Visit our website for more information on fees, scholarships, postgraduate loans and other funding options to study American Studies at Swansea University - 'Welsh University of the Year 2017' (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017).
The MA by Research in American Studies helps to develop an understanding of the forces that have moulded and continue to shape America, and helps us to make sense of our contemporary world. The comparative study of the history and culture of the United States addresses themes such as immigration, democracy, slavery, imperialism, multiculturalism, religion, the economy and, more recently, terrorism. These issues do not just concern the past; they are directly relevant to the world we live in.
The MA by Research in American Studies is ideal for those who want:
- an MA qualification in areas where taught programmes are not offered;
- the experience of a research degree without committing to a PhD at the outset.
Research proposals are invited on any topic in American Studies for which staff in the Department of Political and Cultural Studies can provide supervision. It is a good idea to enter into discussions about your research project in American Studies with the Department's Director of Postgraduate Research, Professor Roland Axtmann ([email protected]), before drawing up an initial proposal and starting the application process.
The Department of Political and Cultural Studies (PCS) boasts a dynamic research environment with a committed staff all of whom are research-active. Academic members of staff have a very considerable range of research interests on which we offer supervision for research degrees in American Studies.
An MA by Research in American Studies gives you the chance to pursue a major research project based around your own passions and interests in American Studies, leading to a qualification which can open the door to an academic career or boost employment prospects outside academia. It will give you the freedom to explore a topic of your choosing and develop a methodology under the close supervision of two experienced academics but without attending regular classes as required in taught programmes.
Typically as a student of the MA by Research in American Studies programme you will work closely with your supervisors, meeting them regularly, in many instances fortnightly, in the first term and at regular intervals thereafter. Meetings are logged and goals agreed each time.
Students enrolled in the MA by Research American Studies are required to attend skills and training courses at College and University level. You may also be expected to give presentations to other research students and staff at departmental seminars and attend the postgraduate conference of the College of Arts and Humanities which is held in October.
At any one time, the department has over forty research students who work together with their supervisors on their projects.
In the area of American Studies, staff have expertise in the American Civil War; US foreign policy; the US ‘War on Drugs’; US politics and government; surveillance and urban America; American conservatism; the Spanish Civil War; American military history; the American West; New South; 20th century American literature, film and popular culture.
Discover more about the Department of Political and Cultural Studies:
The Master in Advanced European and International Studies - Mediterranean studies (MAEIS) provides an overarching and extensive view of the political, social, economic and cultural issues of the present times. The MAEIS is an international, interdisciplinary and itinerant programme which aims to educate the next generation of Euro-Mediterranean decision-makers. Following the slogan "Learning and living the Mediterranean", the participants rotate each trimester, moving their place of studies from Nice to Tunis and then Rome, including a workshop in Istanbul. The programme is structured into three terms and is taught in English and French.
The first term (October to January) starts in the European Union, in Nice, France. It encompasses classes on the basics of the five modules (Conflict Management and Peace Making, Sustainable Development and Globalisation, Regional Integration and Transformation, Mediterranean Politics and Societies as well as Professional Skills Workshops). Studying in France helps the students to analyse the Mediterranean region and Euro-Mediterranean relations from an EU perspective. Courses will introduce to the institutional architecture of the EU and its neighbourhood policy. They will also discuss the shared risks of populism, terrorism and climate change. Mid-term exams will take place in December. The trimester concludes with a simulation exercise.
The second term (January to April) starts off in Tunis, Tunisia. Our cooperation partner, the Université Internationale de Tunis, is famous for its integration of international students in Tunisia. Thanks to our partner, the Institut de Recherche sur le Maghreb Contemporain (IRMC), students will have access to the expertise and the library of one of the most renowned think tanks in the Maghreb. Researchers from the region will analyse transformation processes in the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean in times of globalisation. Studying in Tunisia will provide the students with a unique experience of a historic democratisation process that turns the nobelpeace-prize winning country into a role model throughout the MENA region. For non-Arab speakers an Arab language course is compulsory.
A study trip to Istanbul will take place druing the 2nd or the 3rd term.
The programme concludes in Rome, Italy (April to July) where the courses are organised in cooperation with the Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI), one of the leading European think tanks, and our long-term partner, the Sapienza University. Special focus will be given to Foreign Policy Analysis (EU, Russia, US, Iran), as well as migration, poverty and food security, including visits of relevant UN institutions. A workshop in Istanbul will deal with the changing EU-Turkey relations. Students will have the opportunity to advance in their research work, as they are free of obligations from mid-May to mid-June to work on their thesis. The programme concludes with the defence of the thesis and oral exams. With their graduation in the “eternal city”, students become part of CIFE’s worldwide Alumni network.
The Mediterranean is a case study par excellence for Peace and Conflict Studies. Understanding and explaining questions of war and peace has been at the heart of „International Relations“ as an academic discipline – from its very beginning, after the First World War. In the last two decades Mediterranean societies have been significantly affected by inter-group violence and inter-state conflicts: from the Western Balkans to Cyprus, from Israel to Palestine, from Syria to Lybia. Mediterranean conflicts are partly characterised by external interventions. The module will focus at causes and dynamics of escalation and de-escalation, including international law and peace-making in a multiperspective approach. Theories on violence and peace will help to analyse the case studies proposed.
The Mediterranean in the 21st century faces unprecedented economic, environmental and social challenges. As economic development exercises increased pressure on limited resources, deteriorates the environment and creates growing inequalities, Mediterranean economies struggle to find their way through these challenges. An introduction into economics as an academic discipline will set the ground for a regional analysis of sustainable development, energy policies, climate action and demographic dynamics.
The European Union became a model of regional integration. Nation states agreed to transform their sovereignity into a multi-level governance system sui generis to keep regional peace, increase welfare and economic power. How is the dynamic architecture of European institutions functioning – in times of both Europeanisation and Euroscepticism? And to what extent are the Arab League or the Union for the Mediterranean comparable models of regional integration?
Regional integration is primarily an elite-driven, government-sponsored transformation process. However, socio-economic and political change can be triggered by civil society and social movements, as the „Arab Spring“ has shown transregionally in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). Change and continuity differ significantly in the MENA-region. Why? And which repercussions for the Union for the Mediterranean?
Mediterranean Politics are shaped by an interplay of different policy fields and policy actors. Theories of International Relations (i.e. Foreign Policy Analysis, Migration Theories) will help to understand the dynamics of policy making towards and in the Mediterranean region. Migration constitutes a challenging and complex policy field throughout the Mediterranean.
In a second part of this module we will approach Mediterranean societies with a generational focus upon „youth“. The current number of youth in the Mediterranean is unprecedented. Meanwhile, youth unemployment is a phenomenon that nearly all Mediterranean societies have in common. At the crossroads of theory and practice this module will identify solutions to the challenges the young generation faces in the Mediterranean.
The participants will take part in negotiation and mediation trainings, simulation games and follow career workshops as well as workshops on project cycle management and intercultural communication.
Candidates can submit their application dossier by using the form available on the Institute’s website. They should also include all the relevant documents, or send them by post or e-mail. An academic committee meets regularly in order to review complete applications.
A limited number of scholarship funds can be awarded to particularly qualified candidates. The deadline for application is 15 September 2017.
Drawing on the School’s research strengths in international security and sub-state conflicts, this programme addresses the phenomena of terrorism and insurgency in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries.
It will introduce you to the history of terrorism, from state sponsored terrorism in the Cold War period and urban terrorists in Western Europe to the emergence of radical Islamism in the form of Al-Qaeda and ISIS. You will explore the dilemmas of preserving democratic liberties whilst developing counter-terrorism strategies and assessing the necessity and effectiveness of anti-terrorism legislation in the UK, the US and beyond.
You will consider the wider political context and causes of radicalisation and terrorist violence, including the analysis of situations in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Syria and Iraq as well as an in-depth study of the geo-politics of the Middle East.
Our department is one of the largest and most diverse in the UK and our academics are widely recognised as leading experts in their field. Our research-led teaching is directly informed by the cutting-edge research that occurs around research clusters on ‘The Responsibility to Protect and Prosecute’ and ‘Contemporary Democracy and Authoritarianism’ as well as the Middle East Research Group.
The key strength of our research culture is an approach to academic enquiry which openly embraces normative and empirical approaches in the study of terrorism, insurgency, UK and US foreign policies, security governance in fragile states, post-Cold War conceptions of international society at a global level, as well as within the context of regional politics in Africa, Europe, the Middle East, and East and Southeast Asia.
This unique programme offers you not only the chance to delve deep into the academic analysis of (counter-) terrorism and (counter-) insurgency, but also provides you with the freedom to develop your expertise on a range of security challenges on a global (climate change, conflict resolution, globalisation and conflict, human rights, poverty, post-conflict reconstruction, religious radicalism) and regional level.
The compulsory modules studied will give you the opportunity to:
You will also be able to hone your research and writing skills in your compulsory dissertation – an independent piece of research on your chosen topic.
The wide-ranging list of optional modules means that you can explore a diverse range of related subjects of interest to you.
If you are a part-time student, you will take 30 credits worth of compulsory modules and choose 30 credits worth of optional modules in your first year. You will then take the compulsory dissertation module and 60 credits worth of optional modules in your second year to complete your programme.
Teaching is through a combination of lectures, lively seminar discussions and guided weekly readings. We expect you to participate fully in taught sessions and to study independently, developing your skills and preparing for lectures and seminars.
You will also be able to benefit from an impressive range of research talks and seminars led by outside speakers or colleagues from within the department and University.
Within modules, assessment currently consists exclusively of assessed essays. At the end of your studies, a 12,000 word dissertation will allow you to pursue your own research interest under close supervision by one of our expert colleagues.
This programme provides you with an ideal preparation for a career in the international political arena.
Our graduates have pursued a range of exciting and high-profile careers within academia, think tanks and other organisations. These include: teaching and research positions at universities in the UK, US, Europe and Africa; the public sector in the UK (such as UK Border Agency), Europe (including the External Action Service) and Africa (such as police forces); globally operating consultancy and publishing firms; transnational civil society organisations; and the United Nations.
Many graduates continue to pursue their research interests as PhD students.
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.