MA (Res) Medieval Studies - Reading - Berkshire - University of Reading, School of English & American Literature - I19093

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MA (Res) Medieval Studies

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MA (Res) Medieval Studies - At the institution - Reading - Berkshire

  • Objectives
    • to provide graduate students with a thorough grounding in contemporary approaches to key aspects of the culture of the Middle Ages; • to equip them with the tools for further research by developing their critical and conceptual understanding; • To deal with a multidisciplinary approach (via a compulsory core module, Researching the Middle Ages, which gives students thorough and wide-ranging training in all areas relevant to medieval studies); • To offer the opportunity to develop linguistic and palaeographic skills; • To promote independent study and research skills as a basis, where appropriate, for a research degree.
  • Academic title
    MA (Res) Medieval Studies
  • Course description
    Transferable skills
    The University’s Strategy for Teaching and Learning has identified a number of
    generic transferable skills which all students are expected to have developed by the
    end of their degree programme. In following this programme, students will have had
    the opportunity to enhance their skills relating to career management, communication
    (both written and oral), information handling, numeracy, problem solving, team
    working and use of information technology. In addition to providing a grounding for
    further research, the programme aims to enhance students’ personal and interpersonal
    skills in relation to future employment: in particular, to promote the exercise of
    initiative and personal responsibility; to develop the ability to make decisions and to
    communicate effectively as both communicator and recipient; and to encourage the
    faculty of independent learning with a view to continuing professional development.

    Programme content
    All students take the core Researching the Middle Ages module introducing skills and
    approaches necessary for research in the field of medieval studies. A further
    compulsory module combines Medieval Latin and Medieval Palaeography. The two
    Options are chosen from a broad range, offering the opportunity for independent
    research with a scholar in the field; one may be linked to the dissertation topic. One
    Option may be replaced by a module offered in another MA programme. The
    Dissertation provides for extensive independent research, and includes an Oral

    Presentation.
    MA (Res) 180 credits:

    Compulsory modules

    -Researching the Middle Ages
    -Medieval Latin and Palaeography
    -Dissertation
    -Option A
    -Option B

    Two Options to be selected from the list, one to be taken as Option A and taught in
    the Autumn and Spring terms, the other as Option B and taught in the Spring and
    Summer terms. One Option may be replaced by a module from another MA
    programme at the discretion of the Director

    Postgraduate Diploma in Medieval Studies (120 credits)

    Students take the following modules:

    -Researching the Middle Ages,
    -Medieval Latin and Palaeography
    -Option A
    -Option B
    -Advanced Study and Source Analysis

    Certificate in Medieval Studies (60 credits)

    Students take the following modules:

    -Researching the Middle Ages
    -Option A
    -Option B

    Summary of teaching and assessment
    The compulsory modules are delivered through small group teaching. The Latin and
    Palaeography module is assessed through a mixture of written assignments and timed
    tests. The Researching the Middle Ages module is assessed through a dossier of
    student work. The Options and the Dissertation are supervised on an individual basis.
    Each Option is assessed by an essay of 4,000 words, OR, where learning a language is
    involved, by coursework and a timed test. The Dissertation is assessed by an Oral
    Presentation and a written Dissertation, normally of 18,000-20,000 words, including
    footnotes but excluding bibliography and appropriate appendices.
    Part-time/Modular arrangements

    This programme may be taken over two years of part-time study. The normal pattern
    is for the Researching the Middle Ages and Palaeography and Medieval Latin
    modules to be taken in the first year and the Options and Dissertation in the second
    year, but this may be varied if required. It may also be taken over up to five years.
    The recommended order is Researching the Middle Ages (over up to two years);
    Palaeography and Medieval Latin; Options; Dissertation, but this may be varied by
    agreement.

    Progression requirements

    Classification will follow the University’s taught postgraduate marks classification.
    To pass the degree of Master students must gain an average mark of 50 or more
    overall including a mark of 50 or more for the dissertation. In addition the total credit
    value of all modules marked below 40 must not exceed 30 credits and of all modules
    marked below 50 must be less than 60 credits.

    Students who gain an average mark of 70 or more including a mark of 60 or more for
    the dissertation and have no mark below 40 will be eligible for a Distinction. Those
    gaining an average mark of 60 or more overall including a mark of 50 or more for the
    dissertation and have no mark below 40 will be eligible for a Merit.

    For the Postgraduate Diploma students must gain an average mark of 50 or more,
    and the total credit value of all modules marked below 40 must not exceed 30 credits.
    In addition, the total value of all modules marked below 50 must be less than 60
    credits.

    For Postgraduate Certificate students must gain an average mark of 50 or more, and
    the credit value of modules marked below 40 must not exceed 10 credits.
    Admission requirements

    The qualifications of students will be assessed on an individual basis. Entrants to this
    programme are normally required to have obtained upper second class in an
    undergraduate degree or an equivalent qualification. Overseas students are also
    required to fulfil the university standards of English language proficiency.
    Admissions Tutor: The Director, Graduate Centre for Medieval Studies, School of
    History

    Support for students and their learning
    University support for students and their learning falls into two categories. Learning
    support includes IT Services, which has several hundred computers and the University
    Library, which across its three sites holds over a million volumes, subscribes to
    around 4,000 current periodicals, has a range of electronic sources of information and
    houses the Student Access to Independent Learning (S@IL) computer-based teaching
    and learning facilities. There are language laboratory facilities both for those students
    studying on a language degree and for those taking modules offered by the Institutionwide
    Language Programme. Student guidance and welfare support is provided by
    Programme Directors, the Careers Advisory Service, the University’s Special Needs
    Advisor, Study Advisors, Hall Wardens and the Students’ Union.
    In addition, the GCMS has its own dedicated room offering a private study area
    supported by its own specialised library, with access to microfilm and microfiche
    readers.

    Career prospects
    The programme leads predominantly to further research, typically at a doctoral level.
    It is also a useful training for students wishing to pursue a career in archival work, and
    in the Heritage industry. In addition, recent postgraduates have gone on to pursue
    careers in teaching.

    Opportunities for study abroad or for placements
    Where appropriate, opportunities are open to individual students to study in France in
    the University of Paris VII, with which the School of History has links. The Erasmus
    Programme is also available.

    Educational aims of the programme
    The programme aims to provide graduate students with a thorough grounding in
    contemporary approaches to key aspects of medieval culture. In particular, it aims to
    develop a systematic approach to the acquisition of knowledge together with a critical
    awareness of current issues of debate and the ability to evaluate and develop
    appropriate conceptual frameworks. In addition it aims to prepare them for study at
    doctoral level by equipping them with the tools necessary for further independent
    research.

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