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 (2019), we were rated in the top 15 for Archaeology, top 25 for English, and top 100 for History.
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.
You'll study three core modules and choose three 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'll choose three option modules, worth 20 credits each, from a wide range offered by our partner departments:
English and Related Literature
History of Art
Centre for Women's Studies
Please note, modules may change to reflect the latest academic thinking and expertise of our staff.
Your 80-credit dissertation offers you the chance to examine a topic in depth and to develop your research skills.
In Summer Term and over the vacation you'll work on your 14,000-16,000-word dissertation with regular supervision from a member of staff. You'll submit your dissertation in September.
Recent dissertation topics include:
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 in Culture and Thought
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|Full-time (1 year)||£7,810||£17,370|
|Part-time (2 years)
Fees for subsequent years are subject to confirmation.
year 1 fee
year 1 fee
Students on a 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).
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.
UK/EU or international fees? The level of fee that you will be asked to pay depends on whether you're classed as a UK/EU or international student.
Discover your funding options to help with tuition fees and living costs.
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.
We had the highest proportion of world-leading (4*) research of all UK English departments. We are first in the UK for research impact in History of Art and our Department of Sociology is first in the UK for research quality. The Department of History is second in the UK for research performance, and Archaeology is top five in the UK for research impact.
Research Excellence Framework 2014 | Times Higher Education’s ranking of the Research Excellence Framework 2014
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.
You'll normally attend two 2-hour seminars each week during the Autumn and Spring Terms. If you are a part-time student you'll attend one 2-hour seminar a week during the Autumn and Spring Terms of Year 1 and Year 2.
Seminar groups 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.
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
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Our postgraduates go into academia and teaching, arts administration, journalism, broadcasting, public relations, social work, politics, the civil service and management consultancy.
You'll develop a range of transferable skills including:
You should have, or be about to complete, a 2:1 undergraduate degree 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.
If you are unsure about your eligibility, or want an informal chat about whether this course would be suitable for you, please contact us.
If English isn't your first language you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. We accept the following qualifications:
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 IELTS 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.
You can apply and send all your documentation electronically through our online system. You don’t need to complete your application all at once: you can start it, save it and finish it later.
Get in touch if you have any questions
We offer a range of campus accommodation to suit you and your budget, from economy to premium.
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