About this course
LJMU's MRes in English enables you to carry out an independent research project in the field of English Studies.
- Work alongside active researchers in the field
- Benefit from specialist supervision and study within a diverse community of fellow researchers
- Discover the wide variety of approaches currently practised in the discipline
The MRes seeks to extend your knowledge of literary and cultural history while developing your analytical and critical skills. It is also intended to cultivate an understanding of research as a specific activity.
The programme is delivered by academics actively engaged in research under the aegis of the Research Centre for Literature and Cultural History at LJMU. Key areas of specialism include early modern literature and culture; gender and sexuality; medical humanities; 19th century literature and history; regional, national and postcolonial literatures; contemporary and everyday cultures; literature and cultural geography; 20th century and contemporary writing (British, Irish, Scottish, American).
Over the course of the programme you will be introduced to key developments in the field of literary studies and given the skills necessary to produce a successful postgraduate research project. You will be working individually with a supervisor throughout the year, as well as taking part in taught modules with fellow English MRes students and others across the Faculty. In addition, you will take part in the wider research activities of the English department itself.
"After completing my undergraduate degree at another Liverpool university in 2016 and a teacher training course at LJMU in 2017, I chose to undertake my MRes in English at LJMU in 2020-21. This was the best decision I made. The English team embrace new students with great passion and warmth, and there is a collaborative spirit that makes students feel valued. I felt that a real interest was taken in our progress and development this was evident in tutorials, presentations, and Q&A sessions. The course also allowed me to creatively apply my research into non-academic fields (via film, podcast, articles and community engagement). I valued this because I was able to think about how my research interests could bridge the gap between academia and the community. In addition, the links that LJMU English has with institutions in Liverpool are extremely valuable, making you feel central and active within the city. Ultimately, the MRes in English at LJMU allowed me to become well-rounded in various areas, whilst also providing a strong foundation in research and thesis development."
-Dan Pearson, graduate
Fees and funding
There are many ways to fund postgraduate study for home and international students
The fees quoted at the top of this page cover registration, tuition, supervision, assessment and examinations as well as:
- Library membership with access to printed, multimedia and digital resources
- Access to programme-appropriate software
- Library and student IT support
- Free on-campus wifi via eduroam
Although not all of the following are compulsory/relevant, you should keep in mind the costs of:
- accommodation and living expenditure
- books (should you wish to have your own copies)
- printing, photocopying and stationery
- PC/laptop (should you prefer to purchase your own for independent study and online learning activities)
- mobile phone/tablet (to access online services)
- field trips (travel and activity costs)
- placements (travel expenses and living costs)
- student visas (international students only)
- study abroad opportunities (travel costs, accommodation, visas and immunisations)
- academic conferences (travel costs)
- professional-body membership
- graduation (gown hire etc)
There are many ways to fund postgraduate study for home and international students. From loans to International Scholarships and subject-specific funding, you’ll find all of the information you need on our specialist postgraduate funding pages.
Please be aware that the UK’s departure from the EU may affect your tuition fees. Learn more about your fee status and which tuition fees are relevant to you.
Further your career prospects
LJMU has an excellent employability record with 96% (HESA 2018) of our postgraduates in work or further study six months after graduation. Our applied learning techniques and strong industry connections ensure our students are fully prepared for the workplace on graduation and understand how to apply their knowledge in a real world context.
The programme is designed, in part, as a preparation for doctoral study, and students who progress to PhD often acknowledge the important role it has played in their development.
The advanced skills that it teaches of research, analysis, conceptualisation, argument and presentation are also highly prized in many areas of employment.
Discover the building blocks of your programme
This course is currently undergoing its scheduled programme review, which may impact the advertised modules. Programme review is a standard part of the University’s approach to quality assurance and enhancement, enabling us to ensure that our courses remain up to date and maintain their high standard and relevancy.
Once the review is completed, this course website page will be updated to reflect any approved changes to the advertised course. These approved changes will also be communicated to those who apply for the course to ensure they wish to proceed with their application.
Your programme is made up of a number of core modules which are part of the course framework. Some programmes also have optional modules that can be selected to enhance your learning in certain areas and many feature a dissertation, extended report or research project to demonstrate your advanced learning.
English Research Project
The aim of this module is to allow you to present an 18000 word dissertation or research project of equivalent size on an area of study normally related to the themes and concerns of Literature and Cultural History. It assesses your ability to present, in scholarly form, a sustained piece of research which demonstrates knowledge and understanding of a relevant field, methodologies and critical context, organises material into a clear and relevant argument, and shows the ability to work independently.
Contemporary Literary Studies
The aim of this module is to give you a broad awareness of the current state of literary studies, new approaches and ongoing debates in the field. It enables you to develop strategies for identifying and exploiting relevant resources for research. It:
- helps you to situate research project within a wider field of contemporary literary studies
- equips you with skills for working with primary and secondary sources through presentations and seminars covering textual analysis and critical interpretation
English Project Development
The aim of this module is to promote your theoretical and methodological orientation and help you situate your own work in relation to advances within the field. It helps you to acquire skills and confidence in chairing discussion and presenting your own ideas.
Research Methods for Arts, Professional and Social Studies
This module introduces and develops generic research skills in arts, humanities and social science. It:
- introduces you to library, bibliographic, online and other facilities necessary for postgraduate research
- assists you in recognising and applying appropriate strategies for developing a research project identifying research questions, theoretical problems, material for analysis and critical position
- develops your capacities for evaluating strengths and weaknesses in the methodologies of researchers in your field
- helps you to gain confidence in communicating your ideas verbally to your peers, and conform to postgraduate-level standards for the presentation of written work
Professional Development for Researchers in Arts, Professional and Social Studies
This module provides a context to identify and explore opportunities for professional training and development. Through the examination of relevant professional bodies and systems, the module enhances professional knowledge, skills and understanding, and prepares you for further doctoral study.
An insight into teaching on your course
Study seminars take place on Tuesday mornings and afternoons.
You will receive specialist supervision and study within a diverse community of fellow researchers. Staff are active in a wide range of fields, from early modern literature to prison writing, late 19th-century national identities, Scottish and Irish studies, theories of the everyday, and contemporary British fiction.
How learning is monitored on your programme
To cater for the wide-ranging content of our courses and the varied learning preferences of our students, we offer a range of assessment methods on each programme.
Assessed work on this programme is designed to advance your progress at different stages of the project and help you realise your full potential as a postgraduate researcher.
Assessment is based on a range of research tasks and projects and includes: literature review; seminar presentations, reflective exposition and evaluation of appropriate methodologies; outline research plans, reflective and annotated bibliographies; oral presentations and the research project/dissertation.
Our staff are committed to the highest standards of teaching and learning
Dr Colin Harrison
Dr Colin Harrison
I have written on 19th century urban disorder, American modernism, and late 20th century cultural and intellectual history. My recent book American Culture in the 1990s is an attempt to comprehend the developments taking place in America at the end of the last millennium, examining a variety of cultural spheres including film, television, radio, music, literature, fine art and digital culture.
I am currently supervising doctoral projects on early 19th century Supreme Court history and hobo literature in the modern era. I would be keen to supervise postgraduate research in any area of 19th century American culture, American modernism, intellectual history and visual culture.
Where you will study
What you can expect from your School
The School of Humanities and Social Science on the Mount Pleasant Campus is situated in an historic part of Liverpool, close to the city's cathedrals and a short walk from cafes, bars and the cultural quarter. LJMU's Aldham Robarts Library is also conveniently close and houses all the resources you will require for your studies.
You will need:
- a minimum 2:1 in literature, cultural history or a relevant discipline
- IELTS English language requirement: 6.5 (minimum 5.5 (minimum 7.0 in written work) in each component)
- You may need to meet university staff as part of the selection process.
- RPL is accepted on this programme
Application and selection
Securing your place at LJMU
To apply for this programme, you are required to complete an LJMU online application form. You will need to provide details of previous qualifications and a personal statement outlining why you wish to study this programme.
You need to:
- submit an academic transcript
- provide two academic references
- Your application form should be supported by a research proposal of at least one A4 page with a bibliography.You must demonstrate:a sufficient level of knowledge related to the discipline
- evidence of the learning capability and commitment to work at postgraduate level
- a feasible and well-developed research proposal that falls within the department's capacities for supervision
Research proposals should be 1000-1200 words (excluding bibliography), and will probably include:
- a statement of key research aims / questions the identification of primary sources for analysis
- a brief outline of key secondary literature on the topic, and an indication of the way the research might engage with scholarly debates.
Applications will be considered by at least two programme tutors, including the Programme Leader for MRes English.
The University reserves the right to withdraw or make alterations to a course and facilities if necessary; this may be because such changes are deemed to be beneficial to students, are minor in nature and unlikely to impact negatively upon students or become necessary due to circumstances beyond the control of the University. Where this does happen, the University operates a policy of consultation, advice and support to all enrolled students affected by the proposed change to their course or module.