are: time frame, geographical range, contemporary success, reflexivity, diversity of specialisms and on extended piece of written work.   

b. Competence and Skills

It should be taken as axiomatic that students must progress and that well-designed programmes facilitate their progression. History programmes do not impart knowledge and skills to be passively absorbed: reading, discussion and writing, and encouragement, exploration and discovery are essential. But the importance of historical knowledge must be stressed. The historian’s skills and qualities of mind are developed in the processes of acquiring, evaluating and discussing historical knowledge in the courses and the independent study that History degree programmes demand.   

The learning outcomes of a History degree programme have been in terms of particular pieces of student work – either written or spoken – in which crucial tests and understanding tests are marshalling an argUTMEnt. Accordingly, the ability to deploy ideas and information, to show conceptual grasp and to shape argUTMEnt becomes difficult to separate in assessment practice from the ability to display appropriately relevant, wide and diverse historical knowledge.  

The generic skills acquired through the study of History, in addition to those items for the Arts discipline as a whole, are:

  • Self-direction and initiative;  
  • Ability to work with others, and have respect for others’ reasoned views;  
  • Ability to gather, organize and deploy evidence, data and information, and familiarity with appropriate means of identifying, finding, retrieving, sorting and exchanging information;  
  • Analytical ability, and the capacity to consider and solve problems, including complex problems;  
  • Structure, coherence, clarity and fluency of oral expression; vi. Structure, coherence, clarity and fluency of written expression;  
  • Intellectual integrity and maturity;  
  • Empathy and imaginative thought.  

The graduate of History is expected to carry out field work effectively and to take full advantage of computer literacy, nUTMEracy and develop the life-long learning capacities enUTMErated above.  

c. Behavioural Attributes

In addition to the minimum acceptable ethics and other behavioural attributes consistent with the particular discipline and with the tenets of a liberal education, all graduates in History should show evidence of the following:

  • Custody of a substantial body of historical knowledge;  
  • The ability to develop and sustain historical argUTMEnts in a variety of literary forms, formulating appropriate questions and utilizing evidence;  
  • An ability to read, analyze and reflex critical and contextually upon historical texts; iv. An appreciation of the complexity of reconstructing the past, the problematic and varied nature of historical evidence;  
  • An understanding of the varieties of approaches to understanding, constructing, and interpreting the past; and where relevant, a knowledge of concepts and theories derived from the Humanities and Social sciences; and the other source materials;  
  • The ability to gather and employ evidence and data to find, retrieve, sort and exchange new information;  
  • A command of comparative perspectives, which may include the ability to compare the histories of different countries, societies or cultures;  
  • An awareness of continuity and change over extended time spans;  
  • An understanding of the development of History as a discipline and the awareness of different Historical methodologies;  
  • An ability to design, research and present a sustained and independently-conceived piece of historical writing.   
  • The ability to address historical problems in depth, involving the use of contemporary sources and advanced secondary literature;  
  • Clarity, fluency, and coherence in written expression;  
  • Clarity, fluency, and coherence in oral expression;  
  • The ability to work collaboratively and to participate in group discussions;  
  • Competence in specialist skills are necessary for some areas of historical analysis and understanding, as appropriate.    

Attainment Levels

In the B.A. History programme, assessment of students’ achievements should be based on:

  • Examinations  
  • Field reports
  • Planning, conduct and reporting of project work
  • Oral presentations and problem solving exercises
  • Assignment  
  • Group project work  

Continuous assessment shall be done through assignments, tests and practical exercise. Scores from continuous assessment shall normally constitute 40% of the final marks for all courses.  

Although all students graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in History are expected to demonstrate that they have acquired knowledge, abilities and skills in the areas identified by the benchmark statements, it is accepted that there will be significant differences in their level of attainment.  

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