Investigate the art, literature, history, culture and thought of the post-1945 era. Explore topics from social media to the making of the contemporary world, cultural heritage management to globalisation, from art and the environment to justice.
On this flexible course you'll study with leading experts in their field from the Departments of Archaeology, English, History, History of Art, Sociology and the Centre for Women’s Studies. We'll introduce you to the various means by which different disciplines conceptualise and analyse the period. You can construct a programme that suits your interests and develops your transferable skills in interdisciplinary research.
You’ll engage with the wider research culture of the Centre for Modern Studies, and there will be a diverse schedule of seminars, conferences and reading groups for you to attend. You’ll also be part of the Humanities Research Centre, a vibrant interdisciplinary hub which will enable you to form close social and intellectual bonds over the course of your study.
In the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2022, we were ranked 18th for Archaeology and 28th for English.
Choose from a wide range of option modules with historical depth and geographical breadth.
Engage your own contemporary cultural interests in collaboration with leading academics across the humanities and social sciences.
We're proud to announce that we've been shortlisted for two prestigious University of the Year awards.
You'll study core modules and choose options from our partner departments. You'll also complete a research dissertation.
The core module Framing the Contemporary draws on the expertise of a team of staff from our partner departments and the Department of Theatre, Film and Television. It provides a foundation in various disciplinary and transdisciplinary ways of conceptualising and analysing the contemporary. Each tutor will contribute sessions that highlight a central way in which their discipline categorises the period (for example, the shift from modern to postmodern in English, or the end of Empire in History) while providing the methodological tools used to construct this way of reading the period.
Postgraduate Life in Practice (I and II) will develop your academic skills to support your learning and help you prepare for your final dissertation.
Your option modules enable you to explore the methodologies and subject matter of multiple disciplines.
You will take core modules which may include:
You'll choose option modules from a wide range offered by our partner departments. Examples of which may include:
Our modules may change to reflect the latest academic thinking and expertise of our staff.
Our course structures are changing in September 2023. Find out more about how this course may be affected.
Your dissertation offers you the chance to examine a topic in depth and to develop your research skills.
You'll work on your 14,000-16,000-word dissertation with regular supervision from a member of staff.
Recent dissertation topics include:
Every course at York is built on a distinctive set of learning outcomes. These will give you a clear understanding of what you will be able to accomplish at the end of the course and help you explain what you can offer employers. Our academics identify the knowledge, skills, and experiences you'll need upon graduation and then design the course to get you there.
The course has granted me the freedom to pursue a wide range of research interests where the taught aspect has expanded my horizons rather than limited the areas I can explore.Emelia, MA Culture and Thought after 1945
Read more about what our students say
|Study mode||UK (home)||International and EU|
|Full-time (1 year)||£9,290||£19,950|
|Part-time (2 years)
This is the year 1 fee. Fees for future years are subject to confirmation.
Students on a Student Visa (formerly Tier 4 Visa) are not currently permitted to study part-time at York.
For courses which are longer than one year, the tuition fees quoted are for the first year of study. Fees for subsequent years are subject to increase (no more than 2% each year).
UK (home) or international fees? The level of fee that you will be asked to pay depends on whether you're classed as a UK (home) or international student. Check your fee status
Find out more information about tuition fees and how to pay them.
You'll need copies of the texts set for each module. Where possible, we will provide digital access. We'll let you know which texts and editions you'll need to buy (whether new or second-hand) before the start of each term.
Discover your funding options to help with tuition fees and living costs.
We'll confirm more funding opportunities for students joining us in 2022/23 throughout the year.
If you've successfully completed an undergraduate degree at York you could be eligible for a 10% Masters fee discount.
You can use our living costs guide to help plan your budget. It covers additional costs that are not included in your tuition fee such as expenses for accommodation and study materials.
The Department of English is ranked 5th in the UK for research. We are a top ten UK research department in History of Art and our Department of Sociology was ranked first in the UK for research impact. The Department of History was ranked third nationally for the impact of its research, and Archaeology was ranked 6th overall for its research.
Times Higher Education’s ranking of the Research Excellence Framework 2021
You’ll work with world‐leading academics who’ll challenge you to think independently and excel in all that you do. Our approach to teaching will provide you with the knowledge, opportunities, and support you need to grow and succeed in a global workplace.
Your seminar groups will usually consist of fewer that 15 students in most modules, though some core modules may involve a larger number of students. You'll complete essential reading for each seminar, and we encourage you to read more widely around the topic. If you are a part-time student your seminars will be across Year 1 and Year 2.
You'll attend a series of training lectures and workshops, designed to address presenting your work, writing at MA level, transferable skills, and career development.
Over the course of the year, you'll give regular seminar presentations and attend research seminars and day conferences hosted by the Centre. Many of these events will be organised through the Humanities Research Centre, a state-of-the-art facility unique to York.
You will be based in the Centre for Modern Studies on Campus West. Most of your contact hours will be in locations nearby on Campus West.
Our beautiful green campus offers a student-friendly setting in which to live and study, within easy reach of the action in the city centre. It's easy to get around campus - everything is within walking or pedalling distance, or you can always use the fast and frequent bus service.
For each module, you'll submit an essay of approximately 4,500 words. The Postgraduate Life in Practice module will be assessed on the completion of a series of tasks connected to your core work for the MA. Your final assessment is a dissertation of 14,000-16,000 words.
The mix of interests, subject disciplines and perspectives has resulted in great debates and conversation.George, MA Culture and Thought after 1945
Read more about what our students say
Our postgraduates go into academia and teaching, arts administration, journalism, broadcasting, public relations, social work, politics, the civil service and management consultancy.
|Undergraduate degree||2:1 or equivalent qualification. We will consider applications from students with lower qualifications, particularly if you have high marks in relevant modules or appropriate professional experience.|
|Other international qualifications||Equivalent qualifications from your country|
If English isn't your first language you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. We accept the following qualifications:
|IELTS||7.0, minimum 6.5 in each component|
|C1 Advanced and C2 Proficiency||185, minimum 176 in each component|
|Duolingo||120, minimum 110 in all other components|
|LanguageCert||C1 Expert High Pass with 33/50 in each component|
|PTE Academic||67, minimum 61 in each component|
|TOEFL||96, minimum 23 in each component|
|Trinity ISE III||Distinction in all components|
For more information see our postgraduate English language requirements.
You may be eligible for one of our pre-sessional English language courses. These courses will provide you with the level of English needed to meet the conditions of your offer.
The length of course you need to take depends on your current English language test scores and how much you need to improve to reach our English language requirements.
After you've accepted your offer to study at York, we'll confirm which pre-sessional course you should apply to via You@York.
Get in touch if you have any questions
Our new app, Visit UoY, allows you to take a self-guided tour of campus narrated by our current students. You can either visit us in-person and explore the campus for yourself or get the campus tour experience from the comfort of your own home.
Find out more about using the Visit UoY app.
We offer a range of campus accommodation to suit you and your budget, from economy to premium.
Explore campus and city life and hear what our current students have to say about living here.
Lively, full of culture and beautiful, York is regularly voted one of the best places to live and visit in the UK.
Find out more about York. Chat to staff and students and take the tour, on campus or online.