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Archives and Records Management MA

The Archives and Records Management MA provides the skills and knowledge that are needed by new entrants to the profession in the United Kingdom and abroad. Students learn to manage and preserve records created in the present and those inherited from the past for use in the present and future.

Key Information

Modes and duration

  • Full-time: 1 year
  • Part-time: 2 years
  • Flexible: up to 5 years

Programme start date

September 2016

Tuition Fees (2016/17)

£9,020 (FT)
£18,670 (FT)

Application dates

All applicants
Open: 5 October 2015
Close: 12 January 2016
Optional qualifications: This degree is also available as a PG Diploma and a PG Certificate with fees set accordingly.

Entry Requirements

Normal requirements for admission are a minimum of a second class UK Bachelor's degree or equivalent, and also a substantial period of paid or voluntary employment (usually equivalent to about a year) in an established archive or records service, or experience in a post where management of archives or records is a substantial part of the postholder's responsibility.

English Language Requirements

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.

The English language level for this programme is: Good

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

International students

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.

International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.

Select your country:

Degree Information

The programme focuses on the management of records and archives in a variety of digital and hard copy formats. Students learn to manage, organise, interpret and provide access to a wide range of records and archives, focussing on both the management of records for on-going purposes, and their selection, preservation and accessibility for future uses including historical research.

MA students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of five core modules (90 credits), two optional modules (30 credits) and a research dissertation (60 credits).

A Postgraduate Diploma, five core modules (90 credits), two optional modules (30 credits), full-time nine months or flexible study up to five years, is offered.

A Postgraduate Certificate, four optional modules (60 credits), full-time 15 weeks or flexible study over a period of up to two years, is offered.

Core modules

  • Concepts and Contexts (30 credits, taught across two terms)
  • Creation and Capture
  • Curation and Stewardship
  • The Record-keeping Professional
  • Access and Use of Archives and Records

Options include:

  • Advanced Preservation
  • Digital Resources in the Humanities
  • Introduction to Digital Curation
  • English Historical Frameworks
  • Manuscript Studies
  • Oral History: from Creation to Curation
  • Reading and Interpretation of Archives from 1500
  • Standards for Digital Recordkeeping


All MA students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 10,000–15,000 words.

Teaching and Learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, computer laboratory sessions and class-based practical exercises, with a strong emphasis on group and peer learning and the acquisition of practical skills underpinned by archival theory and knowledge. Assessment is through a mixture of essays, reports, presentations and practical assignments.

Further information on modules and degree structure available on the department web site Archives and Records Management MA


Scottish applicants may be eligible for an award from the Student Awards Agency for Scotland.

Scholarships relevant to this department are displayed (where available) below. For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.

David Tebbutt Scholarship

Full tuition fees plus a work placement with Faber and Faber (1 year)
UK, EU students
Based on academic merit

Sir Hilary Jenkinson Scholarship in Archive Studies

£1,000 (1 year)
UK, EU, Overseas students
Based on academic merit

Wiley Scholarship

UK/EU tuition fees plus internship (1 year)
UK, EU students
Based on academic merit

More scholarships are listed on the Scholarships and Funding website


The MA and PG Diploma are accredited by the Archives and Records Association and are recognised throughout the UK as professional qualifications.

Recent graduates have gone to:

  • Exeter University Library
  • HSBC Group Archives
  • Institute of Actuaries
  • Lambeth Palace
  • London Metropolitan Archives
  • National Archives
  • Royal Society of Arts
  • Westminster Palace

Top career destinations for this programme
  • London Borough of Bexley, Community Archivist, 2012
  • British Academy, Librarian and Archivist, 2012
  • Schroders plc. Records and Archives Assistant, 2014
  • John Lewis Partnership, Assistant Archivist, 2014

Top career destinations for this degree

  • Records Manager, London Borough of Hackney
  • Corporate Archivist, HSBC
  • Archivist, Royal Opera House
  • Digital Archivist, Society of Genealogists
  • Archivist, Lord's Cricket Ground


This programme prepares students to work in a wide variety of traditional and non-traditional archives and informational management roles in both the private and public sectors, in the UK and internationally.

Students benefit from the department's excellent links with employers in the information professions which provide them with 'real life' experience through guest lectures, visits and a placement. Students also receive specific careers advice, including how to construct CVs. In the longer term the programme equips students with the skills and knowledge to have long and successful careers in their chosen field and become leaders in their profession.

Why study this degree at UCL?

UCL boasts one of the longest-established archive education programmes in the UK. It is taught by leading experts in the field, drawing on their innovative research as well as extensive practical experience of archives and records work.

Students benefit from UCL's location close to many records management services, and the grouping of historical archives in any city in the English-speaking world.

The programme hosts an impressive range of visiting speakers, organises frequent field visits to a wide variety of working environments and a two week placement, all of which provide unique occasions to network and create professional links with key players in the sector.

Student / staff ratios › 21 staff › 220 taught students › 28 research students

Department: Information Studies

Degree reviews

Staff review

"Given the huge concentration of archives and records management services and practitioners in the capital, it is very beneficial for any student to be here and have access to the wider networks and experience that it provides."

Jenny Bunn

Archives and Records Management MA
UCL Information Studies
Alumni review

"The degree more than prepared me for a job in my sector, and enabled me to secure employment almost as soon as I finished the Master's programme. It also gave me the opportunity to work with the International Records Management Trust, a UK registered charity which promotes the importance of record-keeping in support of good governance. Although challenging, the course enabled me to learn a huge amount and I really enjoyed learning from the great lecturers within the department."

Helen Sumping

Archives and Records Management MA (2014)
Student review

"The programme content is amazing, the lecturers are some of the best in their field, and it is based in the centre of the capital. Practical skills combined with critical theory is a great way of engaging with the archival profession."

Virginia Dawe-Woodings

Archives and Records Management MA

Application and next steps


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.

Who can apply?

Candidates who meet the entry requirements and want a career in archives and records management. The MA/Postgraduate Diploma provides a foundation education for graduates seeking to enter the profession, and is accredited by the ARA. The Postgraduate Certificate has certain professional elements, but is not recognised as a professional qualification.

Application deadlines

All applicants
12 January 2016
The initial deadline for applications is 12 January 2015. Applications received by 12 January 2015 will be considered for interview in February/March and the majority of the places on the programme will be filled following these interviews. Later applications (especially from overseas applicants) may be considered until 30 June in the year for which entry is sought, but at this stage fewer places are likely to be available.

For more information see our Applications page.

Apply now

What are we looking for?

When we assess your application we would like to learn:
  • why you want to study Archives and Records Management at graduate level
  • why you want to study Archives and Records Management at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to this programme
  • how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this programme
  • where you would like to go professionally and/or academically with your degree

Contact Information


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  • Receive notice of graduate open days, events and more
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