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Medieval and Renaissance Studies

Course content

Are you fascinated by the cultural and intellectual history of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance? Are you keen to acquire in-depth knowledge and widen your historical perspective through intensive multi- and interdisciplinary training? Are you interested in scholarly research about the Middle Ages and the Renaissance and perhaps undertaking a PhD in this domain? Then make the MA in Medieval and Renaissance Studies your springboard for an academic career or an advanced position in the cultural sector.

The programme will stimulate your independent study skills within a wide range of issues ranging from philosophy, theology, law, history, literature and the arts. Specialised seminars will bring the cultural and intellectual history of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance to life, with a particular emphasis on the Low Countries.

The programme draws on the combined expertise of various research groups and specialised centres at KU Leuven, including the Faculty of Arts for the History of the Middle Ages, Early Modern History and the Illuminare and Seminarium Philologiae Humanisticae centres), the Institute of Philosophy's (De Wulf-Mansion Centre for Ancient, Medieval and Renaissance Philosophy, as well as Aristoteles Latinus), the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies' group for the History of Church and Theology), and the Faculty of Law. All of these research groups and centres all play a role in this MA programme, which is monitored by the interfaculty Institute for Medieval and Renaissance Studies. Strengthened by KU Leuven's in-house expertise in ancient and modern languages and by its excellent library collections, you cannot ask for a better home to carry out your historical-philological research.

This is an advanced master's programme and can be followed on a full-time or part-time basis.


The aim of this one-year Master program is to prepare students for the independent study of the cultural and intellectual history of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance form a multi- and interdisciplinary point of view. Taking its point of departure in texts, the program is designed to address a wide spectrum of issues in the fields of language and literature, political thought, law, urban history, art history, philosophy, history of the church and theology, history of education and science. Special attention is devoted to the relation between text and image, the afterlife of Antiquity, and the significance of the Low Countries in the cultural and intellectual history of Western Europe.

Graduates will:
- exhibit sufficient familiarity with manuscripts or old editions, the publishing of texts, their interpretation, and/or the study of illustrations;
- be able to independently formulate and research a problem, and present the results in an adequate manner;
- exhibit competence in innovative and groundbreaking research and be in a position to make a contribution to the process of knowledge development and situate the contribution culturally and historically.

Career paths
Our graduates go on to find employment as researchers, academic and professionals in the cultural sector.

Graduates from the programme are well placed for positions in university research projects, academic appointments and career positions in the cultural sector.




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