Certificate of Achievement

Sandra Spruce

has completed the following course:

Wellington and the Battle of Waterloo

University of Southampton

This course explored the context, interpretations, aftermath and commemoration of the Battle of Waterloo with a particular focus on the Duke of Wellington.

3 weeks, 4 hours per week

Chris Woolgar

Professor of History and Archival Studies

University of Southampton

Karen Robson

Head of Archives

University of Southampton


Learning outcomes

  • Explore the background to the Battle of Waterloo, accounts of the battle, its immediate aftermath and its longer-term impact on British culture.
  • Discuss different accounts of the battle and how they have arisen.
  • Evaluate original documents to see how they were written and what they tell us about the politics of the time.
  • Debate the ways in which wars are commemorated.


  • Placing Waterloo in context: the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars, the conclusion of a world war and the settlement of 1814.
  • The road to war: Napoleon’s dramatic return from exile, the Congress of Vienna and urgent preparations for further European war.
  • The forces that fought at Waterloo, how they were deployed and commanded.
  • Interpreting accounts of the battle, from official despatches to soldiers’ memoirs.
  • After the battle; the occupation of France by the Allied Powers and the exile of Napoleon.
  • How the battle was commemorated in the years immediately after 1815, from monuments and banquets to museums and battlefield tourism.
  • How the battle was depicted in popular paintings and literature, and how Wellington was depicted through sculpture and publication of his correspondence.
  • Wellington’s later life, his grand state funeral and his enduring place in British culture.

Issued on 15th June 2017

The person named on this certificate has completed the activities in the transcript above. For more information about Certificates of Achievement and the effort required to become eligible, visit futurelearn.com/proof-of-learning/certificate-of-achievement.

This certificate represents proof of learning. It is not a formal qualification, degree, or part of a degree.

Free online course:

Wellington and the Battle of Waterloo

University of Southampton