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Masters Degrees (Early Modern History)

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Visit our website for more information on fees, scholarships, postgraduate loans and other funding options to study Early Modern History at Swansea University - 'Welsh University of the Year 2017' (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017). Read more

Visit our website for more information on fees, scholarships, postgraduate loans and other funding options to study Early Modern History at Swansea University - 'Welsh University of the Year 2017' (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017).

The MA in Early Modern History offers the study of the period of history that runs from the fifteenth to the eighteenth centuries, and encompasses the Renaissance, Reformation and Counter Reformation, and Enlightenment.

Key Features of MA in Early Modern History

The wide-ranging expertise of Swansea University's early modern historians allows students to study British, European, American or Asian History. The MA in Early Modern History explores the history of art and culture, empire, gender, politics, religion, sexuality and science.

Swansea University has excellent research resources for postgraduate study in the area of Early Modern History. In addition to the general holdings in the University library, the National Library of Wales at Aberystwyth is within travelling distance. The University works closely with the National Galleries and Museums of Wales. There are a postgraduate common room and an electronic resources room available in the James Callaghan Building for students enrolled in the MA in Early Modern History programme.

The College of Arts and Humanities has a Graduate Centre. The Graduate Centre fosters and supports individual and collaborative research activity of international excellence and offers a vibrant and supportive environment for students pursuing postgraduate research and taught masters study. The Centre provides postgraduate training to enhance academic and professional development and facilitates participation in seminar programmes, workshops and international conferences.

The full-time Early Modern History course structure is split across the year with three modules taken in each academic semester (a total of six modules) and then a dissertation over the summer.

Students study three compulsory modules and three optional modules. The dissertation is written on a specialist research topic of the student's choosing.

Part-time study is available.

Who should Apply?

Students interested in early modern history from a history or related background. Students interested in preparation for postgraduate research, MPhil or PhD, or who wish to develop skills and knowledge related to early modern history.

Modules

Modules on the Early Modern History course typically include:

• Historical Methods and Approaches

• New Departures in the Writing of History

• Gender & Humour in Medieval Europe

• From Princely Possessions to Public Museums: A History of Collecting and Display

• Venice and the Sea

• Medieval Manuscripts

• Directed Reading in History

MA in Early Modern History Programme Aims

- To acquire advanced knowledge and understanding of a range of topics related to early modern history.

- To develop theoretical and methodological skills relevant to all aspects of the study of early modern history.

- To lay a solid foundation of knowledge and analytical and presentational skills for further research work in the field.

Research Interests

All staff in the Department of History and Classics are research active and publish books and articles in their areas of expertise. Our researchers are involved with the Arts and Humanities research centres: the Callaghan Centre for the Study of Conflict, Power and Empire, the Richard Burton Centre for the Study of Wales and the Research Groups: MEMO: the Centre for Medieval and Early modern Research and GENCAS: the Centre for Research into Gender in Culture and Society. Regular research seminars and lectures are run through these groups and also through the Research Institute for Arts and Humanities (RIAH) which students are encouraged to attend.

Careers

Career expectations are excellent for Early Modern History graduates. MA degree holders may move on to doctoral study or enter employment in such areas as museums, heritage and tourism; marketing, sales and advertising; business, art, design and culture; media and PR; social and welfare professions; humanitarian organisations; the civil service, and education.

Student Quotes

“I graduated with a First-Class Honours BA History degree and an MA in Early Modern History from Swansea University. My four years of study here were truly the most enjoyable of my life so far! The lecturers, tutors and all members of the History department were also incredibly friendly and always willing to help. The MA was fully funded by a University Alumni bursary. The range of modules available to MA students is exceptional and the facilities here are fantastic. With a designated Arts and Humanities Postgraduate computer room and common-room area, as well as the University’s very own archives, Swansea is a great place to study History.”

Cath Horler, Early Modern History, MA



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Durham's MA in Early Modern History is a broad-ranging Master's programme which seeks to equip students with historical research techniques and approaches, advanced skills in critical analysis and independent study, as well as strong and effective communication skills. Read more
Durham's MA in Early Modern History is a broad-ranging Master's programme which seeks to equip students with historical research techniques and approaches, advanced skills in critical analysis and independent study, as well as strong and effective communication skills. The MA programme is designed to enable students with different career ambitions to succeed in their chosen area, and it caters for students of different backgrounds, previous training, and areas of specialisation. The breadth of research interests of the early modernists at Durham allows the department to offer supervision in topics about the early modern world from the mid-fifteenth century through to the early nineteenth. The programme seeks to enable students to build an awareness of the contemporary boundaries of early modern scholarship, to master advanced understanding of historical concepts and methods, and ultimately to make their own contributions to the field.

Durham's History Department is an international centre for the study of the Early Modern period, and is situated in the historic setting of the World Heritage Site, which includes Durham Cathedral, Durham Castle, and the surrounding area. Students of early modern history at Durham benefit from the rich archival and manuscript resources in the collections of the University (at Palace Green Library and at Ushaw College) and in the Cathedral Library, while the wider regional resources for study of the period are also highly significant: these include the landscape of industrial revolution, of vernacular architecture and of early modern globalisation. Early Modern History at Durham is comprehensive and international in its reach, with specialists in the History of Medicine, consumer culture, print and information, court culture, ecclesiastical and intellectual history, and political thought. Area specialisms include the British Isles, Continental Europe, North America, China and the Steppe regions.

Course Structure

The MA in Early Modern History is a one-year full-time programme (or two-years part-time). All students are allocated a supervisor at the beginning of the first term, and s/he guides each student through the year. The programme is structured as follows:

Michaelmas Term (October-December)

Archives and Sources (15 credits)
Issues in Early Modern History (30 credits)
*Skill module (30 credits) - taken over Michaelmas and Epiphany Terms

Epiphany Term (January-March)

Critical Practice (15 credits)
Option module (30 credits)

Easter Term (April-June)

Dissertation (90 credits, or 60 credits if taking a *Skill module)

The formal requirements and structure of the programme can be found at: https://www.dur.ac.uk/courses/info/?id=9199&title=Early+Modern+History&code=V1K607&type=MA&year=2016#essentials; a full list of optional modules is available at: https://www.dur.ac.uk/history/postgraduate/ma_degrees/optionalmodules/

The MA can be taken part-time, over two years. In the first year the module combination consists of Archives and Sources, Critical Practice, Issues and in addition a Skills module OR Optional module. In the second year your work will consist of either a 90 credit, 20,000 word dissertation (if you took an Optional module in the first year) OR a 60 credit, 15,000 word dissertation, AND an Optional module (if you took a Skills module in the first year).

Additional courses can be taken on an audit-basis (not for credit), and can include language modules as well as optional modules. You will need to ask and receive the permission of the module leader before auditing a class. If the class is outside the department you will also need to inform the Director of Taught Postgraduates.

Learning and Teaching

The programme is delivered primarily through small group seminar teaching with some larger classes, and lecture-style sessions. Termly division of contact hours between terms depends on student choice. Issues in Early Modern History has 16 contact hours, all classroom-based; this module is team-taught and exposes students to a wide variety of staff support and expertise. Archives and Sources has 8 contact hours, split between lectures, classes and seminars. Skills modules are taught through seminars or classes and are usually more contact-hour-intensive. Optional modules are taught in seminars and provide a total of 16 contact hours. Critical Practice involves lectures, a drama workshop, and oral presentation to a group (at a 'mini-conference'). Dissertation supervision involves 8 hours of directed supervision, individually with a dedicated supervisor.

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Early modern history has become increasingly interdisciplinary, with researchers drawing on the insights of anthropology, sociology, cultural and literary studies, art history, and musicology, as well as history, when writing about the past. Read more
Early modern history has become increasingly interdisciplinary, with researchers drawing on the insights of anthropology, sociology, cultural and literary studies, art history, and musicology, as well as history, when writing about the past.

Topics such as violence, clothing, gender, exploration, art, drama, music, buildings and material culture have come to be seen as crucial to understanding the transformations that were taking place across the period c.1500-c.1700. These new approaches are integral to the teaching and research training provided on this course. There is also an annual field trip, designed to explore key themes and issues outside of the classroom, in the context of key buildings, documents and historical artefacts.

You will study two core modules in early modern history:

Introduction to Early Modern History
Writing Early Modern History: Sources and Approaches

You will also study the department's core module in 'Historical Methods', take a module in research preparation, and choose from a range of optional modules, including special subjects, advanced options, and further research training.

Finally, you will complete a 15,000-word dissertation on an agreed topic. The range of supervisory expertise within CREMS means that we can support dissertations in almost any area, so long as there are sufficient historical sources to support your chosen topic. Birmingham provides access to excellent library resources in early modern history, including an impressive range of digitised primary source material, from state papers and archives to printed books and much more.

About the School of History and Culture

The programmes in the School of History and Cultures offer students enquiry based learning within a rich and diverse environment to stimulate debate and challenge conventional thinking.
The programmes derive from departments which are all excellently rated by the QAA both in teaching and research terms (Medieval History 5, Modern History 5 and African Studies 5*). Our staff publish widely, and we are developing and consolidating a strong, supportive research culture in the School.
We are extremely proud to announce in June 2016, that History at Birmingham was ranked the top research department in the country by the Research Excellence Framework (REF). The national REF exercise assessed research publications and the public impact of research carried out in all universities in the UK between 2008-2014. Our department had an impressive 45% of its research judged to be ‘world-leading’.

Funding and Scholarships

There are many ways to finance your postgraduate study at the University of Birmingham. To see what funding and scholarships are available, please visit: http://www.birmingham.ac.uk/postgraduate/funding

Open Days

Explore postgraduate study at Birmingham at our on-campus open days.
Register to attend at: http://www.birmingham.ac.uk/postgraduate/visit

Virtual Open Days

If you can’t make it to one of our on-campus open days, our virtual open days run regularly throughout the year. For more information, please visit: http://www.pg.bham.ac.uk

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The M.Phil course in Early Modern History offers well-qualified graduates in History, the Humanities and the Social Sciences an introduction to research in the political, social, cultural and religious history of Ireland, Britain and Europe across the early modern period. Read more
The M.Phil course in Early Modern History offers well-qualified graduates in History, the Humanities and the Social Sciences an introduction to research in the political, social, cultural and religious history of Ireland, Britain and Europe across the early modern period. This one-year course (or two years part-time) is designed to introduce students to a wide range of issues in, and approaches to, early modern history. It also provides students with training in research methods and skills. The course is built around Trinity College Library's unparalleled resources for the period from the Reformation to the French Revolution. The course may also serve as an introduction to graduate study for students intending to pursue doctoral studies.

The core module for this course is From Reform to Revolution: Cultural Change and Political Conflict in Early Modern Europe. Students also choose two major of study, one in each term. Availability of modules alters from year to year. Subjects recently offered include: Religious Tolerance and Intolerance in Early Modern Europe; War and Society in Early Modern Ireland and Europe; The War of Ideas in the English Revolution; Gender, Identity and Authority in Eighteenth-Century France; Renaissance Kingship. In addition, students take modules focussed on research training and skills. These are designed to introduce the diverse resources and methodologies that historians encounter in their research while also equipping students with the practical skills that are required for the study of early modern history. The Research Seminar in Early Modern History provides an opportunity for invited early modernists from Ireland and elsewhere to discuss their work with graduate students. The capstone of the course is the independent dissertation project. Students complete dissertations of between 15,000 and 20,000 words based on their own primary research. Each student is assigned a supervisor who provides individual academic guidance on their research project.

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The MA is a distinctive programme designed for applicants whose interests lie in the study of early modern history, and who feel that they have much more to discover. Read more
The MA is a distinctive programme designed for applicants whose interests lie in the study of early modern history, and who feel that they have much more to discover. The course provides both a thorough research training and an opportunity to explore new approaches to the history of early modern Britain, Europe and their overseas empires. Students are introduced to a wide range of sources and approaches drawn from the entire span of the early modern period, and thereby gain an unusual breadth of vision which transcends more conventional boundaries, not only between British and European history but also between Europe and the differing cultures encountered on Europe's frontiers and overseas.

The MA is run by the Department of History and students are encouraged to participate in the lively scholarly community of the department's active graduate school through attendance at relevant MA seminars, research training sessions and the weekly departmental research seminar. Students also have full access to the Centre for Renaissance and Early Modern Studies which provides an active programme of academic seminars, small conferences and reading groups involving both the academic staff and graduate students.

Programme of study

The programme consists of four taught modules (20 credits each), a 20,000 word dissertation (90 credits), and a Research Training module (10 credits). These make up the 180 credits that are normal for an MA in the UK higher education system. For students registered for full-time study, the programme is as follows:

Autumn Term (October-December)
-Core Module: Approaches to Early Modern History
-Option Module 1
-Research Training (taught content)

All students take the core module Approaches to Early Modern History. The module, taught by weekly seminar, introduces students to the key concepts, methods and practices which contribute to the diversity of early modern history; and to the study of particular topics, such as new approaches to the Reformation, early modern globalisation, women in early modern Europe, and the scientific revolution. Additionally, all students take an Option Module chosen from a list approved by the Course Convenor or the Core Module of the interdisciplinary MA in Renaissance and Early Modern Studies, which counts as an Option Module for Early Modern MA students. All students follow a research training module across both terms.

Spring Term (January-March)
-Option Module 2
-Option Module 3
-Research Training (independent writing of dissertation proposal)

Students choose two optional modules which should include at least one related to their pathway. With the approval of the Course Convenor and the Module Tutor they may also choose a module from other MA programmes (e.g. English or History of Art).

Summer Term and Summer Vacation (April-September)
-Research Dissertation

During the Summer Term and over the Vacation, all students will write a research dissertation of up to 20,000 words on a subject of their own choosing and under the supervision of a member of staff, and submitted at the end of the academic year.

Students receive advice about research topics and instruction in bibliography, plus additional specialist advice and guidance from a supervisor. Because of the range of expertise of staff members and the wealth of source material available in York, it is possible to provide supervision on a wide range of topics, both chronologically and geographically.

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This course focuses on the history of Britain, Europe and the wider world between c.1500–1800, highlighting themes of political, cultural… Read more

This course focuses on the history of Britain, Europe and the wider world between c.1500–1800, highlighting themes of political, cultural, religious and social history. The course is taught by experts in the histories of the Reformation and the Enlightenment, gender, the material world of the Renaissance, race and racism, and on Britain, Ireland, France, the Netherlands, Portugal and the Iberian world, offering you the opportunity to choose from a wide range of modules.

Leads to further research or careers in museums, journalism, finance and the cultural sector.

Key benefits

  • One of the best history departments in the world, ranked 5th in the UK for Research Quality (REF 2014) and in the Top 10 departments of History in Europe (QS World University Rankings 2016).
  • King's graduates enjoy one of the best employment rates and starting salaries in the UK. Kings is ranked in the top 6 in the UK for graduate employment (Times and Sunday Times Good Universities Guide 2016).
  • A wide set of optional modules all taught by established experts in the field
  • A rigorous core course that trains students in historical research in archives, manuscripts, print and objects
  • Central London location and staff expertise offers students unrivalled access to world-class museums, collections, archives and libraries as well as easy access to resources in Europe.
  • Vibrant research culture of seminars, workshops and conferences in the department and at the Institute of Historical Research, in which students are encouraged to participate.

Description

Our Early Modern History MA bridges the division between British and European history that exists on many courses, focusing on ways in which cultural, political and social themes stretch across the period c.1500–1800.

The course is taught by experts in the histories of the Reformation and the Enlightenment, gender, the material world of the Renaissance, race and racism, and on Britain, Ireland, France, the Netherlands, Portugal and the Iberian world. Their research connects the political and the social, the cultural and the religious dimensions of the early modern world, and our course will give you interdisciplinary perspectives on early modern history.

You will write a dissertation at the end of your course, but you will begin by testing concepts such as identity, mentality, religion; by challenging models of change including modernization, state-building, the civilising process, reformation, enlightenment and revolution; and by trying out different methodologies such as cultural history, gender, thinking with material objects, global history, using digital data.

Our optional modules offer you different perspectives on religion, society, politics and culture, by examining primary sources of all kinds alongside the most recent historiographical interpretations. We will also develop your practical skills through modules such as advanced historical skills, including palaeography, Latin from beginner to advanced levels, and offer the chance to learn a European language. The flexibility of the course means that you can also take relevant modules from other departments in, for example, early modern English or French literature, the Iberian world and Digital Humanities. You can also attend relevant undergraduate lecture series such as Power, Culture and Belief in Europe 1500–1800 and Early Modern Britain 1500–1750.

You will have access to an excellent range of library resources. Our long-standing expertise in the early modern period means our library has an extensive collection of journals and books in this field. You can also use the British Library, Senate House Library (University of London) and the Institute of Historical Research. We provide access to the most significant online collections of primary printed material, Early English Books Online and the Eighteenth Century Online and to JSTOR and other online resources for secondary material.

Course purpose

The MA Early Modern History course offers a rigorous introduction to the advanced study of early modern history, providing training in the historiographical and technical skills necessary for doctoral study, but is also designed for those who want to deepen their knowledge of the period.

Course format and assessment

Teaching Style

We teach our modules through small seminar groups where we will debate and discuss ideas based on extensive reading.

If you are a full-time student, we will provide you with six to nine hours of teaching each week, and we will expect you to undertake 32 to 34 hours of independent study.

If you are a part-time student, we will provide you with two to six hours of teaching each week, and we will expect you to undertake 14 to 18 hours of independent study.

For your dissertation we will provide you with six hours of one-to-one supervision and we will expect you to undertake 574 hours of independent study.

Typically, one credit equates to 10 hours of work.

Assessment

We will assess your performance through coursework and occasionally exams. The majority of the history modules are assessed by coursework essay; other optional modules may differ.

Regulating body

King’s College is regulated by the Higher Education Funding Council for England.



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This programme explores religious, social, economic, political and cultural developments in the early modern world (c.1450-c.1800). Read more

Introduction

This programme explores religious, social, economic, political and cultural developments in the early modern world (c.1450-c.1800).

Early modern history is a core strength of the the Warwick University History Department. Approximately one-third of the Department's academic staff are scholars of the early modern period, from Britain and Europe to the Americas and China.

Course Structure

The first term core module Themes in Early Modern History provides a critical perspective on key themes and introduces you to a range of expertise at Warwick. This runs alongside a module taken by all MA students exploring theories, skills and methods. In the second term you have a choice of two taught modules - each one taking a different topic and exploring it across time and space. These will help you place your early modern interests in religion, gender, empire, consumption or medicine in a comparative framework as well as deepen your acquaintance with relevant ideas and approaches from outside early modern scholarship. These modules enable you to focus on your early modern interests (you can write all your assessed work on early modern themes) whilst situating them in a wider context that will enrich your studies. The final key element is the dissertation - here you have a large amount of freedom to develop a project of your own choice with help and guidance from your supervisor.

MA students are encouraged to engage with the lively early modern research culture at Warwick - you can find out more about the programme of lectures, seminars, workshops and conferences hosted by the department, and about the research projects being undertaken, in the right hand column.

The programme will also help you to acquire the conceptual and practical skills needed to conduct PhD research in Early Modern history.

All our MA courses can be followed on a part-time basis over two years. For further information, please contact the MA Director, Dr Sarah Hodges or the director of the early modern course, Prof. Mark Knights.

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The MPhil in Early Modern History provides intensive training in the history of early modern Britain, Europe and the wider world to enable its students to produce a substantial piece of historical research and historical writing. Read more
The MPhil in Early Modern History provides intensive training in the history of early modern Britain, Europe and the wider world to enable its students to produce a substantial piece of historical research and historical writing. This stimulating course is designed for those who have completed degrees in which History is the main or at least a substantial component and who want to consolidate their knowledge of the period between 1500 and 1800. It aims to deepen students’ understanding of how early modern history has been studied and to explore how traditional and innovative methods can be used to interpret it.

This course is designed both for those who are considering undertaking historical research at a doctoral level and for those who seek simply to explore history and the craft of the historian at an advanced level. In the first term, students are offered an intensive training programme consisting of classes, seminars, workshops, individual and group assignments. Each student will take two compulsory training modules and select three from a list of options, including languages, palaeography, the history of the book, visual and material culture, and a variety of thematic courses. Those who satisfactorily complete this programme of study will move on to an individual research project, which will lead to the submission of a 20,000-25,000 word dissertation.

See the website http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/hihimpemh

Course detail

By the end of the course, students should have acquired:

- a deeper understanding of their chosen area of early modern history and the critical debates within it
- a conceptual and technical understanding that enables the evaluation of current research and methodologies
- the technical skills necessary to pursue primary research in their chosen area
- the ability to situate their own research within current and past methodological and interpretative developments in the field.

Format

Part I: in the Michaelmas term, students on the course take two compulsory training modules and select three from a list of five options, including languages, palaeography, the history of the book, visual and material culture, and a variety of thematic courses. Students are also expected to attend a weekly relevant graduate research seminar. Those who satisfactorily complete this programme of study move on to Part II: a research dissertation, supervised by one of Cambridge's early modern scholars, which is undertaken during the Lent and Easter terms.

Students are provided with written feedback on the formative essays they submit at the end of the Michaelmas Term. They receive regular oral feedback from their dissertation supervisors, who also write termly reports. Oral feedback is also provided at the Dissertation presentations workshop. They will receive formal written feedback from two examiners after the submission and examination of their dissertations.

Assessment

This MPhil is assessed solely through a 20,000-25,000 word dissertation. An oral examination will only be required in cases where one of the marks is a marginal fail.

Students submit short essays (2,000 words) for each of their 5 modules. These pieces of work do not contribute to the mark for the degree. Students must, however, pass these essays (Part I of the course) to proceed to Part II (dissertation).

Continuing

In order to be considered for continuation to the PhD, and always subject to satisfactory supervision arrangements being in place, students are expected to obtain an overall mark of 70 for the MPhil and a mark of at least 70 for their dissertation.

Please see the Faculty website for more information:
http://www.hist.cam.ac.uk/prospective-graduates/apply/apply-mphil-phd
http://www.hist.cam.ac.uk/prospective-graduates/apply/apply-ltc-home

How to apply: http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/applying

Funding Opportunities

Please see the History Faculty’s Funding Guide via the History Faculty’s weblink below:
http://www.hist.cam.ac.uk/prospective-graduates/faculty-funding/funding-options

General Funding Opportunities http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/finance/funding

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This programme is for historians seeking to specialise in the study of the early modern period. Our early modern interests extend to England, Scotland, France, Scandinavia, the Low Countries, Italy and North America, and range from the late 15th to late 18th centuries. Read more
This programme is for historians seeking to specialise in the study of the early modern period. Our early modern interests extend to England, Scotland, France, Scandinavia, the Low Countries, Italy and North America, and range from the late 15th to late 18th centuries. Our methodologies are drawn from social, political and cultural history. The Masters in Early Modern History provides you with thorough research training, and a wide set of transferable skills in the conception, design and execution of a research project.

Why this programme

◾Our links with The Hunterian, the University’s own museum and art gallery, provide access to primary source material including an enormous collection of anatomical and pathological specimens, coins, books, manuscripts and ethnography.
◾You will enjoy ready access to the Baillie Collection, our prized collection of printed medieval and modern sources in Scottish, Irish and English history.
◾The collection also offers printed state papers, Historical Manuscript Commission publications and a select collection of modern monographs.
◾A regular Early Modern Research Seminar brings together staff, PhD and Masters students on an informal basis, including eminent active scholars with continuing attachments to history.

Programme structure

Our History Masters are built around a hands-on research training course, specialised courses on historical and theoretical themes, and other courses developing your technical skills and other abilities like languages and palaeography.

If you choose to study Early Modern History, there will be a guided selection of courses that will provide you with the specialised knowledge in that field. You will be taught through a series of seminars and workshops. Internationally recognised historians give guest lectures throughout the year.

In the final part of the programme, you will select a specialised topic and conduct original primary source research for your dissertation. You are supported in your research and writing up by an assigned supervisor with expertise in your field of inquiry.

Core courses
◾Research resources and skills for historians
◾Approaches to history.

Optional courses

Course options may include
◾Politics and literature in Jacobean Scotland
◾Print, public opinion and Enlightenment in 18th-century Europe
◾The History of Medicine I: studies in the History of medicine before 1850
◾Reformation! Europe in the age of religious wars
◾Scottish popular culture.

The courses taught each year vary depending upon staff availability.

To widen your approach and develop an interdisciplinary perspective, you are also strongly encouraged to take one or two complementary courses in cognate subjects, such as
◾Early modern warfare
◾Climate and civilisation
◾Lessons from the greats
◾Decline and fall: organisational failure, ancient and modern
◾The authority of the state and duties of the citizen.

Courses in Scottish literature, English literature, theology, history of art and other College of Arts subjects can also be studied, by agreement with the programme convener.

Career prospects

Apart from continuing to study a PhD, you can transfer the arts research skills and methods you learn on this programme to positions in the public and private sectors, such as heritage, policy and projects, journalism and teaching.

Positions held by recent History graduates include Editor Business & History Products, Lead Scholar/Instructor and Secretary.

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This Master's degree in history explores early modern European societies in the period from the Renaissance to the Reformation and on to the Enlightenment and the outbreak of the French Revolution. Read more
This Master's degree in history explores early modern European societies in the period from the Renaissance to the Reformation and on to the Enlightenment and the outbreak of the French Revolution. One of its most exciting and distinguishing features is that it considers developments in Britain, continental Europe (notably France and Italy) and the wider world (particularly the Americas) in comparative perspective, which brings into question the idea of the distinctive nature of national histories.

Some of the key themes you will study are the impact of religious conflict, economic and social developments, government and social order, the growth of urban settlements, population and demographic change, the mutual interactions between Europe and the Americas, and the growth of state power. You will be able to choose option modules in early modern history from across the Department of History, Classics and Archaeology and you will receive training in historical methodologies and research techniques to help you research and write a dissertation on the subject that most interests you.

You will read widely in both secondary works and translated primary sources, but there is no language requirement.

Key teaching staff on this programme

Course director: Dr Brodie Waddell

Professor Julian Swann
Dr Filippo de Vivo
Professor Vanessa Harding
Dr Laura Stewart.

Why study this course at Birkbeck?

Arts and humanities courses at Birkbeck are ranked third best in London and 11th in the UK in the Times Higher Education 2015-16 World University Subject Rankings.
This Master's programme offers a unique opportunity to study early modern European societies comparatively.
You will be able to follow your own interests, with a wide choice of option modules, while developing your research skills and undertaking a dissertation in an area that interests you.
Our Department of History, Classics and Archaeology is one of the leading research and teaching departments for history in the UK. It is ranked 6th in the UK for the percentage of our research deemed world-leading or internationally excellent.
Our academic staff are international authorities in their fields, delivering stimulating, research-led teaching.
Our department is home to thriving student societies and a number of affiliated research centres that actively run seminars, conferences and other events where some of the world's best scholars present their latest research. These include the Pears Institute for the Study of Antisemitism, the Raphael Samuel History Centre and the Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities.
We are located 5 minutes' walk from the British Museum and the British Library, while the Museum of London is easily reachable. The Institute of Historical Research is located in Bloomsbury, near the main Birkbeck campus, and has an internationally renowned library collection and seminars that you can attend.
Birkbeck Library has an extensive history collection, including the major specialist journals, and access to online materials.

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The MRes degree is a research programme with some provision for taught modules. Read more
The MRes degree is a research programme with some provision for taught modules.

It is aimed at those who wish to move beyond taught work and are prepared to engage in research in depth for a substantial postgraduate thesis, but who also wish to take modules that help develop research and related skills, and to study broader historical subjects with other postgraduates.

After consultation with your academic supervisor, you can pursue a research project in any aspect of British or European history, including European discovery of the wider world and focus on political, military or diplomatic history, or the history of early modern religion, culture, society or ideas.

The degree consists of four elements which make a total of 180 credits:

20,000 word thesis (120 credits)
Historical Methods module (20 credits, autumn)
Writing Early Modern History: Sources and Approaches (20 credits, spring)
Research Preparation (20 credits, autumn & spring)

Modules are assessed in various ways – by examination, coursework, presentation, transcription and attendance.

About the School of History and Culture

The programmes in the School of History and Cultures offer students enquiry based learning within a rich and diverse environment to stimulate debate and challenge conventional thinking.
The programmes derive from departments which are all excellently rated by the QAA both in teaching and research terms (Medieval History 5, Modern History 5 and African Studies 5*). Our staff publish widely, and we are developing and consolidating a strong, supportive research culture in the School.
We are extremely proud to announce in June 2016, that History at Birmingham was ranked the top research department in the country by the Research Excellence Framework (REF). The national REF exercise assessed research publications and the public impact of research carried out in all universities in the UK between 2008-2014. Our department had an impressive 45% of its research judged to be ‘world-leading’.

Funding and Scholarships

There are many ways to finance your postgraduate study at the University of Birmingham. To see what funding and scholarships are available, please visit: http://www.birmingham.ac.uk/postgraduate/funding

Open Days

Explore postgraduate study at Birmingham at our on-campus open days.
Register to attend at: http://www.birmingham.ac.uk/postgraduate/visit

Virtual Open Days

If you can’t make it to one of our on-campus open days, our virtual open days run regularly throughout the year. For more information, please visit: http://www.pg.bham.ac.uk

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The MLitt in Early Modern History is a one-year taught postgraduate programme run by the School of History. Highlights. Read more

The MLitt in Early Modern History is a one-year taught postgraduate programme run by the School of History.

Highlights

  • Students receive a high level of specialised supervision and advanced training in the history of the early modern European and Atlantic worlds with a high level of specialised supervision in most fields.
  • Modules offer a wide-ranging survey of the major historical and historiographical controversies that define the early modern period, as well as more specialised study.
  • The course provides research training for students wishing to pursue further study. It also provides a solid foundation and advanced transferable skills for those pursuing other careers in heritage, tourism or education.

Teaching format

The MLitt course lasts for one calendar year; taught modules run from September to April, followed by dissertation research and writing over the late spring and summer.

Teaching methods typically include fortnightly seminars, practical classes and tutorials. Class sizes range from individual supervision up to 12 students. The modules are assessed by coursework only; there is no final exam.

The early modern cohort is typically close-knit and friendly, but comprises a diverse, international group with a range of intellectual interests. Students work closely with each other, with early modern research staff, and also with students in parallel MLitt degrees such as Reformation Studies, Intellectual History, and Book History.

Further particulars regarding curriculum development.

Modules

The modules in this programme have varying methods of delivery and assessment. For more details of each module, including weekly contact hours, teaching methods and assessment, please see the latest module catalogue which is for the 2017–2018 academic year; some elements may be subject to change for 2018 entry.



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This course offers an original and in-depth examination of power, ideology, culture and social change between 1500 and 1750. Read more
This course offers an original and in-depth examination of power, ideology, culture and social change between 1500 and 1750. It provides students with all the skills needed by an early modern historian, including palaeography (reading sixteenth- and seventeenth-century handwriting), using manuscripts and other primary sources, conceptualizing research topics, and writing up the results with emphasis on correct referencing and bibliographical conventions. Guidance will also be given on how to present research findings orally.

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This course looks at the economic, political, social and cultural changes that were seen throughout the world between c.1500 and c.1800. Read more

About the course

This course looks at the economic, political, social and cultural changes that were seen throughout the world between c.1500 and c.1800. Events such as the British civil wars, the settling of the ‘New World’, the early stages of industrialisation, and the French Revolution transformed the way people thought and lived. This MA allows you to explore this momentous period with a group of internationally renowned scholars.

Our department

We are one of the largest, most active and successful centres for teaching and historical research both in the UK and internationally. Our academic reputation means that we are ranked third in the UK for research excellence (Research Excellence Framework 2014).

Our team of over 35 academic staff and 100 postgraduate students work together to create a thriving and supportive research culture. This vibrant community includes a regular research seminar series, covering a huge range of topics, and a range of research centres and networks exploring interdisciplinary themes. Our students also run an active Postgraduate Forum organising a wide variety of social and research events, and collaborating with staff and students both in Sheffield and further afield.

Our teaching

Our world-leading research informs what we teach. We offer a flexible degree structure with a wide range of modules covering a variety of periods, locations, themes and approaches.

An MA degree in history will further develop the range of transferable skills at your disposal. You will have the freedom to tailor your research and focus on the skills that are most important to you. We offer modules that are specifically designed to provide you with skills in public history – Presenting the Past, History Writer’s Workshop and Work Placement all give you real, hands-on experience.

Your future

These kinds of skills are why our graduates are successful in both further study and a wide range of careers – from taking PhDs, lecturing and working in the museum and tourist industry to business management, marketing, law and working in the media.

In addition to the personal and professional development you will experience through your modules, we offer dedicated careers support to enable you to successfully plan your future.

Studentships

University and AHRC Studentships are available. Please contact us or see our website for further details. You’ll need to submit your application by the appropriate funding deadline.

Teaching and assessment

You’ll be taught through seminars and individual tutorials. Assessment is by bibliographical and source-based exercises, written papers, oral presentation, and a 15,000 word dissertation.

Part-time study

All our masters can be taken part-time. Seminars are held during working hours (9am–6pm) – there are no lectures. The number of contact hours will vary over the two years, but you’ll usually have at least one two-hour seminar each week. You’ll take one core module each year and the rest of your course will be made up from optional modules giving you plenty of choice and flexibility over what you study.

Core modules

Research Presentation; Early Modernities; Dissertation.

Examples of optional modules

Microhistory and the History of Everyday Life; Burying the White Gods: Indigenous People in the Early Modern Colonial World; The Early Modern Body: Identity, Politics and Embodiment, c1640-1800; Eighteenth-century Print Culture; Language and Society in Early Modern England; Religious Tolerance and Intolerance in Early Modern Europe.

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The . MA in Medieval and Early Modern Studies.  is an interdisciplinary MA associated with Durham's . Institute of Medieval and Early Modern Studies. Read more

The MA in Medieval and Early Modern Studies is an interdisciplinary MA associated with Durham's Institute of Medieval and Early Modern Studies (IMEMS), and is currently run from the History Department. The programme is suitable for students whose undergraduate training is in Archaeology, Classics, History, Literature/Languages, Philosophy, Theology, or other related disciplines. The main aim of the programme is to prepare students for doctoral research in the study of the medieval and early modern past by offering outstanding interdisciplinary training to equip students with the skills they need for their future careers. It is taught by specialists who are members of IMEMS, primarily from the departments of ArchaeologyClassicsEnglishHistoryModern Languages and CulturesPhilosophy and Theology.

Students are incorporated into the vibrant research communities within departments, IMEMS, and the university. Durham has a large and extremely active postgraduate community, and IMEMS supports the Medieval and Early Modern Student Association (MEMSA), whose members organise regular seminars and conferences. IMEMS has more than fifty staff members from arts, humanities, social science and science departments across the University, all active researchers, and is one of the largest gatherings of scholars in this area in the world. IMEMS is situated in the historic setting of the World Heritage Site, which includes Durham CathedralDurham Castle, and the surrounding area. Students of medieval and early modern studies at Durham benefit from the rich archival and manuscript resources in the collections of the University (at Palace Green Library and at Ushaw College) and in the Cathedral Library, while the wider regional resources for study of the period are also highly significant.

All students on the MA in Medieval and Early Modern Studies take two core modules, Reading the Medieval and Early Modern Past, and Writing the Medieval and Early Modern Past (30 credits each); both of these run throughout Michaelmas and Epiphany Terms. Students also write a 15,000-word dissertation (60 credits), supervised by one of Durham's specialists, which allows them to focus on a specialist topic of their choice in the period AD 300-1700, which may be interdisciplinary or focused primarily on one of the individual disciplines which make up the programme. They also take two optional modules (30 credits each) which run either in Michaelmas or Epiphany or throughout both terms. These may be content, language or skills modules, and are drawn from the seven participating departments as well as Durham’s other centres and programmes. All elements of the programme have embedded within them a range of content, subject-specific skills, and key skills.

Core modules

The two team-taught core modules enable students to develop advanced skills in interpreting and usinga range of different kinds of source-material from the medieval and early modern periods, including textual, material and visual culture. They allow students to consider developments over the longue duree and enable a more rounded understanding of how a range of themes, ideas and institutions changed from the end of the classical world, through the Middle Ages and into the early modern era. These modules are intended to guide students whose backgrounds are in a range of disciplinary specialisms towards an understanding of how study of the medieval and early modern past can be nuanced and enhanced by approaches from multiple different disciplines used alongside each other. The modules also help students develop from a more tutor-led approach to independent learning, in order to support their work on their dissertations and their future careers. Reading the Medieval and Early Modern Past takes one key item or body of material (e.g. a text, a site, an archive) as a lens through which to explore different disciplinary and interdisciplinary approaches to studying the period 300-1700. Students are assessed by a 5000-word essay on a topic of their choice connected with the themes of the module. Writing the Medieval and Early Modern Past focuses on major themes, movements and institutions which can best be examined across the whole medieval and early modern period, and which can best be explained by close study of change and continuity over a long period of time. A number of these themes will invite interdisciplinary or multidisciplinary approaches, and thus will allow students to develop their skills in bringing together different kinds of material for study of the past. Students are assessed for this module by a) a 4000-word essay on a topic of their choice, connected with the themes of the module, and b) a 15-minute presentation.

Optional modules

Students choose two optional modules offered by the departments participating in the programme. These modules are taught by subject specialists and usually involve a series of seminars with an emphasis on close study of original material from the medieval and early modern periods, and provide a ‘step up’ from the level of final-year undergraduate study. The breadth of modules available means that students can develop their skills and research interests according to their own tailored programme and with the advice of their dissertation supervisor, ensuring the best possible preparation for the future. There are also some modules focusing on particular skills-training such as medieval or modern languages or auxiliary skills (e.g. Latin; Ancient Greek; Old Norse; Old English; Academic French; Academic German; Palaeography).

The range of optional modules in each year varies according to staff availability and departmental provision, but as a representative sample optional modules may include the following:

  • Anglo-Saxon Societies and Cultures: interdisciplinary approaches to early medieval England
  • Archaeology of the Book
  • Christian Northumbria, 600-750
  • Contact and Conflict: Texts and Cultures
  • Courts and Power in Early Modern Europe and the New World
  • Latin for Research
  • Narrative Transformations: Medieval Romance to Renaissance Epic
  • Negotiating Life in the Early Modern World
  • Old English Language, Texts and Contexts
  • Old Norse
  • Palaeograpy: Scribes, Script and History from Antiquity to the Renaissance
  • Power and Society in the Late Middle Ages
  • Renaissance Humanism
  • Rewriting Empire: Eusebius of Caesarea and the First Christian History
  • Warrior Poets in Heroic Societies
  • Work and Play in Early Modern Europe


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