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Politics Master in Arts by Research

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  • Entry requirements
    For admission to the MA by Research you will normally be expected to have a good undergraduate honours degree. Each application will be considered on its merits. Where applicants do not meet the formal entrance requirements, their relevant experience will be taken into account. In addition to demonstrating experience and background knowledge related to the proposed research programme, you may be asked to do a written exercise to establish your suitability for this MA. In the case of overseas applicants, an adequate proficiency in English to prepare and defend your dissertation must be demonstrated. This will normally be a minimum IELTS score of 6.5 or its equivalent. Accreditation of prior learning may be considered for some applicants on enrolment, thereby reducing an applicants period of study. This will be determined in accordance with University Regulations.
  • Academic Title
    Politics Master in Arts by Research
  • Course description
    The MA by Research offers you the opportunity to do substantial research on an aspect of History, International Relations or Politics, after completing one module in that subject and one on research methods.

    Course content

    On this new Master's degree you will embark upon a shorter and more flexible research programme than the traditional MPhil and PhD, which offers you greater opportunity for originality and sustained scholarly investigation than the dissertation on the taught Masters' degrees at Coventry University. You may study full-time or part-time for the MA by Research. The latter enables study and work to be combined as part of career development, as well as providing life-long learning opportunities.

    Within the History, International Relations and Politics Subject Group, the MA by Research is complemented by well established taught Masters' programmes in Diplomacy, Law and Global Change, European Nationalism and Integration, Third World Studies, and Peace and Reconciliation Studies. A new MA in Twentieth-Century International History will be offered in 2002. Modules from these MAs will form the taught element of the MA by Research.

    In Coventry Business School, extensive research is undertaken in History, International Relations and Politics, and its strength was recognised in the award of a grade 4 in the national Research Assessment in 2001. Postgraduate research and teaching in these subjects are further enhanced by the activities of the Research Centres for African Studies, European and International Studies, South Asian Studies, and the Study of Forgiveness and Reconciliation. Our research active staff will provide experienced supervision of your thesis.

    MA Programme

    The MA by Research is designed on the basis of 45 weeks (or equivalent) of full-time study. For full-time students the minimum period of registration is 12 months and the maximum is 24 months. For part-time students, the periods are 18 months and 36 months respectively. With accredited prior learning, the period of registration may be less than these minimum periods.

    The degree programme comprises:

        * a subject-based mandatory module that is designed to provide core conceptual and analytical frameworks;
        * a research skills and methods module - the other taught component - that is designed to enhance independent study and research skills; and
        * after passing these taught modules, a 30,000 word thesis.

    The thesis enables you to undertake an extensive piece of written work of your own choice and interest. There will be a great variety of topics and project areas. Their feasibility will be carefully considered prior to enrolment on the dissertation module. All submissions will be expected to demonstrate conceptual awareness and critical reflection on the chosen topic.


    Supervision will be provided by research-active staff who are experienced in overseeing projects to completion. A Director of Studies will be identified according to the discipline area of your dissertation. Throughout the production of the thesis, you will meet your Director of Studies regularly for individual tutorials. Seminars will be scheduled for group presentations of work in progress. Arrangements will be in place, making use of the Internet and e-mail, if you undertake research for your dissertation away from Coventry. All the supervisory arrangements will be monitored by the Research Degrees Subcommittee of Coventry Business School.


    Library provision reflects the extensive research and the well established taught MA degrees in History, International Relations and Politics. Newspapers and documents complement a wide range of secondary texts. You will also be able to make the specialised bibliographical searches for your chosen research topic and, where appropriate, order materials through inter-library loan facilities. The MA by Research degree is supported by the IT facilities in Coventry Business School, which are linked to the University's extensive central computer facilities. Other learning resources include televisions, OHPs and video machines, which are available in the Coventry Business School's dedicated Postgraduate Seminar Room and from the technical unit.

    Additional support for international students

    Coventry University takes pride in the culture and richness that its international students bring to campus life. Currently over 2,000 international students from some 90 countries are pursuing programmes of study here, with a growing amount enrolling on postgraduate courses. A recent report ranked the University highly in terms of international student numbers, recognising our reputation as a leading international institution.

    To meet the needs of this rapidly growing community within the University's student population, our International Office is on hand to provide assistance on all relevant matters such as visas and immigration. It also serves as an information centre to help international visitors locate the many services and activities both on campus and further afield

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