Archives and Records Management MA

London, Bloomsbury

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.

UK students International students
Study mode
UK tuition fees (2022/23)
£10,800
£5,400
Programme fees on a modular (flexible) basis.
Overseas tuition fees (2022/23)
£26,600
£13,300
Programme fees on a modular (flexible) basis.
Duration
1 calendar year
2 calendar years
5 calendar years
Programme starts
September 2022
Applications accepted
All applicants: 18 Oct 2021 – 31 Mar 2022

Applications open

Entry requirements

Normal requirements for admission are a minimum of an upper second-class UK Bachelor's degree or equivalent. A period of paid or voluntary experience (usually 4-12months) in archive, records or information governance work. Applicants that do not meet these requirements but demonstrate a strong understanding of the programme and the recordkeeping field will be given due consideration.

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

UCL Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English courses are for international students who are aiming to study for a postgraduate degree at UCL. The courses will develop your academic English and academic skills required to succeed at postgraduate level. International Preparation Courses

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

Equivalent qualifications

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. Please note that the equivalency will correspond to the broad UK degree classification stated on this page (e.g. upper second-class). Where a specific overall percentage is required in the UK qualification, the international equivalency will be higher than that stated below. Please contact Graduate Admissions should you require further advice.

About this degree

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, focusing on both the management of records for ongoing purposes, and their selection, preservation and accessibility for future uses including historical research.

Who this course is for

The MA/Postgraduate Diploma provides a foundation education for graduates seeking to enter the profession, and is accredited by the Archives and Records Association (ARA). The Postgraduate Certificate has certain professional elements, but is not recognised as a professional qualification.

What this course will give you

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 broadest 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.

The foundation of your career

This programme prepares students to work in a wide variety of traditional and non-traditional archives and information 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' experiences 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.

Employability

Past graduates have taken up professional roles at prestigious organisations and institutions including national societies, university libraries and the House of Commons.

Accreditation

The ARA accreditation is valid for 5 years starting from 2018.

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, and practical assignments.

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.

Modules

Full-time

You will undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. You will undertake seven taught modules and the research dissertation. Five of the modules are compulsory and cover the themes of:

  • concepts and contexts
  • curation and stewardship
  • the record-keeping professional
  • creation and capture
  • access and the use of archives.

To complete the seven modules, you will choose two optional modules that individually cover a broad range of subjects, such as:

  • reading and interpretation of archives from 1500
  • information governance
  • collections care
  • database theory and practice
  • digital resources in the humanities
  • manuscript studies
  • oral history: creation to curation
  • knowledge organisation
  • information literacy
  • historical bibliography

Full-time structure:

Term 1:

You will take four compulsory modules, one of which is a double module: it provides the key concepts and contexts of the programme. As such, it is taught across Terms 1 and 2.

Term 2:

You will take two compulsory modules, one of which is the continuation of the double module started in Term 1, and two optional modules.

Term 3:

The dissertation research and writing commence in Term 3 and continues over the summer, although some initial planning, including choosing a dissertation topic, takes place at the end of Term 1 and during Term 2. You may also undertake a two-week work placement at the beginning of Term 3.

Part-time

You will undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. You will undertake seven taught modules and the research dissertation. You will take two years to complete the 180 credits. Five of the modules are compulsory and cover the themes of:

  • concepts and contexts
  • curation and stewardship
  • the record-keeping professional
  • creation and capture
  • access and the use of archives.

To complete the seven modules, you will choose two optional modules that individually cover a broad range of subjects, such as:

  • reading and interpretation of archives from 1500
  • information governance
  • collections care
  •  
  • database theory and practice
  • digital resources in the humanities
  • manuscript studies
  • oral history: creation to curation
  • knowledge organisation
  • information literacy
  • historical bibliography

Part-time structure:

Year 1:

In Term 1 you will take two compulsory modules, one of which is a double module: it provides the key concepts and contexts of the programme. As such, teaching for this module will continue in Term 2 of Year 1.

In Term 2 you will take two modules, one of which is the continuation of the double module started in Term 1. For your second module, you may choose to take either a compulsory module or an optional module. If there is an optional module being offered in Year One that you are particularly interested in taking, we suggest you do so in Year One, as we cannot guarantee to run the full range of optional modules every year.

In Term 3 of Year One, there is no teaching, although you may have to undertake a two-week work placement if you have elected to take the module that explores the topic of curation and Stewardship to which the placement is attached in this year.

Year 2

In Term 1 and 2 you will take two modules. These will be a mix of compulsory and optional modules, depending on your choices the previous year.

Term 3:

You will commence the dissertation research and writing in Term 3 and continue over the summer of Year Two, although some initial planning, including choosing a dissertation topic, takes place at the end of Term 1 and during Term 2, Year Two. You may have to undertake a two-week work placement if you have elected to take the module that explores the topic of curation and stewardship to which the placement is attached in this year.

Flexible

You will undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. You will undertake seven taught modules and the research dissertation. You will have a maximum of five years in which to complete the programme. Five of the modules are compulsory and cover the themes of:

  • concepts and contexts
  • curation and stewardship
  • the record-keeping professional
  • creation and capture
  • access and the use of archives.

To complete the seven modules, you will choose two optional modules that individually cover a broad range of subjects, such as:

  • reading and interpretation of archives from 1500
  • information governance
  • collections care
  •  
  • database theory and practice
  • digital resources in the humanities
  • manuscript studies
  • oral history: creation to curation
  • knowledge organisation 
  • information literacy.

Modular structure:

You will have a maximum of five years in which to complete the programme. We strongly recommend that you start with the double module in Year One (taught across Terms 1 and 2) as it covers the key concepts and contexts of the programme. Other than that, you choose how many and which modules you take in any given year of study.

Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.

MA students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded an MA in Archives and Records Management. Upon successful completion of 120 credits, you will be awarded a PG Dip in Archives and Records Management. Upon successful completion of 60 credits, you will be awarded a PG Cert in Archives and Records Management.

Placement

The work placement gives students taking the MA/Dip experience of how the techniques they have learned may be applied in practice. Placements are optional. They last for two weeks and are undertaken as part of the Curation and Stewardship core module just after the beginning of the third term (May). We arrange placements individually for each student and do our best to match the placement with their interests and experience.

Accessibility

Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble accessable.co.uk. Further information can also be obtained from the UCL Student Support & Wellbeing team.

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Fees and funding

Fees for this course

UK students International students
Fee description Full-time Part-time
Tuition fees (2022/23) £10,800 £5,400
Tuition fees (2022/23) £26,600 £13,300

Programme fees on a modular (flexible) basis.

The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Where the programme is offered on a flexible/modular basis, fees are charged pro-rata to the appropriate full-time Master's fee taken in an academic session. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Students website: ucl.ac.uk/students/fees.

Additional costs

For more information on additional costs for prospective students please go to our estimated cost of essential expenditure at Accommodation and living costs.

Funding your studies

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

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.

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.

There is an application processing fee for this programme of £90 for online applications and £115 for paper applications. Further information can be found at Application fees.

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

Please note that you may submit applications for a maximum of two graduate programmes in any application cycle.

We recommend that you submit your application as soon as possible. The programme may remain open if places are still available after 31 March 2022 and will be closed as soon as it is full or by 30 June 2022.

UCL is regulated by the Office for Students.

This page was last updated 28 Sep 2021