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Under the supervision of one or more staff members with expertise relevant to the project topic, students on the MA Research will produce: either an academic dissertation of 20000 words OR an academic dissertation of 12000 words and a piece of creative work. The dissertation must include a critical reflection on the relationship between the dissertation and the piece of creative work.

The 12000 word dissertation is a critical piece of writing, demonstrating an advanced ability to research, investigate and discuss relevant ideas, debates, contexts, creative processes and products/texts. The dissertation should provide a contextual framework for the piece of creative work and demonstrate advanced levels of appropriate subject knowledge, insight and understanding. It should also use appropriate academic referencing and bibliographic conventions.  

The piece of creative work can comprise different types of material depending on the research topic and subject matter. Examples could include:

  • A performance of between 60 and 120 minutes, with the candidate taking the part of lead actor or director/facilitator (other roles for the candidate to be negotiated with the candidate’s supervisor). This might be a performance in a theatre, an installation, or a site-specific performance (other possibilities to be negotiated with the candidate’s supervisor).
  • A stage play of between 60 and 120 minutes which has been written by the candidate.

Entry requirements and application

You will normally be expected to have at least a 2:1 undergraduate degree or equivalent qualification. You may be invited for an interview and asked to send samples of your creative practice work.

  • Curriculum Vitae (CV)
  • Degree transcript
  • Two References
  • Research proposal
  • Sample work 

Please supply an example of recent written work, which should be around 5000 words in total. This should be analytical writing, which may be an essay which you have written for your present course, material you have prepared for some other purpose, or something you have written specially for your application to York. The work you submit should cover topics which are relevant to the subject of your proposed area of research.

You can find full guidance on how to apply to our MA by Research in Theatre on the York study webpage.

When you are ready to apply, you will need to complete an application form and upload an academic transcript and research proposal. If you are an international student, you will need to upload a copy of your latest English language certificate.

Specific entry requirements and funding opportunities for your country

English language requirements

Overseas students requiring a Tier 4 Student Visa:

If you are an overseas student who requires a Tier 4 Student Visa to enter the UK, you will not be permitted to undertake part-time study.  For further information, please refer to the UKCISA website.


The tuition fee rates for all postgraduate research programmes in the department are classroom-based. 

Find out more

For more information please contact Dr Lisa Peschel.

Apply now