English MRes

Course fees (2018/19 entry)

Option / fee Value
Home/EU full-time annual tuition fee: £4,625
Home/EU part-time tuition fee: n/a
International full time annual tuition fee: £13,250

Course type



Humanities and Social Science

Study mode

Full Time (1 year)

About your course

The MRes English at Liverpool John Moores University will enable you to carry out novel investigations on narrative, its function and potential to affect human experience and our ways of being. You will be based in our Research Centre for Literature and Cultural History, where you will work alongside other students and leading academics in this fascinating field.

  • Complete this masters full time (one year)
  • Staff research judged to be of international excellence and world-leading quality
  • A valuable foundation for progression to PhD
  • Work alongside active researchers in the field and become a part of a thriving academic community 
  • Excellent career development opportunities through our working relationships with Merseyside employers

The unprecedented freedom and the excellent staff support gave me the chance to expand, merge, and refine my research interests into a cohesive whole.

Sam Caddick

I think the main plus of doing an MRes is that it has provided a good base for me to make the transition onto PhD. We have been encouraged from day one to engage with other MRes students and their projects, which really makes you feel you are part of a wider academic community.

Victoria Hoffman

Introduction to the School

The School of Humanities and Social Science provides an ideal environment in which to expand your knowledge and horizons at postgraduate level, leading you to a broad range of career opportunities.

Our dynamic, professional and experienced staff excel in innovative and exciting research which contributes to the teaching and learning methods you will experience here. You will join a warm and friendly learning community, offering excellent learning resources and first class student support.

Our working relationships with Merseyside employers and organisations may benefit you in both academic and personal career development. We are situated in an historic part of Liverpool, close to the Anglican Cathedral and a short walk from cafes, bars and the cultural quarter.

You will be taught, mentored and supervised by academic staff who are passionate, experienced and active in respect of critical social scientific research and the knowledge and skills you acquire will allow you to progress to doctoral research in the social sciences or are transferable to a range of academic, professional and commercial occupations. 

Research excellence

In the 2014 REF exercise, 22% of research submitted by English Language and Literature at LJMU was rated as world-leading and a further 76% as internationally excellent or internationally recognised. This research helps ensure that our postgraduate courses are positioned at the vanguard of developments in the field and that you have an opportunity to study alongside leading experts.

Why study this course at LJMU?

This MRes gives you the opportunity to pursue your own interests in literature and cultural history, under the guidance of specialist supervision and amongst a diverse community of fellow researchers. You will be provided with a valuable foundation for progressing to PhD while also developing the skills of research, analysis, conceptualisation, argument and presentation – all highly prized competencies in many areas of employment.

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). Research proposals related to these projects and specialisms are welcomed, but the capacities for supervision are broad and MRes students work in a wide range of areas within the discipline.

We are also particularly interested in interdisciplinary methodologies. Our notable areas of strength include: 

  • autobiography and life-writing
  • womens' political writing
  • masculinity
  • 17th-century cultural politics
  • 19th-century literature and history
  • Irish and Scottish fiction
  • Contemporary fiction (British and American)

Programme outline and structure

The English MRes combines supervised independent research with specialist training in research methods and academic skills, while also helping students become aware of the wide variety of approaches currently practised in the discipline

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 producing a successful postgraduate research project. You will be working individually with a supervisor throughout the year, as well as taking part on taught modules with fellow English MRes students and others across the faculty. In addition, you will become a part of the wider research activities of the English department itself.

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. They are also involved in several major research projects, including: Shakespeare North at Prescott; The Everyman Archive; The Archive of Working-Class Writing.

What you will study on this degree

Please see guidance below on core and option modules for further information on what you will study.


  • Research Methods for Arts, Professional and Social Science

Develops your generic research skills and intends to guide you through individual research projects, helping you to develop productive research questions, define the parameters of your research, apply suitable methods and present findings in a manner appropriate to your field.  The module will also give you the opportunity to see yourself as part of a community of postgraduate researchers, and present your ideas to your peers accordingly

  • Professional Development for Researchers in Arts, Professional and Social Science

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 as a researcher for further doctoral study

  • English Research Proposition

Introduces the methods and skills essential to work at postgraduate level in the humanities, including information retrieval, contextualisation and organisation; engages with critical theory at an advanced level; identifies questions central to research in literature in terms of identifying the object of study and evaluating work in a specific area; and develops learning processes which enable independent reflections on research

  • English Research Project

Assesses the ability to present, in scholarly form, a sustained piece of research which demonstrates knowledge and understanding of a relevant field, appropriate methodologies and critical context, organises material into a clear and relevant argument, and shows the ability to work independently

Further guidance on modules

The information listed in the section entitled 'What you will study' is an overview of the academic content of the programme that will take the form of either core or option modules. Modules are designated as core or option in accordance with professional body requirements and internal Academic Framework review, so may be subject to change. Students will be required to undertake modules that the University designates as core and will have a choice of designated option modules.

Academic Framework reviews are conducted by LJMU from time to time to ensure that academic standards continue to be maintained.

Please email courses@ljmu.ac.uk if you require further guidance or clarification.   

How will I be assessed?

Your assessed work 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 reflecting the skills developed by the various modules.

Methods include: 

  • academic essays
  • annotated bibliographies
  • reflective research exercises
  • position papers
  • oral presentations
  • dissertation/research project

Staff research interests

Your self-directed study will be supported by a surrounding framework of expertise, within a scholarly community that hosts regular seminars, lectures and a fertile platform for the dissemination of research.

The Research Centre for English Literature and Cultural History conducts research in topics such as:

  • Early modern literary and cultural history
  • Nineteenth century studies
  • Contemporary and everyday culture  

  • Regional, national and postcolonial literatures
  • Literature and cultural geography
  • Medical humanities
  • Gender and sexuality.

Entry requirements (Home)

Applicants for MRes in English will normally be expected to have a good first degree (a 2:1 or above) in literature, cultural history, or a related subject.

Applications are welcomed from highly motivated non-standard entry students with relevant experience, but without the necessary formal qualifications. Prospective applicants are advised to contact the Programme Leader for further information.

Overseas applicants should have acquired passes in appropriate examinations in their country of origin, and, where English is not their first language, an IELTS score of 6.5, with a score of 7 in written work.

Entry requirements (International)

LJMU welcomes applications from international students. In addition to normal entry requirements, you will be expected to demonstrate a very good level of English language competence, for example an IELTS score of 6.0-6.5 or equivalent. Please note: specific courses may require higher levels of English language competence.

If you have applied to study a full-time taught Masters, MRes, MPhil or PhD at LJMU, you should check if you require an Academic Technology Approval Scheme or ATAS certificate. It can take four to six weeks to receive an ATAS certificate, so please make sure you apply as early as possible. You can find out more on the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) website. Alternatively, contact LJMU’s International Admissions Team for guidance.

Please note: international students entering on a Tier 4 visa cannot study part time. Students entering the UK on alternate types of visa may be in a position to study part time. Please contact LJMU’s International Admissions Team for further details before making your application. 

In order to obtain a visa you will also need to show evidence that the money required to cover your tuition fees and living expenses has been in your bank account for at least 28 days prior to submitting your visa application. So please make sure that your finances are in place before applying. For more details, go to our international website

For advice on any aspect of the application process, please contact LJMU’s International Admissions Team.

Application and selection

You will be required to submit:

  • a completed LJMU online application form
  • academic transcript or equivalent
  • two academic references.

Your application form should be supported by a research proposal of at least one A4 page with a bibliography.

The decision to admit a candidate to the programme will depend upon:

  • a sufficient level of knowledge related to the discipline
  • evidence of the learning capability and commitment to work at postgraduate level
  • identification of a research topic that falls within the department's capacities for supervision
  • presentation of a feasible and well-developed research proposal.

Research proposals should be of approximately 1000-1200 words (excluding bibliography), and might be expected to include the following:

  • statement of key research aims / questions
  • identification of primary sources for analysis
  • 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 application deadline for 2017 entry is Monday 17 July. Late applications will be considered but places may not be available.

Will I be interviewed?

Selection is made on the basis of the application form, but staff normally meet with prospective students to discuss the programme before they submit an application.


6.5 (Min. 5.5 (7 in writing) in each component)


58-64 (Min. 51 in each component for UKVI Purposes)

Is RPL accepted on this programme?


Please Note: All international qualifications are subject to a qualification equivalency check via NARIC.

Financial support

Tuition fees

All students enrolled on postgraduate taught programmes at LJMU are liable to pay an annual tuition fee. You can opt to pay your tuition fees in full at the start of each academic year or in instalments. If you need advice about how to pay your tuition fees, please email LJMU’s Student Funding Team.

Funding sources

There are many ways to fund postgraduate study for home and international students. From Postgraduate Masters Loans and Professional and Career Development Loans (PCDLs) to International Scholarships and subject-specific funding, you’ll find all of the information you need on our specialist postgraduate funding pages.

Graduate employment

Thanks to our working relationships with a diverse range of Merseyside employers and organisations, you will enjoy excellent opportunities for academic and personal career development.

The programme is designed, in part, as a preparation for doctoral study. Students who progress to PhD often acknowledge the important role it has played in their development.

The programme teaches the advanced skills of research, conceptualization, analysis and argument, and presentation and these are highly valued in many areas of employment.

International Study

International applicants are required to demonstrate equivalent qualifications to the standard requirements for entry when applying for courses at LJMU.

Students must also demonstrate a proficiency in communicating through English, for example via an IELTS tests or equivalent.

Please note: UK visa restrictions mean that international students are only permitted to study on a full-time basis.

Please contact LJMU’s International Team by visiting www.ljmu.ac.uk/international for more information and advice.


LJMU has launched a range of generous international scholarships for students enrolling at the University.

These prestigious scholarships take the form of tuition fee waivers and are available for outstanding international students applying for taught postgraduate programmes and research degrees.

You will need to complete an additional application form in order to be considered for these scholarships. Full eligibility criteria and the online application form are available here: www.ljmu.ac.uk/international

Applications for these scholarships are welcomed from:

  • new international applicants
  • current LJMU international students hoping to progress onto postgraduate study at the University
  • LJMU international alumni

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.
Further information on the terms and conditions of any offer made, our admissions policy and the complaints and appeals process.

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