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Early Modern History MA

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Our course looks at the history of Britain, Europe and the wider world between c.1500-1800, highlighting themes of political, cultural, religious and social history. Taught by experts in the histories of the Reformation and the Enlightenment, gender, the material world of the Renaissance, race and racism, medicine and science, and on Britain, Ireland, France, Italy, Portugal and the Iberian world, our course offers you the opportunity to choose from a wide range of study options at one of Europe's leading History departments. Leads to careers in museums, journalism, finance and the cultural sector.

Key benefits

  • Department of History – 86% of its research rated either ‘world leading’ (4*) or ‘Internationally excellent’ (3*) in the most recent Research Excellence Framework (REF 2021).
  • King's graduates enjoy one of the best employment rates and starting salaries in the UK. King's is ranked 4th in the UK for graduate employability (Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2020).
  • A wide set of optional modules all taught by established experts in the field.
  • A rigorous core course that trains students in historical research in archives, manuscripts, print and objects.
  • Central London location and staff expertise offers students unrivalled access to world-class museums, collections, archives and libraries as well as easy access to resources in Europe.
  • Vibrant research culture of seminars, workshops and conferences in the department and at the Institute of Historical Research, in which students are encouraged to participate.

Our Early Modern History MA bridges the division between British and European history that exists on many courses, focusing on ways in which cultural, political and social themes stretch across the period c.1500–1800. The course is taught by experts in the histories of the Reformation and the Enlightenment, gender, the material world of the Renaissance, race and racism, and on Britain, Ireland, France, the Netherlands, Portugal and the Iberian world. Their research connects the political and the social, the cultural and the religious dimensions of the early modern world, and our course will give you interdisciplinary perspectives on early modern history.

Base campus

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Strand Campus

Located on the north bank of the River Thames, the Strand Campus houses King's College London's arts and sciences faculties.

Regulating bodies

King's is regulated by the Office for Students

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Teaching methods - what to expect

You will write a dissertation at the end of your course, but you will begin by testing concepts such as identity, mentality, religion; by challenging models of change including modernization, state-building, the civilising process, reformation, enlightenment and revolution; and by trying out different methodologies such as cultural history, gender, thinking with material objects, global history, using digital data.

Our optional modules offer you different perspectives on religion, society, politics and culture, by examining primary sources of all kinds alongside the most recent historiographical interpretations. We will also develop your practical skills through modules such as advanced historical skills, including palaeography, Latin from beginner to advanced levels, and offer the chance to learn a European language. The flexibility of the course means that you can also take relevant modules from other departments in, for example, early modern English or French literature, the Iberian world and Digital Humanities. You can also attend relevant undergraduate lecture series such as Power, Culture and Belief in Europe 1500–1800 and Early Modern Britain 1500–1750.

You will have access to an excellent range of library resources. Our long-standing expertise in the early modern period means our library has an extensive collection of journals and books in this field. You can also use the British Library, Senate House Library (University of London) and the Institute of Historical Research. We provide access to the most significant online collections of primary printed material, Early English Books Online and the Eighteenth Century Online and to JSTOR and other online resources for secondary material.

Teaching

We teach our modules through small seminar groups where we will debate and discuss ideas based on extensive reading.

If you are a full-time student, we will provide you with six to nine hours of teaching each week, and we will expect you to undertake 31 to 34 hours of independent study.

If you are a part-time student, we will provide you with two to six hours of teaching each week, and we will expect you to undertake 14 to 18 hours of independent study.

For your dissertation we will provide you with six hours of one-to-one supervision and we will expect you to undertake 574 hours of independent study.

We will use a delivery method that will ensure students have a rich, exciting experience from the start. Face to face teaching will be complemented and supported with innovative technology so that students also experience elements of digital learning and assessment.

Typically, one credit equates to 10 hours of work.

Location

This course is primarily taught at the King’s College London Strand Campus. Studying in central London provides you with a wealth of opportunities and exceptional access to the sources and material artefacts of the early modern period, including buildings, libraries, archives and exhibitions.

We have many archival and manuscript resources for the early modern period, and the British Library’s Manuscripts and Rare Books Collections are enhanced by, for example, the extensive collection of early printed books at our own Maughan Library amongst others. Visual resources of the period are easily found at the National Portrait Gallery, National Gallery, Courtauld Institute, Tate Britain and the Victoria and Albert Museum.

London also offers you access to a strong graduate community, where you can follow up almost any interest. We will strongly encourage you to participate in the seminars at the Institute of Historical Research (IHR), where there are 10 regular seminars on the early modern period alone, many of them convened by members of our Department.

Assessment

    Your performance will be assessed through a combination of coursework and written/practical examinations. Forms of assessment may typically include essays and a dissertation. Coursework contributes approximately 100% and examinations approximately 0% to your final mark.

    Structure

    Required modules

    You are required to take:

    Optional modules

    In addition, you are required to take 60 credits from a range of optional modules, which may typically include:

    If you are a part-time student, you will take Advanced Skills for Historians in your first year, along with 30 credits of optional modules. In your second year you will take Approaches to Early Modern History and your dissertation module, along with 30 credits of optional modules.

    King’s College London reviews the modules offered on a regular basis to provide up-to-date, innovative and relevant programmes of study. Therefore, modules offered may change. We suggest you keep an eye on the course finder on our website for updates.

    Please note that modules with a practical component will be capped due to educational requirements, which may mean that we cannot guarantee a place to all students who elect to study this module.

    Employability

    Our graduates use the skills and knowledge they develop with us to go on to further research or to careers in museums, education, journalism, finance, politics and the cultural sector.

    Tuition Fees

    UK:

    Full time: £11,040 per year (2022/23)

    Part time: £5,520 per year (2022/23)

    International:

    Full time: £24,660 per year (2022/23)

    Part time: £12,330 per year (2022/23)

    These tuition fees may be subject to additional increases in subsequent years of study, in line with King’s terms and conditions.

    Deposit

    When you receive an offer for this course you will be required to pay a non-refundable deposit to secure your place. The deposit will be credited towards your total fee payment.

    The UK deposit is £500.

    The INTERNATIONAL deposit is £2,000. 

    • If you receive an offer on or before 31 March, payment is due by 25 April 2022.

    • If you receive an offer between 1 April and 30 June, payment is due within one month of receiving the offer.

    • If you receive an offer between 1 July and 31 July, payment is due within two weeks of receiving the offer.

    • If you receive an offer between 1 August and 21 August, payment is due within one week of receiving the offer.

    • If you receive an offer from 22 August onwards, payment is due within three days of receiving the offer.

    If you are a current King’s student in receipt of the King's Living Bursary you are not required to pay a deposit to secure your place on the programme. Please note, this will not change the total fees payable for your chosen programme.

    Please visit our web pages on fees and funding for more information.

    Additional Costs

    In addition to your tuition costs, you can also expect to pay for:

    • books if you choose to buy your own copies
    • clothing for optional course related events and competitions
    • library fees and fines
    • personal photocopies
    • printing course handouts
    • society membership fees
    • stationery
    • travel costs for travel around London and between campuses
    • graduation costs

    Funding

    Our Early Modern History MA bridges the division between British and European history that exists on many courses, focusing on ways in which cultural, political and social themes stretch across the period c.1500–1800. The course is taught by experts in the histories of the Reformation and the Enlightenment, gender, the material world of the Renaissance, race and racism, and on Britain, Ireland, France, the Netherlands, Portugal and the Iberian world. Their research connects the political and the social, the cultural and the religious dimensions of the early modern world, and our course will give you interdisciplinary perspectives on early modern history.

    Base campus

    strand-quad
    Strand Campus

    Located on the north bank of the River Thames, the Strand Campus houses King's College London's arts and sciences faculties.

    Regulating bodies

    King's is regulated by the Office for Students

    Loading...

    Teaching methods - what to expect

    You will write a dissertation at the end of your course, but you will begin by testing concepts such as identity, mentality, religion; by challenging models of change including modernization, state-building, the civilising process, reformation, enlightenment and revolution; and by trying out different methodologies such as cultural history, gender, thinking with material objects, global history, using digital data.

    Our optional modules offer you different perspectives on religion, society, politics and culture, by examining primary sources of all kinds alongside the most recent historiographical interpretations. We will also develop your practical skills through modules such as advanced historical skills, including palaeography, Latin from beginner to advanced levels, and offer the chance to learn a European language. The flexibility of the course means that you can also take relevant modules from other departments in, for example, early modern English or French literature, the Iberian world and Digital Humanities. You can also attend relevant undergraduate lecture series such as Power, Culture and Belief in Europe 1500–1800 and Early Modern Britain 1500–1750.

    You will have access to an excellent range of library resources. Our long-standing expertise in the early modern period means our library has an extensive collection of journals and books in this field. You can also use the British Library, Senate House Library (University of London) and the Institute of Historical Research. We provide access to the most significant online collections of primary printed material, Early English Books Online and the Eighteenth Century Online and to JSTOR and other online resources for secondary material.

    Teaching

    We teach our modules through small seminar groups where we will debate and discuss ideas based on extensive reading.

    If you are a full-time student, we will provide you with six to nine hours of teaching each week, and we will expect you to undertake 31 to 34 hours of independent study.

    If you are a part-time student, we will provide you with two to six hours of teaching each week, and we will expect you to undertake 14 to 18 hours of independent study.

    For your dissertation we will provide you with six hours of one-to-one supervision and we will expect you to undertake 574 hours of independent study.

    We will use a delivery method that will ensure students have a rich, exciting experience from the start. Face to face teaching will be complemented and supported with innovative technology so that students also experience elements of digital learning and assessment.

    Typically, one credit equates to 10 hours of work.

    Location

    This course is primarily taught at the King’s College London Strand Campus. Studying in central London provides you with a wealth of opportunities and exceptional access to the sources and material artefacts of the early modern period, including buildings, libraries, archives and exhibitions.

    We have many archival and manuscript resources for the early modern period, and the British Library’s Manuscripts and Rare Books Collections are enhanced by, for example, the extensive collection of early printed books at our own Maughan Library amongst others. Visual resources of the period are easily found at the National Portrait Gallery, National Gallery, Courtauld Institute, Tate Britain and the Victoria and Albert Museum.

    London also offers you access to a strong graduate community, where you can follow up almost any interest. We will strongly encourage you to participate in the seminars at the Institute of Historical Research (IHR), where there are 10 regular seminars on the early modern period alone, many of them convened by members of our Department.

    Assessment

      Your performance will be assessed through a combination of coursework and written/practical examinations. Forms of assessment may typically include essays and a dissertation. Coursework contributes approximately 100% and examinations approximately 0% to your final mark.

      Structure

      Required modules

      You are required to take:

      Optional modules

      In addition, you are required to take 60 credits from a range of optional modules, which may typically include:

      If you are a part-time student, you will take Advanced Skills for Historians in your first year, along with 30 credits of optional modules. In your second year you will take Approaches to Early Modern History and your dissertation module, along with 30 credits of optional modules.

      King’s College London reviews the modules offered on a regular basis to provide up-to-date, innovative and relevant programmes of study. Therefore, modules offered may change. We suggest you keep an eye on the course finder on our website for updates.

      Please note that modules with a practical component will be capped due to educational requirements, which may mean that we cannot guarantee a place to all students who elect to study this module.

      Employability

      Our graduates use the skills and knowledge they develop with us to go on to further research or to careers in museums, education, journalism, finance, politics and the cultural sector.

      Tuition Fees

      UK:

      Full time: £11,040 per year (2022/23)

      Part time: £5,520 per year (2022/23)

      International:

      Full time: £24,660 per year (2022/23)

      Part time: £12,330 per year (2022/23)

      These tuition fees may be subject to additional increases in subsequent years of study, in line with King’s terms and conditions.

      Deposit

      When you receive an offer for this course you will be required to pay a non-refundable deposit to secure your place. The deposit will be credited towards your total fee payment.

      The UK deposit is £500.

      The INTERNATIONAL deposit is £2,000. 

      • If you receive an offer on or before 31 March, payment is due by 25 April 2022.

      • If you receive an offer between 1 April and 30 June, payment is due within one month of receiving the offer.

      • If you receive an offer between 1 July and 31 July, payment is due within two weeks of receiving the offer.

      • If you receive an offer between 1 August and 21 August, payment is due within one week of receiving the offer.

      • If you receive an offer from 22 August onwards, payment is due within three days of receiving the offer.

      If you are a current King’s student in receipt of the King's Living Bursary you are not required to pay a deposit to secure your place on the programme. Please note, this will not change the total fees payable for your chosen programme.

      Please visit our web pages on fees and funding for more information.

      Additional Costs

      In addition to your tuition costs, you can also expect to pay for:

      • books if you choose to buy your own copies
      • clothing for optional course related events and competitions
      • library fees and fines
      • personal photocopies
      • printing course handouts
      • society membership fees
      • stationery
      • travel costs for travel around London and between campuses
      • graduation costs

      Funding

      Application closing date guidance

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