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Unit information: Internationalising Modern China 1850s - 1950 (Level H Special Subject) in 2022/23

Please note: It is possible that the information shown for future academic years may change due to developments in the relevant academic field. Optional unit availability varies depending on both staffing, student choice and timetabling constraints.

Unit name Internationalising Modern China 1850s - 1950 (Level H Special Subject)
Unit code HIST37016
Credit points 20
Level of study H/6
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 1 (weeks 1 - 12)
Unit director Dr. Lopes
Open unit status Not open
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School/department Department of History (Historical Studies)
Faculty Faculty of Arts

Unit Information

This unit explores the city that lay at the heart of China's interaction with foreign power after 1843, examining the history of Shanghai down to 1949. Tens of thousands of foreign nationals lived amongst the ever-growing Chinese population of this important city, a site in which ordinary people and the state to renegotiate China’s relationship with the world beyond its domains. The overall aim in studying the city’s history is to help us understand key issues in China's modern history, and its place in a relentlessly globalising world. The unit allows for a study of such issues as international diplomacy, technology transfer, the circulation of knowledge, imperialism and nationalism, as well as the experiences and views of individuals. The resources relating to this unit are rich and easily accessible, including memoirs, private and official archives, Customs and other publications, newspapers, travel accounts, trade, medical, and educational reports, and visual documents.

Your learning on this unit

By the end of the unit students should have:

  • Developed an in depth understanding of the internationalisation of modern China
  • Become more experienced and competent in working with an increasingly specialist range of primary sources
  • Become more adept at contributing to and learning from a small-group environment
  • Acquired a firm knowledge of key issues in the history of modern Chinas foreign relations
  • Developed an advanced understanding of the literature generated by and about the Chinese Maritime Customs.

How you will learn

Seminars - 3 hours per week

How you will be assessed

Tasks which count towards your unit mark (summative):

One 3500-word essay (50%) [ILOs 1-5]. Timed Assessment (50%) [ILOs 1-5].

When assessment does not go to plan:

When required by the Board of Examiners, you will normally complete reassessments in the same formats as those outlined above. However, the Board reserves the right to modify the format or number of reassessments required. Details of reassessments are confirmed by the School/Centre shortly after the notification of your results at the end of the year. 


If this unit has a Resource List, you will normally find a link to it in the Blackboard area for the unit. Sometimes there will be a separate link for each weekly topic.

If you are unable to access a list through Blackboard, you can also find it via the Resource Lists homepage. Search for the list by the unit name or code (e.g. HIST37016).

How much time the unit requires
Each credit equates to 10 hours of total student input. For example a 20 credit unit will take you 200 hours of study to complete. Your total learning time is made up of contact time, directed learning tasks, independent learning and assessment activity.

See the Faculty workload statement relating to this unit for more information.

The Board of Examiners will consider all cases where students have failed or not completed the assessments required for credit. The Board considers each student's outcomes across all the units which contribute to each year's programme of study. If you have self-certificated your absence from an assessment, you will normally be required to complete it the next time it runs (this is usually in the next assessment period).
The Board of Examiners will take into account any extenuating circumstances and operates within the Regulations and Code of Practice for Taught Programmes.