PG student profiles
Get an insight into the experience of studying postgraduate history at Essex and the support
you can expect to receive by reading the profiles of some of our current and former students.
We offer a popular MA History course, which can be taken with your choice
of four different pathways. Our course is modular and gives you a wide
choice of optional modules. With all of our pathways you will complete
taught modules and also conduct independent research which culminates in a
20,000 word dissertation. You can choose to study full-time for one year or
part-time for two years.
You can also take our course as a Postgraduate (PG) Certificate. If you
choose this route, you will undertake the same taught modules but will not
complete a dissertation. The same choice of pathways is available. The PG
Certificate takes 9 months of full-time study or 21 months on a part-time
A variety of scholarships and funding
for postgraduate study is available.
Full course details
You can study our courses full- or part-time:
See our current student pages for a list of
postgraduate history modules or search our
module directory. Please note that some optional
modules may not run evey year.
What our students say
In this video, MA History student, Elijah Bell explains why he chose Essex to continue his studies in History.
Your choice of pathways
Our flagship MA History is rigorous, flexible and wide-ranging, offering
you a high degree of choice in terms of the modules you take and the thesis
subject you can choose. You take a practical module in research techniques
(Research Methods in History) which will lay the essential groundwork for
your 20,000-word dissertation, which you can undertake on a theme of your
own choosing. In addition to the research methods module, you will take four
other optional modules.
You can alternatively choose to take one of our three specialist
MA History (Cultural and Social History Pathway)
This pathway offers you modules in cultural and social history, dealing
with a range of areas, themes and periods, which place you at the
cutting-edge of historical thought on issues such as gender, race, class,
consumption, modernity, mentalities and identities. You explore the varied
ways in which understandings of the relationship between evidence and
interpretation, language and the material world, economies and identities,
have been challenged and changed by the 'cultural turn'.
MA History (Local and Regional History Pathway)
This pathway introduces you to the concepts and approaches used in local,
community and family history. Local/micro history, as well as community and
family studies, has played an increasingly important part in the development
of historical analysis. We reflect on these developments with our modules
that draw on the rich national and comparative literature in these fields,
with a primary focus on the period from 1800 to the twentieth century.
MA History (Public History Pathway)
This pathway, which includes the compulsory Public History Workshop
module, will be suitable for you if you are interested in furthering your
expertise in a variety of public history contexts, ranging from museums and
documentary films to conflict resolution and computer games. This pathway
makes the most of our status as an institution at the cutting edge of
communicating history to the general public.
Book a place at a postgraduate event to find out about studying at a top 20 UK research university. Staff will be
available to answer your questions and you can speak to students about life at Essex.
We offer scholarships and bursaries to talented postgraduates, ranging from
research council studentships and University of Essex scholarships to awards
funded by charities and other external organisations.
How to apply
Find out more about how to apply for our postgraduate courses. We know that this can be quite
different to your experience of undergraduate applications, so we explain the process and what you need to do.
All our students can learn languages in a number of ways, including as part of your degree, in evening
classes or online at no extra cost, or via Essex Modern Language Certificates.