The Great War Group is thrilled to begin offering its inaugural online course in March 2021 with: The First World War on the Western Front.
Are you keen to learn more about the First World War in an educational environment?
Does the idea of leaping straight into expensive, university studies alarm you? Is the time/financial commitment more than you have to offer?
The Great War Group is pleased to offer this six week “bridge” course in the First World War for you to get your feet wet.
The course will take place across six Sunday afternoons via Zoom, beginning on 14th March at 16:00.
Sessions are priced at £10 each for members or a discounted rate for all six of £50. Non member rates are £15 for each session or £75 for the full course.
Payment is due in full prior to 14th March for the full course, or 24 hours before individual lectures.
We do recognise that we live in weird times, and that some people are living with uncertain finances. If you are a Great War Group member, do drop us a line to consider individual circumstances. We will also be offering five places free on the basis of individual financial hardship, whether Covid-related or not. To contact us about financial alternatives, please email us at email@example.com
How long do the sessions last?
Each session will consist of a 45 minute lecture, time for questions then a quick break. After that we will spend another half an hour on small group discussions and a summary.
What are the benefits of the complete course?
If you are looking to step back into academia, there will be an opportunity to complete an essay on the topic of your choice. We will provide the question, as well as pointers and feedback on completion. You will also receive a completion certificate detailing what you have studied for future use if you are applying for university courses.
For those completing the full course, you will also be entitled to receive any one of the sessions recorded, after the fact, in case you miss it. If you are in Australia or New Zealand, because of the time difference, you will be able to receive all six sessions via download.
How difficult will it be to follow?
We very much want to provide an accessible experience, and to that effect, you don’t need to have gone to university to be able to keep up with these lectures. If you think maybe you’d want to try university, whether it be undergraduate or postgraduate one day, if you are studying for GCSEs or A Levels and just want to know more than you will learn in school, or if you are just a nerd, (we prefer the term “war bore”) who wants to focus your enthusiasm on a structured experience, then this is for you.
Will there be homework?
We will provide you with some recommended reading, and suggest accounts, and things that are easily accessible that will widen the experience. As with all of these things, you get out what you put in, but there will be no detentions. Though Beth can be bribed with chocolate.
Is it suitable for school children?
Yes, we wouldn’t recommend below year/grade 10, but this is a general look at the Western Front that will augment what’s in the curriculum.
We will offer five “scholarship places” to young people with a particular interest in the First World War. To qualify you must be aged 15-18. To apply for one of these places, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Who is doing the teaching?
The course is overseen by educational professionals. All lecturers will be Postgraduate qualified or equivalent. You know we don’t do academic snobbery!
Sunday 14th March 16:00 (UK) Europe 1890-1914: Fin de Siecle (Alex Churchill) Why was Europe primed for war in 1914, and how did it come about? Who were the major players? How did we end up on the Western Front? You’ll be surprised to learn who wasn’t! It’s a tale of conflicting ambitions, runaway shipbuilding, diplomatic skulduggery, and mad royal cousins.
Sunday 21st March 16:00 (UK) Opening Throes: 1914-15 on the Western Front (Andrew Lock) From “it will all be over by Christmas,” through the painful trial and error of 1915 to the eve of Verdun. This lecture examines how the war developed to become the conflict typified in our memory; one of vast battles, tens of thousands of men and the attritional warfare of the Western Front on a massive scale.
Sunday 28th March 16:00 (UK) The Somme: A Watchword in Failure (Alex Churchill) The opening day of the Battle of the Somme is still the blackest day in the history of the British Army. But this battle lasted for months. What was it for, why was it so bloody, why did it carry on, and on, and did it achieve anything?
Sunday 4th April 16:00 (UK): Attaque à outrance: The French theory of attack (Jim Smithson) The French entered the Great War with a very aggressive strategy of attack in excess. How did this philosophy affect their conduct of the war and how did French Army tactics change as the war on the Western Front progressed into one of trenches and stalemate?
Sunday 11th April 16:00 (UK) The Role of Empire: Colonials on the Western Front (Beth Moore) Hundreds of thousands of men were drawn onto Europe’s battlefields in the name of Empire. From Indians at Neuve Chapelle, to South Africans at Delville Wood and Algerians in the doomed Nivelle Offensive, this is a succinct introduction to their contribution.
Sunday 18th April 16:00 (UK) Germany’s Last Chance: The Spring Offensives of 1918 (Peter Hart) By 1918 the writing was on the wall. Germany had one last chance to win the war. How did they go about it? What went wrong, what might have been? Learn all about the massive operation that constituted this increasingly desperate phase of the war and how close Britain and the Allies came to defeat.
To book your place visit our shop.