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Masters Degrees (Renaissance)

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MA Renaissance Studies explores the question of what the Renaissance was and what approaches are best suited to understanding it. Read more
MA Renaissance Studies explores the question of what the Renaissance was and what approaches are best suited to understanding it. The programme considers different aspects of Renaissance culture, particularly the social and intellectual histories of England, France, Italy and Spain. You will study with Birkbeck's internationally recognised experts in Renaissance English literature and culture, history of art, French, history and Spanish, tailoring your module choices towards chosen specialisms. By the end of the course you will be able to demonstrate a conceptual understanding of the questions associated with the study of the Renaissance and will have had the opportunity to either specialise or work in an interdisciplinary way. From the start, you will undertake training in postgraduate research skills.

You begin with a core course which examines the way the Renaissance has been understood and then you go on to take 3 options in areas of specialist interest. You can see detailed descriptions of our core course and all the option modules below. Finally, you will be individually counselled in your choice of dissertation topic.

We are based in Bloomsbury in central London and the unrivalled resources both within and near to Birkbeck will enable you to develop advanced research skills, which will support your dissertation writing and provide a thorough preparation for PhD study. Many of our students progress to MPhil/PhD level at Birkbeck and other institutions, including other colleges of the University of London and the University of Oxford.

In addition to the core teaching and individual research support, students benefit from many Birkbeck Renaissance events. This includes the London Renaissance Seminar, which brings many internationally renowned academics to Birkbeck, and events specific to the Birkbeck Renaissance group, including our day on 'Researching the Text'.

To find out more, read our programme handbook.

What is special about this MA?

You decide how to use the MA. You can choose to work within a discipline (e.g. English literature) or explore the full interdisciplinary possibilities of Renaissance Studies.
We offer research internship placements at the Globe Theatre.
Students specialising - in Spain, Shakespeare, Rome or London, for example - benefit immensely from putting that specialism into a wider context by learning about a range of approaches to the Renaissance in the core module.
We are committed to personal tuition. Each student has many opportunities to discuss their work and plan one-to-one meetings with specialist tutors who are working at the cutting-edge of Renaissance studies.
You can decide as you study if you want to progress beyond your MA and undertake further, independent research.
Birkbeck's prestige in this area means it has an unrivalled range of Renaissance activities: join the early modern society, bring your friends to Renaissance events in Arts Week and take part in our 'Researching the Text' day, as well as attending the London Renaissance Seminar.

What our students say

'Deciding to undertake an MA in Renaissance Studies was one of the wisest things I have ever done. It gave me huge intellectual satisfaction and insight into curatorial and research skills that are essential to my role in running a national museum.' (Ian Blatchford, Director of the Science Museum Group)

'I thoroughly enjoyed my course in MA Renaissance Studies, especially researching on the theme of women and Islam during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. I am very appreciative of all the help I was provided with during the MA and couldn't have developed my career without doing this course. When applying for jobs as an English teacher, my MA helped immensely during the application process, as well as continuing my professional development in this field.' (Maarya Desai, English teacher)

'Deciding to do the MA Renaissance Studies course at Birkbeck was one of the best decisions I could have made, especially as a student coming from the USA. The evening modules allowed me to explore London to its fullest during the day and to use the British Library for my research.' (Christeen Abee)

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Warwick is one of the only taught Renaissance MAs in the UK to offer students a Venice Programme, giving them the opportunity to spend a full university term in Venice and to study. Read more

Warwick is one of the only taught Renaissance MAs in the UK to offer students a Venice Programme, giving them the opportunity to spend a full university term in Venice and to study in situ the city’s art, history and culture. Students will have the opportunity to spend a further period of 3 months (usually in the Summer term) at the University of Venice, as part of our ERASMUS Exchange Programme.

Warwick’s long-standing and dynamic Centre for the Study of the Renaissance, and its unusually large staff of Renaissance specialists, provides the opportunity for students at postgraduate level to approach Renaissance art, history, religion and literature from a distinctively interdisciplinary perspective Warwick is well-placed to offer teaching and research programmes in Renaissance Studies, both because of its own staffing resources and library provisions (which offers excellent electronic resources such as ITER, BIHR, Early English Books Online and The Making of the Modern World), and because of its proximity to major research collections at Oxford, Birmingham, Manchester, Stratford-upon-Avon and London.  Warwick also has well-established links with other prestigious centres of Renaissance excellence, including the Warburg Institute in London, the Newberry Library in Chicago and the Folger Institute in Washington.

Warwick’s centre in Venice has been housed in the fifteenth-century Palazzo Pesaro-Papafava since 2007. This stunning building, in gothic style, belonged to a rich patrician family who exercised considerable political and economic power. Warwick’s Venice Programme offers unique opportunities for graduate study. The course opens with a term based in Venice studying Italian Renaissance art in situ, engaging directly with the city’s galleries, libraries, and museums, and exploring the history and culture of the Renaissance. There you will benefit from Warwick’s forty-year association with the city, and from the expertise of our specialists in Venetian art, history and culture. Seminars are combined with site-visits, study sessions in Venetian workshops (for example, in a traditional printing shop or bronze foundry), and behind-the-scenes visits to the warehouses of Venetian museums. We teach as much as possible in the presence of original objects, and within period settings. All teaching is delivered in English but Italian language lessons are offered to students as an optional extra at no extra cost.

During the Autumn term in Venice, students will take two modules examining the history and the art of the Italian Renaissance. Modules typically include: ‘Order and Disorder: Culture, Society and Religion in Early Modern Venice,’ ‘Venetian Art and its Histories’ or ‘Venetian Luxury & Display.’

During the Spring term in Warwick students take two further modules, both providing an opportunity to explore the dissemination of Italian culture in Renaissance Europe. There are a series of skills sessions on Palaeography and research resources which help students to acquire the skills necessary to undertake research and extended writing on the Renaissance and a weekly seminar in Renaissance Latin (post-beginners).

During the Summer term students work closely with their supervisor on researching and writing their dissertation which is on any topic of their choice related to the course. Work continues over the summer vacation and submission is due in September.

Previous graduates from this course have chosen to progress to PhD study at Warwick or another institution, and/or to pursue a career in academia (most recently at Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore), museums or galleries, teaching and the armed forces.

Courses typically start in September/October of each year with a compulsory induction at Warwick before heading off to Venice for the first term. Further (academic) details may be requested from the Director of Graduate Studies, https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/arts/ren/about_us/ ; or for more pragmatic queries, from the Centre's Administrator on



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This programme explores the richness and complexity of artistic invention from the late thirteenth to the seventeenth centuries. Read more

This programme explores the richness and complexity of artistic invention from the late thirteenth to the seventeenth centuries. You will have the opportunity for deep engagement with art-making both in Italy and northern Europe (France, Germany, Low Countries, England and Scotland) and be encouraged to challenge orthodoxies about the influence of one upon the other.

Why this programme

  • You will learn from world-leading researchers and develop expert knowledge in this specialised area within History of Art.
  • Glasgow’s civic and university collections are some of the richest and most diverse in Europe and are of international standing.
  • You will have hands-on access to Renaissance collections of international significance in the University’s own Hunterian Art Gallery (paintings, woodcuts and engravings) and Special Collections (illuminated manuscripts, early printed books, emblem books), and Glasgow’s Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum (Italian, Dutch and Flemish Old Master paintings) , Burrell Collection (Renaissance art in many media, including tapestries and sculpture) and Museums Resource Centre (paintings, glass and ceramics). The city is also an excellent base from which to explore Scotland’s rich architectural heritage, including some of the most complete Renaissance palaces and noble houses in Europe.

Programme structure

The programme is comprised of a core course designed to give you an overview of methods and approaches as well as seminar opportunities to engage directly with original works of art; and optional courses, enabling you to create your own Masters programme.

It also allows you to work in an interdisciplinary capacity, selecting courses from across the College of Arts, according to personal interests. Language and renaissance palaeography study are among the optional courses available. The programme convenor will work with you to ensure a sensible portfolio of courses is constructed, according to your personal aims and objectives.

Core teaching and research training are delivered during the first semester. Optional courses may be taken during the first and second semesters, followed by dissertation research. The dissertation provides an opportunity for you to identify an area of interest and to create a research project that allows in-depth critical exploration of it.

Core Courses

  • Defining the Renaissance: Objects, Theories, Categories
  • Research Methods in Practice

Optional Courses

  • Death and the Art of Dying in the Renaissance North
  • Masters of the Venetian Renaissance: Titian, Tintoretto, Veronese
  • From Gothic to Renaissance in Northern Europe
  • The Renaissance Palace as Portrait
  • Work Placement

Who will you work with?

You will be taught by a team of experts in different aspects of Renaissance art history based at the University of Glasgow:

  • Dr Debra Strickland – illuminated manuscripts, early printed books, monsters, images of non-Christians in Christian art, and the painting of Hieronymus Bosch.
  • Dr Tom Nichols - Venetian Renaissance art and the imagery of social outcasts
  • Dr John Richards – Humanism and the visual arts; ‘Gothic’/’Renaissance’ interface.
  • Dr Sally Rush - the visual and material culture of the Renaissance court

Career prospects

Object-based study sessions and field trips will introduce you to professionals working in museums and the heritage industry and you will have the opportunity to gain further experience of these sectors through a work placement. The dissertation will foster essential independent research skills and prepare you for doctoral research should you wish to pursue an academic career.



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Our taught MA pathway in Medieval and Renaissance Literary Studies offers choice, flexibility and the opportunity to specialise within this field. Read more

Our taught MA pathway in Medieval and Renaissance Literary Studies offers choice, flexibility and the opportunity to specialise within this field. You can learn from the rich variety of research expertise in the Department and you also have the chance to concentrate on a particular area of literary study within the fields of Medieval and Renaissance studies. Our commitment to research-led teaching means that students are able to explore the cutting edge of the discipline - from Old Norse to Renaissance Tragedy, from medieval manuscripts to critical theory. The Medieval and Renaissance Literary Studies pathway includes the possibility of taking interdisciplinary modules involving other departments including History and Archaeology. We provide an intimate, dynamic and supportive environment for students of all backgrounds and nationalities.

Our programme offers up-to-date training in research methods and skills. You will choose three modules, at least two of which are from within the pathway, and you will write a dissertation on a subject related to Medieval and/or Renaissance studies.

An MA in Medieval and Renaissance Literary Studies is often the platform for further research at PhD level, as well as providing an excellent grounding for jobs in education, the arts and the media.

Course Structure

If you choose to take this named pathway, you will be expected to select at least two modules from those available within the pathway and to write your dissertation in an area related to it. Your third optional module may, if you wish, be chosen from the full list of MA modules on offer in the Department. Students may, with permission, take one module from other modules on offer elsewhere in the Faculty of Arts and Humanities. All students must take the core Research Methods and Resources module and the dissertation alongside their three optional modules.

Core Modules

  • Research Methods and Resources
  • Dissertation

Optional Modules

Typical modules might include:

  • Warrior Poets in Heroic Societies
  • Old Norse
  • Old English Language, Texts and Contexts
  • The Anglo-Saxon World
  • Narrative Transformations: Medieval Romance to Renaissance Epic
  • Middle English Manuscripts and Texts
  • Issues in Medieval and Renaissance Studies
  • Renaissance Tragedy
  • Renaissance Humanism
  • John Milton: Life, Works and Influence
  • Lyric Poetry of the English Renaissance and Reformation.

Modules are subject to staff availability and normally no more then six of the above will run in any one year.

Please use the 'additional comments' section of the application form to indicate your choice of modules as well as to provide a personal statement.

Course Learning and Teaching

One of the distinctive features of the Durham MA in Literary Studies is that it permits both a broad-based, eclectic study of literary topics from the earliest periods of literature to the present and the possibility of specialisation through designated pathways in such areas as Medieval and Renaissance Studies or Twentieth- and Twenty-First-Century Studies. All students take 3 optional modules, taught in small seminar groups of up to 10, with each module generating 18 hours of contact time (9 seminars x 2 hours) over the academic year. A strong emphasis is placed on independent research, and seminars usually involve a considerable amount of preparation, including short presentations and workshop activities. Assessment for these modules is usually by coursework essay.

All students also register for the Research Methods and Resources module, which generates an additional 20 hours of contact time over the academic year. Again, a strong emphasis is given to independent research. Both pieces of assessed written work for the Research Methods and Resources module involve significant preparation for the MA dissertation (and in some cases for doctoral study later on). The MA dissertation is supported by 3.5 hours of dedicated individual supervision time. Drafts of the dissertation are read and commented upon by the supervisor.

Each MA student is assigned an Academic Advisor who can guide and support her or his progress during the programme of study.

Throughout the taught MA degree programme, all students are strongly encouraged to participate in a lively series of staff-postgraduate research seminars, usually involving invited guest speakers from the UK and beyond. 



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Modern English Literature begins in the extraordinary developments of the 16th and early 17th centuries. Read more

Modern English Literature begins in the extraordinary developments of the 16th and early 17th centuries. Under the influence of social, religious and political transformations, and through engagement with classical and continental European culture, new theories and practices of literature appeared that have influenced generations of writers since.

Studying the literature of this period allows us both to enter a world that is not our own, and to see the origins of modern western perspectives and predicaments. This programme offer you the opportunity to undertake a substantial piece of supervised independent research in this field.

We are the oldest department of English Literature in the world, and at the last Research Assessment Exercise were awarded the highest research rating possible, of 5*A. We have one of the largest graduate programmes in this area in the country and a rich research culture covering all aspects of literatures in English.

We offer supervision in all areas of Renaissance literature, and have particular strengths in Renaissance drama and performance, Renaissance poetry, the politics of literature in the Renaissance, religious writing in the Renaissance, Renaissance biographical and autobiographical writing, and the relevance to the study of Renaissance literature of modern and contemporary theory.

The research of staff has made valuable contributions to the areas of literature and philosophy, modernism/postmodernism, medieval and early modern literature, history of the book, romanticism, transatlantic studies and performance studies.

English Literature houses the Centre for the History of the Book and is one of the UK's leading forces in this area. It works closely with the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities and with the National Library of Scotland. The latter's recently acquired Murray Archive is crucial for studies in Romanticism, Book History, Bibliography and Archive Studies.

Extensive collections of Renaissance manuscripts and printed books are held in Edinburgh by the University’s own library, the National Library of Scotland, and the National Archives of Scotland. These collections offer excellent research resources and opportunities for graduate study, and are particularly rich in materials relating to Shakespeare and Renaissance drama.

Programme structure

The course includes a 15,000 word dissertation, completed under the supervision of one or more of the course tutors. Students will undertake a seminar based programme of research methods training in core research skills and subject specific methodologies. They will also take two option courses covering areas of Renaissance literature and culture related to their chosen fields and will write two extended essays in relation to these courses.

Training and support

The academic staff you will be working with are all active researchers or authors, many of them prize winners and leading scholars in their fields. As well as benefiting from their expert supervision, you will undertake a seminar-based programme of training in core research skills and subject-specific methodologies. You will also have the opportunity to develop other transferable skills through the University’s Institute for Academic Development

We encourage you to share your research and learn from the work of others through a vibrant programme of Work-in-Progress seminars, reading groups, visiting speakers and conferences.

Our postgraduate journal, Forum, is a valuable conduit for research findings, and provides an opportunity for editorial experience.

Facilities

On hand are all the amenities you would expect, such as computing facilities, study areas and a common room and kitchen. Our location gives you easy access to the University’s general facilities, such as the Main Library and our collections, as well as to the National Museum, National Library and National Galleries of Scotland at the heart of the city.

In addition to the impressive range of resources available at the University’s Main Library (more than two million printed volumes and generous online resources) and the nearby National Library of Scotland, we host a number of collections of rare and valuable archival materials, all of which will be readily available to you as a postgraduate student.

Among the literary treasures are the libraries of William Drummond, Lewis Grassic Gibbon, Hugh MacDiarmid, Adam Smith, Dugald Stewart and Norman MacCaig, plus the WH Auden collection, the Corson Collection of works by and about Sir Walter Scott and the Ramage collection of poetry pamphlets.

Our cultural collections are highly regarded and include a truly exceptional collection of early Shakespeare quartos and other early modern printed plays, and world-class manuscript and archival collections.



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This programme gives you the opportunity to study poetry, drama, prose and a variety of authors including Shakespeare from 1550-1640, and place them in the context of the rapid social, political and intellectual change of the Renaissance. Read more

This programme gives you the opportunity to study poetry, drama, prose and a variety of authors including Shakespeare from 1550-1640, and place them in the context of the rapid social, political and intellectual change of the Renaissance.

You will have the flexibility to focus on the aspects of Renaissance literature that interest you, as well as the contexts that shaped different texts such as political issues, religious ideas and dominant social structures. You will also gain an insight into how writers and cultural industries engaged with the events and trends of a fascinating historical period.

Optional modules will allow you to develop this specialist knowledge – and you can choose up to two modules from elsewhere in the School of English to broaden your approach.

A core module will help to develop your research skills, allowing you to make the most of our library resources and prepare for a wide range of careers as well as further study.

You’ll study in a supportive environment with access to excellent research resources. The world-class Brotherton Library has a remarkable variety of manuscript, archive and early printed materials, including the Brotherton Collection of poetry manuscripts and Elizabethan and 17th-century literary texts. They include First, Second, Third and Fourth Folio editions of Shakespeare’s plays, as well as works by Jonson, Donne, Sidney, Milton, Herbert, Beaumont and Fletcher, Bacon and Ford. We also have extensive collections of correspondence with a literary theme in our Letters Database.

Guided by tutors who are at the forefront of research in Renaissance studies, you’ll have the opportunity to make the most of all we have to offer.

Course content

In the first semester you will develop your knowledge of research methods and approaches in literary studies. You will also begin to develop your interest in Renaissance literature through your choice of optional modules. You will take three optional modules throughout the year – at least one of these must be specific to the Renaissance pathway, though you can choose up to two modules from across the School of English to broaden your approach.

Throughout the programme you will have the chance to deepen your subject knowledge while developing high-level skills in research, interpretation and analysis. You will have the chance to demonstrate these through your research project or dissertation: an independent piece of research on a topic in English Renaissance literature, which you will submit by the end of the programme in September.

If you choose to study part-time, you’ll study over a 24 month period and study fewer modules in each year.

Course structure

These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.

Compulsory modules

  • Studying English: Research Methods 30 credits
  • Research Project 60 credits

Optional modules

  • Shakespeare's Tyrants 30 credits
  • Turks, Moors, and Jews: Staging the Exotic in the Renaissance 30 credits

For more information on typical modules, read English Literature (Renaissance pathway) MA Full Time in the course catalogue

For more information on typical modules, read English Literature (Renaissance pathway) MA Part Time in the course catalogue

Learning and teaching

Most of our MA modules are taught in weekly seminars, where you will discuss issues arising from your reading with a small group of students and your tutor. You will also have the chance to expand your learning by making the most of the range of visiting speakers and research seminars that we run throughout the year. However, independent study is still crucial to this degree, allowing you to pursue your interests and build your skills.

Assessment

We use different assessment methods, but most of your modules will be assessed by a single 4,000 word essay, which you submit at the end of the semester. Your research project or dissertation is usually between 12,000 and 15,000 words. During the year you may also be expected to give presentations on your reading during seminars, or submit unassessed essays to get feedback on your work.

Career opportunities

This programme will equip you with a wide range of advanced transferable skills which are valuable in a wide range of careers.

You’ll be a confident researcher who can work independently as well as within a team. You’ll be a strong communicator, both verbally and in writing, and be able to think critically and analytically. In addition, you’ll have a strong level of cultural and critical awareness, and you’ll be able to look at a situation from different points of view.

All of these qualities are attractive to employers across sectors, and you’ll have the skills to pursue a career in fields including teaching, journalism, publishing, advertising, broadcasting and law. Many of our graduates also progress to PhD-level study and you’ll be well equipped for a career in academia.

Careers support

Leeds for Life is our unique approach to helping you make the most of University by supporting your academic and personal development. Find out more at the Leeds for Life website.

We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.

The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.



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The MA in Art History, Curatorship and Renaissance Culture is offered by the Warburg Institute in collaboration with the National Gallery, London. Read more
The MA in Art History, Curatorship and Renaissance Culture is offered by the Warburg Institute in collaboration with the National Gallery, London. The purpose of the programme is to provide high level linguistic, archive and research skills for a new generation of academic art historians and museum curators. The art historical and scholarly traditions of the Warburg Institute are linked to the practical experience and skills of the National Gallery to provide an academic programme which will equip students either as academic art historians with serious insight into the behind the scenes working of a great museum or as curators with the research skills necessary for high-level museum work.

This twelve-month, full-time programme provides an introduction to:

Museum knowledge, which covers all aspects of curatorship including the technical examination of paintings, connoisseurship, materials and conservation, attribution, provenance and issues relating to display.
Art history and Renaissance culture to increase students’ understanding of methods of analysing the subjects of works of art and their knowledge of Renaissance art works and the conditions in which they were commissioned, produced and enjoyed.
Current scholarship and professional practice in these areas as well as new and emerging areas of research and scholarship.
The programme will be taught through classes and supervision by members of the academic staff of the Warburg Institute and by National Gallery curatorial and archival experts. The teaching staff of the Warburg Institute are leading professors and academics in their field who have published widely and are involved with research related to the topics they teach.

Structure

All students will take three core modules and two optional modules. The core modules include language and paleography classes, which will be selected following an individual language audit for each student, and are spread over two terms. The optional subjects will vary from year to year and students must select at least one in an art historical field.

Core courses:

Art History – Iconology – Dr Paul Taylor
Language, Paleographical and Archive Skills – Various tutors for language and palaeography classes; Dr Claudia Wedepohl (The Warburg Institute) and Mr Alan Crookham (National Gallery) for archive skills
Curatorship in the National Gallery – Curatorial, conservation and scientific staff of the National Gallery, including Dr Ashok Roy, Dr Susanne Avery-Quash, Mr Larry Keith and Ms Rachel Billinge
Optional courses (two to be chosen):

Artistic Intentions 1400 - 1700 – Dr Paul Taylor
Islamic Authorities and Arabic Elements in the Renaissance – Professor Charles Burnett
Music in the Later Middle Ages and the Renaissance - Professor Charles Burnett
New Worlds, Ancient Texts: Renaissance Intellectual History and the Discovery of the Americas - Dr Philipp Nothaft
Renaissance Art Literature – Dr François Quiviger
Renaissance Philosophy – Dr Guido Giglioni
Renaissance Material Culture – Dr Rembrandt Duits and Dr François Quiviger
Sin and Sanctity in the Reformation – Professor Alastair Hamilton

Students will also be encouraged to attend the Director’s weekly seminar on Work in Progress and any of the other regular seminars held in the Institute that may be of interest to them. These at present include History of Art and Maps and Society. The third term and summer will be spent in researching and writing a dissertation, under the guidance of a supervisor from the academic staff of the Warburg Institute or a member of staff from the National Gallery.

Assessment

The usual format for classes is a weekly seminar. All students are required to submit three essays of 4,000 words, one at the beginning of the second term and the remaining two at the beginning of the third term. A dissertation of 15,000 words, on a topic agreed by the student and supervisor, has to be submitted by 30 September. The course is examined on these four pieces of written work, a catalogue entry (submitted at the end of the first term), and examinations in language, paleographical and archive skills. Students are allocated a course tutor and, in addition, are encouraged to discuss their work with other members of the staff at the Warburg Institute and the National Gallery. Because of the small numbers involved (places are limited to 12 per year), students have unusually frequent contact, formal and informal, with their teachers.

Mode of study

12 months full-time only.

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What is the 'Master of Medieval and Renaissance Studies' all about? . The Master's Programme of Medieval and Renaissance Studies will stimulate your independent study skills within a wide range of issues ranging from philosophy, theology, law, history, literature and the arts. Read more

What is the 'Master of Medieval and Renaissance Studies' all about? 

The Master's Programme of Medieval and Renaissance Studies will stimulate your independent study skills within a wide range of issues ranging from philosophy, theology, law, history, literature and the arts. Specialised seminars will bring the cultural and intellectual history of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance to life, with a particular emphasis on the Low Countries.

The programme draws on the combined expertise of various research groups and specialised centres at KU Leuven, including the Faculty of Arts for the History of the Middle Ages, Early Modern History and the Illuminare and Seminarium Philologiae Humanisticae centres), the Institute of Philosophy's (De Wulf-Mansion Centre for Ancient, Medieval and Renaissance Philosophy, as well as Aristoteles Latinus), the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies' group for the History of Church and Theology), and the Faculty of Law. All of these research groups and centres all play a role in this MA programme, which is monitored by the interfaculty Institute for Medieval and Renaissance Studies. Strengthened by KU Leuven's in-house expertise in ancient and modern languages and by its excellent library collections, you cannot ask for a better home to carry out your historical-philological research.

Spotlight

The Institute of Medieval and Renaissance Studies at KU Leuven boasts a long academic tradition: founded in 1966, it stimulates and coordinates multi-disciplinary and inter-disciplinary research and graduate teaching in the history of the Middle Ages, the Renaissance and the Reformation.

Strengthened by its expertise in ancient and modern languages, KU Leuven's historical-philological research strongly emphasises the interdisciplinary study of texts. In the Leuven context, special attention is devoted to the role of the Church and its stimulating influence on intellectual life in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance.

Objectives

The aim of this one-year Master program is to prepare students for the independent study of the cultural and intellectual history of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance form a multi- and interdisciplinary point of view. Taking its point of departure in texts, the program is designed to address a wide spectrum of issues in the fields of language and literature, political thought, law, urban history, art history, philosophy, history of the church and theology, history of education and science. Special attention is devoted to the relation between text and image, the afterlife of Antiquity, and the significance of the Low Countries in the cultural and intellectual history of Western Europe.

Graduates will:

  • exhibit sufficient familiarity with manuscripts or old editions, the publishing of texts, their interpretation, and/or the study of illustrations;
  • be able to independently formulate and research a problem, and present the results in an adequate manner;
  • exhibit competence in innovative and groundbreaking research and be in a position to make a contribution to the process of knowledge development and situate the contribution culturally and historically.

Career perspectives

Our graduates go on to find employment as researchers, academic and professionals in the cultural sector.

Graduates from the programme are well placed for positions in university research projects, academic appointments and career positions in the cultural sector.



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If you already have a considerable base of knowledge and a firm idea of where your interests lie, this course could be for you. The degree requires no coursework; the main focus is a 40,00-word dissertation, supervised by an appropriate member of staff. Read more

If you already have a considerable base of knowledge and a firm idea of where your interests lie, this course could be for you. The degree requires no coursework; the main focus is a 40,00-word dissertation, supervised by an appropriate member of staff. You will be encouraged to undertake relevant research-skills training and, where appropriate, further language study. 

Courses typically start in September/October of each year; other dates are possible subject to various rules & regulations and supervisor(s) availability. The University of Warwick boasts an unusually high concentration of staff with research interests in the Medieval, Renaissance and Early Modern periods, many of whom are recognised international experts in their field. Their joint expertise offers unparalleled opportunities for interdisciplinary study. Staff who teach for the Centre are drawn from the departments of English and Comparative Literary Studies, History, History of Art, Theatre Studies, Classics, School of Modern Languages (inc Italian, French and Hispanic Studies). Geographically, the Centre for the Study of the Renaissance has particular strengths in Renaissance and Early-Modern England and Britain, Italy, France, and central Europe (especially Germany and Switzerland).  Further details of staff who are linked to the Renaissance Centre can be found on this webpage: https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/arts/ren/about_us/centrestaff/ by checking the 'academic staff' box, top left.

Thematically, the CSR promotes research in (but not limited to):

  • Aristotelianism and Platonism in Early Modern Europe
  • Court and Civic Culture
  • Early modern theatre and performance
  • Education in the Renaissance
  • Greek Diaspora in Renaissance Europe
  • History of Art
  • History of Translation
  • Intellectual Culture
  • Manuscript studies, print culture and the history of the book
  • Medieval and Renaissance Drama
  • Modern thought and intellectual culture (including the history of scholarship and universities; The Classical tradition / reception studies; commentaries; the history of medicine and the history of science)
  • Neo-Latin Literature
  • Religious, political and social history
  • Renaissance Venice
  • The visual arts and the world of artisans, especially in Italy

Further details may be requested from the Director of Graduate Studies, https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/arts/ren/about_us/



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The Centre for Medieval and Renaissance Culture MA combines the benefits of an interdisciplinary, cross-period MA with the capacity to follow your interests in a particular discipline or period. Read more

The Centre for Medieval and Renaissance Culture MA combines the benefits of an interdisciplinary, cross-period MA with the capacity to follow your interests in a particular discipline or period. You will be taught by a team of specialists across English, History, Music and Archaeology and benefit both from expert classroom teaching and from field trips to important Medieval and Early Modern sites and collections both locally and abroad. Rich local resources will be fully exploited for teaching and dissertation research on the MA, notably Salisbury Cathedral Library and Archive, to which you will have privileged access. You will also have the opportunity to make a guided and fully-funded week-long trip abroad to a European city rich in medieval and renaissance heritage, such as Rome or Paris. In addition the MA core modules will train you in interdisciplinary methods and core research skills such as Medieval and Renaissance Palaeography. You will have the opportunity to study Latin or another foreign language useful for your research. Optional modules will allow you to follow your interests in subjects such as medieval political thought, medieval and renaissance spaces and places, to Early Modern performance.

Introducing your course

Why do scholars routinely differentiate between ‘medieval’ and ‘renaissance’? How can different disciplinary perspectives benefit us in our study of these periods? Explore through this MA how a range of social, cultural and material ‘renaissances’ occurred across Europe in different ways over a long historical period. Discover how combining historical, archaeological, literary and musicological perspectives and hands-on experience of sites and collections both locally and abroad can deepen and nuance your understanding of these interconnected periods. Learn core research skills such as palaeography, Latin, or a modern foreign language to enable you to progress to PhD study at Southampton or elsewhere. Develop your own research interests through a wide variety of interdisciplinary and single-discipline study options and your independent dissertation.

Overview

Two Core Modules, From Medieval to Renaissance Parts I and II, will introduce you to key methods, approaches and resources for interdisciplinary study of the Medieval and Early Modern periods. You will learn key skills in manuscript and archival work, including how to assess, read, transcribe and edit Medieval and Early Modern documents appropriate to your research interests. You will also gain experience of working with Medieval and Renaissance source collections through our regional and foreign field trips. Most students of the Medieval and Renaissance periods will take our optional module in Latin, which will equip you to read and translate Classical and Medieval forms of the language. In consultation with the course convenor, however, you may replace Latin with with an alternative language appropriate to your research interests.

View the programme specification document for this course - Please note that updated version of the programme specification will be available after programme validation.



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Note. this MPhil can be developed into a PHD. You'll be required to write a thesis of up to 60,000 words (exclusive of appendices, footnotes, tables and bibliography). Read more

Note: this MPhil can be developed into a PHD.

You'll be required to write a thesis of up to 60,000 words (exclusive of appendices, footnotes, tables and bibliography). Work for this degree can be done in any of the areas where the Centre can offer expert supervision. Please consult the staff list to see current research interests.  https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/arts/ren/about_us/centrestaff/

Please note that all doctoral students are first registered as MPhil students. There is an upgrade procedure in the third term of the first year (for full-time students) or the first term of the second year (for part-time students), in order to register for a PhD degree.  Details of the procedure are included in the Graduate Handbook which students receive upon arrival in the Department. Further details may be requested from the Director of Graduate Studies, https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/arts/ren/about_us/

The University of Warwick boasts an unusually high concentration of staff with research interests in the Medieval, Renaissance and Early Modern periods, many of whom are recognised international experts in their field. Their joint expertise offers unparalleled opportunities for interdisciplinary study. Staff who teach for the Centre are drawn from the departments of English and Comparative Literary Studies, History, History of Art, Theatre Studies, Classics, School of Modern Languages (inc Italian, French and Hispanic Studies). Geographically, the Centre for the Study of the Renaissance has particular strengths in Renaissance and Early-Modern England and Britain, Italy, France, and central Europe (especially Germany and Switzerland). Thematically, the CSR promotes research in (but not limited to):

  • Aristotelianism and Platonism in Early Modern Europe
  • Court and Civic Culture
  • Early modern theatre and performance
  • Education in the Renaissance
  • Greek Diaspora in Renaissance Europe
  • History of Art
  • History of Translation
  • Intellectual Culture
  • Manuscript studies, print culture and the history of the book
  • Medieval and Renaissance Drama
  • Modern thought and intellectual culture (including the history of scholarship and universities; The Classical tradition / reception studies; commentaries; the history of medicine and the history of science)
  • Neo-Latin Literature
  • Religious, political and social history
  • Renaissance Venice
  • The visual arts and the world of artisans, especially in Italy

Courses typically start in September/October of each year; other dates are possible subject to various rules & regulations and supervisor(s) availability.  Further details may be requested from the Director of Graduate Studies, https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/arts/ren/about_us/



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Judged best in the field. The highly regarded . Keuzegids.  Master’s Selection Guide 2017 ranked Utrecht University’s Ancient, Medieval and Renaissance programme as the best in the field in the Netherlands. Read more

Judged best in the field

The highly regarded Keuzegids Master’s Selection Guide 2017 ranked Utrecht University’s Ancient, Medieval and Renaissance programme as the best in the field in the Netherlands.

DISCOVER THE HISTORY AND CULTURE OF THE GREAT PRE-MODERN CIVILISATIONS 

Our Research Master’s programme in Ancient, Medieval and Renaissance Studies focuses on interdisciplinary study of the material, social, and intellectual developments in Europe (including the Mediterranean region) from Antiquity through the Middle Ages to the Renaissance. Within this long period, you can focus on your academic interests by choosing one of the following tracks:

  • Ancient Studies
  • Medieval Studies
  • Medieval Celtic Studies
  • Renaissance Studies

Within each track, you will work with source materials in their original languages, including in manuscript form. The Ancient Studies track has a keen interest in archaeology. The Medieval Studies and Renaissance Studies tracks go beyond a solely historical approach by including courses in literature, linguistics, art history, musicology, and history. In the Medieval Studies track, you may specialise in either Medieval History, Medieval Art History, Medieval Literature, or Medieval Musicology. Medieval Celtic Studies combines literary studies with historical linguistics. Read more about the tracks.

The programme is enhanced with research conducted by lecturers who are internationally renowned in their fields of expertise. You are encouraged to work alongside these lecturers on research projects, and you can spend a semester abroad at one of the many universities with which we have research links. After graduation, approximately 50% of graduates go on to undertake a PhD, either in the Netherlands or abroad. 

For those with ambitions outside research, courses are being developed on ‘Heritage and Cultural Transfer’ (including an internship in material culture, e.g. on written texts as objects), and on the uses of the ancient and medieval languages.

INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY

The programme attracts students from the Netherlands and abroad. International students find an internationally unique interdisciplinary approach to the study of pre-modern civilisations. They quickly feel welcome in the community of teachers and students and fully participate in the programme’s scholarly life.

AFTER GRADUATION

This Research Master’s programme will provide you with the knowledge and skills needed to gain admission to PhD programmes in your chosen specialisation; you can also conduct independent research and complete your doctoral dissertation. The programme will give you the skills needed for your future career, including pursuing scholarly research to be published in peer-reviewed journals.

Our programme also prepares you for careers outside academia in management, politics, or the arts. The programme is both academically and socially relevant; by developing your professional skills and your ability to work independently, you will be well prepared for the challenges of the modern employment market. Read more about possible career prospects.



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This MA equips students with the skills necessary for advanced medieval and renaissance scholarship. A wide range of historical, literary, palaeographical, art historical and archaeological modules enables students to explore the aspects of medieval and renaissance culture in which they are interested. Read more

This MA equips students with the skills necessary for advanced medieval and renaissance scholarship. A wide range of historical, literary, palaeographical, art historical and archaeological modules enables students to explore the aspects of medieval and renaissance culture in which they are interested.

About this degree

This MA provides exceptional opportunities to master medieval and renaissance languages and to acquire manuscript expertise working with original manuscripts; key skills for those who want to go on to original research. Students with primary interests in many different areas ‒ linguistic, historical, literary or archaeological ‒ will be able to build on and extend their expertise and skills.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of 30 credits of core language modules, optional modules (90 credits), and a research dissertation (60 credits).

Core modules

  • Old and Middle English
  • Medieval Latin (Beginners)
  • Medieval Latin (Intermediate)
  • Medieval French
  • Old and Middle French
  • Medieval Italian
  • Medieval German
  • Classical Hebrew
  • Rabbinic Hebrew
  • Introduction to Old Norse

Optional modules

Up to 90 credits of options drawn from the following:

  • Identity and Power in Medieval Europe, AD 500-1300
  • Magic in the Middle Ages
  • Writing History in Europe, c. 900-1200
  • A Global History of the Middle Ages?
  • Russsian Monarchy: Court Ritual and Political Ideas 1498-1917
  • Science and Medicine across Medieval Worlds
  • Reframing the Renaissance
  • Forging the Early Modern
  • Unstitching the Early Modern: Archival and Book Skills
  • Web 0.1: Early Modern Information Culture c. 1470-1750
  • Confessional Cultures in the Dutch Republic and England, c. 1500-c. 1700
  • Seeing Through Materials: Matter, Vision and Transformation in the Renaissance
  • Sex and the Body in Early Modern Europe
  • Men on the Moon: Cosmic Voyages in the Early Modern Period
  • Metamorphosis: The Limits of the Human
  • Wolfram von Eschenbach's "Parzival"
  • Legendary Histories (Medieval French Literature)
  • The Transformation of the Roman Mediterranean
  • Themes and Debates in Islamic Archaeology and Heritage

This list is indicative only; the modules available are subject to change each year.

Dissertation/research project

All students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of up to 12,000 words.

Teaching and learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars and classes. Several modules include site visits to institutions, notably the British Library, the Warburg Institute, the National Archives and the Institute of Historical Research. Assessment is through unseen examination, long essays, coursework and the dissertation.

Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Medieval and Renaissance Studies MA

Careers

Recent destinations of recent graduates of this programme include: funded PhDs at UCL, Universities of Oxford, St Andrews, Cambridge, Durham, Cardiff, Lancaster, and UEA; the British Library: Cataloguer; Reuters: News Assistant; Ministry of Trade Industry and Tourism: Government Advisor.

Recent career destinations for this degree

  • Curatorial and Art Intern, Swiss Institute
  • Policy and Communications Officer, Caritas
  • Project Assistant, British Library
  • GDL (Graduate Diploma in Law), BPP University
  • PhD in Medieval Studies, University of Leeds

Employability

The MARS degree allows students to develop an enviable range of skills. This programme not only provides an outstanding foundation for those hoping to undertake PhD research and pursue an academic career but is also popular with students wishing to go into journalism, the civil service, business, museum and heritage and the education sector. Debates, small group seminars and tutorials help students to acquire strong presentation and negotiation skills for their future career. Likewise the analytical and research skills gained by students on this programme are highly valued by employers from a range of industries.

Careers data is taken from the ‘Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education’ survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2013–2015 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The departments contributing to this degree - History; English; the School of European Languages, Culture and Society; History of Art - enjoy outstanding international reputations for research and teaching.

We are strongly committed to the intellectual development of all our students; if you come to UCL, you will receive individual supervision from leading researchers in their fields.

Located in Bloomsbury, we are just a few minutes' walk away from the exceptional resources of the British Library, the British Museum and the research institutes of the University of London, including the Warburg and the Institute of Historical Research.

Research Excellence Framework (REF)

The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.

The following REF score was awarded to the department: History

82% rated 4* (‘world-leading’) or 3* (‘internationally excellent’)

Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.



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The MA offers the student the opportunity to explore early Western intellectual history through philosophical, literary and cultural approaches. Read more

Overview

The MA offers the student the opportunity to explore early Western intellectual history through philosophical, literary and cultural approaches. It should appeal to students who want an overview of the foundations of modern European thought, and those who want to go on to further studies in Classics, Medieval and Renaissance studies,European studies, philosophy, or the history of ideas. The objective of this course is to provide students with a specialized knowledge in Ancient, Medieval and Renaissance thought, focusing on philosophical writers, literary and historical themes, and the history of thought. Building upon the strengths of critical thinking, systematic reflection and historical awareness developed by the student in their undergraduate studies, the MA in Ancient, Medieval and Renaissance Thought will allow the student to explore thematic concerns of writers in the Western tradition from Ancient Greece and Rome to the 16th century and the various revivals in scholastic thought into the seventeenth century. It will also prepare those students for research degrees in either one of these areas, allowing them to pursue further studies in Classics, Philosophy or related fields.

See the website https://www.maynoothuniversity.ie/philosophy/our-courses/ma-ancient-medieval-and-renaissance-thought-0

Course Structure

Candidates take six modules (three in each semester) and write a dissertation of 15,000-20,000 words under the supervision of a designated supervisor. The 90 credits for the MA will be made up of 60 credits awarded for taught modules and 30 credits for the dissertation. Candidates are required to take the core module PH626, at least one taught module in Classics, and at least one in Philosophy. Modules include Introduction to Latin, Images of the Human Being in Ancient, Medieval and Renaissance Thought, Texts and Interpretation, An Introduction to Classical Scholarship, Ancient Cosmology, Aquinas and the Emergence of the Concepts of Rights, New Politics in the Renaissance: Machiavelli.

Career Options

Successful completion of the MA at a high level will normally equip students to proceed to study for a PhD, a necessary qualification for an academic career (in certain subject areas further language qualifications may be required). Beyond the academic sphere, however, the skills the programme fosters (analytic skills, critical thinking, systematic research, clear argumentation, lucid writing) are indispensable to a wide variety of careers.

How To Apply

Online application only http://www.pac.ie/maynoothuniversity

PAC code
MHV61 Part-time

The following information should be forwarded to PAC, 1 Courthouse Square, Galway or uploaded to your online application form:

Certified copies of all official transcripts of results for all non-Maynooth University qualifications listed MUST accompany the application. Failure to do so will delay your application being processed. Non-Maynooth University students are asked to provide two academic references and a copy of birth certificate or valid passport.

Find information on Scholarships here https://www.maynoothuniversity.ie/study-maynooth/postgraduate-studies/fees-funding-scholarships

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The MA offers the student the opportunity to explore early Western intellectual history through philosophical, literary and cultural approaches. Read more

Overview

The MA offers the student the opportunity to explore early Western intellectual history through philosophical, literary and cultural approaches. It should appeal to students who want an overview of the foundations of modern European thought, and those who want to go on to further studies in Classics, Medieval and Renaissance studies,European studies, philosophy, or the history of ideas. The objective of this course is to provide students with a specialized knowledge in Ancient, Medieval and Renaissance thought, focusing on philosophical writers, literary and historical themes, and the history of thought. Building upon the strengths of critical thinking, systematic reflection and historical awareness developed by the student in their undergraduate studies, the MA in Ancient, Medieval and Renaissance Thought will allow the student to explore thematic concerns of writers in the Western tradition from Ancient Greece and Rome to the 16th century and the various revivals in scholastic thought into the seventeenth century. It will also prepare those students for research degrees in either one of these areas, allowing them to pursue further studies in Classics, Philosophy or related fields.

See the website https://www.maynoothuniversity.ie/philosophy/our-courses/ma-ancient-medieval-and-renaissance-thought

Course Structure

Candidates take six modules (three in each semester) and write a dissertation of 15,000-20,000 words under the supervision of a designated supervisor. The 90 credits for the MA will be made up of 60 credits awarded for taught modules and 30 credits for the dissertation. Candidates are required to take the core module PH626, at least one taught module in Classics and at least one in Philosophy, and either GC698 (dissertation in Classics) or PH699 (dissertation in Philosophy). Modules include Introduction to Latin, Images of the Human Being in Ancient, Medieval and Renaissance Thought, Texts and Interpretation, An Introduction to Classical Scholarship, Ancient Cosmology, Aquinas and the Emergence of the Concepts of Rights, New Politics in the Renaissance: Machiavelli.

Career Options

Successful completion of the MA at a high level will normally equip students to proceed to study for a PhD, a necessary qualification for an academic career (in certain subject areas further language qualifications may be required). Beyond the academic sphere, however, the skills the programme fosters (analytic skills, critical thinking, systematic research, clear argumentation, lucid writing) are indispensable to a wide variety of careers.

How To Apply

Online application only http://www.pac.ie/maynoothuniversity

PAC code
MHV60 Full-time

The following information should be forwarded to PAC, 1 Courthouse Square, Galway or uploaded to your online application form:

Certified copies of all official transcripts of results for all non-Maynooth University qualifications listed MUST accompany the application. Failure to do so will delay your application being processed. Non-Maynooth University students are asked to provide two academic references and a copy of birth certificate or valid passport.

Find information on Scholarships here https://www.maynoothuniversity.ie/study-maynooth/postgraduate-studies/fees-funding-scholarships

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