MA Modern Liberal Arts

MA Modern Liberal Arts at Winchester offers a different and exciting way for students to plan their studies around their own intellectual interests and questions. The programme is designed for those who, after their first degree, wish to return to higher education without having to commit themselves to a specific subject discipline.

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MA Modern Liberal Arts at University of Winchester

Entry requirements 

Normally a first or second-class Honours degree in one of the subjects likely to be the main focus of interest

If English is not your first language

IELTS 6.5 (including 6.5 in academic writing) or equivalent

Degree duration

Full-time: 1 year
Part-time: 2 years

Start date: September

Teaching takes place: Individual tutorials take place at mutually convenient times - these assume a high level of self-motivation on the part of students, together with a readiness to conduct independent study.

Distance learning available: Depending on the area of central interest identified and the students' prior academic experience.

Course Tuition Fees and Additional Costs

UK/EU/Channel Islands and Isle of Man

2017 Entry

September 2017** Entry Full-time | £5,000
September 2017** Entry Part-time | £2,500 p/a

Total Cost | £5,000

International Students

September 2017** Entry Full-time | £11,200
September 2017** Entry Part-time | £5,600 p/a

Total Cost | £11,200

Additional costs:

To find out what general costs are included or excluded in the course fees, such as textbooks and travel expenses, please click here

Terms and Conditions

For more information about the University of Winchester's terms and conditions click here.

**Please note the fees are indicative and subject to the approval of the University of Winchester Board of Governors. 

The Liberal Arts (Latin liberalis, free, and ars, art or principled practice) can claim to be the oldest programme of higher education in Western history. In medieval culture this became formalised as the trivium, with the quadrivium of arithmetic, geometry, music and astronomy. Essentially, these seven subjects laid out the uniform laws of what could be known and achieved in the natural universe. These broad areas of enquiry are better known now as philosophy, the humanities, social science, natural science, and the fine arts.

This programme offers the possibility to explore ideas across the wide range of these intellectual areas. Students decide the content of their studies through discussion with tutor(s) working within the broad range of intellectual areas which constitute Modern Liberal Arts.

There are no taught modules on this programme; students arrive at essay topics through negotiation with tutors. For the MA, the essay element of the programme must total 120 credits (in any combination of short (30 credit), intermediate (40 credit) and long (60 credit) essays).


Essay topics may include:

  • Ancient, Medieval, and Modern Philosophies
  • Renaissance Humanism
  • Modern Social and Political Thought
  • The Holocaust
  • Religion
  • Philosophy and Music
  • Sociological theory
  • Philosophies of Education
  • Educational Theory
  • Ecology
  • Race
  • Gender
  • Woman's History

Students may also undertake an Independent Study module which is worth 60 credits.

Core tuition is through one-to-one contact; assignments are based on areas of enquiry identified by individual students. In addition, students experience learning in a number of different ways including listening and talking to tutors and peers; independent research from books, journals and the web; quiet reflection and questioning; and from the thinking and preparation required for the successful completion of assignments.

Programme Leader

Credits are differentiated and awarded according to the size and number of written projects, again chosen by the student. Titles are individually negotiated between student and tutor.

At the University of Winchester validated programmes may adopt a range of means of assessing your learning. An indicative, and not necessarily comprehensive, list of assessment types you might encounter includes essays, portfolios, supervised independent work, presentations, written exams, or practical performances. The University is committed to ensuring that all students have an equal opportunity to achieve module learning outcomes. As such, where appropriate and necessary, students with recognised disabilities may have alternative assignments set that continue to test how successfully they have met the module's learning outcomes. Further details on assessment types used in the programme you are interested in can be found on the course page, by attending an Open Day/Evening, or contacting our teaching staff.

The programme offers training in postgraduate employability skills and enables those in mid-career to return to higher education around their own interests. It also provides rigorous preparation for those wishing to pursue a career in research in higher education and who are intending to take a PhD.

Course Enquiries and Applications

Telephone: +44 (0) 1962 827234
Send us a message

International students seeking additional information about this programme can email International@winchester.ac.uk or call +44 (0) 1962 827023.

Applications need to be submitted before the 31 May 2017. Late applications can be accepted throughout the remainder of the application year, for more information click here.

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