University of Chester

Programme Specification
History MRes
2017 - 2018

Master by Research



University of Chester

University of Chester

Chester Campus

Postgraduate (Taught)

Full-time and Part-time

Classroom / Laboratory,

1 year full-time; 2 years part-time

6 Years

Annual - October



17a. Faculty

17b. Department

Arts and Humanities History and Archaeology



MRes in History

Friday 30th September 2011

To provide graduate students with the opportunity to develop an independent, substantial piece of scholarly research into an aspect of the past that fits with the department's supervisory expertise. To be informed by, and to contribute to, broader academic debates about the methods, approaches and practices that underpin the modern historical discipline. To provide students with advanced historical research training appropriate for both Level 7 and doctoral research. To develop students' self-management, planning and communication skills. To prepare fully those students with suitable interests for further postgraduate research at the Master/Doctor of Philosophy level and beyond.

By the end of the programme, through all modules, students will have:

  • Demonstrated knowledge and understanding of the nature and value of history.
  • Demonstrated knowledge and understanding of selected themes and issues examined in their national, regional or local contexts.
  • Demonstrated knowledge and understanding of the range, nature and value of primary and secondary sources for the study of history.
  • Applied scholarly conventions.
  • Demonstrated the skills of the researcher including bibliographical skills, selection and synthesis of primary and secondary sources and the ability to provide original analysis in relation to questions appropriate to the discipline.
  • Improved their own learning and performance
  • Demonstrated self-discipline and self-direction in their work with others in a reasoned way.
  • Used information technology as and when appropriate.
  • Demonstrated intellectual integrity and maturity, empathy and insight.

By the end of the programme,through all modules, students will have:

  • Demonstrated the capacity to plan, conduct and present a programme of original research.
  • Demonstrated the ability to read and use texts and other source materials both critically and empathetically while addressing content, context and perspective.
  • Demonstrated analytical ability and the capacity to consider and solve problems.

By the end of the programme, through all modules,  students will have:

  • Demonstrated the above key skills within a professional environment or as required for continuing professional development.
  • Demonstrated the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment or further professional development requiring the exercise of initiative and personal responsibility.

By the end of the programme, through all modules, students will have:

  • Communicated orally to a range of audiences - small and large groups, peers and academics
  • Developed writing skills appropriate for extended essays as well as for shorter reviews



The MRes is comprised of three compulsory, Level 7 modules:

  • HI7400 (Research Dissertation) - 140 credits
  • HI7401 (Research Methods and Skills in History) - 20 credits
  • HI7402 (Approaches to Historiography) - 20 credits

There are no exit awards within the MRes programme.

Mod-Code Level Title Credit Single
HI7400 7 Research Dissertation 140 Comp
HI7401 7 Research Methods and Skills in History 20 Comp
HI7402 7 Approaches to Historiography 20 Comp

MRes (180 credits)
All MRes students complete HI7401 (Research Methods and Skills in History - 20 credits), HI7402 (Approaches to Historiography - 20 credits), and HI7400 (Research Dissertation - 140 credits).

Possession of an upper, second class honours degree in any relevant discipline with additional emphasis placed upon the student's preparedness for study and performance at interview which will inform the selection process.  A lower, second class degree can be mitigated by experience.  Decisions concerning the allocation of credit, either for admission or advanced standing, will be the responsibility of a Credit Allocation Panel.  Credit value will be given for appropriate certificated or experiential learning completed within the previous five years and through which an applicant can demonstrate prior achievement of learning outcomes related to one or more programme modules.  A student seeking advanced standing must apply before enrolment.

There is currently no MRes in History Benchmark Statement but the QAA code of practice for research degree is relevant and has been drawn upon.

Acquisition of core knowledge is achieved through lectures, seminars, workshops, audio-visual presentation, tutorials and private study, supplemented, where appropriate, by field visits and additional contributions by guest and visiting lecturers.

The main, substantive piece of assessment is the research dissertation (HI7400) which is normally assessed by an extended dissertation of up to 28,000 words.  HI7402 (Approaches to Historiography) is normally assessed by a single 4000-word essay which takes the form of a literature review.  The second core module, HI7401 (Research Methods and Skills in History) encompasses four separate assessment strands.  It is normally assessed by a 1000-word review of an archive relevant to the student's research project; a 1000-word document commentary; a 1500-word research topic proposal and a 20-minute oral presentation on the same theme. Reassessment will be as assessment.

On completion of this programme, a successful graduate will have acquired a range of communication and transferable skills (as embraced by both the educational aims of the programme and the programme outcomes - see above) valuable to their current or potential employers.  The MRes in History will also prepare students for further research at Master/Doctor of Philosophy level.

The Department of History & Archaeology programmes respect the standard University policies regarding admissions, widening access and participation, equal opportunities and APL, as applied centrally by the University.  Consistent with the University's commitment to widening access and participation, the programme conforms to the University's flexible approach and welcomes applications from mature students and from groups normally under-represented in higher education. The University of Chester values the diversity of its student body and aims to provide quality of opportunity in all its activities.  All suitably qualified students are welcome on this programme, irrespective of race, gender, disability or age.  Every effort will be made to accommodate students with specific learning or physical needs and to ensure that all students benefit equally.  Each case will be examined individually and the University's Inclusion Plans will provide guidance and support, as appropriate.  International students who meet the admissions requirements are welcome and will enrich both the programme and the postgraduate community at the University; support and guidance are provided for international students at the institution, particularly through the International Student Welfare Officer.

Student Support and Guidance: All students are issued with a comprehensive programme handbook and a module handbook at the commencement of each module.  Students needing further advice are welcome to consult the Programme Leader (who acts as the Personal Academic Tutor for students on the programme), or the Module Tutor. Learning Resources: Students have access to the University's open-access IT suite, the main campus library and other academic libraries (via the SCONUL scheme).

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