The MA Irish History programme (Culture, Politics and Identity) consists of five modules:
1. Research Methods (MHY7020) Semester 1 (Sept-Dec)
This module offers an introduction to bibliographic research, archival usage, the handling of primary and secondary sources, methods of documenting research results and practical writing and editing skills. Particular emphasis is placed on practical experience in using local archives (including PRONI), research tools and resources (in print and online). Students are also introduced to specialist methodologies associated with oral history, statistics and material culture. Training is offered in the use of sources specific to the Culture, Politics and Identity strand, and you will be encouraged to attend research seminars in the School relating to this. This module is assessed through a number of practical coursework exercises.
2. Historiography (MHY7035) Semester 1 (Sept-Dec)
This is a two-part module, combining global and Irish perspectives on historical theory and practice, The first part, taught in common with MA Modern History, will introduce you to developments in contemporary international historiography, and includes topics such as memory and orality, new cultural histories, postcolonialism and postmodernism.
In the second part students focus on historiographical developments related to modern Irish History. Students taking the Culture, Politics and Identity strand focus on such themes as the professionalisation of Irish history ith the establishment of Irish Historical Studies and the subsequent 'revisionist' controversy, as well as the more specialist historiographical themes such as migration, gender and women's history. This module is assessed through two research essays of c. 3000 words each.
3. Culture, Politics and Identity in Ireland c.1534-1972 (MHY7030 ) Semester 2 (Jan-June) This team-taught module looks at the relationship between cultural expression, political activity and identity-formation in Ireland between the early-modern period and the 20th century. This module is assessed through two research essays of c. 3000 words each.4. Historical Documents and Sources (MHY7025) OR Public History Internship (MHY7077) Semester 2 (Jan-June)
In this project-based module you will be introduced to techniques of calendaring, indexing and locating primary documents. You may produce either a calendar of documents, a finding aid to primary sources on a defined theme available locally, or a database drawn from primary sources. Training will be provided by staff from the Public Records Office of Northern Ireland and QUB Special Collections, and you will be encouraged to work on collections held in these depositories, but relevant materials might also be used from other libraries and depositories.
Assessment is by calendar, finding aid or database, in all cases prefaced by a 5,000 word introductory essay. You will be encouraged to deposit their finished (and corrected) work for public consultation at the relevant depository. Assessment is by calendar, finding aid or database, in all cases prefaced by a 5,000 word introductory essay. You will be encouraged to deposit their finished (and corrected) work for public consultation at the relevant depository. Expanded versions of two of the projects created for this module have been published by the Irish Manuscripts Commission: Diane Urquhart (ed), The Minutes of the Ulster Women's Unionist Council and Executive Committee 1911-40 (2001); Margaret Baguley (ed), The Correspondence of Lillian and Wilfrid Spender, 1914-1918 (2009).
Public History Internship (MHY7077) Semester 2 (Jan-June)
This module is provided as an alternative to MHY7025 (Historical Documents and Sources). Students will be offered an opportunity to undertake an internship in public history in a local cultural institution during semester 2. This aims to allow students relate their academic studies to a practical setting and to give them some experience of a work-place environment.
In this module you will be given the opportunity to engage with the core ideas, debates and best practices in the field of public history and to get hands-on experience of ‘doing’ public history through a placement in the heritage sector.
For approximately 14 days spread over several months, you will undertake an internship in a public history institution of your choice. Here you will get hands-on experience of working in a public history environment in two different ways. Firstly, by shadowing public history professionals, you will acquire broad experience in their particular field and become familiar with the range of issues that they face in the course of their work. Secondly, by selecting a particular collection or archive on which to work, you will engage in a very practical way with issues such as preservation policy, archiving, digital collections and exhibition development.
By participating in this module, you will gain a broad experience of communicating history to a wider audience. You will gain a range of employability skills. In addition, students who successfully complete every aspect of the module will qualify for the Queen’s Employability and Skills Award.
The main part of the module will be the internship which will be organised by the student in conjunction with the co-ordinator.
There will be three compulsory workshops. Two of these will take the form of vocational training on applying for jobs and giving effective presentations. The third will be a lecture on the experience of ‘doing public history’ by someone currently working in the field.
There will also be an optional two-day residential field trip towards the end of the internship period. This will allow students to come together in an informal environment to explore aspects of public history and share their experiences of placement in a public history environment.
Assessment will take the form of a pre-placement submission including CV, covering letter and a forward analysis of skills (10%), a reflective 5,000-word essay (80%) and a short presentation (10%). More details >>
5. Dissertation (MHY7010: Double module)
The MA co-ordinator will encourage you to identify your dissertation proposal and arrange a suitable supervisor to advise on research and writing towards the end of the first semester. The dissertation must not exceed 20,000 words in total length, be drawn from primary sources, and have a suitable scholarly apparatus. Full-time students must submit their dissertation by mid September. Candidates who pass the assessment for the four taught modules but who fail to submit a dissertation, or who submit an unsatisfactory dissertation, may be awarded a Postgraduate Diploma.
Part-time students take MHY7035 (semester 1) and MHY7030 (semester 2) in their first year; MHY7020 (semester 1) and MHY7025 (semester 2) in their second year, and submit their dissertation by 1 May in their third year (a total study period of 31 months).