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MA Modern German and Comparative Literature

Course Description

Politically, economically and culturally, Germany is one of the most influential countries in Europe. Examining German literature alongside wider trends in European culture, the MA in Modern German and Comparative Literature introduces you to a wide range of theoretical perspectives, enriching your appreciation of the cultures, texts and critical practices examined in the programme’s various modules. In the spirit of interdisciplinary dialogue, you benefit from expert teaching from members of both the Department of Modern Languages and the Department of Comparative Literature.

The MA in Modern German and Comparative Literature involves the postgraduate study of German literature within a broader comparative context. Uniquely, it offers the opportunity to spend a fully funded month at the Deutsches Literaturarchiv Marbach.

Visit the website: https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/30/modern-german-and-comparative-literature

Course detail

- Description -

This MA is aimed at students who want to deepen their knowledge of modern German literature within a broader European context. Kent is one of the few universities in the UK to have a thriving Comparative Literature department; within an expanding school of European culture. Students will hone their literary and analytical skills not only on German texts, but also on a broader range of modern literature.

- Purpose -

The MA is suitable for those who wish to take their undergraduate studies a stage further, and for those who wish to go on to do a PhD. This programme is also ideal for modern languages graduates who wish to consolidate their knowledge in a wider context; English graduates wishing to diversify their interests; and graduates in other humanities subjects (history, philosophy, theology) who would like to apply their knowledge to literary material.

- Format and assessment -

In the Autumn and Spring terms, you take a choice of four modules, before undertaking a 12,000 word dissertation over the summer, supervised by an expert within the department. While writing the dissertation, you will have the opportunity to spend a month at the Deutsches Literaturarchiv Marbach (DLA), as part of an innovative internship scheme generously subsidised by the DLA, learning about the work of the world’s leading research archive for modern German literature.

Assessment is by one 5,000-word essay for each module and the dissertation.


A postgraduate degree in German shows you have advanced knowledge of the culture of Europe’s economically most significant country and opens employment possibilities in areas such as media, publishing and European administration. Previous graduates have gone on to work in these areas as well as using the qualification as a basis for entering higher-level positions in the public sector. A large number of MA graduates go on to doctoral studies, either at Kent or at other leading institutions in the UK or German-speaking world.

How to apply: https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/apply/

Why study at The University of Kent?

- Shortlisted for University of the Year 2015
- Kent has been ranked fifth out of 120 UK universities in a mock Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) exercise modelled by Times Higher Education (THE).
- In the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014, modern languages and linguistics was ranked 3rd for research quality, 3rd for research output and in the top 20 for research intensity, research impact and research power in the UK.

Postgraduate scholarships and funding

We have a scholarship fund of over £9 million to support our taught and research students with their tuition fees and living costs. Find out more: https://www.kent.ac.uk/scholarships/postgraduate/

English language learning

If you need to improve your English before and during your postgraduate studies, Kent offers a range of modules and programmes in English for Academic Purposes (EAP). Find out more here: https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/international/english.html

Visit the MA Modern German and Comparative Literature page on the University of Kent website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Melanie Dilly

What attracted you to Kent?
Having previously studied in Germany, I wanted to deepen my knowledge of literature within a broader European context and this course was ideal because it doesn’t limit your studies to the literature of a single language or country.

I was impressed that Kent is ranked among the top universities in the area of comparative literature. Canterbury is also an an attractive place to live and study, and the University provides a friendly and welcoming environment for international students.

How are you enjoying your studies?
The teaching is great. One of my modules is taught by two lecturers each session, so a high level of expertise is guaranteed. In SECL, you get the chance to meet a lot of international students. Our classes bring together a range of expert knowledge and perspectives in the literatures of many different countries, which I’ve found particularly helpful in my studies. We are always encouraged to contribute to the discussions and this creates a highly productive learning environment. It’s also a lot of fun.

What about your employment prospects?
I think a second degree will positively influence my employment prospects. I felt that I needed more time to study in order to find my particular area of interest within the wide field of German and comparative literature. I now feel much more confident when I talk or write about literature. And a Master’s degree from abroad is always useful – especially in the area of comparative literature.


Graduate School Scholarships - No. of awards TBC

The Graduate School Scholarship Scheme was established in 2009 to celebrate the founding of the University's Graduate School, which is responsible for the strategic development of graduate education and research within the University. The aim of the scheme is enable Kent graduates to continue study at the University in the next academic year after graduation from their undergraduate degree.Candidates can hold the Graduate School Scholarship in conjunction with other awards except where these awards offer full fees and a Research Council UK equivalent maintenance grant. The Graduate School Scholarship cannot be held in conjunction with the University's loyalty discount.Criteria- Candidates must hold a Bachelors degree with honours (or undergraduate Masters degree) awarded in 2016 by the University of Kent. This scholarship offer is not available to those students who have been awarded foundation degrees, HNCs, HNDs or postgraduate degrees.
- Candidates must have satisfied the criteria for admission and register for a postgraduate degree (Masters or Doctorate) with the University of Kent by 1 October 2016. Students considering this offer are advised to check the entry criteria for their favoured postgraduate programme of study prior to application.
- Candidates must be self-funded, i.e. they are paying their tuition fees themselves.
- Open to overseas/home/EU fee paying students.

Value of Scholarship(s)

£1,000 reduction (£500 per annum for part-time students, for 2 years) in tuition fees


Kent 2016 graduates who earn a Bachelor's degree with honours (or undergraduate Master's degree) and register for a postgraduate degree at Kent by 1 October 2016.

Application Procedure

There is no need to make a separate application. The tuition fee reduction will be provided to all eligible 2016 graduates on registration.

Further Information


Entry Requirements

A first or 2.1 in a relevant subject (or equivalent) and the appropriate language skills. English Language requirements: View Website How to apply: View Website

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Recipient: University of Kent

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