History: Sheffield or Loughborough? Watch

nulli tertius
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#21
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#21
(Original post by Stewart365)
My offers are Loughborough (AAB) Sheffield (AAB) Leicester (ABB) Keele (ABB) Hull (BBB)
I appreciate that you are leaning towards Sheffield and Loughborough but the best history department on that list is undoubtedly Leicester. Leicester invented English local history as an academic discipline and is pre-eminent in the field (literally the field-if you read the works of WG Hoskins you will see what I mean). Obviously if your interests lie outside England, then Leicester may not be for you.
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Stewart365
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#22
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#22
(Original post by nulli tertius)
I appreciate that you are leaning towards Sheffield and Loughborough but the best history department on that list is undoubtedly Leicester. Leicester invented English local history as an academic discipline and is pre-eminent in the field (literally the field-if you read the works of WG Hoskins you will see what I mean). Obviously if your interests lie outside England, then Leicester may not be for you.
I've got visits booked for Sheffield, Loughborough and Leicester so I'll know more after seeing more of each History department. Even if Leicester's History department is the best from my list, would it be wise going there instead of Sheffield? Leicester will probably end up as my insurance.
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nulli tertius
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#23
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#23
(Original post by Stewart365)
I've got visits booked for Sheffield, Loughborough and Leicester so I'll know more after seeing more of each History department. Even if Leicester's History department is the best from my list, would it be wise going there instead of Sheffield? Leicester will probably end up as my insurance.
The first thing is that you have to study it and if you are interested in European history (I think particularly geographically that part of Europe between Rome and Constantinople) or if you are interested in the big themes of post medieval British history (the Story of Britain) Sheffield would be a better bet than Leicester.

Which is the better brand on the CV, I think depends with whom but also depends a little on the quality of your crystal ball. If you are going into academia or to teach history or any other historical career, I suspect Leicester looks better. For any other career, that is where the crystal ball comes in.

Over the last 2-3years the Russell Group has consolidated an image of being the leading universities. Sheffield is in and Leicester is out. Ten years ago, opinion would have been split as to which was the better university. Do you see the RG pulling away from the rest or do you see it collapsing under the weight of its own contradictions (there is a lot of dead wood in the RG)? This issue may come to the fore when the Research Assessment Framework results are published in 2015 and some RG members won't be in the top drawer for research quality. Leicester will at some point gets its Nobel Prize for Alec Jeffreys (DNA fingerprinting) and of course you can't buy the publicity over Richard III. You pays your money (literally) and you takes your pick of which will be better when you set out on a career. The odds are slightly stacked in Sheffield's favour and I think today it is probably the better brand but not by much.
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Stewart365
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#24
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#24
(Original post by nulli tertius)
The first thing is that you have to study it and if you are interested in European history (I think particularly geographically that part of Europe between Rome and Constantinople) or if you are interested in the big themes of post medieval British history (the Story of Britain) Sheffield would be a better bet than Leicester.

Which is the better brand on the CV, I think depends with whom but also depends a little on the quality of your crystal ball. If you are going into academia or to teach history or any other historical career, I suspect Leicester looks better. For any other career, that is where the crystal ball comes in.

Over the last 2-3years the Russell Group has consolidated an image of being the leading universities. Sheffield is in and Leicester is out. Ten years ago, opinion would have been split as to which was the better university. Do you see the RG pulling away from the rest or do you see it collapsing under the weight of its own contradictions (there is a lot of dead wood in the RG)? This issue may come to the fore when the Research Assessment Framework results are published in 2015 and some RG members won't be in the top drawer for research quality. Leicester will at some point gets its Nobel Prize for Alec Jeffreys (DNA fingerprinting) and of course you can't buy the publicity over Richard III. You pays your money (literally) and you takes your pick of which will be better when you set out on a career. The odds are slightly stacked in Sheffield's favour and I think today it is probably the better brand but not by much.
Thanks a lot for your response, very helpful. Whilst Leicester sounds like a better university in terms of History and the department, Sheffield sounds better for general graduate prospects and on my CV so I'll have to give it some thought.
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jelly1000
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#25
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#25
(Original post by Stewart365)
I've now heard back from all my universities and thankfully I have 5 offers to study History. My top two choices are Loughborough and Sheffield and I've received AAB offers for both. I'm now at the stage where I'm thinking about which one would be better, I know I have a lot of time to consider it but I'd still welcome any advice at this stage. Thanks in advance
My opinion in all this is that at the end of the day both are good unis. Sheffield may be ranked higher for History but I doubt the difference between the two will be huge and for most jobs it won't be make the difference, what will is getting a 2:1+ a lot of the time & work experience. Therefore if I was you I'd go for the university with the course & facilities & location that appeal to you most. Just my two sticks on it.
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OhMyAbdil
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#26
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Sheffield's got the better department and a much better reputation both nationally and internationally. It's also a brilliant student city.
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