American history at the University of Cambridge is a dynamic field which covers the history of what is now the United States, from the colonial period to the modern era. The MPhil in American History enables students to develop expertise in this ever-expanding field of historical scholarship. The MPhil in American History combines taught and research elements over a nine-month full-time programme. The taught elements include three modules, as well as training workshops and seminars. All students will also complete a substantial piece of independent research (a dissertation of 15,000–20,000 words). Throughout the course, students will be supervised by a dedicated member of staff, who will guide their research towards the completion of a dissertation on a subject chosen and developed by the student. Cambridge graduates in American history have taken up posts in universities and academic-related spheres of work around the world. The MPhil in American History provides a point of entry into this rich tradition. However, the MPhil has also provided an excellent basis on which to proceed to a career in other, non-academic professions. Learning Outcomes Students on the MPhil in American History will be provided with an in-depth study of some of the key areas of research in American history. All students will be assigned a supervisor who will guide them through the requirements of the course and, most crucially, the dissertation. In this manner, all students are provided with the historiographical knowledge and analytical skills necessary to understand and evaluate existing research and to pursue research in their own fields of intellectual interest. Through individual supervisions and small-group classes, students are introduced to the more specialised and intensive nature of research required at a postgraduate level. By the end of the programme, students will have: knowledge of key debates and trends in American history and historiography greater understanding of issues, events, and people in American history skills in presenting work in both oral and written form advanced research and writing skills at postgraduate level
Assessment Thesis / Dissertation The dissertation is Part II of the MPhil in American History. All students will submit a dissertation of 15,000–20,000 words, worth 70 per cent of the overall mark. At the discretion of the examiners, the examination may include an oral examination (viva voce) on the dissertation and on the general field of knowledge within which it falls. This is unusual and normally only occurs if the dissertation is given failing marks. Essays Each of the three modules (the core course and two options) require a 3,000–4,000 word essay (not including footnotes and bibliography). Each essay counts towards 10 per cent of the final degree mark, for a total of 30 per cent. Taken together, these essays form Part I of the MPhil. Students will also prepare a 2,000-word dissertation proposal essay due in the Lent term. This essay is mandatory but is not assessed. Students will meet with their supervisor to discuss the proposal and get feedback in preparation for the dissertation.
Applicants for this course should have achieved a UK High II.i Honours Degree. If your degree is not from the UK, please check International Qualifications to find the equivalent in your country. Applicants should normally hold at least a high upper second-class degree from a UK University (usually 67 per cent) or international equivalent as set by the University's Postgraduate Admissions Office (see the International Qualifications page on the Postgraduate Admissions website). Please be aware that this is the minimum criterion for academic results, and that attaining this minimum does not assure admission to the MPhil. Admissions are fiercely competitive and students who simply meet the minimum standard are often not accepted onto the MPhil. Candidates will normally be expected to have taken a substantial number of history courses at the university level and to have a sound background in the period covered by the course. Most applicants are completing or have completed degrees in history or a cognate discipline, such as English or politics.
Fees and funding
No fee information has been provided for this course