Renaissance Studies

Postgraduate Diploma, Postgraduate Certificate, MRes


Suspended for 2014/15 and 2015/16 entry

The MRes Renaissance Studies is aimed at those who are interested in the literary and broader cultural aspects of the Renaissance and who wish to acquire a more specialised knowledge of this field. A primary objective is to investigate factors that contribute to the distinctiveness of the cultural productions of Northern Europe, including Scotland.

Key information

  • Degree type: Postgraduate Diploma, Postgraduate Certificate, MRes
  • Study methods: Part-time, Full-time, Campus based
  • Start date: September
  • Course Director: Dr Angus Vine

Alison Scott School of Arts and Humanities
University of Stirling
+44 (0) 1786 467510

View fees and finance

Course objectives

The research-based MRes course aims to:

  • Introduce you to key areas of critical debate in Renaissance Studies by comparing different canonical accounts of the period
  • Explore the distinctiveness of northern Renaissance culture, including Scotland.
  • Develop a critical understanding of the variety of genres, media and signifying practices employed by Renaissance writers and visual artists
  • Equip you with the technical skills necessary for conducting research in this field, presenting information and constructing scholarly arguments

What makes us different?

World-class library and teaching facilities

Studying for a degree means learning in different ways; managing your own time; conducting research; mastering new computer skills. We have the facilities and advice on hand to help you do all this - and do it well.

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Entry requirements

Academic requirements

A minimum of a second class Honours degree (2.1 preferred) or equivalent in a relevant subject.  Applicants without these formal qualifications but with significant appropriate/relevant work/life experience are encouraged to apply.

A sample of work (e.g. English Essay) is required.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your English language skills:

  • IELTS: 6.5 with 6.0 minimum in each skill
  • Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE): Grade C
  • Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE): Grade B
  • Pearson Test of English (Academic): 60 with 56 in each component
  • IBT TOEFL: 90 with no subtest less than 20

For more information go to English language requirements

If you don’t meet the required score you may be able to register for one of our pre-sessional English courses. To register you must hold a conditional offer for your course and have an IELTS score 0.5 or 1.0 below the required standard. View our range of pre-sessional courses.

Application procedure

Use the online enquiry service to find out more or to request a prospectus.

If you are ready to apply you can fill out an online application form now.

Structure and teaching

Structure and content

The core of this MRes course is a sustained period of independent study, assessed by coursework over two semesters. This involves a course of directed reading and research, to be agreed by each individual student with his/her supervisor, and tailored to his/her interests.

In addition, students take two taught modules from a menu including:

  • Politics and Renaissance Drama: Shakespeare and His Contemporaries
  • Renaissance Sovereignty: Politics and Representation
  • Writing and National Identity

Please note that not all these optional modules may be offered in each academic year.

Arts Research Training

Our innovative training for graduates enables students to build up a portfolio of skills that prepare them for academic and professional life. All graduate students will work with their supervisors to select what’s right for them from a menu of activities. Each student will build up a portfolio of skills every year. On a taught postgraduate degree, you may be given specific guidance on what activities you need to undertake for those qualifications.


The most significant piece of work on the course will be a dissertation of 15,000 words on a subject of your choosing in consultation with a member of English Studies. You may choose to develop work initiated on one of the modules you have studied. Those who do not embark on the dissertation may be awarded a Diploma.


We are currently revising the curricula for our 2015/16 courses

Modes of study

Full-time: MRes: one year; Diploma: eight months;
Certificate: four months

Part-time: MRes: 27 months; Diploma: 21 months;
Certificate: nine months

Study method

Part-time; Full-time

Why Stirling?


In REF2014 Stirling was placed 6th in Scotland and 45th in the UK with almost three quarters of research activity rated either world-leading or internationally excellent.


Over half of our submissions in the latest Research Assessment Exercise (RAE) were found to be ‘Internationally Excellent’ or ‘World-leading’.

Careers and employability

Career opportunities

Completing a Master’s degree as a prelude to further academic research is a route encouraged by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC). Advanced education in the Arts and the practical experience of research and the production of a dissertation are significant transferable skills for many careers.



2016/17 Overseas £12,450
2016/17 Home/EU £4,500
2015/16 Overseas £11,900
2015/16 Home/EU £4,500

You should expect to pay fees for every year you are in attendance and be aware fees are subject to revision and may increase annually. Students on programmes of study of more than one year should take this into account when applying.

Please note there is an additional charge for the conferral of your degree. This will be charged at the rate applicable when you complete your studies. View more information

Scholarships & funding

information on possible sources of funding

The University of Stirling is offering any UK or European Union student with a First Class Honours degree (or equivalent) a £2,000 scholarship to study full-time on any taught Master's course or £1,000 for part-time study. Further information on the scholarships is available here.

Scholarship finder
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