Course Overview

Students are invited to apply for P J Mara Scholarship and MA Humanitites Scholarships.

Students taking the MA and the Postgraduate Diploma in History follow the same taught programme but only MA students write a dissertation.

This newly revised popular postgraduate course has been structured so as to offer students greater choice. Entrants may choose the omnibus History MA which combines a thorough training in the craft of history with an exploration of the ways in which history is and has been interpreted by historians, politicians, the media and others. Alternatively, students may choose to specialize in Local and Regional History, a branch of the programme which introduces a variety of regionally-focussed approaches to the past, in Ireland and abroad, or they may select Transnational History, which explores the movement of people, ideas and goods across national borders. Whatever their specialism, students on the History MA develop their ability to carry out research and to construct their own historical arguments.

There are some scholarship opportunities available for this programme. Please visit the MA (Humanities) Scholarships website for more information.

Aims and objectives

This programme enables students to develop critical and analytical skills.  it trains them in ways of evaluating evidence and encourages them to reflect on different modes of presenting information in print and electronic formats.

The taught programme aims to increase students’ awareness of the nature of historical change and to deepen their understanding of the mentalities of other historical periods. In doing so, they develop a critical awareness of the relationship between current events and political, social, economic and cultural processes in the past. Students are introduced to a wide range of historical sources and taught to appreciate and understand many different kinds of source from estate rolls and depositions to newspapers, memoirs and oral evidence. This year, students may choose to specialize in Local and Regional History or Transnational History. As well as the taught courses which they must take and for which they must submit essays/projects, students are given guidance in framing research questions and carrying out independent research, culminating in their dissertations. Continuous feedback from dedicated staff enables them to hone their research techniques and to present their findings clearly and accessibly in thesis form.

Lecturers on the programme include historians working in medieval, early modern and modern history across a range of geographical areas and using a variety of historical approaches. Students are encouraged to develop comparative perspectives across Irish, European, North American and world history. Transnational History students will take courses that explore the movement of peoples, ideas and goods across national borders. Students on all three branches of the programme will take the same two core courses: Sources and Resources, and Historical Debates and Controversies.

Applications and Selections

Selection will be based on applicants' academic record and academic references testifying to their enthusiasm for the subject and their ability to carry out a research project.

Further information here on: How to apply

Who Teaches this Course

This programme draws widely on the expertise of the History staff, with most input from Mary Harris, Caitríona Clear, John Cunningham, Kim LoPrete, Roisin Healy, Laurence Marley, Enrico Dal Lago and Gearóid Barry.

Requirements and Assessment

All modules are assessed by coursework. Modes of assessment include projects, essays, reviews, reports and oral presentations. A final dissertation involving original research is an essential component of the programme.

Key Facts

Entry Requirements

There is a common entry for all three branches of the programme: students will choose the branch they wish to pursue by the end of the first week of term. Successful applicants will normally hold an honours degree of H2.2 standard, including a minimum H2.1 in history, or GPA of 3.5. Selection will be based on applicants' academic record and academic references testifying to their academic ability and enthusiasm for history.

The same entry requirements and application procedure are in place for both the MA and PGDip programme.


Additional Requirements

Duration

1 year, full-time
2 years, part-time

Next start date

September 2019

A Level Grades ()

Average intake

15

Closing Date

Please see the offer round dates for further information.

NFQ level

Mode of study

Taught

ECTS weighting

MA—90, PGDip—60

Award

CAO

Course code

1MAH1, full-time
1MAH2, part-time

Course Outline

Students taking the MA and the Postgraduate Diploma in History follow the same taught programme but only MA students write a dissertation.

CORE COURSES

(Must be taken by students on all three branches of the programme):

  • Sources and Resources  (15 ECTS)
  • Historical Debates & Controversies  (15 ECTS)

 OPTIONAL COURSES 

Each student must take three courses (30 ECTS) from the list below.

Studies in Local History 10 ECTS
Regional Identities 10 ECTS
Studies in Oral History 10 ECTS
Comparing Slavery, Antislavery and Nationbuilding: The Americas, The Atlantic and Europe 10 ECTS   
NGOs & The Making of the Twentieth Century World 10 ECTS
People on the Move: Studying Migration 10 ECTS
The First Crusade and the Sources            10 ECTS
Studies in the History of Imperialism and Colonialism  10 ECTS

Module Details for Full Time Course

Module Details for Part Time Course

Curriculum Information

Curriculum information relates to the current academic year (in most cases).
Course and module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Glossary of Terms

Credits
You must earn a defined number of credits (aka ECTS) to complete each year of your course. You do this by taking all of its required modules as well as the correct number of optional modules to obtain that year's total number of credits.
Module
An examinable portion of a subject or course, for which you attend lectures and/or tutorials and carry out assignments. E.g. Algebra and Calculus could be modules within the subject Mathematics. Each module has a unique module code eg. MA140.
Optional
A module you may choose to study.
Required
A module that you must study if you choose this course (or subject).
Semester
Most courses have 2 semesters (aka terms) per year.

Year 1 (90 Credits)

Required HI509: Dissertation


15 months long | Credits: 30

All students carry out original research and produce a dissertation of 15,000-20,000 words. Students may research an area of their choice as long as the project they envisage allows them demonstrate the competencies being tested and an appropriate supervisor in the area is available.

Learning Outcomes
  1. tbc
Assessments
  • Research (100%)
Teachers
The above information outlines module HI509: "Dissertation" and is valid from 2018 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Required HI519: Sources and Resources


12 months long | Credits: 15

This team-taught module explores the ways in which historians have used a wide range of sources such as medieval charters and chronicles, estate rolls, memoirs, newspapers, government records, reports of commissions of inquiry and oral evidence. It considers questions such as the following: Who produced these sources? Why were they produced? In what context? Were they subject to censorship? Who was the target audience? What kind of research questions can we examine with such evidence? What factors have affected the preservation of historical records? How can we study groups who have left few written records? What impact had developments such as mass literacy, television and the internet on the communication of knowledge and access to historical sources?

Learning Outcomes
  1. tbc
Assessments
  • Continuous Assessment (100%)
Teachers
The above information outlines module HI519: "Sources and Resources" and is valid from 2018 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Required HI503: Historical Debates & Controversies: Studies in Historiography


12 months long | Credits: 15

This team-taught module examines perceptions of History as a discipline and methodological approaches to different periods and themes. It looks at perceptions of the groups, issues, events and periods considered worthwhile subjects for historical investigation and explores the role of ideology in framing historical questions. It examines case themes such as the following closely: Decolonisation and Development; Gender and History; Comparative History; Counterfactual History; History, Conflict and Reconciliation in Northern Ireland. Key questions: why do historians disagree? Is “value-free History” possible? How important is empathy in historical investigations? Why do certain historical topics and come into and go out of fashion? What is the difference between modern history and journalism? What challenges are involved in investigating conflict? Can historians make a contribution to public policy formulation? Should they? How do historians approach commemorations?

Learning Outcomes
  1. tbc
Assessments
  • Continuous Assessment (100%)
Teachers
The above information outlines module HI503: "Historical Debates & Controversies: Studies in Historiography" and is valid from 2018 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Optional HI546: Studies In The History Of Colonialism And Imperialism I


Semester 1 | Credits: 10

This course introduces students to some of the key thinkers and concepts in the writing of British imperial history. The work of scholars such as J. A. Hobson, Ronald Robinson and Jack Gallagher, Peter Cain and Tony Hopkins, Chris Bayly, Alan Lester and John Darwin will be discussed. Concepts such as finance imperialism, informal empire, the official mind, gentlemanly capitalism, colonial knowledge, imperial networks, and bridgeheads will be examined from a critical perspective. Full use of on-line journals and other e-resources will be encouraged. Students will be asked to read key texts, undertake wider reading and research to help put these key texts in context, comment on their readings, and present their own ideas as the basis for class discussion and debate. Course assessments will be linked closely to the core texts studied.
(Language of instruction: English)

Learning Outcomes
  1. Describe different historical theories concerning the origins and nature of British overseas expansion during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries
  2. Critically evaluate the merits of these theories, with reference to a range of examples drawn from the history of the British empire
  3. Identify inter-disciplinary trends in the history of the modern British empire; Present ideas in a persuasive, logical and scholarly fashion through written assignments
  4. Apply scholarly conventions in the citation of relevant literature or primary sources
Assessments
  • Continuous Assessment (100%)
Teachers
Reading List
  1. "The Empire Project" by John Darwin
    ISBN: 9780521317894.
    Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  2. "Empire" by Stephen Howe
    ISBN: 9780192802231.
    Publisher: Oxford ; Oxford University Press, 2002.
  3. "The British Empire" by Philippa Levine
    ISBN: 0582472814.
    Publisher: Harlow, England ; Pearson Longman, 2007.
  4. "The lion's share" by Bernard Porter
    ISBN: 0582772524.
    Publisher: Harlow, Essex, England ; Pearson/Longman, 2004.
  5. "The Oxford history of the British Empire" by Wm. Roger Louis, editor-in-chief
    ISBN: 9780198205654.
    Publisher: Oxford University Press
  6. "The Oxford history of the British Empire" by Wm. Roger Louis, editor-in-chief
    ISBN: 9780198205647.
    Publisher: Oxford University Press
  7. "The Oxford history of the British Empire" by Wm. Roger Louis, editor-in-chief
    ISBN: 9780198205661.
    Publisher: Oxford University Press
  8. "British imperialism, 1750-1970" by Simon C. Smith
    ISBN: 052159930X.
    Publisher: Cambridge University Press
The above information outlines module HI546: "Studies In The History Of Colonialism And Imperialism I" and is valid from 2017 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Optional HI160: Studies in Local History


Semester 1 | Credits: 10

This module explores Irish and international approaches to local history; trains students in the uses and interpretation of local history sources and provides guidance in devising and carrying out a local history project.
(Language of instruction: English)

Assessments
  • Continuous Assessment (100%)
Teachers
The above information outlines module HI160: "Studies in Local History" and is valid from 2017 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Optional HI561: Studies in Oral History


Semester 2 | Credits: 10

This module explores approaches to oral history, trains students in effective oral history interviewing techniques, discusses the interpretation of oral history interview findings and provides guidance in devising and carrying out an oral history project.

Assessments
  • Continuous Assessment (100%)
Teachers
The above information outlines module HI561: "Studies in Oral History" and is valid from 2014 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Optional HI6101: Youth in transition: 1870-1970


Semester 2 | Credits: 10

This module will address the history and experience of youth in Ireland, Europe and the wider world from 1870-1970. Adopting a transnational approach, it will investigate the history of work, school, popular culture, teenage culture and changes to the concept of childhood and youth. With regard to the State, the importance of 'moral' concerns will be addressed - most critically at turning points like the First and Second World Wars. Class, gender, ethnicity, and religion will also be addressed.
(Language of instruction: English)

Learning Outcomes
  1. Understand the changes to youth and youth culture in Ireland, Europe and the wider world from 1870-1970
  2. Adopt a transnational approach to the history of youth
  3. Utilise a wide range of primary and secondary materials
  4. Complete a range of continuous assessment
Assessments
  • Continuous Assessment (100%)
Teachers
Reading List
  1. "Transnational Histories of Youth in the Twentieth Century" by Richard Ivan Jobs, David M. Pomfret (eds)
    Publisher: Palgrave MacMillan
  2. "Youth and history" by [by] John R. Gillis
    ISBN: 0127852646.
    Publisher: Academic Press
  3. "Adolescence in Modern Irish History" by Catherine Cox and Susannah Riordan (eds),
    Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
The above information outlines module HI6101: "Youth in transition: 1870-1970" and is valid from 2016 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Optional HI6100: NGOs and the Making of the 20th Century World


Semester 2 | Credits: 10

In the 20th century NGO's emerged as one of the key building blocks of the contemporary world. This module introduces the historiography, key concepts and methodologies in the study of transnational action. How did NGOs operate? How should we study them? What can they tell us about the growing inter-connectedness of the modern world? The second part of the module puts these concepts into practice through a series of focused case studies, from Amnesty INternational to the Ante-Apartheid Movement.
(Language of instruction: English)

Learning Outcomes
  1. Demonstrate knowledge and informed understanding of the historiography, key concepts and methodologies involved in the study of NGOs in the twentieth century
  2. Show familiarity with a range of primary source documents relevant to the course, and develop skills allowing them to analyse documents of this type in depth.
  3. Give an oral presentation based on their reading and research.
  4. Develop a discreet project and write an accompanying scholarly essay appropriate to an MA student.
Assessments
  • Continuous Assessment (100%)
Teachers
Reading List
  1. "The politics of expertise: how NGOs shaped modern Britain" by Matthew Hilton, James McKay, Nicholas Crowson and Jean-François Mouhot
  2. "Global Community: the role of international organisations in the making of the contemporary world" by Akira Iriye
  3. "Activists beyond borders: advocacy networks in international politics" by Margaret Keck and Kathryn Sikkink
The above information outlines module HI6100: "NGOs and the Making of the 20th Century World" and is valid from 2018 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Why Choose This Course?

Career Opportunities

The MA provides an excellent foundation for doctoral studies in History.  Graduates are also well suited to employment in areas such as teaching, research, print and electonic media, tourism, cultural and heritage development, library and archives services, the civil service and party politics.

Who’s Suited to This Course

Learning Outcomes

 

Work Placement

Study Abroad

Related Student Organisations

Course Fees

Fees: EU

€6,200 p.a. 2018/19

Fees: Tuition

€5,976 p.a. 2018/19

Fees: Student levy

€224 p.a. 2018/19

Fees: Non EU

€14,250 p.a. 2018/19

Postgraduate students in receipt of a SUSI grant—please note an F4 grant is where SUSI will pay €2,000 towards your full-time tuition.  You will be liable for the remainder of the total fee.  An F5 grant is where SUSI will pay full-time TUITION up to a maximum of €6,270.  SUSI will not cover the student levy of €224.

Postgraduate fee breakdown = tuition (EU or NON EU) + student levy as outlined above.

Find out More

Dr John Cunningham, History
School of Humanities
National University of Ireland, Galway 
T: +353 91 495 642
F: +353 91 494 556
E: john.cunningham@nuigalway.ie  
www.nuigalway.ie/history/pgrads/mah.html