Early Modern Studies MA

London, Bloomsbury

The Early Modern Studies MA offers an innovative blend of essential skills training for research (paleography and historical bibliography), object-based learning and museum visits. The core modules cover a wide range of disciplines, giving you a broad understanding of the early modern period. You can then tailor your programme to suit your interests from a large number of wide-ranging optional modules, covering early modern culture, history and society.

UK students International students
Study mode
UK tuition fees (2023/24)
£14,100
£7,050
Overseas tuition fees (2023/24)
£29,000
£14,500
Duration
1 calendar year
2 calendar years
Programme starts
September 2023
Applications accepted
All applicants: 17 Oct 2022 – 30 Jun 2023

Applications open

Notification

Application closes at 17:00 (UK time).

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.

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: Level 4

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 MA in Early Modern Studies will teach you critical reading skills, the ability to assess and weigh evidence, and construct persuasive arguments. It combines training in book history, bibliography, and paleography with a range of theoretical and methodological approaches to the study of the early modern period.

Who this course is for

The programme is aimed at students with a good degree in a relevant subject who wish to gain the key bibliography, paleography and research skills necessary for a future career in academia or in the heritage or cultural industries.

What this course will give you

This is a bespoke programme of study which can be tailored to your interests through several optional modules, all taught by leading scholars in a wide range of subjects including art, history, law, literature, politics and science.

Practical, hands-on modules with traditional skills such as palaeography and textual bibliography are taught alongside the latest techniques in databases and XML. The programme includes field trips to museums, archives and galleries.

Our central London location provides unrivalled access to a wide range of world-class museums, rare-books libraries and archives. Located in Bloomsbury, it is a short walk to the exceptional resources of the British Library and the British Museum.

The foundation of your career

This MA will give you a very specific skill set, including archival research skills. Depending on the optional modules you select, you may also develop manuscript handling skills, language skills and knowledge in information technologies and database use.

Employability

Graduates may find employment within the cultural or heritage sector, as well as library work, the arts, and other roles which require intensive research and/or information management. Many graduates have been accepted to undertake further study as research students, both at UCL and elsewhere.

Teaching and learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of tutorials, seminars, workshops, presentations, class discussions and library, archive, museum and gallery visits. Assessment is through essays, annotated bibliography and the dissertation.

For a full-time postgraduate course, we recommend around 20-25 hours of independent study per week. The majority of our courses have around 10-12 hours' teaching time spent in lectures and seminars.

For a part-time postgraduate course, your contact hours would usually be 5-6 hours per week across 2-3 days and we would recommend around 10-12 hours of independent study per week.

There is minimal teaching during Term 3, which focusses on the dissertation and assessment.

Modules

Full-time structure

During the academic year, you will take compulsory modules which are designed to work as a postgraduate-level foundation and provide you with the specific skills to research and write essays and the dissertation. Compulsory modules cover a range of disciplines, helping you identify areas of interest for further study. You will gain the skills required for archival research, focusing on palaeography and bibliography.


You will also choose optional modules from the suggested list (see Optional modules). These modules set the foundation for the whole Master's, preparing you for further learning and for your dissertation. You will be exposed to concepts of research design and research methods, thus gaining the necessary knowledge to develop your research proposal and give you a broad understanding of the early modern period.


During Term 2, in addition to your taught modules, you will start formulating your dissertation proposal. This work will continue into Term 3 and across the remainder of the academic year. You will develop your dissertation outline and structure with support from your supervisor. You will give a presentation to your peers and tutors on your dissertation to help cement your argument and subject area to cover. This is a non-assessed compulsory element of the MA. You will then spend the summer researching and writing your 12,000 word dissertation on a topic to be determined in discussion with your academic supervisor.

Part-time structure

In Year 1, you will take compulsory modules that will cover a range of disciplines, helping you identify areas of interest for further study as well as cover the skills required for archival research, focusing on palaeography and bibliography. You can also take an elective module from another UCL department to develop your personal interests. These modules set the foundation for the whole Master's, preparing you for further learning and for your dissertation. You will be exposed to concepts of research design and research methods, thus gaining the necessary knowledge to develop your research proposal.

In Year 2, you will take optional modules to develop your broader understanding of the early modern period, and further develop key concepts learnt in Year 1. You will also formulate and develop your dissertation outline and structure, with support from your supervisor. You will give a presentation to your peers and tutors on your dissertation proposal to help cement your argument and subject areas to cover. This is a non-assessed compulsory element of your MA. You will then spend the summer of Year 2 researching and writing your 12,000 word dissertation on a topic of your choice to be determined in discussion with your supervisor.

Optional modules



Fiction and the Archives: Writing and Rewriting of Criminal Stories in Early Modern France

Identity and Performance in Renaissance Italy


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. Modules that are in use for the current academic year are linked for further information. Where no link is present, further information is not yet available.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded an MA in Early Modern Studies.

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.

Online - Open day

Introduction to MA Early Modern Studies

This MA programme is very hands-on, with a combination of tutorials, workshops, discussions and library, archive, museum and gallery visits.

Fees and funding

Fees for this course

UK students International students
Fee description Full-time Part-time
Tuition fees (2023/24) £14,100 £7,050
Tuition fees (2023/24) £29,000 £14,500

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

All full time students are required to pay a fee deposit of £1,000 for this programme. All part-time students are required to pay a fee deposit of £500.

Additional costs may include expenses such as books, stationery, printing or photocopying, or conference registration fees and associated travel costs.

The department strives to keep additional costs low. Books and journal articles are usually available via the UCL library as hard copies or via e-journal subscriptions.

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

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 Early Modern Studies at graduate level
  • why you want to study Early Modern Studies at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to this programme
  • how your personal, academic and professional background meets the demands of this programme
  • where you would like to go professionally with your degree

Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.

Please note that you may submit applications for a maximum of two graduate programmes (or one application for the Law LLM) in any application cycle.

Choose your programme

Please read the Application Guidance before proceeding with your application.

Year of entry: 2023-2024

UCL is regulated by the Office for Students.