External courses

The information on this page is offered in good faith and no recommendation is given or implied by providing these details.

Please note that the inclusion of groups or individuals on this page does not mean that they have been vetted or are recommended by the Oral History Society. The OHS runs its own training programme in conjunction with the British Library.

If you wish to advertise on this page, please register your course using the online form. (password required). Please note that you may also submit a course for inclusion in the OHS Training section. Please allow some time for us to check your submissions.

Oral History Spring School

The Institute for Historical Research and the Oral History Society run an annual Spring School at Senate House, London WC1E 7HU. Past students at previous Spring Schools have contributed to the development of the programme with comments and suggestions and their enthusiasm for the three day event is evident in feedback:

‘Thank you so much. I learned a lot and enjoyed the atmosphere’

‘I would definitely recommend it to others’

‘There was an enormous amount of fascinating discussion. I was particularly pleased to get a basic grounding in the theoretical developments and turns in oral history’.

‘There is a general lack of training related to using oral history in an academic context. This course was a very welcome development’.

Course details

The Oral History Spring School covers the theory and practice of oral history in depth, with the help of leading UK oral historians. To be able to take advantage of the course students should have some prior experience in recording and writing oral history and will be asked to complete readings in advance, available through a dedicated online website.

Through lectures and discussion and practical examples from oral history research the three day course will:

· Consider the emergence and development of oral history, and the links between theory and practice when considering memory of the past

· Compare different approaches which oral historians have used to understand and analyse their interviews

· Reflect on emotion as a part of oral history and the inter-subjective relationship of the interview when reflection on past experience may lead to displays of emotion

· Explore the ethical considerations of oral history interviewing and archiving

· Review the rewards gained from returning to archived oral history data as well as the challenges which re-use generated

· Provide an opportunity to explore challenges and questions posed by individual research interests through group discussion

· Discuss the use of oral history in a range of contexts from academic monographs to museum exhibitions and community projects

The three day course will also include a visit to a central London museum where oral history is incorporated into exhibitions.

To book please visit the IHR website: http://www.history.ac.uk/research-training/courses/oral-spring-school  

Tutors on past courses have included:

Professor Joanna Bornat (The Open University)

Professor Jenny Harding (London Metropolitan University)

Dr Joel Morley (University of Essex)

Professor Paul Thompson (University of Essex)

Sample Programme Details


9.30 Arrive, sign in, put up individual research posters

10.00 Introductions

11.15 Coffee

11.30 Oral History Worldwide

12.30 Lunch

1.15 Representativeness and Generalisability

2.15 Analysing the data: drawing out the evidence

3.15 Tea Break

3.30- 5.00 pm Oral history surgery: your challenges


10.00 Emotion

11.00 Coffee break

11.15 Emotion

12.30 Lunch

1.15 Re-use: issues from the secondary analysis of archived interviews

2.15 Ethics

3.15 Tea Break

3.30- 5.00pm. Open discussion- ethical issues and challenges


10.00 Outputs

11.00 Coffee break

11.15 Impacts

12.30 Lunch

1.45 Museum Visit

The spring school is organised by the Institute of Historical Research and is open to all who are interested in using oral history. Numbers are strictly limited and early application is recommended. To book please visit the IHR website: http://www.history.ac.uk/research-training/courses/oral-spring-school  

Question about training opportunities with the OHS?

For all questions relating to training (including further clarification of course content and reduced rate eligibility) please contact our training administrator.

Have you made an OHS training booking recently and not received a response?

We apologise if this has happened to you, we’ve had a glitch in the online system and may have missed some bookings. Please contact us if you’ve experienced a problem or not received a booking confirmation email within five working days: Michelle Winslow, Oral History Society Website Coordinator: m.winslow@sheffield.ac.uk