Capitalising on our research expertise, the History MA combines taught and individual approaches, enabling you to focus on specific areas of interest that drive your passion for the subject. We will provide you with the academic rigour of advanced-level learning and equip you with the practical skills involved in independent research, giving you first-hand experience of conference management, presenting work and writing for publications. This course is an ideal stepping-stone to either research at PhD level or a career in teaching, publishing, research or event management.
You will contextualise, analyse and problematise the past, considering key questions in current historiography and how history has been written across time and place. By engaging with debates around how public history is constructed, contested and represented in society, you will produce your own ‘heritage’ project and also consider how the digital age has impacted on the growth of the heritage sector. Our specialist Global Leicester module will provide you with an opportunity to understand the importance of place and scale, spanning across the historical periods and blending the local with global narratives.
You will collaborate with fellow students to organise and participate in a one-day humanities conference, gaining skills in event management and presenting a paper. The course culminates in a dissertation, where you will use your independent research skills to develop an extended piece of writing in your chosen area, with supervision from one of our academic experts. This course is ideal for students who are self-motivated, with good time management and the ability to work independently, as these skills will be developed throughout.
Our teaching team produces ground-breaking work on topics such as internment in the First World War, the history of Montenegro, cultural exchanges in the Indian Ocean World and the history and heritage of the Olympic Games. Their research has featured in the media, including the BBC’s TV programme My Family, Partition and Me: India 1947, and BBC Radio 4 Extra’s Sport and the British.
- Join a community of leading scholars who produce ground-breaking research, stimulating your learning experience with their cutting-edge insights and enabling you to benefit from their links with museums and galleries.
- We will challenge you to rethink your approach to history by exploring historiography across a range of themes, including global and transnational histories, empires and colonies, orientalism and Occidentalism, social history, cultural history and postmodernism, materiality and visual history, and gender history.
- Benefit from collaborative teaching in workshops with fellow students as well as individual learning experiences and receive personalised feedback to achieve your independent research goals.
- You will have access to our special collections, which span from 1474 to the present day and encompass the history of DMU as an institution, collections on sports history, performance and art, history of photography, fashion and textiles, and the history of Leicester.
- Participate in the DMU research community through open seminars and conferences with our research centres, including the International Centre for Sports History and Cultures, Photographic History Research Centre and the Stephen Lawrence Research Centre.
- The focus on individual research and fostering your skills as an independent learner provides ideal preparation for progression to PhD. Practical experience gained in conference management, presenting work and writing for publication will be excellent preparation for a career in teaching, publishing, research or event management.
Structure and assessment
This module provides an introduction to advanced historiography. It will develop students’ knowledge of traditional historiographical concerns alongside current trends and new directions in writing and thinking about the past. It also aims to enable students to think critically about the way historians have formulated research questions, used sources, and written history, across time and place. It will help students to build up an informed knowledge of recent developments in historical thinking as well as a history of the discipline of History itself.
Topics to be covered will be drawn from the following themes: nation and state in History; global and transnational histories; empires and colonies; orientalism and occidentalism; social history, structuralism and the Annales; history from below; history in numbers; cultural history and postmodernism; materiality and visual history; gender history; and migration history.
Public History and Heritage
This module provides an introduction to Public History and Heritage. It will develop your knowledge about the debates, theoretical underpinnings and development of public history and heritage in both the UK and the wider world. It will enable you to engage in debates around how public history is constructed, contested and represented in society. It examines the growth in the heritage industry and considers the ways in which the digital age has impacted upon the development and growth of this sector. The module also brings together an array of industry specialists to provide a practical and theoretical approach to teaching and learning on this module.
The city of Leicester is one of the most diverse cities in Europe. It is shaped by both by its long migration history and also by its position as a post-industrial city in the Midlands. Using Global Leicester as the pivotal point, this module will emphasise the importance of place and scale while drawing on multiple themes. The module is designed to unpack local history through global lenses. The module will consider the multiple ways in which we can understand the history of migration through and beyond the axis of Leicester. For example, the complex relationship with the empire and the subsequent population movement due to the expulsion Asians in Uganda. The changing landscape of both the physical city and the demographic movement of people via themes of food, empire, football, trade, material objects. The themes will reflect and draw upon the expertise currently in History and more broadly research which has explored the wider ramifications of migration through the ages to present-day Leicester. The students will be encouraged to approach some of these themes and ideas through leading individual discussions and presenting a focused research case study.
Conference Training and Presentation
The module is designed to train students in the skills involved in event organisation and presentation. It will involve collaborative as well as individual research skills. Students will be guided through the necessary training in organising a conference, choosing a topic and delivering a relevant paper. Students will be assigned roles (treasurer, programme developer, marketing manager, website designer) and will also present a paper at the conference. Students will be assessed on a reflective essay, outlining their contribution to the management of the conference and a written version of their presentation (including slides). Please visit the Conference Twitter handle @DMUHumsConf to sample previous years’ conferences.
The final project will be a sustained piece of writing, amounting to 15,000 words. The piece will draw on research undertaken throughout the year but will provide a new and sustained argument.
Note: All modules are subject to change in order to keep content current
Facilities and features
The Clephan Building is home to DMU’s humanities subjects, and is equipped with the latest audio-visual equipment and cinema screens.
Currently Clephan houses some key Arts, Design and Humanities student support facilities including the Arts, Design and Humanities Placement Team and the faculties Advice Centre, where you can access information about timetabling, specialist support queries. and any other questions you may have about your course.
The building also features the Leicester Centre for Creative Writing, Centre of Textual Studies, Centre for Adaptations, and the International Centre for Sports History and Culture.
The main Kimberlin Library is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year (other than in exceptional circumstances) and offers a huge range of online resources, all of which can be remotely accessed from anywhere you choose.
The library is run by dedicated staff who offer additional support to students, including help with academic writing, research strategies, literature searching and reference management and assistive technology, and mathematical skills for non-maths students. There is also a Just Ask service for help and advice, available via email or telephone.
Our Learning Zones and the The Greenhouse also provide space for group or individual work and study.
There are 1,600 study places across all library locations, more than 700 computer stations, laptops to borrow, free wi-fi and desktop power outlets.
You can also book rooms with plasma screens, laptops and DVD facilities for group work and presentations, secure an individual study room with adjustable lighting or make use of our assistive technology.
Opportunities and careers
Starting a business
If you are thinking of starting your own business or working for yourself, the Enterprise Team can help provide you with the right advice and guidance to get your business off the ground.
This is our innovative international experience programme which aims to enrich your studies and expand your cultural horizons – helping you to become a global graduate, equipped to meet the needs of employers across the world.
Through #DMUglobal, we offer a wide range of opportunities including on-campus and UK activities, overseas study, internships, faculty-led field trips and volunteering, as well as Erasmus+ and international exchanges.
The MA History programme is designed to both enhance your generic skills and knowledge to put you in a better position to enter professions such as teaching, museums and archives, project management, marketing or other professions. The subject specialisms and independent research will form the basis of progressing onto a PhD.
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