Matthew Roberts is awarded the Neville Masterman Prize in History

Each year the Department awards prizes to students excelling in their studies on aspects of History. This year third-year Matthew Roberts was awarded the Neville Masterman Prize in History. He writes about his enjoyment of History here:


My name is Matthew Roberts and I studied History for my undergraduate degree. I graduated in July having received a first-class award. I really enjoyed my degree and will be returning to Swansea in September to do a Masters in History.

If you hadn’t guessed it already, I really enjoy studying History and it made a real difference during my degree. There are a number of reasons why this is the case for me. First off, from a young age, I was fascinated by history. Whether I was on a school trip, or reading books about castles, or playing Age of Empires on the computer, History was a source of immense enjoyment personally. Throughout my education, I chose to study History in some form at every level, and having an interest in the subject helped me to achieve good grades. Having that enjoyment made the degree more fun too. Enjoying a subject makes studying it much easier as you are more engaged and ready to go into greater detail, and this was certainly true during my three years at Swansea. This also helped to motivate me to go the extra mile with coursework, especially when writing the essays. These were hard but nevertheless greatly rewarding when the reading and source-work paid off. Another reason I enjoy studying History is that there is so much of the past to examine, analyse and attempt to understand. You learn about many different events, cultures and groups in many different time periods, and the depth and variation makes historical studies really interesting and enjoyable. In my second year, for example, I took diverse modules on Roman armies, the Normans, and 20th century British politics, to name a few. A final reason why I enjoy studying History is that other historians, i.e. the lecturers, are really engaging and very helpful, and are always willing to consider your ideas. This added a lot to my degree experience and helped me to improve and achieve the best grades.

Written by Matthew Roberts