The Master of Research in Historical Research is a one-year course that is research-oriented and allows you to specialise in particular research areas.
The MRes is designed to:
- enable you to become a well-trained historian
- demonstrate your ability to undertake research to doctoral level at Stirling or other universities in Britain and overseas
Both of these aims are achieved through the completion of independent study modules, field seminars and skills training conducted under supervision. You’ll also be allocated an individual supervisor to direct your independent study and plan the curriculum to reflect your interests and needs.
Our course prepares you for further research by covering many different topics including:
- coordination of the provision of additional or external skills training to develop the application of research skills
- practical experience of devising and applying a research method to interrogate primary sources
- qualitative and quantitative analysis
- the application of IT in information retrieval, especially bibliographical database software
- written and oral communication skills
- project design involving the conceptualisation of research questions and the presentation of data and data analysis
Top reasons to study with us
#1 You can tailor the course to your interests, needs and aspirations
#2 Enhance continuing professional development, particularly in teaching, journalism, marketing, and heritage management
#3 Recognised by the Arts and Humanities Research Council and the Economic and Social Research Council
The course is recognised by both the Arts and Humanities Research Council and the Economic and Social Research Council. Both have given PhD awards to outstanding Stirling graduates of the MRes.
The Master of Research in Historical Research is a one-year course that is research-oriented and allows specialisation in particular research areas. You’re allocated an individual supervisor to direct your independent study and plan the curriculum to reflect your interests and needs. You should maintain regular contact with supervisors and agree a schedule of meetings to discuss your work and review draft submissions.
The course is split into four sections:
You’ll undertake independent study of the historical literature of a chosen field. Coursework comprises a 10,000-word paper that critically reviews historians' works, and identifies a topic suitable for original research in a dissertation. There are no classes. One-to-one supervisory sessions are scheduled at mutually convenient times.
Research skills training
You’ll plan a personal itinerary, with direction, that entails attendance at events organised by the Stirling Graduate School and Stirling historians through training modules. Sessions include personal development and career planning, making grant applications, undertaking qualitative and quantitative analyses and database management.
An intensive, one-week programme covers history-specific related skills including historical approaches, documentary editing, palaeography, and using biographical sources.
Extra classes in languages can be arranged. You’ll attend history research seminars and present a short working paper at the History postgraduate symposium in June. Coursework involves the preparation of a research bibliography for the dissertation and due performance at skills workshops.
Sources and methods
You’ll discuss with your supervisor how to apply and develop your research skills. This may entail further training, such as in languages or palaeography, or attendance at external courses on relational database construction or social theory. You’ll also examine a body of sources related to your research topic and practice the methods that you have been learning. Coursework comprises a 5,000-word paper explaining the research 'value' and significance of the selected sources and setting out the appropriate concepts, theories and methods to be used in analysis and interpretation. There’s also a skills test based on methods and sources.
Having researched the existing secondary literature and the primary sources, and having received training in appropriate research skills, you will then go on to complete a dissertation of up to 20,000 words.
Delivery of the MRes is mainly through one-to-one sessions with the member of staff who will supervise your dissertation and provide direct feedback on the modules Historiography, and Sources and Methods.
Training and skills elements are planned in discussion with your supervisor and these will be made up of activities in four areas:
- generic skills
- employability skills
- breadth of knowledge
- subject-specific skills
You must attend the one-week programme on history and related discipline skills in early December. You must also give a short paper on your own research at the Stirling postgraduate conference in early June.
There’s also a lively series of guest lectures that students can attend on this course.
Dr Jim Smyth
+44 (0) 1786 467961
Fees - 2018/2019
- Overseas £13,650
- Home/EU £4,700
About the School
At the University of Stirling, being the difference is in our DNA – providing education with a purpose and carrying out research that helps to shape society.