This course is discontinued

ENG2505 – 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.


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.

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


Recommended previous knowledge

It is strongly recommended that students take the survey course ENG1505 – British Civilisation, and introduction before they begin their study of Identities in the British Isles.

Overlapping courses


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 administrator.

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

During the semester, students will prepare one oral group presentation for the rest of the class.

All obligatory activities must be approved in the same semester.


The exam consists of two parts:

  1. A term paper of approximately 7 standard pages (a standard page consists of 2,300 characters). References and bibliography comes in addition. 
  2. A 2–hour written exam.

A pass mark is required on both parts. You have to take both examination parts in the same semester. The examination parts will be graded separately with a combined final mark. The term paper counts for 70 % of the overall mark, while the written exam counts for 30 %.

Previously given exam assignments

Written examination

The written examination is conducted in the digital examination system Inspera. You will need to familiarize yourself with the digital examination arrangements in Inspera.

Read more about written examinations using Inspera.

Submission in Inspera

You submit your assignment in the digital examination system Inspera. Read more about how to submit in Inspera.

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.

Grades will be published on Studentweb three weeks after the submission date.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

For those who want to retake their exam: Since this exam includes a term paper, you must follow the classes and write a new paper in order to qualify. Admission depends on capacity.

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

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