Medieval British Studies (MA)
The scheme draws together a wide range of expertise in the History department and in English and Welsh to provide a flexible programme of study that seeks to lay the foundations for further postgraduate study and equips students with the skills necessary for research. It consists partly of taught modules and partly of independent research. The MA may be taken as a one-year full-time or a two-year part-time course.
The MA in Medieval British Studies is run in conjunction with the Cardiff School of History, Archaeology and Religion, the Cardiff School of English Communication and Philosophy, and the Cardiff School of Welsh. It aims to enable students with some prior knowledge and a strong interest in Medieval Britain to take advantage of the range of expertise on aspects of medieval studies at Cardiff, and to engage in postgraduate work either within single disciplines or on interdisciplinary topics.
Applicants should normally possess a first degree in History (or related field) with a first or upper second class Honours.You should note that as part of the application process, you must include a statement (around 500 words) outlining areas of interest and the topic upon which they hope to write their dissertation. This replaces the 'personal statement'.
Outline: Taught Stage
Please note that some modules are subject to review and may change prior to academic year 2013-2014.
In the taught stage, you take the following components:
- Module on Medieval sources and methods
- Two 20-credit option modules
- Beginner's Language (normally Latin)
- A training module on presentation of work and bibliographical sources, skills and procedures
This combination of modules provides you with the skills necessary to examine the Medieval period from a number of perspectives, introducing you to the nature of sources and problems of evidence as well as providing you with practical and transferable skills in interpreting and presenting evidence. Option modules, which draw on the research expertise in Medieval British studies in all three departments (History, English and Welsh), are tailored to student's interests and needs and equip you with a deeper understanding of the Medieval period and provide a basis for the dissertation.
Part-time students will take a Beginners Language and the module on Sources and Methods in Year One and the two Options in Year Two
Outline: Dissertation Stage (60 credits)
Part Two comprises a dissertation on a topic of your choice in consultation with your dissertation tutor. The dissertation provides an opportunity to build on one or more of the courses undertaken by doing research on a selected topic or question. The dissertation encourages a demonstration of your understanding of the selected topic or question coupled with an ability to apply appropriately the knowledge and experience gained during the MA and course of research. Much of the work is undertaken independently in consultation with your dissertation supervisor who will provide guidance and assistance.
- Dissertation - 60 credits (HST655)
Upon completion of the MA in Medieval British Studies, students will have acquired the following skills.
- Intellectual skills, including the ability to critically evaluate evidence and its interpretation and to be tolerant of differing interpretations; to sustain a logical argument and reach a conclusion that can be defended; to synthesise and analyse information; to compare and contrast theoretical explanations and to integrate different methodologies.
- Communication skills, including the ability to communicate orally in an appropriate professional medium; to make presentations both as an individual and as part of a group; to write effectively at an advanced level.
- Numeracy skills, including the ability to display and present numerical data in appropriate formats; and to analyse numerical data and solve basic mathematical and statistical problems.
- Information technology skills, including the ability to produce and calculate values using a spreadsheet; to produce and query databases; to find, manage and utilise information and data.
- Personal skills, including the ability to manage workloads; to adapt and apply skills to new contexts; to assess and formulate priorities, constraints and goals and to adapt to changing circumstances.
Above all, by the end of the Cardiff Masters degree, students will be able to critically assess the work of others and of their own, to engage effectively in debate at an advanced level, to plan, design and carry out a coherent research strategy, and to produce detailed and coherent reports and presentations.
A particular strength of the Cardiff MA in History is the preparation it provides for students wishing to pursue non-historical careers. Thus, in addition to helping you obtain a detailed and critical historical knowledge, the Cardiff MA offers you the chance to acquire and perfect valuable skills critical to careers in many different fields. Often referred to as transferable skills, these skills expand your individual capabilities and make it easier for you to obtain employment and enter careers with abilities that are widely considered essential for professional success.
History is one of the subject areas covered by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) Block Grant Partnership award to Cardiff for study at Masters level and the School has Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) recognition for 1+3 funding. Further details on how to apply for these postgraduate studentships and on other scholarships and funding opportunities are available on our postgraduate funding page.
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