Welcome to MA Politics
The MA Politics enables students to develop an advanced understanding of politics and policymaking across national and international settings. The course explores critical issues that drive the political process and examines the role of the state in the governance of society. It considers contemporary challenges, such as policy formulation and implementation in areas such as counter-terrorism and gender equality. Together with tutors and peers, students are able to engage in important discussions about the future of representative democracy in Britain and globally.
The Master's places considerable emphasis on advanced research methods, enabling students to hone qualitative and quantitative research skills, and supporting them in becoming confident researchers in their own right. Students are also invited to attend the School's research seminar series.
The programme draws on a range of subject specialisms within the School of Social and Political Sciences and connects students with tutors who have research expertise in that area and can support students on their personal research and career paths.
Career and Personal Development
Lincoln’s MA Politics course is designed to equip students with a range of skills that are valued in a variety of employment sectors. Graduates from the School have gone on to careers in local and central government, parliament, the civil service, law, industry and commerce, as well as in a variety of other public and private sector organisations.
The University Careers and Employability team offer qualified advisors who can work with you to provide tailored, individual support and careers advice during your time at the University. As a member of our alumni we also offer one-to-one support in the first year after completing your course, including access to events, vacancy information and website resources; with access to online vacancies and virtual and website resources for the following two years.
This service can include one-to-one coaching, CV advice and interview preparation to help you maximise your future opportunities. The service works closely with local, national and international employers, acting as a gateway to the business world.
Study and Field Trips
Students may have the opportunity to participate in a field trip to the UK Parliament, Scottish Parliament, or Welsh Assembly. The School also runs optional field trips to key international organisations and national and international political institutions, including New York, Washington, D.C, Brussels, Ypres, and The Hague. Places are limited and students are encouraged to register their interest early in the academic year. Those who wish to take part are responsible for covering their own travel, accommodation, and general living costs.
Research Areas, Projects and Topics
Research within the School of Social and Political Sciences is diverse. Examples include research on violence against women and girls in the UK and India by Professor Sundari Aritha, work on citizenship education and youth political participation in Britain by Dr Ben Kisby, and work on parliamentary oversight of the intelligence and security agencies by Dr Andrew Defty.
During 2017, Professor Hugh Bochel was an Academic Fellow at the Scottish Parliament, looking at the extent of diversity among witnesses that appear before the Parliament’s committees. These projects involved working with MPs, MSPs, and officials on ways to enhance the work of these Legislatures.
Students can also engage with the Eleanor Glanville Institute, the University’s institute for equality. Research themes within the centre include inclusive environments, life course, embodiment, social construction, culture and creativity, and perceptions and prejudice.
How You Study
The learning and teaching strategy adopted within the MA Politics reflects a commitment to self-directed, student-centred learning, with an emphasis on applied analytical skills.
This degree offers a distinctive range of modules, drawing upon the existing research and teaching expertise in the School of Social and Political Sciences to deliver an academically rigorous and contemporary programme. Please note that the availability of optional modules may vary depending on student numbers and staff availability.
This programme aims to develop specialist subject knowledge and equip students with a set of transferable skills relevant to further academic study and employment. The incorporation of a strong research methods element within the MA is designed to enhance employability and development of transferable skills.
Students are taught using a range of methods including lectures, seminars, workshops, and tutorials. Lectures are designed to introduce students to key themes and perspectives, generate enthusiasm for further enquiry, provide illustrative examples, and to signpost substantive issues.
Seminars and workshops provide students with an environment for more interactive learning and reflection, aimed at deepening critical understanding of the subject matter. These sessions are organised in a variety of ways, including tutor or student-led discussions, presentations, and problem-solving exercises, normally centred on a particular theme.
Tutorials are available to students on an individual or small-group basis as a means of supporting the preparation of individual or group assignments, offering feedback on progress, dealing with any particular learning difficulties, and offering advice on specific choices within the module programme. E-learning will be supported through use of the University's virtual learning environment.
Full-time students on this programme can expect to receive approximately eight hours of contact time per week. However, this may vary depending on which optional modules are selected by students.
The research methods modules on this programme are taught in weekly two-hour sessions and the remaining modules are mostly taught through two-hour weekly lecture and seminar sessions. In addition, students are expected to attend personal tutor groups, dissertation workshops, and meetings with their tutors and dissertation supervisor.
We expect that a full-time student on this course would engage in at least four hours of self-study for every one hour of lecture and seminar time. This equates to 32 hours of self-study per week These figures are halved for part-time study.
An Introduction to Your Modules
† Some courses may offer optional modules. The availability of optional modules may vary from year to year and will be subject to minimum student numbers being achieved. This means that the availability of specific optional modules cannot be guaranteed. Optional module selection may also be affected by staff availability.
How you are assessed
The programme is designed to expose students to a range of different forms of assessment and to develop a range of academic, professional, and work-relevant skills such as public speaking.
Students will have the chance to develop written communication skills through essays, report writing, and independent study, all of which are designed to expand students' skills in professional and academic writing.
The development of high-level research skills is a central feature of the programme and students will be expected to develop these through the core research methods module and apply them in their dissertation. Further research skills are also embedded in assessments throughout other core and optional modules.
Critical, analytical, and reflexive thinking are central to all assessments. IT skills are embedded in many modules and include word processing, digital data management and presentation, statistical data handling, the use of electronic search engines, and other resources.
The University of Lincoln's policy on assessment feedback aims to ensure that academics will return in-course assessments to students promptly - usually within 15 working days of the submission date.
Entry Requirements 2023-24
First or second class honours degree in a relevant subject.
Candidates holding other qualifications or substantial relevant work experience may be considered on an individual basis.
If you have studied outside of the UK, and are unsure whether your qualification meets the above requirements, please visit our country pages for information on equivalent qualifications.
Overseas students will be required to demonstrate English language proficiency equivalent to IELTS 6.0 overall, with a minimum of 5.5 in each element. For information regarding other English language qualifications we accept, please visit the English Requirements page
If you do not meet the above IELTS requirements, you may be able to take part in one of our Pre-session English and Academic Study Skills courses. These specialist courses are designed to help students meet the English language requirements for their intended programme of study.
Fees and Funding
For eligible students, there are more ways than ever before to fund your postgraduate study, whether you want to do a taught or research course. For those wishing to undertake a Master's course, UK students can apply for a loan as a contribution towards the course and living costs. Loans are also available to those who wish to undertake doctoral study. The University offers a number of scholarships and funded studentships for those interested in postgraduate study. Learn how Master's and PhD loans, scholarships, and studentships can help you fund your studies on our Postgraduate Fees and Funding pages.
Programme-Specific Additional Costs
For each course you may find that there are additional costs. These may be with regard to the specific clothing, materials or equipment required, depending on your course. Some courses provide opportunities for you to undertake field work or field trips.
Where these are compulsory, the cost for the travel, accommodation and your meals may be covered by the University and so is included in your fee. Where these are optional you will normally (unless stated otherwise) be required to pay your own transportation, accommodation, and meal costs.
With regards to textbooks, the University provides students who enrol with a comprehensive reading list and you will find that our extensive library holds either material or virtual versions of the core texts that you are required to read. However, you may prefer to purchase some of these for yourself and you will be responsible for this cost.
Dr Ben Kisby - Programme Leader
Dr Ben Kisby is a Senior Lecturer in Politics and Programme Leader for the MA Politics. Ben has particular research interests in British politics, public policy and citizenship education and teaches on a number of undergraduate and postgraduate modules.Academic Staff List Make an Enquiry
Find out more about how postgraduate study can help further your career, develop your knowledge, or even prepare you to start your own business at one of our postgraduate events.Find out More
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An interdisciplinary programme, drawing upon politics, economics, history, sociology, international law, geography and cultural studies.