Skip to Content
MA|Postgraduate Taught


Entry year
Entry requirements
2.2 (minimum 55%)
1 year (Full-time)
3 years (Part-time)
Places available
30 (Full Time)
30 (Part Time)

The MA History programme at Queen’s is designed to offer an innovative package of modules that challenges students to develop their knowledge and skills, and flourish in their area of interest or future specialism.

Our Faculty have research specialisms across a range of chronological and geographical areas. We have areas of particular strength in ancient, medieval, early modern and contemporary history in Ireland, Britain, the USA, Europe, Africa and Asia. Students will be taught by leading experts in public history, urban history, women’s and gender history, religious history, political history, and extra-European history.

Modules are designed in a complementary fashion in order to develop the range of skills that employers expect from graduates from the best designed postgraduate taught programmes. They are designed also to train students who want to continue onto a PhD.

Modules range from Theory, methods and sources to Topic in the History of Religion, the History of Race and Ethnicity, the History of the Cold War, Social History, Political History or Economic History. You can opt to take these approaches within American History, British History, Irish History, European History, African History, Asian History or Ancient, Medieval and Early Modern History.

History at Queen’s is ranked in the top 200 in the world by subject (QS World Rankings 2023).

History highlights

Student Experience

The School has a rich research culture and postgraduate community. Postgraduate students host regular graduate-led seminars, colloquia and conferences. Students engage closely with research activities and events run by the Centre for Public History at Queen’s.

This programme provides students with an opportunity to work in the largest and most international community of historians on the island of Ireland.
Close involvement of practitioners from a wide range of organisations in many aspects of the course including:

Practitioner-led workshops
Field trips to Europe
Rich research culture and postgraduate community
Involvement in the Centre for Public History at Queen’s
Involvement in the Institute of Irish Studies
Involvement in QUOTE (Queen’s University Oral history, Technology and Ethics) Hub

World Class Facilities

The School is a world-leading centre for innovative and dynamic historical research. In the 2021 UK assessment of research (REF), History at Queen’s was ranked in the top 23 departments for research and 100% of the History research environment was considered as ‘world-leading’.

Student Experience

Studying MA History at Queen’s offers a unique insight into many of the key issues relating to contested histories, cultural memory, commemoration, identity, and community history in a very real and meaningful way, and to gain first-hand understanding of the relationship between public history, heritage, policy, and the consumption of history at a local, national and international level.

Internationally Renowned Experts

Modules focus on cutting-edge staff collaboration on emerging research themes with renowned experts in their field.

Student Experience

Queen’s ranked 17 in the world for international outlook (Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2022).

16% of the Queen’s student population are international students (Queen’s Planning Office, 2023).

Ranked 15th in the UK for graduate prospects (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2023).

Student Testimonials

Course Structure

Students in this programme are given both a strong foundation in the study of History as a discipline, as well as the opportunity to specialise within particular fields of study. All students will participate in the study of research methods and historiography, and then specialise through elective modules, individually negotiated topics, and case studies.

Course Structure

MA History consists of six taught modules and a dissertation.

MHY7090 - Pathways Through History
Students are introduced to historiographical pathways followed by Queen’s staff and examine some of the grand debates that have taken place within political, social, culture and gender history. They are encouraged to reflect on their own pathway through history and to consider the range of historiographical and thematic approaches open to them as part of their postgraduate studies.

MHY7020 – The Historian’s Craft
Students probe some of the approaches used by historians to examine the past, including oral history, literary and visual sources and quantitative data. They receive training in research ethics, on the use of archival sources and on other key skills such as critical writing and high level presentations. The module also offers a careers-focused element by reflecting on the employment of historians inside and outside academia.

MHY7011 - Individually Negotiated Topic
An exciting opportunity for students to work with a research leader in their field on an essay topic that is selected by the student. Students work in a small Study Group (up to 3) and individually (with the supervisor), to assess the historiographical literature on a research question of their choice.

MHY7089 - Case Studies in History
Students select two options from a range of 6-week mini-modules that are designed to discuss exciting and innovative historical issues in a range of geographical or chronological contexts. The aim is to develop student’s knowledge of those issues beyond their own research field and to enhance their ability to evaluate fully the historical evidence they encounter during their research. Examples of these mini modules include ‘Sex and the City’, ‘Unruly Women’, ‘Commemoration after Fascism’, ‘Contested Public Histories’, ‘Ireland and the wider world’, ‘Religion and toleration’, ‘Commemoration and Irish history’, ‘Perspectives on the Cold War’, ‘Race and Labour in Transnational Perspective’.

MHY7081 – Topics in Irish History
Topics in Irish History is designed to introduce you to the study of Irish history at an advanced level, through an exploration of selected topics spanning the period from the late middle ages to the present day. The topics chosen are deliberately diverse, taking in issues in politics, religion, culture, and gender, as well as a critical examination of the role of history itself as a cultural and political instrument.

MHY7035 - History and Theory
In this module individual lecturers introduce students to a theoretical approach that has inspired or influenced their research. The module examines some of the big theoretical debate about history and truth, history and class, history and gender, and history and identity. The module uses case studies to bring passion and insight to the students’ understanding of theoretical approaches. Staff teaching on the module are asked to reflect on the key books and articles that made them either shake with disbelieving anger or race to the archives full of inspiration!

MHY7025 - Presenting Sources
Students are given an opportunity to undertake practical work on a selection of primary sources. This can include the production of a calendar of previously uncatalogued documents, a finding aid to primary sources on a defined theme, or a database drawn from primary sources.

MHY7010 - Dissertation
Students (with the help of a supervisor) will research and write a 20,000 word dissertation on a subject of their choice. This is a triple-weighted module.

If you wish to take the programme on a part time basis, you will be required to complete 3 taught modules each year (one in first semester and two in second semester or vice versa). It is advised you should complete the core modules in your first year. Please note, all modules run at the same time for full time and part time students. Please contact the programme convenor for further information.

People teaching you

Programme Convenor

Dr Eric Morier-Genoud is a historian of Africa. His work focuses on religion, politics, war and conflict-resolution. He has published extensively on the history of missionaries, the Catholic Church, Protestantism, and Islam in Africa. His most recent work is about a pre-colonial African empire. Email:

Teaching Times

Teaching takes place at a variety of times from 12-6pm Monday – Friday.

Learning and Teaching

Assessment procedures: a combination of essays, reviews, placements, posters, projects and a research-based dissertation.

  • Cognitive Skills

    Acquisition and development of reflective practice and critical thinking in the analysis of source material.
    Identification and analysis of primary sources for research and verbal and written communication of findings based on analysis of research materials.
    Management of individual learning including planning, organisation and management of time and activities to ensure delivery of assessed work within set time-frames.
    Understand and evaluate differing interpretations.
    Critically evaluate primary sources, placing them in their context and assessing their potential as evidence.
    Identify and assimilate evidence relevant to a particular enquiry from a variety of primary sources.
    Formulate and test hypotheses and interpretations.
    Develop and present an argument based on the analysis of historical evidence.

  • Knowledge and Understanding

    An understanding of the theoretical basis of historical study.
    An insight into the preservation, accessibility and use of historical documents and primary sources.
    The role of history in the public sphere and the contribution of historical study to culture, society, economics and politics.

  • Subject Specific Skills

    An ability to identify and evaluate different interpretations of the past.
    Knowledge of different approaches to historical study from a range of perspectives including, but not limited to, gender, race, ethnicity, society, economics and culture.
    The opportunity to apply historical methodology to the study of history from the ancient to the contemporary periods, with particular opportunity to focus on Irish, British, American, European and Asian history.
    Understand the work of archives and/or public history institutions in cataloguing and preserving historical materials and/or interpreting and presenting these to non-academic audiences.
    Present the results of historical research, using quotation, citation and bibliography in a manner consistent with professional standards of accuracy and presentation.
    Extract material relevant to a particular theme or problem from primary sources and record it in a systematic and accurate manner.
    Read manuscript material from their chosen period of study.
    Identify and locate primary sources relevant to a particular field of study, using standard bibliographical resources.
    Identify and locate secondary sources relevant to a particular field of study, using standard bibliographical resources.

  • Transferable Skills

    Conduct research on a variety of issues, making intelligent use of the available material.
    Work independently.
    Communicate effectively in writing.
    Interpret and analyse information from a range of sources.
    Evaluate arguments and evidence.


Assessment and feedback are continuous throughout the course of study. Assessments associated with the course are outlined below:

  • • coursework
    • essays
    • written projects
    • oral presentations
    • class contributions




The information below is intended as an example only, featuring module details for the current year of study (2023/24). Modules are reviewed on an annual basis and may be subject to future changes – revised details will be published through Programme Specifications ahead of each academic year.

  • Year 1

    Core Modules

    Dissertation (60 credits)
    Theory in History (20 credits)

    Optional Modules

    Presenting Sources (20 credits)

Entrance requirements


Normally a strong 2.2 Honours degree (with minimum of 55%) or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University in an Arts and Humanities discipline.

Applicants with a Social Sciences Honours degree will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Applicants who hold a 2.2 Honours degree below 55% (or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University) in an Arts and Humanities discipline, or relevant other discipline who can demonstrate relevant professional experience will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Applicants are advised to apply as early as possible and ideally no later than 16th August 2024 for courses which commence in late September. In the event that any programme receives a high number of applications, the University reserves the right to close the application portal. Notifications to this effect will appear on the Direct Application Portal against the programme application page.

International Students

Our country/region pages include information on entry requirements, tuition fees, scholarships, student profiles, upcoming events and contacts for your country/region. Use the dropdown list below for specific information for your country/region.

English Language Requirements

Evidence of an IELTS* score of 6.5, with not less than 5.5 in any component, or an equivalent qualification acceptable to the University is required (*taken within the last 2 years).

International students wishing to apply to Queen's University Belfast (and for whom English is not their first language), must be able to demonstrate their proficiency in English in order to benefit fully from their course of study or research. Non-EEA nationals must also satisfy UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) immigration requirements for English language for visa purposes.

For more information on English Language requirements for EEA and non-EEA nationals see:

If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this degree programme, INTO Queen's University Belfast offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability for admission to this degree.

  • Academic English: an intensive English language and study skills course for successful university study at degree level
  • Pre-sessional English: a short intensive academic English course for students starting a degree programme at Queen's University Belfast and who need to improve their English.



Career Prospects


The MA can be regarded either as an end in itself, culminating in the distinction of having obtained a postgraduate degree and enhanced your employability skills as a researcher, or as a stepping stone to the higher research degree of PhD. Many graduates have gone on to PhD programmes both at Queen’s and other world-leading Universities. Others go into a wide variety of employment including careers in museums, archives or libraries; journalism or media related work; teaching; private and public administration; economic development and the voluntary sector.

Modules focus on skills development in terms of high level intellectual development and presentational competence.

Graduate Plus/Future Ready Award for extra-curricular skills

In addition to your degree programme, at Queen's you can have the opportunity to gain wider life, academic and employability skills. For example, placements, voluntary work, clubs, societies, sports and lots more. So not only do you graduate with a degree recognised from a world leading university, you'll have practical national and international experience plus a wider exposure to life overall. We call this Graduate Plus/Future Ready Award. It's what makes studying at Queen's University Belfast special.

Tuition Fees

Northern Ireland (NI) 1 £7,300
Republic of Ireland (ROI) 2 £7,300
England, Scotland or Wales (GB) 1 £9,250
EU Other 3 £21,500
International £21,500

1EU citizens in the EU Settlement Scheme, with settled status, will be charged the NI or GB tuition fee based on where they are ordinarily resident. Students who are ROI nationals resident in GB will be charged the GB fee.

2 EU students who are ROI nationals resident in ROI are eligible for NI tuition fees.

3 EU Other students (excludes Republic of Ireland nationals living in GB, NI or ROI) are charged tuition fees in line with international fees.

All tuition fees quoted relate to a single year of study unless stated otherwise. Tuition fees will be subject to an annual inflationary increase, unless explicitly stated otherwise.

More information on postgraduate tuition fees.

Additional course costs

Students undertaking a placement are responsible for funding travel, accommodation and subsistence costs. These costs vary depending on the location and duration of the placement. Students may receive payment from their placement provider.

All Students

Depending on the programme of study, there may be extra costs which are not covered by tuition fees, which students will need to consider when planning their studies.

Students can borrow books and access online learning resources from any Queen's library. If students wish to purchase recommended texts, rather than borrow them from the University Library, prices per text can range from £30 to £100. Students should also budget between £30 to £75 per year for photocopying, memory sticks and printing charges.

Students undertaking a period of work placement or study abroad, as either a compulsory or optional part of their programme, should be aware that they will have to fund additional travel and living costs.

If a programme includes a major project or dissertation, there may be costs associated with transport, accommodation and/or materials. The amount will depend on the project chosen. There may also be additional costs for printing and binding.

Students may wish to consider purchasing an electronic device; costs will vary depending on the specification of the model chosen.

There are also additional charges for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines.

How do I fund my study?

The Department for the Economy will provide a tuition fee loan of up to £6,500 per NI / EU student for postgraduate study. Tuition fee loan information.

A postgraduate loans system in the UK offers government-backed student loans of up to £11,836 for taught and research Masters courses in all subject areas. Criteria, eligibility, repayment and application information are available on the UK government website.

More information on funding options and financial assistance - please check this link regularly, even after you have submitted an application, as new scholarships may become available to you.

International Scholarships

Information on scholarships for international students, is available at



How to Apply

Apply using our online Postgraduate Applications Portal and follow the step-by-step instructions on how to apply.

Apply now

When to Apply

The deadline for applications is normally 30th June 2021. In the event that any programme receives a high volume of applications, the university reserves the right to close the application portal earlier than 30th June deadline. Notifications to this effect will appear on the Direct Entry Portal (DAP) against the programme application page.

Terms and Conditions

The terms and conditions that apply when you accept an offer of a place at the University on a taught programme of study.
Queen's University Belfast Terms and Conditions.

Download a prospectus