A Master's by Research (MA) allows you to undertake a one year (full-time) research degree. It contains little or no formal taught component. This type of study gives you the chance to explore a research topic over a shorter time than a more in-depth doctoral programme.
Research Master's students choose a specific project to work on and have a greater degree of independence in their work than is the case with a taught Master's course.
You'll be expected to work to an approved programme of work which you will develop in conjunction with your supervisor within the first few months of starting your studies. Whilst undertaking the research project you will also have the opportunity to develop your research skills by taking part in training courses and events.
Your main supervisor will normally head a supervisory team which will comprising up to three members. The research supervisor will advise and support you on your project.
At the end of the project you'll write up your findings in the form of a short thesis of around 25,000 words, which will then be examined.
On successful completion, you will be awarded your degree and if you have enjoyed this taste of research you may then decide to apply for the full research doctoral degree (PhD).