MA Landscape History

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Recognised as a leading department within the UK, History at UEA has a chronological range from the collapse of the Roman empire to the present day, a geographical scope covering Europe, Africa, the Middle East, North America and the Caribbean, and experts in political, economic, social, cultural, environmental, diplomatic and intellectual history.

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Key facts

(2017 Guardian University Guide)

"The MA has given me the opportunity to pursue Latin and Latin palaeography, the essential skills of any medieval historian. It has also allowed me to develop important research skills for future work"

In their words

Richard Turk, MA Medieval History graduate

Key facts

(REF 2014)

The English landscape has been described as 'the richest historical record we possess' and this MA programme focuses both on the skills of 'reading the landscape' and also the practical and theoretical issues involved in the study of the countryside.

The key theme of the course is the relationship between human beings and the natural environment from prehistory to the present day. The importance of landscape history is not something that is confined to the academic seminar room, however, as an understanding of the historic environment has relevance to the heritage industry, conservation agencies, local government and archaeological management.

The MA offers an intensive and practical preparation for those wishing to undertake further post-graduate study in landscape history, but also for those who wish to enter a profession for which knowledge of the historic environment is desirable.

Overview

Why Study Landscape History at UEA?

The English landscape has been described as ‘the richest historical record we possess’ and this programme focuses both on the skills of ‘reading the landscape’ and also the practical and theoretical issues involved in the study of the countryside. 

The key theme of the course is the relationship between human beings and the natural environment from prehistory to the present day. The importance of landscape history is not something that is confined to the academic seminar room, however, as an understanding of the historic environment has relevance to the heritage industry, conservation agencies, local government and archaeological management. 

The MA offers an intensive and practical preparation for those wishing to undertake further post-graduate study in landscape history, but also for those who wish to enter a profession for which knowledge of the historic environment is desirable.

Content and Structure of the Course

Past Environments: Theory and Practice in Landscape History (50 credits)

Our core module meets as a seminar once per week throughout the academic year. It revolves around four major themes:

  • What is Landscape History? explores the ways in which landscape history is practiced and its relationship with other disciplines.
  • Landscape and the Environment discusses the history and archaeology of various manmade and semi-natural environments (such as wood pasture, heaths and moors) and introduces ideas of historical ecology and what is sometimes, mistakenly, called ‘environmental determinism’.
  • Society and Landscape is more concerned with human agency in the landscape and the more obvious signs of manipulation of the countryside. It discusses ideas concerning landscape design, enclosure and the impact of modernity.
  • Regions and Regionality takes a slightly different approach and examines patterns of regionality in the landscape. Why do regions exist? Are they created by social and economic behaviour that reflects different regional identities or more the product of later ‘attrition’?

Geographical Systems for Landscape History (30 credits)

This module involves a week-long intensive practical training programme intended to give students the ability to use GIS in their dissertation research. This module is tailored with landscape historians in mind and with an emphasis on the specific analytical operations which students are likely to find useful.

Sources for Landscape History (10 credits) and English Palaeography (10 credits)

Skills training for independent research in Landscape History is also provided with two popular semester-long modules. Sources for Landscape History runs in the autumn semester: this module offers training in where to find historical and archaeological information, introducing students to a wide range of source material for the study of Landscape History. English Palaeography runs in the spring semester and provides training in reading historical maps and cartographic sources.

MA Dissertation in History (80 credits)

The Dissertation Module is very much the centrepiece of the course and allows students to focus on a particular place of interest or a specific research question. Given the range of expertise within the School, supervision can be provided for most dissertation topics. Recent dissertations have covered: The Landscapes of Medieval Monasteries, Medieval Hunting Landscapes, The Archaeology of Ancient Woods, Regional Patterns of Enclosure, Landscape Characterisation and Second World War Coastal Defence. A substantial number of MA Dissertations have formed the basis for published articles. 

Course Tutors and Research Interests

Professor Tom Williamson – all aspects of English landscape; designed landscapes, esp. eighteenth- and nineteenth-century parks and gardens; landscape archaeology.

Professor Robert Liddiard – medieval high-status landscapes; parks and hunting; landscapes of fortification

Dr Jon Gregory - post-medieval landscapes and agricultural improvement; GIS for Landscape History

Dr Sarah Spooner - post-medieval parks and gardens

This course is also available on a part time basis.

Course Modules

Students must study the following modules for 180 credits:

Name Code Credits

ENGLISH PALEOGRAPHY

This module is essential for all historians and archaeologists who wish to be able to read the handwriting of the period that they are researching! This can be demanding, but also fun.

HIS-7029B

10

GEOGRAPHIC INFORMATION SYSTEMS FOR LANDSCAPE HISTORY

This module takes place in the Spring Semester and is taught through a combination of practical group sessions and independent tasks. The main focus of the course is the use of Geographical Information Systems (GIS) in Landscape History and there is a strong emphasis on the practical application of GIS in examining Britain's historic landscape.

HIS-7001B

30

MA HISTORY DISSERTATION

Dissertation for students taking the MA in Landscape, Medieval, Early Modern, Modern British and Modern European History. 14,000 - 16,000 Words

HIS-7019X

80

PAST ENVIRONMENTS: THEORY AND PRACTICE IN LANDSCAPE HISTORY

This year-long module examines the nature of past environments from prehistory to the present. It will focus on the theory and practice of Landscape History and examine a series of semi-natural environments, such as woodland, fieldscapes and parkland. It will also look at the impact of man-made structures - such as fortifications - on the landscape.

HIS-7021Y

50

SOURCES FOR LANDSCAPE HISTORY

This is a specialist preparatory exercise, examining sources for landscape history, ranging from historical documents through to archaeological data sets and maps. There will be a strong practical element to this component, with an emphasis on how landscape historians use their sources.

HIS-7000A

10

Disclaimer

Whilst the University will make every effort to offer the modules listed, changes may sometimes be made arising from the annual monitoring, review and update of modules and regular (five-yearly) review of course programmes. Where this activity leads to significant (but not minor) changes to programmes and their constituent modules, there will normally be prior consultation of students and others. It is also possible that the University may not be able to offer a module for reasons outside of its control, such as the illness of a member of staff or sabbatical leave. Where this is the case, the University will endeavour to inform students.

Entry Requirements

  • Degree Subject History or a related subject
  • Degree Classification UK BA (Hons) 2.1 or equivalent
  • Special Entry Requirements Applicants must submit a sample of written work (in English). This should be a typed essay on a historical subject, 2-3,000 words long, preferably a photocopy of an assessment marked by a tutor, complete with critical comments and a percentage or grade. The essay should address a specific question, and must demonstrate an ability to construct a historical argument, familiarity with the conventions of academic writing, and competence in English. This should be uploaded to your online application.

Students for whom English is a Foreign language

We welcome applications from students whose first language is not English. To ensure such students benefit from postgraduate study, we require evidence of proficiency in English. Our usual entry requirements are as follows:

  • IELTS: 6.5 (minimum 6.0 in all components)
  • PTE (Pearson): 62 (minimum 55 in all components)

Test dates should be within two years of the course start date.

Other tests, including Cambridge English exams and the Trinity Integrated Skills in English are also accepted by the university. The full list of accepted tests can be found here: Accepted English Language Tests

INTO UEA also run pre-sessional courses which can be taken prior to the start of your course. For further information and to see if you qualify please contact intopre-sessional@uea.ac.uk

Intakes

The School's annual intake is in September of each year.

Alternative Qualifications

If you have alternative qualifications that have not been mentioned above then please contact the university directly for further information.

Fees and Funding

Tuition fees

Tuition fees for the academic year 2017/18 are:

  • UK/EU Students: £7,300
  • International Students: £14,800

If you choose to study part-time, the fee per annum will be half the annual fee for that year, or a pro-rata fee for the module credit you are taking (only available for UK/EU students).

We estimate living expenses at £820 per month.

Scholarships and Awards:

There are a variety of scholarships and studentships available to postgraduate applicants in the Faculty of Arts and Humanities. For further information relevant to the School of History, please click here.

 

How to Apply

Applications for Postgraduate Taught programmes at the University of East Anglia should be made directly to the University.

You can apply online.

Further Information

To request further information & to be kept up to date with news & events please use our online enquiry form.

If you would like to discuss your individual circumstances prior to applying please do contact us:

Postgraduate Admissions Office
Tel: +44 (0)1603 591515
Email: admissions@uea.ac.uk

International candidates are also encouraged to access the International Students section of our website.

    Next Steps

    We can’t wait to hear from you. Just pop any questions about this course into the form below and our enquiries team will answer as soon as they can.

    Admissions enquiries:
    admissions@uea.ac.uk or
    telephone +44 (0)1603 591515