UCC Postgraduate courses

Medieval History

About This Course

Fact File

  • Title

    Medieval History

  • Code

    CKE46 Full-time; CKD23 Part-time

  • College

    Arts, Celtic Studies and Social Sciences

  • Duration

    1 year Full-time; 2 years Part-time

  • Teaching Mode

    Full-time. See Additional Teaching Mode Information for more info.

  • Qualifications


  • EU Fees 2019

    See Fees and Costs for full details.

  • Non-EU Fees 2019


  • Entry Requirements

    Candidates will have an honours primary degree of at least 2H1 level in a suitable subject or the equivalent. Applications from students with a 2H2 in a suitable subject may also be considered. See Requirements for full details.

  • Closing Date

    Late applications currently being accepted.

  • Non-EU Closing Date

    15th June

  • Start Date

    9 September 2019

Course Outline

The MA in Medieval History is a taught, one-year course that gives you the research skills to investigate and interpret the literary and artistic culture of the Middle Ages, particularly of early Ireland and Britain.

You will encounter medieval sources that are being radically reinterpreted in the light of exciting new research by course lecturers. The course is designed to give you a thorough grounding in research skills while providing maximum freedom to follow your own research interests.

You will have the opportunity to demonstrate your own ability to engage with historical sources in writing your research dissertation, and to apply your knowledge in the working environment of a museum. You will also adapt your research and analytical skills to a variety of non-academic contexts or, alternatively, to undertaking further research.

In the Autumn and Spring teaching periods, you will take a number of modules (including instruction in Latin) that explore major themes in western medieval culture and are intended to equip you with the key skills of the medieval historian. Teaching is research-led; classes focus on a range of sources, both literary and visual.

The MA offers modules which concentrate on historical themes, and others which are intended to develop key research skills and methodologies. In the Autumn semester, you will take Historical contexts for medievalists (Hi6088), an intensive introduction to key turning points and transformations in the history and culture of medieval Western Europe from Late Antiquity to the High Middle Ages. You will take The Insular world in text and image (Hi6090) and, through a close analysis of selected literary and visual sources, come to understand the history and culture of early Ireland and Britain.

In the Spring semester, you will explore actual and virtual Insular encounters with real and imagined peoples and places in Hi6089 Insular encounters with the wider world. You will also take Skills for medieval historians (Hi6091), where you will explore, evaluate and employ the variety of sources, techniques and strategies available to historians. This module will also give you the opportunity to employ your skills and knowledge in the working environment of a museum or field of applied historical research.

All students will take an introductory Latin module (LT6001) offered by the Department of Classics.

For more current details of the programme and module descriptions, see the Postgraduate College Calendar

Additional Teaching Mode Information

The part-time option will be taught during weekday working hours over 2 years.


Further details on the modules listed above can be found in our book of modules. Any modules listed above are indicative of the current set of modules for this course but are subject to change from year to year.

University Calendar

You can find the full academic content for the current year of any given course in our University Calendar.

Course Practicalities

The taught modules in the MA are evenly spread across both the Autumn and Spring semesters, enabling you to balance your work commitments across the academic year, and to leave Semester Three for your research and the writing of your thesis.

The introductory module, Historical contexts for medievalists (Hi6088), is a module in which all the MA in Medieval History lecturers collaborate to provide you with a solid grounding in the field, and to give you foundation for the more specialised modules to follow.

Skills for medieval historians (Hi6091) is taught as a lecture/workshop series. This module involves field trips to different repositories, where you will experience the management and interpretation of the textual and material culture of the Middle Ages. The module includes work placement as well as design of an online exhibition.

Introduction to Latin (Lt6001) is taught in three one-hour classes per week throughout both semesters and is offered by the Department of Classics.

In the taught History modules, you are assessed by coursework involving the writing of an essay and the delivery of oral presentations. The Latin module is examined by continuous assessment and by end-of-year exam. You will also complete a minor dissertation (20,000 words maximum) based on your own research of a topic of particular interest to you. The MA in Medieval History has a credit weighting of 90 credits, divided equally between coursework (45 credits) and minor dissertation (45 credits).

Who teaches on the programme

Dr Damian Bracken

Dr Malgorzata D'Aughton

Dr Diarmuid Scully

Why Choose This Course

  • The programme is designed to give students a thorough grounding in research skills while providing maximum freedom to follow their own research interests.
  • This course will appeal to students wishing to deepen their understanding and appreciation of the culture of the medieval West, and especially of early Ireland and Britain.
  • Students will encounter medieval sources that are being radically reinterpreted in the light of exciting new research by programme lecturers.
  • Students will have the opportunity to apply their knowledge of the period and their interpretative skills in the working environment of a museum.

Placement or Study Abroad Information

Work experience is an integral part of the course giving students the opportunity to apply their knowledge of the period and interpretative skills in the working environment of a museum, or through the creation of online digital corpora and databases.

Skills and Careers Information

The course will equip you with the essential skills that enable you to understand and interpret the history and culture (written and visual) of the past. It will introduce new and innovative methodologies that bring fresh insights into medieval times, and that allow us to reconstruct in considerable detail how people understood their world, and how they lived their lives. There are modules that explore and apply research methods, and also modules that train you in how these methods and skills can be used by graduates in their employment. Work experience is an integral part of the course giving you the opportunity to apply your knowledge and interpretative skills in the working environment of a museum. You will also be guided in how to develop your ability to present your findings both orally and in writing.

Occupations associated with the MA in Medieval History
MA in Medieval History students have gone on to pursue doctorates with scholarship support; work in financial services; in university lecturing posts; in curatorial and museum posts.

What are our graduates doing?

  • doctoral study with scholarship support
  • work in financial services
  • university lecturing
  • teaching
  • project management
  • the heritage sector


To be considered for registration an applicant will normally have an honours primary degree of at least Second Class Honours Grade I level in a suitable subject or the equivalent. Applications from students with a Second Class Honours Grade II degree in a suitable subject may also be considered. These applicants may be requested to submit a proposal and/or attend an interview.

All candidates must satisfy a Selection Committee who may request applicants to provide letters of reference.

If you are applying with Qualifications obtained outside Ireland and you wish to verify if you meet the minimum academic and English language requirements for this programme please click here to view the grades comparison table by country and for details of recognised English language tests. 

English Language Requirements

Applicants that are non-native speakers of the English language must meet the university approved English language requirements available here.

For applicants with qualifications completed outside of Ireland

Applicants must meet the required entry academic grade, equivalent to Irish requirements, please find our grades comparison by country here

International/non-EU applicants

For full details of the non-EU application procedure please visit our how to apply pages for international students. In UCC, we use the term programme and course interchangeably to describe what a person has registered to study in UCC and its constituent colleges, schools, and departments.

Not all courses are open to international/non-EU applicants, please check the fact file above.

For more information please contact the International Office.

Fees and Costs

The EU fee for this course is €6,000.

The Non-EU fee for this course is €13,000.

Full-time/Part-time fee:

If your course is offered full time and part time, normally the fee for the part-time course is half the full-time fee per year, please check the fact file for confirmation.


If your course required a deposit, that figure will be deducted from your second semester fee payment in January.

EU student fee payment:

Fees for EU students are payable in two equal instalments. First payment at registration in August and the second in January.

International student fee payment:

Fees for Non-EU Students are payable in one instalment in August.

How can I pay?

By Credit/Debit card online or by credit transfer.


If you have any questions on fee payment please email our Fees Office at fees@ucc.ie .

Students may be requested to contribute towards the field trip as part of module HI 6039 Skills for Medieval Historians

Non-EU Fees

The fee schedule for 2019/2020 is available here.

How Do I Apply

1. Choose Course

Firstly choose your course. Applicants can apply for up to three courses under one application. Details of taught courses are available on our online prospectus.

2. Apply Online

Once you have chosen your course you can apply online at the Postgraduate Applications Centre (PAC). Applicants will need to apply before the course closing date. There is a €50 application fee for all courses apart from the Education - Professional Master of Education - (Secondary School/Post-Primary Teacher Training) which has a €100 application fee.

3. Gather Supporting Documents

Scanned copies of the following documents will need to be uploaded to PAC in support of your application. Applicants may need to produce the original documents if you are accepted onto a course and register at UCC.

  • Original qualification documents listed on your application including transcripts of results from institutions other than UCC
  • Any supplementary forms requested for your course.

Please log into PAC for more details.

4. Application processing timeline

Our online application system PAC opens for applications for most courses in early November of each year. Check specific course details. 


For courses that are in the rounds system (Irish and EU applicants), please check the rounds closing dates here

Questions on how to apply?

Please use our web enquiry form to contact us.

Additional Requirements (All Applicants)

In addition to applying online, applicants will also be asked to COMPLETE an online Supplementary Questions Form which includes the name of a proposed supervisor and proposed title of your research (to be returned online together with your PAC application form).   Before completing the online application and online Supplementary Question Form, intending candidates must consult with the relevant course coordinators or prospective supervisors to discuss/confirm their proposed research area. Following this consultation the proposed supervisor should be named on the online supplementary questions form.

Course Coordinator
Dr. Damian Bracken
School of History
University College Cork
Email:  d.bracken@ucc.ie
Phone:  +353 21 4902950

A copy of the Supplementary Questions form is available to view here: CKE46supplementaryform (7kB)

The School of History may ask applicants to provide letters of reference if necessary when considering applications.

The closing date for non-EU applications is 15th June

Apply Now

For queries regarding course content or timetables please contact