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  • Study Type

    Full time & Part time available

  • Subject Areas

    History & Archaeology

  • Start Date

    September

  • Course Duration

    1 year full-time or 2 years part-time

  • Course Type

    MSc

  • Course Fees

    Please visit website for more details

  • Last Updated

    05 December 2017

Course content

In this programme, you will take an in-depth look at the fascinating history of Europe in the period between AD 400 and 1500 and develop your own specialised interests. Through small, seminar-based classes, and specialised training you will develop knowledge of the principal categories of surviving evidence and the technical skills needed to understand them. You will also learn the value of an interdisciplinary approach to medieval research with opportunities to enrol for relevant courses in other parts of the University.

With more than 90 members of academic staff attached to our cross-disciplinary Centre for Medieval and Renaissance Studies (CMRS), Edinburgh is a wonderful environment for medieval scholarship. World-class resources will be on hand to aid your studies, most notably the impressive combined collections of the National Library of Scotland and the University’s Main Library.

Programme structure

You will take a variety of seminar-style courses in small groups. Most courses are assessed by means of an extended piece of written work, while some courses may also assess non-written skills.

You will complete a compulsory course on primary sources and five other courses, including at least two language options or skills-based options (which include Latin) and at least two academic options (which cover Europe and the Mediterranean). You will then complete an independent research dissertation and will be assigned a supervisor from the outset.

The compulsory course is:

  • The Sources of Medieval History

Option courses previously offered include those listed below. Option courses change from year to year and those available when you start your studies may be different from those shown in the list.

  • Elementary Gaelic 1
  • Elementary Gaelic 2
  • Elementary Latin (PG) 1
  • Elementary Latin (PG) 2
  • Historical Research: Skills and Sources
  • Historical Methodology
  • The Crusades: Thirteenth Century Crossroads
  • Medieval Men and Masculinities
  • Literature and History in Early Medieval Britain and Ireland
  • Debating Marriage between Antiquity and the Middle Ages
  • Studying Women in Late Medieval England: Sources and Approaches
  • Constantinople: The History of a Medieval Megalopolis from Constantine the Great to Suleyman the Magnificent

Learning outcomes

This programme is designed to provide a grounding in the principal categories of surviving evidence and the technical skills needed to read them, namely palaeography and linguistic knowledge (generally Latin), and demonstrates the value of an interdisciplinary approach to medieval research.

You will also deepen your knowledge and understanding of selected themes and topics in a way that enables you to select and execute an independent piece of research.

Career opportunities

Our students view the programme and a graduate degree from Edinburgh as an advanced qualification valued and respected by many employers, others are interested in pursuing long-term academic careers and therefore consider the MSc as preparation for a PhD. The combination of specialised skills training courses and research seminars, as well as independent research provides you with transferable skills that will be beneficial whatever path you choose.

Graduates pursue work in related areas such as museums, policy think tanks, national and international civil services, non-governmental organisations, galleries, libraries and historic trusts whilst others build on the transferable skills gained and enter areas as diverse as business, media, public administration and marketing.


Visit the Medieval History (MSc) page on the University of Edinburgh website for more details!

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