MPhil History / Programme details
Year of entry: 2022
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Our History MPhil programme is a course of study that enables you to carry out a piece of in-depth research in the area that most interests you.
Our research interests stretch from the early Middle Ages to the end of the 20th century, and our geographical range includes Britain, continental Europe, South and East Asia, Africa and the Americas.
You will prepare a thesis under the guidance of two supervisors with specialist expertise. Your progress is monitored at regular meetings of your research panel (two supervisors plus a reviewer who is independent of the supervisory team), which also provides guidance on research training and career development.
The aim of the programme is to turn you into a competent independent researcher.
The programme culminates in the submission of a 50,000-word dissertation that makes a substantive contribution to historical knowledge.
This programme is for you if, having already undertaken a master's degree, you want to undertake a substantial piece of research, but cannot commit to a PhD.
As a postgraduate researcher in the History department, you will join a large and lively research community. We have over 40 established members of staff engaged in research, often in ways that help to re-shape their fields, and there are also many historians working in other departments and research institutes across the University.
The University is committed to investing in History, which has recruited 20 new staff in the last four years.
We are ranked 4th among history departments in the UK for the quality of our research according to the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014.
- 82% of our overall research activity was recognised as 'world leading' or'internationally excellent'.
- 100% of our research environment was judged to be'world-leading' or 'internationally excellent'.
- 80% of our research in history has also been judged to have 'outstanding' or 'very considerable' impact.
Find out more about our History research .
All of our postgraduate students become members of the Graduate School when you start at Manchester. It has dedicated facilities for students and offers opportunities to collaborate with other postgraduates.
Teaching and learning
Your research will normally be supervised by two members of staff - usually from the History department, but if appropriate, from another department in the University.
Close supervision based on regular production of written work is at the heart of the research student's working life. But your supervisors will aim to nurture your capacities as an independent researcher, and equally central to the learning process is your ability to take advantage of the wider opportunities offered by the University - seminars, conferences, reading groups, training courses, and the like.
We offer one of the UK's fullest and most innovative training programmes in the humanities, artsmethods@manchester .
This provides a rich menu of courses on methods (eg using medieval manuscripts, interview methods, using newspapers in research) and theory ('Using Marx'. 'Using Foucault', 'Using Cultural Studies'), as well as researcher-led conferences organised by groups of PhD students (eg 'How does gender mean? Debates and applications in modern Britain').
Economic and social historians working on the interface with the social sciences also have access to the social sciences counterpart, methods@manchester , which offers a similar range of opportunities.
These two programmes are reinforced by the Humanities Researcher Development programme, which offers generic training - eg on academic networking, or how to prepare for your viva - and courses aiming to enhance your career development.
Coursework and assessment
This programme requires regular attendance at the University, except during periods of approved 'fieldwork', ie archival research away from Manchester.
It is not available on a distance-learning basis, since regular engagement with the University's research environment as well as with your supervisors is integral to your development as a researcher.
Part-time students should ensure a minimum of two full days in the working week for their studies for the same reason; evening and weekend study on its own is unlikely to be sufficient.
Your progress will be reviewed by your research panel, consisting of your two supervisors and one other member of staff.
This will meet with you once per semester (or once per year for part-time students) to give you formal feedback on your work and report on your progress to the School.
The MPhil is assessed on the basis of a thesis of up to 50,000 words.
This is examined by two examiners, one of whom is external to the University.
An oral examination is commonly required, at the discretion of the examiners.
Manchester is home to one of the UK's five National Research Libraries - one of the best-resourced academic libraries in the UK and widely recognised as one of the world's greatest research libraries.
Find out more about libraries and study spaces for postgraduate research students at Manchester.
We also have one of the largest academic IT services in Europe - supporting world-class teaching and research. There are extensive computing facilities across campus, with access to standard office software as well as specialist programmes, all connected to the campus network and internet.
Every student is registered for email, file storage and internet access. If more demanding computer access is required, our specialist computing division can provide high-end and specialist computing services.
The Graduate School offers dedicated state of the art facilities to research students, including common rooms and workstations.