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Overview

This masters course will allow you to develop an in-depth understanding of how healthcare and medicine have developed, how health has changed and the societal impacts of these changes across the world in a variety of historical contexts.

You’ll be trained in historical research methods and conceptual and methodological approaches to the history of health, medicine and society. You can combine British, European and African history under the guidance of leading researchers in History, History and Philosophy and Science and Medieval Studies. You’ll have the chance to focus on topics and periods that suit your own interests, whether that’s the history of health, medicine and society in the Middle Ages or the First World War.

Looking at the health of individuals, families and communities, you could study the human life course from birth to death, the experiences of medical practitioners and caregivers, medicine during periods of war and conflict, or the impact of health policy in different societies. It’s an exciting opportunity to explore how health and medicine have always been shaped by the social and cultural context.

You’ll be encouraged to participate in events run by the School of History’s ‘Health, Medicine and Society’ research group, including seminars, reading group sessions and a postgraduate symposium. You’ll also be able to attend a range of other events at the University of Leeds, including seminars at the Centre for History and Philosophy of Science and the Leeds Centre for Medical Humanities.

You’ll also have access to the University’s Museum of Science, Technology and Medicine, which is especially rich in its medical collections, and we have close links with the Thackray Medical Museum in east Leeds and its 47,000 medical objects.

Course content

The first semester will lay the foundations of your studies, introducing you to historical research methods, and key sources, debates and methodologies in the history of health, medicine and society. You’ll take part in a source analysis workshop and gain practical knowledge of documentary, visual and material sources which can be used to study the history of health, medicine and society.

In Semester Two, you’ll build on this knowledge with your choice from a wide range of optional modules, including specialist topics such as birth , death and illness in the Middle Ages; Medicine and warfare in the 19th and 20th centuries or disease and sexuality in Africa.

Modules

Compulsory modules

  • Research Methodology in History
  • Dissertation (History of Health, Medicine and Society)
  • Approaches to the History of Health and Medicine

Optional modules (selection of typical options shown below)

  • Making History: Archive Collaborations
  • Medicine and Warfare in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries
  • Women, Gender and Sexuality: Archives and Approaches
  • Sexuality and Disease in African History
  • Contesting Patriarchy: Debating Gender Justice in Colonial and Post-Colonial India
  • Lifecycles: Birth, Death and Illness in the Middle Ages
  • Special Option (History of Science)
  • Science in the Museum: Interpretations & Practices
  • The Origin of Modern Medicine (Birth of the Clinic)

Learning and teaching

We use a range of teaching and learning methods. The majority of your modules will be taught through weekly seminars, where you’ll discuss issues and themes in your chosen modules with a small group of students and your tutors. Independent study is also crucial to this degree, giving you the space to shape your own studies and develop your skills.

Assessment

We use different types of assessment to help you develop a wide range of skills, including presentations, research proposals, project reports and essays, depending on the subjects you choose.

Applying, fees and funding

English language requirements

IELTS 6.5 overall, with no less than 6.0 in any component. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

Improve your English

International students who do not meet the English language requirements for this programme may be able to study our postgraduate pre-sessional English course, to help improve your English language level.

To find out more, read Language for Arts and Humanities (6 weeks) and Language for Social Science and Arts: Arts and Humanities (10 weeks).

How to apply

Application Deadlines

We usually aim to process your application within 2-4 weeks. However, during the busy April-June period this can take up to six weeks.

We recommend that you apply as early as possible so you can leave enough time to make any arrangements before starting the programme, such as moving to Leeds or visa applications. Application deadlines for scholarships are likely to close much sooner.

Occasionally we may invite applicants to interview before deciding whether to offer them a place.

APPLY (FULL TIME) 

APPLY (PART TIME) 

Documents and information you need

  • A copy of your BA transcript, or a partial one if you are still studying
  • Two academic references
  • Evidence of your English language qualifications in English isn’t your first language.

You may also be asked to provide a sample of your written work, such as an assessed undergraduate essay.Read about visas, immigration and other information in International students.

Fees

For fees information for taught postgraduate students, read Masters fees.

Part-time fees are normally calculated based on the number of credits you study in a year compared to the equivalent full-time course.

Scholarships and financial support

If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There may be help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government. Find out more at Masters funding overview.

Please view our Scholarships and Employment page for the latest information about School scholarships.

Career opportunities

Graduates have found success in a diverse range of careers in education, research and the private sector. Many others have continued with their studies at PhD level. Your knowledge and skills will appeal to a wide range of employers, including in the charitable, education, healthcare, and heritage sectors.


Visit the History of Health, Medicine and Society MA page on the University of Leeds website for more details!

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