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Masters Degrees (Historical Research)

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The MA in Historical Research Methods is designed to train students in research skills to the level prescribed by the research training guidelines favoured by UK Research Councils. Read more
The MA in Historical Research Methods is designed to train students in research skills to the level prescribed by the research training guidelines favoured by UK Research Councils. It is intended for students with a good first degree in history, or who possess a taught Masters degree in history. Most students would be expected to progress to a research degree in history at the end of the degree, but it is also possible to take it as a stand-alone programme.
Students must complete a programme in research training and submit a dissertation on an approved topic which is connected to the core course of this programme (Sources and Research Design in Historical Research). As part of this course candidates must also submit a number of research related assignments which, taken together with the dissertation, are equivalent to approximately 30,000 words.

Email:

Visit the website http://www.soas.ac.uk/history/programmes/mahistresmeth/

Structure

Core Course:
- Sources and Research Design in Historical Research (1.0 unit)
This course provides one-to-one training in research design and in the use of sources for a specific region under the guidance of the MA dissertation supervisor. It is assessed by 2 essays (10,000 words in total). The first is normally on source-based problems and the second on research design which is linked to the dissertation topic.

Structure of the Programme:
This degree programme consists of four elements, including a 10,000-word dissertation:

1. Sources and Research Design in Historical Research (Core course, 1.0 unit)
2. Research Methods in History with reference to Asia and Africa (1.0 unit)
3. Dissertation (1.0 unit)
4. a minor course or courses (equivalent to 1.0 unit) chosen from the Minor Course Options list and/or a language course from the Faculty of Languages and Cultures.

Please note that not all the courses listed here will be available every year, and some new courses are likely to be added.

For any queries, please contact the convener of the History MA Programme, who will also be pleased to provide more detailed information on individual courses.

MA Historical Research Methods Programme Specification (pdf; 109kb) - http://www.soas.ac.uk/history/programmes/mahistresmeth/file76287.pdf

Teaching & Learning

- Lectures and Seminars

Teaching is generally by informal lectures and seminar discussions. At Masters level there is particular emphasis on seminar work where students may be expected to make full-scale presentations for units they take.

In addition to their studies on the MA programme, students at SOAS are able to participate in a wide range of research seminars, lectures and conferences that regularly take place in the School and in the University of London.

- Dissertation

The 10,000 word Dissertation on an approved topic linked with one of the taught courses.

- Learning Resources

SOAS Library is one of the world's most important academic libraries for the study of Africa, Asia and the Middle East, attracting scholars from all over the world. The Library houses over 1.2 million volumes, together with significant archival holdings, special collections and a growing network of electronic resources.

Employment

A postgraduate degree in Historical Research Methods from SOAS provides its students with an understanding of the world, giving them specialised historical knowledge and understanding of cultural sensibilities of a region. Postgraduate students are equipped with the expertise to continue in research as well as the skills needed to enable them to find professional careers in the private and public sectors.

Postgraduate students leave SOAS with a portfolio of widely transferable skills which employers seek, including familiarity with methods of research; the competence to manage large quantities of information; the ability to select and organise information and analytical skills. A postgraduate degree is a valuable experience that provides students with a body of work and a diverse range of skills that they can use to market themselves with when they graduate.

For more information about Graduate Destinations from this department, please visit the Careers Service website (http://www.soas.ac.uk/careers/graduate-destinations/).

Find out how to apply here - http://www.soas.ac.uk/admissions/pg/howtoapply/

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The MA in Historical Research gives you the opportunity to study a wide range of different approaches to the research and writing of history, with a specialised focus on innovative recent theoretical and methodological developments. Read more

Summary

The MA in Historical Research gives you the opportunity to study a wide range of different approaches to the research and writing of history, with a specialised focus on innovative recent theoretical and methodological developments. We also offer a specialised pathway in Social and Cultural History, and a part-time, distance learning pathway in Archival Practice and Local History.

This masters programme offers you the opportunity to refine your knowledge and practice of historical research, and is ideal for those seeking further study in History, a career in the museum or heritage industries, or simply those looking to develop personal research interests.

This programme will equip you with an appreciation of some of the most influential theoretical positions and methodologies in historical scholarship today, which will help you to develop academic independence whilst undertaking your major piece of historical research. You will be able to utilise these independent research skills in a professional context, whether in academia or other working environments, where high level interpretative and analytical ability is required.

On all pathways, students will gain a secure knowledge of the range of primary source material available to research historians, which involves using a range of both quantitative and qualitative data, which students will learn to analyse and exploit critically. You will also have opportunity to develop and present arguments, both oral and written, adapted to specific kinds of audience. As well as expanding your communication skills in this way, this course will also develop your capacity to work independently and with others.

The programme offers exceptional staff-student support, through small-group sessions, one-on-one tutorials and Roehampton's excellent academic learning, library and employability staff. Whether continuing on from undergraduate studies, or returning to study after a break, you will be supported in your studies and personal and professional development.

The course also boasts a broad and rich syllabus, from family history to oral history techniques, from medical to crime history, which allows you to develop methods and skills applicable in any historical research project and environment.

Content

The key modules in the MA Historical Research are focused on developing theoretical skills, and then applying these in your dissertation. Some of the most influential theoretical positions and methodologies in historical scholarship will be discussed on this course, introducing you to the theoretical framework that will underlie the specialised skills you will need as a historical researcher. Particular texts will be studied which deepen your understanding of these concepts, and the texts themselves will be tailored to the specific pathway students follow.

The Distance learning options allow students away from London to follow a pathway in Archival Practice and Local History, supported by our excellent virtual learning environment and flexible part-time study options. There will be an emphasis on working with historical source material, including modules on palaeography.

A research internship is available on all pathways, offering research-led experience in local and national historical, archival and heritage settings, such as the Institute of Historical Research, the Surrey History Centre and the Royal Horticultural Society Lindley Library.

You are also able to study a further four thematic modules from our current range, which changes year by year. These modules are designed to let you practice your research skills, and engage with detailed source material, aiding you in your independent dissertation. If you choose to study full-time, the academic year runs from September to September; and if you study part-time, you can vary the pace of study to suit your needs.

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The MA in Historical Research at the Institute of Historical Research (http://www.history.ac.uk/) is tailored to individual research interests. Read more
The MA in Historical Research at the Institute of Historical Research (http://www.history.ac.uk/) is tailored to individual research interests. It allows students to undertake assessed work and independent projects in the issues and controversies which interest them most. Students are introduced to key historical approaches, sources and methods and learn to apply them to their particular subject area. The course offers wide-ranging research training, and importance is placed on the use of architecture, material culture, archaeology and literature to aid historical research and understanding. Field trips and museum visits form a key part of the training programme.

The MA will appeal to anyone wishing to develop a broad range of transferable historical skills and those seeking a professional career in the historical profession. It represents excellent preparation for future PhD research.

The MA is taught by staff at two of the United Kingdom's leading research centres, the Centre for Metropolitan History and the Victoria County History both are based within the Institute of Historical Research (IHR), where students can draw on wealth of expertise in urban and metropolitan history as well as unrivalled library and other resources for the study of the history of London and of other cities. Students join a thriving and lively community of students, researchers and teachers at the IHR and take full advantage of the facilities and resources of the central University, as well as the nearby British Library, the Museum of London and other important national centres.

Structure

Credit value: 180

Core courses:

Module 1: Historical Training: Methods and Approaches to Historical Research
Module 2: History in Context: Cities, States and Localities in History
Option module:

The special project is an original extended assignment based around the individual student’s particular area of interest. It requires students to show that they can analyse primary source material in an effective and convincing way and place it in context to throw new light on a specific historical problem or controversy. The project may focus on a particular historical event or how a particular cultural activity (such as an exhibition, film or play) has interpreted such an event. Students will not be required to attend formal weekly classes but they will attend group discussions on the practical application of historical methods and at least four supervisory sessions
Dissertation of 15,000 words

Students are also required to undertake a short (unassessed) research training course.

Assessment

Module 1 is assessed by two 2,500 word written exercises, one of which may have an oral component. Module 2 is assessed through one 5,000-word assignment and presentations based on the topics covered by the module. The special project is assessed by a 5,000 word report. Students write a dissertation on a topic of their choice, agreed with the Course Director, and submit it by 30 September.

Mode of study

12 months full-time or 24 months part-time.

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The Master's of Research in Historical Research is a one-year course that is research-oriented and allows specialisation in particular research areas. Read more

Introduction

The Master's of Research in Historical Research is a one-year course that is research-oriented and allows specialisation in particular research areas. Students are allocated an individual supervisor to direct their independent study and plan the curriculum to reflect their interests and needs. Students should maintain regular contact with supervisors through email and an agreed schedule of meetings to discuss their work and review draft submissions.

The Master's of Research (MRes) is designed
- to enable students to become well-trained historians
and
- to demonstrate their fitness to undertake research to doctoral level at Stirling or other universities in Britain and overseas. Both are achieved through the completion of independent study modules, field seminars and skills training, under supervision.

There are four variants of the MRes in Historical Research:
- MRes in Historical Research: The American Revolutionary Era
- MRes in Historial Research: Medieval Scottish History
- MRes in Historical Research: Environmental History
- MRes in HIstorical Research: Modern European History and Politics

Students are allocated an individual supervisor to direct their independent study and plan the curriculum to reflect their interests and needs.

Accreditation

The MRes programme and all constituent modules are constructed in line with the University's academic procedures and are fully assessed and externally examined. The programme is recognised by both the Arts and Humanities Research Council and the Economic and Social Research Council both of whom have given PhD awards to outstanding Stirling graduates of the MRes.

Key information

- Degree type: MRes
- Study methods: Part-time, Full-time
- Duration: Full-time: 12 months Part-time: 24 months
- Start date: September
- Course Director: Dr Jim Smyth

Course objectives

This programme prepares you for further research:
- to co-ordinate the provision of additional or external skills training and to develop the application of research skills
- students will obtain practical experience of devising and applying a research method to interrogate primary sources
- qualitative and quantitative analyses
- the application of IT in information retrieval, especially bibliographical database software,
- communication skills, written and oral
- project design involving the conceptualisation of research questions and the presentation of data and data analysis

English language requirements

If English is not your first language you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your English language skills:
- IELTS: 6.5 with 6.0 minimum in each skill
- Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE): Grade C
- Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE): Grade B
- Pearson Test of English (Academic): 60 with 56 in each component
- IBT TOEFL: 90 with no subtest less than 20

For more information go to English language requirements https://www.stir.ac.uk/study-in-the-uk/entry-requirements/english/

If you don’t meet the required score you may be able to register for one of our pre-sessional English courses. To register you must hold a conditional offer for your course and have an IELTS score 0.5 or 1.0 below the required standard. View the range of pre-sessional courses http://www.intohigher.com/uk/en-gb/our-centres/into-university-of-stirling/studying/our-courses/course-list/pre-sessional-english.aspx .

Career opportunities

The MRes has been designed with three career destinations in mind:
- to prepare graduate students for further research at doctoral level
- as a route to an academic career
- as a higher degree in its own right

The MRes will also enhance continuing professional development, particularly in teaching, journalism, marketing, and heritage management through in-depth study of particular fields; by aiming to develop critical analytical skills and research techniques, the programme provides preparation for a wide variety of research-based careers in the public and private sectors.
Most of our graduates go on to study for a PhD either by continuing at Stirling or at another University in the UK, Europe or North America. Recent graduates have secured posts in firms and institutions as varied as Historic Scotland, Sea World, and the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl).

Chances to expand your horizons
There is a lively series of guest lectures which students can attend on this programme.

Where are our graduates now?
The MRes has been designed with three career destinations in mind:
- to prepare graduate students for further research at doctoral level and as a route to an academic career
- as a higher degree in its own right
- to enhance continuing professional development, particularly in teaching, journalism, marketing, and heritage management through in-depth study of particular fields; by aiming to develop critical analytical skills and research techniques, the programme provides preparation for a wide variety of research-based careers in the public and private sectors

Employability

Skills you can develop through this programme
- command of a substantial body of historical knowledge
- understand how people have existed, acted and thought in the context of the past
- read and use texts and other source materials critically and empathetically
- appreciate the complexity and diversity of situations, events and past mentalities
- recognise there are ways of testing statements and that there are rules of evidence which require integrity and maturity
- reflect critically on the nature and theoretical underpinnings of the discipline
- marshall an argument, be self-disciplined and independent intellectually
- express themselves orally and in writing with coherence, clarity and fluency
- gather, organise and deploy evidence, data and information
- analyse and solve problems
- use effectively ICT, information retrieval and presentation skills
- exercise self-discipline, self-direction and initiative
- work with others and have respect for others’ reasoned views
- show empathy and imaginative insight
- prepare for further academic research such as a Phd

In addition, our students have the opportunity to further develop their transferable skills through voluntary internships working on collections of material held within the Division (The Scottish Political Archive and the University's own archive (e.g. UNESCO recognised Royal Scottish National Institution for mentally disabled children).

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The programme is tailored for students who wish to proceed to further research on the doctoral level on a topic related to the history of the Near and Middle East, South Asia, South East Asia, East Asia and Africa, but it also makes sense as a stand-alone programme for those who wish to explore a specific topic or question within a shorter period of time. Read more

Who is this programme for?:

The programme is tailored for students who wish to proceed to further research on the doctoral level on a topic related to the history of the Near and Middle East, South Asia, South East Asia, East Asia and Africa, but it also makes sense as a stand-alone programme for those who wish to explore a specific topic or question within a shorter period of time.

The two-year intensive language pathway is directed at students who want to engage with a country in a professional as well as academic way, as the intensive language course would enable them to reach a near proficient knowledge of the language.

Career opportunities include:

- Further historical research (PhD)
- Research positions in government institutions, NGOs, journalism, etc.

This is the only Master-level programme in Historical Research Methods focusing on the study of Asia and Africa in the UK. It provides the unique opportunity to develop and carry out a research project under the guidance of regional specialists and thus an ideal preparation for a research degree. It can also be taken with an intensive language pathway over two years, therefore making this programme unique in Europe.

Please see the webpage for the Japanese pathway of the programme, and contact the MA convenor of that pathway for further information on the language component. Further information on entry level language requirements can be found on the programme page.

The Korean pathway is designed for beginner learners of Korean. Students with prior knowledge of Korean are advised to contact the programme convenor, Dr Anders Karlsson (). Students will take four course units in the Korean language, one of them at a Korean university during the summer after year 1.

The Arabic pathway is designed for beginner learners of Arabic. Students will take four units of Arabic, one of them at the Qasid Institute in Jordan or another partner institution during the summer after year 1. Programme convenor: Dr Mustafa Shah ()

Email:

Visit the website http://www.soas.ac.uk/history/programmes/ma-historial-research-methods-and-intensive-language/

Structure

Students take 4 course units over the period of their programme of study (i.e. 2 or 4 years). This includes the core course Sources and Research Design in Historical Research (1 unit), which is taught on a one-to-one basis by the dissertation supervisor, the compulsory course Research Methods in History with Special Reference to Asia and Africa (1 unit), a minor course or courses (to the value of 1 unit) from a list of approved options and/or a language course from the Faculty of Languages and Cultures, and a 10,000 word dissertation (1 unit).

In the intensive language pathways, students take 2 intensive language units and one history unit in their first year. During the summer, they will participate in a summer school abroad (location dependant on language). Upon their return, they will take 1 language unit and 2 history units and complete work on their dissertation (1 unit). For example, Year 1: 2 intensive language units + compulsory course Research Methods in History with Special Reference to Asia and Africa; Year 2: 1 intensive language unit + core course Sources and Research Design in Historical Research (1 unit) + minor courses to the value of 1 unit + dissertation.

Aims and Outcomes

- Knowledge of a variety of theoretical issues and methodological approaches relevant for the study of historical problems

- Practical research and writing skills, developed through the study of primary and secondary sources related to Asian and African history

- A sound grounding for further research, either in a doctoral programme or in a professional environment

- A near proficient ability in the a language.

Knowledge:
1. How to locate materials and use research resources (particularly research library catalogues, archival hand lists, and digital resources), assess data and evidence critically from manuscripts, printed, and digital sources, and solve problems of conflicting sources and conflicting interpretations.

2. How to formulate and carry out a research project, based on a thorough knowledge and understanding of the particular field of study chosen by the student, the relevant literature and current debates.
3. Language skills appropriate to chosen region of study.

Intellectual (thinking) skills:
1. Students should become precise and cautious in their assessment of evidence and understand what the different types of historical sources can and cannot tell us.

2. Students should question interpretations, however authoritative, maintain an open-minded attitude to interpretations that challenge older interpretations, and reassess evidence for themselves.

3. Students should be able to think critically about the nature of the historical discipline, its methodology, historiography, and openness for interdisciplinary approaches.

4. Students should be able to reflect about the potential of historical research on non-Western societies and civilizations for the advancement of the historical discipline and human civilization in general.

Subject-based practical skills:
1. Effective writing and referencing skills, attention to detail and accuracy in presentation.

2. Effective oral presentation of seminar papers, articulation of ideas, and constructive participation in seminar discussions.

3. Ability to retrieve, sift and select information from a variety of sources, effective note-taking, record keeping and planning of projects.

4. Effective use of relevant professional databases.

5. In the two year intensive language pathway, to acquire/develop skills in a language to Effective Operational Proficiency level, i.e., being able to communicate in written and spoken medium in a contemporary language

Transferable skills:
1. Critical thinking.

2. Ability to communicate effectively in oral and written forms.

3. Information gathering skills from conventional and electronic sources.

4. Effective time-management, writing to word limits, and meeting deadlines.

Find out how to apply here - http://www.soas.ac.uk/admissions/pg/howtoapply/

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Develop your understanding of history and of the nature of historical research with this flexible course that encourages you to develop as independent researcher. Read more
Develop your understanding of history and of the nature of historical research with this flexible course that encourages you to develop as independent researcher.

Course overview

The MA Historical Research is for students who want to develop their understanding of history and of the nature of historical research. It is a flexible course that will encourage you to develop as an independent researcher. You will be able to pursue your interests in history while discovering the ways in which historians work. You will also engage with the intellectual, practical and social facets of the profession.

Core modules emphasise the nature of the discipline or historical research, its evolution (History in the Past or Historians on History) and the preparatory work for independent research (The Profession of the Historian or the Dissertation Feasibility Study). These modules will give you the grounding needed to engage with your own research project in the dissertation module.

Design your MA studies according to your preferred methods of learning. If you prefer to work independently you may choose to opt for the Extended History Dissertation, whereas if you prefer more taught elements you can opt for the History Dissertation. This will allow you to place more or less emphasis on independent work and research. The Extended History Dissertation is a great opportunity for those wanting to move on to further research or who want to develop a career in which research is a key element. In both cases, the project will be negotiated with the teaching team to reflect both you and your lecturers’ research interests.

The course is designed to implement the research-led curriculum of the university in which you become involved in research through the guidance of research-active members of staff - all staff members on the teaching team are research active.

You will graduate with a firm grounding in the way history evolves through an understanding of the nature of the discipline in all its diversity and of the challenges it faces. This, combined with an engagement with a specific subject area, will foster a critical understanding of history, necessary for a wide range of careers in research, academia, law, journalism and the cultural sector.

Course content

The course mixes taught elements with independent research and self-directed study. There is flexibility to pursue personal interests in considerable depth, with guidance from Sunderland's supportive tutors.

Core module:
-History in the past (15 Credits)
-Historians on History (15 Credits)
-History in the past (15 Credits)
-Historians on History (15 Credits)
-Dissertation Feasibility study (30 Credits)
-The profession of the historian (15 Credits)
-The Profession of the historian (Symposium/Webinar) (15 Credits)

Dissertation modules:
-History Dissertation (60 Credits)
-Extended History Dissertation (90 Credits)

Optional modules (for students choosing the Dissertation module HISM40) would typically include:
-Suicide Until the Reformation
-Suicide Since the Reformation
-Law, Family and Community Relations 1550-1800
-Law, Treason and Rebellion 1550-1800
-Britain Between the Wars: The Changing Party System
-Britain Between the Wars: The Challenges of the Inter War Years
-Foundations of Liberty - Obedience and Resistance
-Foundations of liberty - Religious toleration
-Human Rights in History: Ideas and Movements
-Human Rights in History: Organizations, Activists and Campaigns
-Revolution in Science and Art 1870-1920
-Revolution in Science and Art 1870-1920

You will normally choose your options during the induction week when the full list of optional modules available that year will be presented to you. The number of optional modules offered will depend on the size of the cohort and the availability of staff. Not all options will be available every year. In any one academic year no more than three optional modules (3 x 15 credits) will be offered. Optional modules all run in Semester 2.

Facilities & location

The University of Sunderland has excellent facilities that have been boosted by multi-million pound redevelopments.

University Library Services
We’ve got thousands of books and e-books on topics related to history, with many more titles available through the inter-library loan service. We also subscribe to a comprehensive range of print and electronic journals so you can access the most reliable and up-to-date academic and industry articles.

Some of the most important sources for your course include:
-House of Commons Parliamentary Papers including bills, registers and journals
-Early English Books Online, which provides digital images of virtually every work printed in England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland and British North America during 1473-1800
-Eighteenth Century Collections Online, which provides 136,000 full-text publications from 1701-1800
-Periodicals Archive Online, which provides digitised literary journals
-Archival Sound Recordings with over 12,000 hours of recordings
-JSTOR (short for ‘Journal Storage’), which provides access to important journals across the humanities, social sciences and sciences
Lexis, which provides access to legal information as well as full-text newspaper articles
-Nineteenth Century British Library Newspapers, with full runs of 48 titles
-Screen Online (BFI), which is an online encyclopaedia of British film and television, featuring clips from the vast collections of the BFI National Archive
-SocINDEX with full-text articles, which is probably the world's most comprehensive and highest-quality sociology research database

Archives
The Murray Library at the University also contains the physical archive of the North East England Mining Archive and Resource Centre. This contains mining records, technical reports, trade union records and health & safety information.

IT provision
When it comes to IT provision you can take your pick from hundreds of PCs as well as Apple Macs in the David Goldman Informatics Centre and St Peter’s library. There are also free WiFi zones throughout the campus. If you have any problems, just ask the friendly helpdesk team.

Course location
The course is based at the Priestman Building on City Campus, just a few minutes from the main Murray Library and close to Sunderland city centre. It’s a very vibrant and supportive environment with excellent resources for teaching and learning.

Employment & careers

This course is relevant to a wide range of professions, highlighting as it does critical and analytical skills and an ability to develop and effectively advance an argument. A large number of transferable skills will be gained: research skills, writing skills, presentation skills, analytical and critical skills. These will be valuable in a huge range of careers and activities.

The course has been designed with employability in mind, with a focus on the way research skills can be transferred to the work place.

History by nature is a subject that includes a number of transferable skills such as critical thinking, collecting and analysing data critically, working independently and to a deadline, developing a coherent argument, writing, and oral skills. The QAA Subject Benchmark statement for History (December 2014) lists the some following (§3.3):
-Self discipline
-Independence of mind, and initiative
-A questioning disposition and the ability to formulate and pursue clearly defined questions and enquiries
-Ability to work with others, and to have respect for others' reasoned views
-Ability to gather, organise and deploy evidence, data and information; and familiarity with appropriate means of identifying, finding, retrieving, sorting and exchanging information
-Analytical ability, and the capacity to consider and solve problems, including complex problems to which there is no single solution
-Structure, coherence, clarity and fluency of both oral and written expression
-Imaginative insight and creativity
-Awareness of ethical issues and responsibilities that arise from research into the past and the reuse of the research and writing of others

These transferable skills will be fostered through each module and particularly emphasised in core modules. Furthermore, the research skills module The profession of the historian Symposium/Webinar will involve the organisation of a mini symposium. You will be expected to engage with some of the administrative and practical skills involved in organising an academic event.

During the dissertation feasibility study, you will be expected to deliver papers to an audience of staff and peers, allowing you to practice your oral and presentational skills.

MA Historical Research graduates can expect to be employed in:
-Teaching
-Archives
-Libraries
-Museums
-Journalism
-Law

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This Master’s degree in history will provide you with the advanced conceptual, theoretical and practical skills necessary for undertaking historical research, whether at PhD level, professionally or independently. Read more
This Master’s degree in history will provide you with the advanced conceptual, theoretical and practical skills necessary for undertaking historical research, whether at PhD level, professionally or independently. It will give you the intellectual foundations, practical techniques and confidence to pursue your own research in the historical subject or period that most interests you.

The core modules provide fundamental training in approaching and carrying out research at a postgraduate level, including locating, retrieving and managing historical evidence, contextualising and analysing textual, visual and material sources, and using qualitative and quantitative methods, including specialist software, to assess and analyse historical data. We will critically examine problems of historical theory and practice, with an emphasis on debates around key topics such as historical narrative, objectivity and relativism, causation, the relationship of history to other disciplines, the rise and impact of social and cultural histories, and new directions in historical research and writing. We will consider some of the key methodological and theoretical approaches to history of the past 100 years, including the Annales School, Marxist historiography and postmodernism.

As well as being able to choose option modules from the extensive range offered by the Department of History, Classics and Archaeology, you will also be able to elect to undertake option modules offered by other departments. The culmination of the programme is the writing of an independently researched dissertation under the guidance and supervision of one of our research-active academics.

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 degree in historical research is specifically aimed at providing intellectual and skills training for students considering future research at PhD level, professionally or independently.
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.
Find out more about why you should study with us.

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Our Historical Research & Public History MA offers a rich and intensive study of historical research and public history. The programme is designed to produce talented and sought-after historians who are able to apply their skills not only to academia but also to the practice of history in the public sphere. Read more
Our Historical Research & Public History MA offers a rich and intensive study of historical research and public history. The programme is designed to produce talented and sought-after historians who are able to apply their skills not only to academia but also to the practice of history in the public sphere.

The Historical Research & Public History MA is a one-year programme taught primarily through seminars of no more than 10 students, over the course of 86 full contact hours.

In addition, you will receive 11 hours of intensive one-to-one tutorials, in which our academics will engage and work with you to clarify, challenge, defend and develop the arguments and ideas that you express in your essays. The tutorial method is the gold standard of a humanities education. It draws out your potential by providing the deepest insights and sharpens your intellectual skills. Graduate students are also welcome to attend lectures in all the other degree programmes being offered in history or other disciplines at NCH.

MA students are also strongly encouraged to attend 40 hours of lectures on ‘History, Heritage & Memory’, which are delivered by the History Faculty as part of the College’s History BA degree. You may also attend the regular professorial lectures that are delivered to our undergraduates and friends of the College in order to further enrich their studies, led by the College’s world-leading Visiting Professors including Bettany Hughes, Sir Christopher Ricks, Richard Dawkins, Steven Pinker, and others.

NCH understands the importance of thinking about your future while you are studying for your degree, so that you are ready to succeed in whatever you choose to do as soon as you graduate. All postgraduate students at NCH have the opportunity to benefit from the College’s professional development advisory service where you will work with our careers department on an individual basis throughout your time at NCH.

Whether you decide to pursue a career or start their own business, NCH will help identify a professional or academic future that best matches your ambitions and aptitudes, and to prepare you for success after graduation.

Research and archives

You will be introduced to major research libraries and archives including the National Archives, Senate House Library, the British Library and the British Museum, which is located mere steps from NCH.

You will be taught how to search these archives for primary sources – dating from the medieval, early modern and modern past and including manuscript sources, printed texts and quantified data – and how to research, evaluate and critique a wide range of different source materials.

You will learn to distinguish between and assess different historical perspectives, and to evaluate the usefulness of inter-disciplinary approaches to history, including anthropology, the history of art, and literary studies.

Public history

The public history strand of the programme teaches you how to critically appraise the ways in which historical knowledge can contribute to a wider public engagement with the past, and the challenges and complexities of reconstructing the past for a public audience.

During your studies, you will meet with professionals who practise History in the public realm, including historical novelists, media producers, museum curators and keeper of historic archives. The faculty will also organise a study trip a major historic house, or another site of historic interest.

Programme outline

Our Historical Research & Public History MA is a one-year programme of study, or can be studied part-time across three years.

Each of the programme’s seven courses have been developed and will be delivered by the History Faculty at NCH, led by award-winning academic, historian and broadcaster Dr Suzannah Lipscomb.

o Course 1: The Historian’s Craft
o Course 2: Depth Study I*
o Course 3: Public History
o Course 4: Depth Study II*
o Course 5: Dissertation I
o Course 6: Applied Public History
o Course 7: Dissertation II

* Depth Studies are chosen from:

o The Royal Court: Ritual, Culture & Power in Medieval England, 1150-1300
o Reality & Utopia: Renaissance Political Thought
o Cross-Cultural encounters in the Early Modern World
o The Later Victorian Age: Society & Culture, 1870-1900
o African Americans & Economic Inequality from Civil War to Civil Rights

Where we teach

New College of the Humanities has the great fortune of being based in one of the best locations for a higher education institution in the UK. Situated in the heart of Bloomsbury, the main building is mere steps from the Senate House Library and the British Museum, and just a few minutes’ walk to Oxford Street, Covent Garden, Theatreland and an array of galleries and museums.

The majority of your seminars and weekly one-to-one tutorials will take place in The Registry on Bedford Square, which is home to the College’s teaching and administrative facilities.

The Registry is a stunning and recently refurbished Grade I listed, five-storey townhouse, situated in the centre of one of the most beautiful examples of a Georgian terrace. It stands opposite the tranquil and beautiful Bedford Square Gardens, the first garden square with an imposed architectural uniformity, which set the style for garden squares across London.

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This course is excellent preparation for a research degree in history. You can further your interests, broaden your knowledge and at the same time hone your research skills. Read more

About the course

This course is excellent preparation for a research degree in history. You can further your interests, broaden your knowledge and at the same time hone your research skills. As well as specific research training in history, you’ll also gain a broad range of transferable skills that will be of value to employers outside academia.

If you’re already focused on taking a PhD in history, this intensive course improves your chances of getting funding from the AHRC, ESRC and others.

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

Dissertation; Research Presentation and a choice of research skills modules including Research Skills for Historians; Directed Reading; Palaeography; Latin and modern languages.

Examples of optional modules

Order and Disorder Around theYear 1000; Prisoners of War in the Twentieth Century; Crime and Punishment in Late Antiquity; City Life in Jacksonian America, 1828-1850; Language and Society in Early Modern England; Cold War Histories; Debating Cultural Imperialism in the Nineteenth-Century British Empire; Stories of Activism, 1960 to the Present.

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This Master's degree in history will equip you with the advanced historical research skills needed to complete an individual, large-scale research project. Read more
This Master's degree in history will equip you with the advanced historical research skills needed to complete an individual, large-scale research project. Core modules will help you develop project management skills and extend your critical analytical skills through the planning and writing of a literature review. You will also learn practical skills and techniques, including locating and retrieving historical material, critiquing primary and secondary sources, and examining and organising historical information. These core modules are taught by experienced, research-active academics with a range of methodological research skills and publications, while your dissertation supervisor will be an innovator in their field of research.

The programme culminates in the researching and writing of a 30,000-word dissertation on the topic that most interests you, which will allow you to exercise and demonstrate your advanced historical research skills.

This course is ideal for self-motivated and committed students who wish to research and write on a complex, specialised area of historical knowledge that interests them, whether in preparation for historical research at PhD level, professionally or independently.

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 research Master's degree in history will train you in historical research skills if you wish to complete a substantial historical research project, such as a PhD.
You will be taught by, and work alongside, internationally renowned historians and researchers covering a wide geographical and thematic spread.
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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Our unique MSc Research Methods in Psychology programme allows you to study theory while benefitting from hands-on research experience. Read more
Our unique MSc Research Methods in Psychology programme allows you to study theory while benefitting from hands-on research experience.

It covers the breadth of contemporary psychological research methods and allows you to develop research approaches to studying psychology, from the level of social groups through to neuro-imaging of brain activity.

PROGRAMME OVERVIEW

Our MSc Research Methods in Psychology programme is designed to provide you with expertise in psychological research methods appropriate for the behavioural sciences.

You will develop the skills necessary for critically evaluating research, formulating innovative research questions, conducting empirical research, and analysing, interpreting and reporting research results.

The programme covers the breadth of contemporary psychological research methods, allowing you to develop research approaches that combine multiple methods in unique ways. By the end of the programme, you will have developed an individual profile of research skills.

The programme also provides an ideal stepping stone for research at PhD level.

PROGRAMME STRUCTURE

This programme is studied full-time over one academic year and part-time students must study at least two taught technical modules per academic year. It consists of eight taught modules and a dissertation. The following modules are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that not all modules described are compulsory and may be subject to teaching availability and/or student demand.
-Aspects of Experimental Psychology
-Crafting Research: Linking Theory & Methods
-Dissertation
-Psychological Neuroscience: Electrophysiology
-Psychological Neuroscience: Psychophysics & fMRI
-Qualitative Research Methods
-Quantitative Research Methods
-Preparation for Academic Research in Psychology
-Conducting Health Psychology Research
-Social Change and Influence
-Maintaining Health Throughout the Lifespan
-Key Questions in Environmental Psychology: People & Place

CAREER PROSPECTS

Students who have completed the Psychology programmes have progressed to a range of careers in areas such as local government, management, research posts in universities and commercial organisations, healthcare and clinical psychology, and many have progressed on to study for a PhD.

RESEARCH

We believe in involving all postgraduate students in the research life of the School through active participation in one of the research groups, attendance at research seminars and, where possible, an attachment to ongoing research projects.

As a student of the Department of Psychology, you will also have access to a number of conferences, seminars and workshops hosted throughout the year.

EDUCATIONAL AIMS OF THE PROGRAMME

-To provide postgraduate students with expertise of current psychological research methods appropriate for the behavioural sciences
-To provide postgraduate students with the skills necessary for research at PhD level and/or making transition to the world of work
-To provide postgraduate students with the skills necessary for formulating appropriate research questions, conducting empirical research and analysing and reporting research results

PROGRAMME LEARNING OUTCOMES

The programme provides opportunities for students to develop and demonstrate knowledge and understanding, skills, qualities and other attributes in the following areas:

Knowledge and understanding
-Of the basic principles of research design and strategies
-Of psychology as an evidence-based science and the historical and theoretical issues underlying the discipline
-Of psychological concepts and methodologies and how to evaluate the range of alternative research methods
-Of quantitative/qualitative techniques to manage and analyse psychological data
-Of different methods to present and communicate the results
-Of ethical considerations when undertaking research

Intellectual / cognitive skills
-Critically assess and comment on both published and unpublished sources of research
-Critically weigh up the contributions and limitations of psychological theories and methods in addressing research problems
-Critically compare methods and research findings to develop, where appropriate, integrative theoretical frameworks to understand research methodologies
-Design, conduct and evaluate psychological research including a rationale for choice of methods employed;
-Reflect on the mutual interaction between theory development, practice and application.

Professional practical skills
-Communicate work in a professional manner for academic and non-academic audiences in written and verbal formats
-Apply problem solving techniques to psychological research topics effectively
-Use effective learning strategies
-Analyse and interpret quantitative and qualitative empirical evidence in a competent and critical manner

Key / transferable skills
-Communicate theories and methods in relation to psychology research by oral and written means
-Use information technology effectively
-Manage own personal development

GLOBAL OPPORTUNITIES

We often give our students the opportunity to acquire international experience during their degrees by taking advantage of our exchange agreements with overseas universities.

In addition to the hugely enjoyable and satisfying experience, time spent abroad adds a distinctive element to your CV.

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The focus of this programme is on contemporary substantive issues in criminology and criminal justice and on criminological research methods. Read more
The focus of this programme is on contemporary substantive issues in criminology and criminal justice and on criminological research methods. It is particularly appropriate for those engaged in criminal justice policy analysis and development or similar work in allied fields.

The programme develops a theoretical, policy and technical understanding of key issues within criminology, criminal justice and research methods. More specifically, it aims to develop an advanced understanding of the complex nature of crime, harm and victimisation together with an appreciation of the role of the state/criminal justice system in the regulation of human behaviour, deviance and crime. The programme will equip you to design and implement social scientific research using a broad range of methodologies, consider research ethics, analyse and present the material such research generates.

Through combining criminology and research methods, the programme enables you to think logically and in an informed manner about criminological issues. The programme fosters a critical awareness of the relationship between theory, policy and practice and enables you to utilize your research knowledge of research skills and translate these into research practice in the field of criminology and broader social science research professions.

See the website http://www.lsbu.ac.uk/courses/course-finder/criminology-social-research-methods-msc

Modules

You'll undertake modules from a broad base of subject areas including:

- Criminological theory
This module charts the development of criminological thinking from the onset of modernity through to the present day. It will place discrete theories in their proper sociological, historical, political and cultural contexts. It will seek to establish the implications and relationships of various theories to criminal justice policy. A number of contemporary issues (terrorism, urban disturbances, and gang culture) will be explored with a view to critically evaluating the value of competing theoretical frameworks.

- Crime, harm and victimisation
The module aims to deconstruct the fundamental elements of criminology: the crime, the criminal and the victim. It begins by examining historical and contemporary patterns of crime and criminality, as officially measured, within the UK and beyond. It then engages with more critical academic debates about defining and measuring crime, considering definitions of crime as: a breach of criminal law; a violation of collective conscience; a product of conduct norms; a social construct; ideological censure; a gendered reality; a violation of human rights, and; social or environmental harm. The module engages with critical deconstructions of the 'offender' and the 'victim', considering how these are socially constructed and how our understanding of these, like of 'crime', has changed and continues to change in late-/post-modern society.

- Responding to crime: justice, social control and punishment
This module explores some of the key issues and controversies in the delivery of justice, social control and punishment. It begins with a critical consideration of the concept of justice and emphasises the significance of this in relation to how the state responds to various forms of crime. It encourages you to think critically about the role of the state in the regulation of behaviour and provides an overview of key changes that have occurred in the field of crime control and criminal justice. One of the key features of contemporary crime control discourse is the rise of risk management and the pursuit of security. This module outlines the ways in which such a discourse has transformed criminal justice thinking and practices of both policing and penal policy, and also of crime (and harm) prevention.

- Criminological research in practice
This module uses examples from recent and current research conducted by members of the Crime and Justice Research Group at LSBU and external guest speakers to develop both the research training and subject understanding elements of the MSc, demonstrating how research becomes knowledge – generating theoretical advances, policy initiatives, new research questions and university curricula. Lectures/seminars will take the form of a research commentary, talking you through a research project from idea inception through research design, fieldwork, analysis and dissemination and, where appropriate, on to the influences research has had (or could have) on subsequent academic works and policy developments. Particular emphasis will be placed on challenges peculiar to criminological research.

- Methods for social research and evaluation: philosophy, design and data collection
This module introduces you to core concepts in social research and shows how they can be used to address social scientific questions and practical issues in policy evaluation. You'll be introduced to central topics in the philosophy of social sciences and the effect they have on research choices. You are then introduced to different ways research can be designed and the ways design affects permissible inferences. You are then introduced to the theory of measurement and sampling. The final third of the module focuses on acquiring data ranging from survey methods through qualitative data collection methods to secondary data.

- Data analytic techniques for social scientists
You are introduced to a range of analytic techniques commonly used by social scientists. It begins by introducing you to statistical analysis, it then moves to techniques used to analyse qualitative data. It concludes by looking at relational methods and data reduction techniques. You'll also be introduced to computer software (SPSS, NVivo and Ucinet) that implements the techniques. Students will gain both a conceptual understanding of the techniques and the means to apply them to their own research projects. An emphasis will be placed on how these techniques can be used in social evaluation.

- Dissertation
The dissertation is a major part of your work on the MSc, reflected in its value of 60 credits. The aim of the dissertation is to enable students to expand and deepen their knowledge of a substantive area in criminology, whilst simultaneously developing their methodological skills. You'll choose an area of investigation and apply the research skills of design and process, modes of data generation and data analysis techniques to undertake a 15,000 word dissertation. You'll be allocated a dissertation supervisor from the departmental team and will meet regularly for personal supervision meetings.

Employability

This MSc will enable you to pursue a range of professional careers in criminal justice related work in statutory, commercial or community voluntary sectors and operating at central, regional and local government levels, for example, the Home Office; police forces; local government; crime and disorder reduction partnerships and their equivalencies throughout the world.

The acquisition of specific criminological and research methods knowledge will also enhance the career opportunities if you are currently working in the field. The specialist focus on research methods also offers an excellent foundation for those interested in undertaking subsequent doctoral research in the field.

LSBU Employability Services

LSBU is committed to supporting you develop your employability and succeed in getting a job after you have graduated. Your qualification will certainly help, but in a competitive market you also need to work on your employability, and on your career search. Our Employability Service will support you in developing your skills, finding a job, interview techniques, work experience or an internship, and will help you assess what you need to do to get the job you want at the end of your course. LSBU offers a comprehensive Employability Service, with a range of initiatives to complement your studies, including:

- direct engagement from employers who come in to interview and talk to students
- Job Shop and on-campus recruitment agencies to help your job search
- mentoring and work shadowing schemes.

Professional links

The Crime and Criminal Justice Research Group, (CCJRG), at LSBU has developed a strong national and international reputation for delivering high quality and real life impact research. It has worked closely with a range of government agencies, including the Office for Criminal Justice Reform (Ministry of Justice); Government Office for London; the Scottish Executive, Northern Ireland Office and the Equalities and Human Rights Commission. It has also undertaken extensive research in collaboration with various London local authorities together with a range of voluntary and charity-based agencies.

Placements

Our criminology programme also has a strong voluntary work scheme.You're encouraged to undertake voluntary work in a variety of criminal justice related agencies. Recent positions have been within the police service, the prison service, legal advice, victim support, domestic violence and child abuse agencies and youth offending and youth mentoring schemes.

Teaching and learning

Study hours:
Year 1 class contact time is typically 6 hours per week part time and 12 hours per week full time plus individual tutorial and independent study.

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Our MRes programme provide a personalised and focused introduction to postgraduate research allowing you to develop as an independent researcher with the support of an expert in Latin American Studies. Read more
Our MRes programme provide a personalised and focused introduction to postgraduate research allowing you to develop as an independent researcher with the support of an expert in Latin American Studies. It provides a rigorous overview of the current state of scholarship in your selected field, guides you, through a programme of directed, individualised reading, to the selection of a feasible research project, and allows you to complete a substantial piece of research.

As an MRes student you will benefit from your membership of the university research community, both students and academic staff. You will also have access to facilities available to doctoral students e.g. free Interlibrary loans, a print allowance and a research allowance.

Key Facts

REF 2014
We're ranked in top 50% for 4* and 3* research with 90% of environment at 4* and 3* (world leading and internationally excellent).

French
Since 2001, the Department has housed three major AHRC-funded projects in French; it also continues to be one of the leading centres in French studies for innovation in the application of IT and new technology to text-based research and the creation of international research networks. A major new monograph series, Liverpool University Press’s ‘Contemporary French and Francophone Cultures’, is co-edited within Modern Languages and Cultures.

German
Research in German studies at Liverpool continues to develop its breadth and vitality, through new appointments, and through a strategy directed towards promoting cooperation among staff in different subject areas. Colleagues are actively involved in interdisciplinary research centres, namely the Research Centre in Eighteenth-Century Studies, the Centre for the Study of International Slavery, and CAVA (The Centre for Architecture and the Visual Arts). These research centres provide a dynamic context for the development of staff and postgraduate research, and underpin and vitalise interdisciplinary research within the section and department as a whole.

Hispanic Studies
We continue to extend research activity over a broad range of areas in Iberian and Latin American Studies. The School is now at the forefront of high profile research in literary, historical, linguistic and cultural studies. Our research emphasises our understanding of ‘Hispanic studies’ in the broadest sense, as relating to the multiple geographical and linguistic contexts that make up the Hispanic and Lusophone worlds.

Latin American Studies and Italian Studies
The section has recently made new appointments including a new post extending our expertise to North America and the Caribbean. We have consolidated research clusters in American, Brazilian, Hispanic and Caribbean Studies, enhancing the research environment by providing institutional support to colleagues with related and overlapping interests. A University-wide research centre Research Institute of Latin American Studies (RILAS) fosters a robust research environment based in the Department.
Research in Italian studies is a recent addition to the School’s portfolio. The focus is on the contemporary and staff are involved in interdisciplinary research projects which feature, amongst others, the Linguistic Landscape, Italian political cinema and European cinema.

Why Department of Modern Languages and Cultures?

Introduction to Modern Languages and Cultures

We are a smaller department than many, but manage at the same time to maintain a variety of very distinctive areas of strength in research. As a result we are uniquely placed to offer taught programmes which are tailored to the individual in a friendly, supportive atmosphere and, for research students, close contact with your supervisors from the outset.

There is a high degree of interdisciplinary activity, with students and staff from all disciplines interacting through institutional research centres, cross-School reading groups, research groups and seminars.

We offer an MA in Latin American Studies and an MA in Modern Languages (French / German / Hispanic Studies/Italian) and supervision on a wide range of topics for both MPhil and PhD study.

Applications are welcome for both full-time and part-time study. Postgraduate students form an integral part of our research culture, and are encouraged to become involved in conference, workshops and seminar series, in addition, we have postgraduate reading groups and a regular programme of postgraduate workshops involving leading scholars visiting the institution. We have an active and vibrant research community, with staff engaging in research covering eight language areas consisting of French, German, Italian, Spanish, Galician, Catalan, Portuguese and Corsican. Research interests range from medieval manuscripts to contemporary cyber literature, and cover a wide geographical remit, with staff working on American, Latin American, and Caribbean, African and Indian contexts as well as European ones.

We are home to three scholarly journals: Bulletin of Hispanic Studies, Bulletin of Latin American Research, and Migrations and Identities as well as a number of prominent book series.

Research Overview

Our research activities are broadly organised around four research groups in addition to the Research Institute of Latin American Studies. The groups are engaged in interdisciplinary work, taking in literary, visual and historical sources, and collaborating across the language areas.

Latin American Studies

Latin American Studies is one of Modern languages and Cultures' major research specialisms. The six permanent members of staff have research interests in the following domains of Latin American Studies: anthropology, cultural studies, history, literature, politics, and sociology and extend to Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Central America, the Caribbean and southern USA. The Sydney Jones Library is an acknowledged centre of excellence for collections in Latin American Studies. Additional facilities for all postgraduates include access to regular seminars and short conferences, language tuition, and use of the University’s networked computer facilities.

Career prospects

Former postgraduates in French, German and Hispanic Studies are currently employed in senior positions at the universities of: Aberdeen, Sussex, Leeds, Sheffield, Kings College London, Loughborough, Salford and Liverpool, as well as in a variety of careers.

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A University of Hertfordshire Masters research degree is an internationally recognised degree signifying achievement in research. Read more
A University of Hertfordshire Masters research degree is an internationally recognised degree signifying achievement in research. While an MA/MSc is a taught, modular programme, a Masters by Research is a programme of research and skills development negotiated with your supervisors and based on your own research proposal.

About the course

The Masters by Research degree may be undertaken in full-time (1 year) or part-time (2 year) modes in any creative arts discipline that the School engages with and for which we have appropriately qualified supervisory staff. In the School of Creative Arts we have a wide range of expertise in historical and theoretical research, as well as in practice-led/practice-based research, relating to fine and applied arts, film, media and TV studies, interior and architectural design, music and the music industry.

During the period of study for the Masters by Research degree you will develop a greater depth of subject expertise and independent research skills. You will undertake a focused research project for the duration of the degree, under the supervision and guidance of two or more academic members of staff who are your supervisors. In addition you will engage with a negotiated programme of selected generic skills development and careers workshops provided by the University of Hertfordshire Doctoral College.

Your Masters by Research project project may be purely theoretical or contain elements of your own practice. If there is a practice element, one of your supervisors would be a practitioner in an appropriate discipline, and appropriate studio space and/or workshop facilities would be made available if necessary. The School has a wide range of outstanding facilities for researchers in the broad area of creative arts, and the University library has an excellent range of relevant and up-to-date resources to support research in this area.

During the course of the degree, you would typically be given opportunities present your research at seminars and conferences, and to exhibit your practical work if it is part of the research project. Some opportunities in this regard may be provided by the School or the University.

Why choose this course?

-An internationally recognised research qualification
-Develop subject expertise at postgraduate level
-Develop research skills through practice and research experience
-Employers are looking for high calibre graduates with advanced skills who can demonstrate independent creative thinking and problem-solving through research

Careers

Graduates with this degree will be able to demonstrate to employers a highly-valued ability to work independently on an original project and to maintain that focus over an extended period, and will have developed much sought after research skills. Research students also benefit from the School’s networks of international partners in the creative and cultural industries, which may offer valuable opportunities for career development, as well as from career development workshops and events.

The skills, knowledge and experience gained will also provide a valuable grounding if you wish to study at Doctoral level at some point after you have completed your MA by Research.

Teaching methods

Research degrees are not taught programmes, however, programmes of supporting studies are a key element.

The School of Creative Arts has a lively research community staffed by supervisors whose research is world leading, Supervisory teams provide guidance in helping you to formulate and develop your research during the course of the programme.

We offer a range of subject specific research training throughout various research group seminars. Our research students are strongly encouraged to participate in modules in our taught Masters programmes, and the University also has an extensive Researcher Development Programme, which is provided by the UH Doctoral College and offers generic research training.

The Masters by Research has two main assessment points after enrolment: Initial Registration for the degree after 3 months for both full-time and part-time students, and the final examination. Your research will be examined on the basis of the final submission which may include a combination of both written and non-textual material that must be "defended" in a viva and contain a thesis (a position that can be defended by substantiated argument).

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The Postgraduate Certificate in Historical Studies offers an exciting new opening for graduates of all disciplines to pursue a taught postgraduate qualification in historical studies. Read more
The Postgraduate Certificate in Historical Studies offers an exciting new opening for graduates of all disciplines to pursue a taught postgraduate qualification in historical studies. This one-year part-time course offers a unique opportunity for students to combine focused study of key historical themes and concepts in British and Western European history with either a broad-based approach to history or with the opportunity to specialise by period or in a branch of the discipline (political, social, economic, art, architectural and local). The course culminates in the research and preparation of a substantial dissertation.

The Postgraduate Certificate in Historical Studies forms part of a two-year Master's programme. Students who successfully complete the Postgraduate Certificate in Historical Studies are eligible to apply to the Master's of Study in Historical Studies (https://www.conted.ox.ac.uk/about/mst-in-historical-studies).

This Historical Studies course offers a stimulating and supportive environment for study. As a student of Oxford University you will also be entitled to attend History Faculty lectures and to join the Bodleian Library. The University’s Museums and Art Galleries are within easy walking distance.

Visit the website https://www.conted.ox.ac.uk/about/postgraduate-certificate-in-historical-studies

Course content

Unit 1: Princes, States, and Revolutions
The first unit examines the interaction between the state and the individual from medieval to modern times and focuses upon authority, resistance, revolution and the development of political institutions. It introduces the development of scholarly debate, key historical themes and the critical analysis of documentary sources. Students explore disorder and rebellion in medieval and early modern England; the causes and impact of the British Civil Wars; and the causes and impact of the French Revolution.

Unit 2: European Court Patronage c.1400
The second unit explores cultural patronage in late medieval Europe and examines the diverse courtly responses to shared concerns and experiences, including the promotion of power and status; the relationship between piety and power; and the impact of dominant cultures. It introduces comparative approaches to history, the critical analysis of visual sources and the methodological issues surrounding the interpretation of material culture and the translation of written sources. Students compare the courts of Richard II of England, Philip the Bold and John the Fearless of Burgundy, Charles V and Charles VI of France, and Giangaleazzo Visconti of Milan.

Unit 3: Religious Reformations and Movements
The third unit examines the role of organised religion and religious movements in the lives of people in the past. It utilises case studies from different historical periods to explore the impact of local circumstances upon the reception and development of new ideas and further encourages engagement with historical debate and the interpretation of documentary and visual sources. Students explore: medieval monasticism; the English and European reformations of the sixteenth century; and religion and society in nineteenth-century England, including the rise of nonconformity, secularism and the Oxford Movement.

Unit 4: Memory and Conflict
The fourth unit focuses upon a central theme in the study of twentieth-century European history: how societies have chosen to remember (and forget) violent conflicts, and the relationship between public and private memory. It explores the challenges faced by historians when interpreting documentary, visual and oral sources in the writing of recent history. Students examine the theoretical context and methodological approaches to the study of memory and consider two case studies: World War I and the Spanish Civil War.

Unit 5: Special Subjects
In the final unit, students study a source-based special subject and research and write a dissertation on a related topic of their own choice. A range of subjects will be offered, varying from year to year, allowing specialization across both time periods and the historical disciplines. Examples include:

- Visualising Sanctity: Art and the Culture of Saints c1150-1500
- The Tudor Court
- The English Nobility c1540-1640
- The Great Indian Mutiny and Anglo-Indian Relations in the Nineteenth Century
- The British Empire
- Propaganda in the Twentieth Century

The on-line teaching modules

The first module provides a pre-course introduction to history and post-graduate study skills. The second focuses upon the analysis and interpretation of material sources, such as buildings and images and the third upon the analysis and interpretation of a range of documentary sources. All include a range of self-test exercises.

Libraries and computing facilities

Registered students receive an Oxford University card, valid for one year at a time, which acts as a library card for the Departmental Library at Rewley House and provides access to the unrivalled facilities of the Bodleian Libraries which include the central Bodleian, major research libraries such as the Sackler Library, Taylorian Institution Library, Bodleian Social Science Library, and faculty libraries such as English and History. Students also have access to a wide range of electronic resources including electronic journals, many of which can be accessed from home. Students on the course are entitled to use the Library at Rewley House for reference and private study and to borrow books. The loan period is normally two weeks and up to eight books may be borrowed. Students will also be encouraged to use their nearest University library. More information about the Continuing Education Library can be found at http://www.bodleian.ox.ac.uk/conted.

The University card also provides access to facilities at Oxford University Computing Service (OUCS), 13 Banbury Road, Oxford. Computing facilities are available to students in the Students' Computing Facility in Rewley House and at Ewert House.

Course aims

The Postgraduate Certificate in Historical Studies course is designed to:

- provide a structured introduction to the study of medieval and modern British and European history;

- develop awareness and understanding of historical processes, such as continuity and change, comparative perspectives and the investigation of historical problems;

- provide the methodology required to interpret visual arts as historical evidence;

- equip students to evaluate and interpret historical evidence critically;

- promote interest in the concept and discipline of history and its specialisms;

- enable students to develop the analytical and communication skills needed to present historical argument orally and in writing;

- prepare students for progression to study at Master's level.

By the end of the course students will be expected to:

- display a broad knowledge and understanding of the themes and methodologies studied;

- demonstrate a detailed knowledge and understanding of key topics, the historical interpretation surrounding them and the relationship between local case-studies and the national perspective;

- utilise the appropriate critical and/or technical vocabulary associated with the disciplines, periods and themes covered;

- identify underlying historical processes, make cross-comparisons between countries and periods and explore historical problems;

- assess the relationship between the visual arts and the cultural framework within which they were produced;

- evaluate and analyse texts and images as historical evidence and utilise them to support and develop an argument;

- develop, sustain and communicate historical argument orally and in writing;

- reflect upon the nature and development of the historical disciplines and their contribution to national culture;

- demonstrate the skills needed to conduct an independent research project and present it as a dissertation within a restricted timeframe.

Assessment methods

The Postgraduate Certificate in Historical Studies is assessed through coursework. This comprises: four essays of 2,500 words each, two source-based exercises of 1,500 words each and a dissertation of 8,000 words. Students will write one essay following each of the first four units and the dissertation following unit 5. There will be a wide choice of assignment subjects for each unit and students will select a dissertation topic relating to their special subject with the advice of the course team. Students will be asked to write a non-assessed book review following the first pre-course online module and the source-based exercises will follow the second and third online modules.

Assignment titles, submission deadlines and reading lists will be supplied at the start of the course.

Tuition and study

A variety of teaching methods will be used in both the face-to-face and online elements of the course. In addition to lectures, PowerPoint slide presentations and tutor-led discussion, there will be opportunities for students to undertake course exercises in small groups and to give short presentations on prepared topics.

University lectures

Students are taught by the Department’s own staff but are also entitled to attend, at no extra cost, the wide range of lectures and research seminars organised by the University of Oxford’s History Faculty. Students are able to borrow books from both the Department’s library and the History Faculty Library, and are also eligible for membership of the Bodleian Library.

Find out how to apply here - http://www.ox.ac.uk/admissions/graduate/applying-to-oxford

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