ENG4525 - Identities in the British Isles

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

Choose semester

Course content

This course will give an historical introduction to the forming of different and competing national identities in the British Isles from 1500 to the present.

Emphasis will be placed on the emergence of a British identity in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and on how this has developed since in competition with the older national identities: English, Scottish, Welsh and Irish.

The course will take into account the different interpretations of Britishness that have been devised since the beginning of the seventeenth century, and look at how British identity has been affected by the emergence of a multicultural society in Britain since 1945.

Learning outcome

After completing this course, you:

  • have an understanding of the nature of national identities in Britain and Ireland, with a particular focus on Britishness
  • have an overview of the development of Britishness over time, and the particular challenges facing this identity today
  • can identify a topic for investigation, and can analyse central questions of identity in the British Isles


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

Students enrolled in other Master's Degree Programmes can, on application, be admitted to the course if this is cleared by their own study programme.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.

Overlapping courses

10 credits overlap with ENG2505 - Identities in the British Isles


Seminar, two hours per week for 10 weeks, 20 hours in all.

Attendance is obligatory at least 8 out of 10 seminars. Additional absences must be justified by documentation to the exam coordinator.

Students must submit a proposal for their individual essay topic by a stated deadline during the semester. The proposal must be approved by the teacher.

Students must also submit a first draft of the paper within a set due date. Feedback will be given.


Portfolio examination: An essay of 3000 words +/- 10 %, and a 2h class room exam make up the portfolio. Students are required to set their own individual essay topic, but the topic must be approved by the teacher.

You must submit your paper in Fronter. Read more about submission procedures .

Previously given exam assignments.

Use of sources and citation

You should familiarize yourself with the rules that apply to the use of sources and citations. If you violate the rules, you may be suspected of cheating/attempted cheating.

Examination support material

English-English dictionary

Language of examination

The examination text is given in English, and you submit your response in English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Marks will be published on Studentweb no later than three weeks after the submission date/exam.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

For those who want to retake their exam: Because this is a portfolio exam, you must follow the classes and write a new paper in order to qualify. If you get access to this, depends on the capacity.

If it's just the class room exam you have missed because of illness, it is possible to apply for a postponed exam. Please contact the exam consultant.

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.

Reports from periodic evaluations (in Norwegian)

Facts about this course






This course is not taught fall 2017

Teaching language