PDF version of Medieval and Renaissance Studies MA

Contact details

Joanna Fryer

Email: j.fryer@ucl.ac.uk

Tel: +44 (0)20 7679 7125

Fees and funding

UK/EU 2013/14:

£8,250 (FT)

Overseas 2013/14:

£16,250 (FT)

EU/UK students will be eligible for AHRC awards within the history, english and language competitions. In addition there will be two programme-specific scholarships and the Carol Chattaway Scholarship in medieval history.

Full details of funding opportunities can be found on the UCL Scholarships website

More information

Contributing department

Contributing Department

Prospectus Entry


Key facts

Research Assessment Rating

65% rated 4* (world-leading) or 3* (internationally excellent)
(What is the RAE?)

The programme information on this page relates to 2013 entry. 2014 content to appear here shortly. 

Medieval and Renaissance Studies MA

This MA equips students with the skills necessary for advanced medieval and renaissance scholarship; in language and in the techniques of reading manuscripts and early printed books. A wide range of historical, literary, palaeographical, art historical and archaeological courses enables students to explore the aspects of medieval and renaissance culture in which they are interested.

Degree summary

What will I learn?

This MA provides exceptional opportunities to master medieval and renaissance languages and to acquire manuscript expertise working with original manuscripts; key skills for those who want to go on to original research. Students with primary interests in many different areas ‒ linguistic, historical, literary or archaeological ‒ will be able to build on and extend their expertise and skills.

Why should I study this degree at UCL?

The departments contributing to this degree (including: History; English; the School of European Languages, Culture and Society; History of Art; Hebrew & Jewish Studies; and the Institute of Archaeology) enjoy outstanding international reputations for research and teaching.

We are strongly committed to the intellectual development of all our students; if you come to UCL, you will receive individual supervision from leading researchers in their fields.

Located in Bloomsbury, we are just a few minutes' walk away from the exceptional resources of the British Library, the British Museum and the research institutes of the University of London, including the Warburg and the Institute of Historical Research.

See subject website for more information:

Degree structure

Availability: Full-time 1 year; Part-time 2 years

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. The programme consists of core language modules (30 credits), optional modules (90 credits), and a research dissertation (60 credits).

Core Modules

  • At least 30 credits from the following:
  • Old English
  • Medieval Latin (Beginners)
  • Medieval Latin (Intermediate)
  • Medieval French
  • Old French
  • Medieval Italian
  • Medieval German
  • Classical Hebrew
  • Rabbinic Hebrew


  • Up to 90 credits of options drawn from any of:
  • Manuscripts and Early Printed Books
  • Manuscripts and Documents
  • Renaissance Texts: Resources and Research Techniques
  • The Medieval English Book
  • Anglo-Saxon Court Culture
  • Animals and the Medieval Imagination
  • Comparative History of Medieval Literature
  • Dante: Divina Commedia
  • English and Englishness in the Middle Ages
  • Europe's Long 13th Century: Governments, Conflicts and the Cultivation of Christendom
  • From Renaissance to Republic: The Netherlands c. 1555‒1609
  • Giordano Bruno
  • Identity and Power in Medieval Europe, 500‒1300 AD
  • The Italian Book, 1465‒1600
  • The Italian Dialogue of Giordano Bruno
  • Magic in the Middle Ages
  • Medieval Archaeology: Selected Topics and Current Problems
  • Medieval Manuscripts and Documents: Research Techniques


All students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 10,000‒12,000 words.

Teaching and Learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars and classes. Several courses include site visits to institutions, notably the British Library, the Warburg Institute, the National Archives and the Institute of Historical Research. Assessment is through unseen examination, long essays, course work and the dissertation.

Further details available on subject website:

Entry and application

Entry requirements

A minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree in a relevant discipline from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.

For overseas equivalencies see the relevant country page.

How to apply

You may choose to apply online or download application materials; for details visit www.ucl.ac.uk/gradapps

Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines. These typically fall early in the calendar year, but you should check deadlines.

You are requested to attach to your application a sample of written work in English of c. 2,500 words. This does not have to be on a medieval or renaissance topic, but it should show your analytical and writing ability.

Who can apply?

The programme will be particularly attractive to students with research ambitions who have strong undergraduate qualifications and who are thinking about doctoral research. The intensive linguistic and manuscript training is intended to increase students' chances of acceptance onto and excelling in good doctoral programmes. This MSc is also particularly suited to students wishing to extend their knowledge of a wide range of medieval and renaissance topics and approaches.

What are we looking for?

When we assess your application we would like to learn:

  • why you want to study Medieval and Renaissance Studies at graduate level
  • why you want to study Medieval and Renaissance Studies at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to this programme
  • how your academic background meets the demands of this challenging programme
  • where you would like to go professionally with your degree
Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to show how your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme delivers.


First destinations of recent graduates of the programme include: funded PhDs at UCL, Universities of Oxford, St Andrews, Cambridge, Durham, Cardiff, Lancaster, and UEA; The British Library: Cataloguer; Reuters: News Assistant; Ministry of Trade Industry and Tourism: Government Advisor; University of San Diego: Juris Doctor.

Find out more about London graduates' careers by visiting the Careers Group (University of London) website:

Request content update l Request printed information l Disclaimer
Page maintained by Publications and Marketing Services