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Explore contrasting periods of history using different historical and interdisciplinary approaches that will develop your critical awareness and research skills. Become a true historian, able to sustain arguments and solve problems, with a richer understanding of how history is communicated to the wider public, and how it helps us address present-day issues.

  • Join a Masters course built on the expertise of our BA (Hons) History (95% for ‘Satisfied with Teaching,’ The Guardian University Guide 2018) and our History research (world-leading status, Research Excellence Framework 2014)
  • Benefit from our links with local organisations, including the Cambridgeshire Collection and Imperial War Museum, Duxford
  • Extend your mastery of the top two most required skills for 2020*: complex problem solving and critical thinking (World Economic Forum)
  • Prepare for your career with innovative assessment methods such as researching and writing radio programmes and planning exhibitions

On our MA History, you will learn to critically examine different periods of history - including social, cultural, political and public history - and conduct original research at both local and global levels.

Each module (including the final major project) will introduce you to new research methods and the analytical questions that go with them. This will allow you to develop an understanding of the problems inherent in the historical record, such as the many contrasting viewpoints, and give you the means to test them effectively.

As well as using both digital and archival resources, you will develop the skills required to critically engage with non-textual historical documents such as artefacts and visual sources as presented by museums, film, or artwork.

You will then, through a series of workshops, choose a topic for your major project that calls upon the research methods you have learned and your awareness of the relevant historical concepts. By the end of the course, you will have acquired and demonstrated the skillset of a genuine historian - not just an antiquarian.

Your theoretical studies will be enhanced through our links with many local bodies, archives, libraries and organisations, including the Cambridgeshire Collection; the Thatcher and Kinnock archives at Churchill College; Imperial War Museum (Duxford); and Cambridge University Press. Through these, you will have the opportunity to engage and network with specialists, practitioners, agencies and institutions at events such as guest lectures, study trips and research projects.

You will also be part of a dynamic and rich academic environment, including a lively post-graduate community, with its own seminars and workshops that cover aspects of historical research. Your studies will be supported by expert academic staff including Professor Rohan McWilliam (Victorian studies; modern British and US history; popular culture), Professor Lucy Bland (eugenics, race and gender; British feminism), Dr Jonathan Davis (the Soviet Union), Dr Richard Carr (modern British history) and Dr Sean Lang (the First World War; British Imperialism).


The skills you develop on our MA History will transfer across a range of careers, as well as providing a gateway to PhD research.

By exploring how to make the past available to a wider public, you will open up careers in the heritage industry, archives and museums.

You will also become an independent learner, able to manage your own projects and research in a confident and flexible manner, devise and sustain arguments and solve problems successfully.

Such skills are transferable to careers in teaching, business, journalism, television, radio, the music industry, arts administration, digital media, gallery work, fundraising, personnel work, publishing, librarianship, marketing, local authority work, publicity, social work, tourism and IT-related industries.

Core modules

  • Major Project
  • Public History

Optional modules

  • Histories of Emotions 1100-1850
  • A History of Race, Racism and Resistance in Modern Britain
  • Making the Modern World, 1979-1999

Research resources

Our library in Cambridge hold a substantial collection of resources including books, e-books, journals, databases, CDs and DVDs, as well as a History subject page developed by our dedicated History librarian.

It also subscribes to a number of specialist databases including:

  • Art & Humanities Full Text
  • Project Muse
  • Time Digital Archive
  • JISC Historical Text (January 2017)
  • British Periodicals I and II

Course Leader: Professor Rohan McWilliam

Visit the History - MA page on the Anglia Ruskin University website for more details!





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