Society and Religion in the Medieval Crusader States HIST4226

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Humanities
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Either Semester 1 or Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

Founded in the course and aftermath of the First Crusade the near eastern crusader lordships were home to numerous religions and cultures, which for almost 200 years co-existed, converged and clashed in multiple and often unexpected forms. This course aims to capture and analyse the variety of engagements and contacts between Latin settlers and indigenous Christians, Muslims and Jews in the crusader lordships by looking at aspects and concepts of cultural borrowing, assimilation, exclusion and identity from a social and religious perspective.


Two one-hour sessions weekly over 10 weeks: 15 lectures; 5 seminars .This is one of the honours options in History and may not run every year. The options that are running this session are available on MyCampus.

Requirements of Entry

Available to all students fulfilling requirements for Honours entry into History, and by arrangement to visiting students or students of other Honours programmes.

Excluded Courses





Coursework - class essay (2000 words approximately) - 20%

Examination duration - 120 mins - 70%

Coursework - seminar presentation - 6%

■ a paper of 700-800 words is part of the seminar presentation

Coursework - wiki entry - 4%

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? Not applicable

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. For non Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 

Course Aims

The aims common to all History Honours 20 credit courses are as follows:


■ To prepare students for independent and original analysis of a complex range of evidence, including source materials, thereby developing intellectual skills that will be of benefit in a wide range of careers.

Students' research capacity will be enriched by their introduction to diverse source materials and their oral and written communication skills enhanced in ways designed to address employers' expectations for highly literate and highly articulate graduates who are fully cognisant of a range of research tools.

■ To show students how a professional historian works.

By supporting students in the production of their essay and seminar presentation, students will gain first hand experience of the scoping and shaping of research projects and the challenges faced by historians in the pursuit of advances in knowledge.

■ To familiarise students, through source-criticism, with a wide-range of problems of interpretation arising from different usages of language, underlying meanings and intentions, differing standards of objectivity, and the variety of purpose and intent associated with historical evidence (written, visual or other).

The critical interpretation of key historiographical and theoretical debates relating to this subject will inform the close reading of sources. Provenance, perspective, context, intent and audience will be core considerations in students' interpretation of sources.

- To ensure, through student-led discussion, that the relative validity of alternative historical interpretations is fully recognised. The seminars aim to encourage student-led learning and the facilitation of rigorous and informed debate.

- To encourage students to develop imagination, skills and self-discipline required to master a similarly demanding brief in the future, whether in historical research or in any sphere or employment where these qualities are valuable.

Students will be encouraged to reflect on the range of generic research and communication skills they are developing over the course of this course in order to align their academic and professional aspirations and competencies and encourage reflective practice.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:


■ demonstrate an understanding of the relationship between different cultures and ethnicities within the Levantine crusader lordships.

■ demonstrate an ability to distinguish between different historiographical traditions and methodological approaches relevant to the study of medieval trans-cultural relations and the crusades.

■ demonstrate the skills necessary to engage critically with, and evaluate, different types of written evidence (including charters, letters, chronicles, travel accounts) relevant to different aspects of the subject.

■ demonstrate an awareness of the inherent complexity of concepts of society, state and identity.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.