Cultural Studies MRes

Qualification name
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MRes Cultural Studies
1 year full-time, 2 years part-time
Entry requirements
2:1 (or international equivalent) in an arts, humanities or social science subject.
7.0 (no less than 6.5 in any element) If these grades are not met, English preparatory courses are available
Start date
University Park
Other requirements



Some prospective masters students already have a clear idea of the area and topic they wish to research. In this case you can effectively lay the ground work for a PhD by doing a masters by research rather than a taught masters. 

This degree is composed of a research dissertation of 25,000 words (worth 120 credits) and a selection of taught modules (worth 60 credits) that can be drawn from the Department and the University's Research Training Programmes or from Level 4 specialist topic modules within the School of Cultures, Languages and Area Studies.

You attend research training sessions and attend the weekly graduate work-in-progress seminars to which you contribute a paper in semester two, and you also work with a main supervisor and co-supervisor on a pre-agreed research topic. Your 25,000 word dissertation is submitted at the end of the year which is marked by both an internal and an external examiner with the possibility of a viva to confirm the award. 


Since you are expected to complete a piece of research in just one year, the MRes degree requires you to work in areas of faculty expertise and with a practical sense of the resources to which you have ready access. The duration of this course is one year (12 months) full-time, or two years (24 months) part-time.



The Department of Cultural, Media and Visual Studies welcomes applications from students who wish to pursue MRes or PhD degrees in the areas of film and television studies, cultural studies, media studies and critical theory.

These research programmes form a central and thriving part of the department’s activities, with over 40 students currently enrolled, either full-time or part-time. Research students come to Nottingham from the UK and overseas, including the EU, the Middle and Far East, Latin America and the United States. With their diversity of cultural and disciplinary backgrounds, they constitute a rich, rewarding and supportive postgraduate community. 

All research students are involved in the Postgraduate Professional Development Programme, which includes weekly work-in-progress seminars. The school's energetic research culture also involves a programme of visiting speakers and regular symposia organised by staff and students (these have included recent events on cultural borrowings, television and memory, digital archives, and sound in the media).

The department offers you:

  • advanced research training
  • expert supervision (each student is allocated two supervisors)
  • frequent reviews and feedback on progress
  • weekly 'work-in-progress' seminars
  • well-equipped work bases, with excellent library and IT facilities 
  • support for research trips and conference attendance, inter-library loans
  • full participation in the department’s academic life, including opportunities to become a teaching assistant

Hallward Library

The Hallward library is dedicated to the Faculty of Arts and is situated in the centre of the campus, just a few minutes walk from our school. It has an ever expanding collection of books, journals and other materials.  

Language Centre

The Language Centre houses a Self Access Centre that provides facilities to support the language teaching in the school, such as books, audio/video tapes, satellite TV, reading, reference and multimedia materials.

You can visit the centre to improve your fluency in a language you are studying for your degree, or you can learn additional languages from beginners’ stage, such as Arabic, Mandarin Chinese, Modern Greek, Italian, French, German, Japanese and Spanish. These languages can be studied independently on a self-learning basis, or as part of taught courses.

IT facilities

The University provides students with access to general IT facilities through a number of computer rooms spread across its campuses. Such areas are conveniently located around the University in all University libraries.

The majority of computer rooms are open to all members of the University and contain PC workstations and printing facilities. In some of the larger rooms, more specialised equipment is provided such as text and image scanners, colour printing and high powered Unix workstations.

Connected Campus Network Zones are areas in the University where you can either access wireless networking or plug laptops directly into the University network. This is a major development which provides students with roaming access to the internet and University network


Research support

You will benefit from the well-established research environment and professional training of the Department of Cultural, Media and Visual Studies. Postgraduates have the opportunity to participate in a range of vital learning experiences while studying in the department, including the department’s Postgraduate Professional Development Programme and the University’s Graduate School research training courses. Many of our research students publish high-quality books and articles and have secured teaching positions in universities both in the UK and abroad.

Research supervision

In terms of research student supervision, the department does all it can to meet recommended practice in this area. You have two supervisors who regularly read and advise on your work and attend your works-in-progress presentation. The work-in-progress is a weekly session in which you present their ongoing research to your peers, supervisors and to invited members of academic staff and research students from other Schools in the University. The department has a large number of research students whose welfare is monitored through the Research Committee, supporting the good work of research students and advising students who may find themselves in difficulties. In this way, the Research Committee monitors progress and intervenes, in consultation with supervisors, when progress is unsatisfactory.

Support for students

Research student support takes a number of different forms, including photocopying and printing expenses, and inter-library loans. You have dedicated study space within the school, accessing computers and the Internet. You are also offered advice on publishing and professional development by supervisors and through the Postgraduate Professional Development Programme, which involves stage-specific training sessions offered by the Arts Graduate Centre. Students organise and attend conferences, publish book review essays, articles and have successfully turned their PhDs into books. There are opportunities for students to act as teaching assistants on undergraduate courses. In order to do this, students are required to take training courses run by the Graduate School in the year prior to such teaching and to attend the school’s teaching induction sessions. Teaching assistants are supported and monitored by the module convenors, the Chair of Teaching Committee and the Director of Research.

Research seminars

The department runs work-in-progress seminars on most Wednesday afternoons. All full-time research students attend each week and part-time students attend whenever possible. The purpose of these sessions is to provide an opportunity for the academic community to discuss work in progress by students and staff members. Each full-time research student presents a paper once every academic year; part-time students give a seminar once every other year. Seminar papers are circulated two weeks in advance so as to allow the maximum time for discussion. This intellectual exchange is vital to the department’s ethos of intellectual support and is often followed by presentations from visiting speakers. The research programme emphasizes professional development and students attend sessions on publishing and conference presentation among very many other skills that are vital to new academics.


Find a supervisor

We encourage you to get in touch with a member of academic staff about your research proposal before submitting an application. They may be able to help you with your proposal and offer support to find funding opportunities in your area. Details of research supervisors can be found on the department's website.


Fees and funding

If you choose to study with us, there are various sources of funding to which you can apply. Some are administered by the school, others by research bodies to which the school has links, and others by the University and central government sources.

These opportunities are often specific to particular degree programmes, or to the fee-status of a student, so it is important to read all related information very carefully. All studentships and bursaries are competitive and are awarded on academic merit.

For information on the full range of funding opportunities for UK, EU and international students look our funding pages.The University Graduate School also offers guidance on securing funding as well as a number of funding opportunities to support researcher development.

Applicants must receive an offer of study before applying for any of our scholarships. Please note the closing dates of any scholarships you are interested in and make sure you submit your MRes or PhD application in good time so that you have the opportunity to apply for them.

Funding for UK/EU students

The Midlands3Cities Doctoral Training Partnership is a collaboration between the universities of Nottingham, Nottingham Trent, Leicester, De Montfort, Birmingham and Birmingham City, provides research candidates with cross-institutional mentoring, expert supervision including cross-institutional supervision where appropriate, subject-specific and generic training, and professional support in preparing for a career. More information about how to apply can be found through the weblink above.

International and EU students

The University of Nottingham offers a range of masters scholarships for international and EU students from a wide variety of countries and areas of study, as well as PhD scholarships for international and EU students.

The International Office also provides information and advice for international and EU students on financing your degree, living costs, external sources of funding and working during your studies. Find out more on our scholarships, fees and finance webpages for international applicants.



Visit the school page for additional opportunities.

Average starting salary and career progression

The University of Nottingham is consistently named as one of the most targeted universities by Britain’s leading graduate employers.*

In 2016, 96.6% of postgraduates from the School of Cultures, Languages and Area Studies who were available for employment had secured work or further study within six months of graduation. The average starting salary was £25,314 with the highest being £35,000.**

* The Graduate Market 2013-2016, High Fliers Research.

** Known destinations of full-time home postgraduates 2015/16. Salaries are calculated based on the median of those in full-time paid employment within the UK.  

Career prospects and employability

Those who take up a research opportunity with us will not only receive support in terms of close contact with supervisors and specific training related to your area of research, you will also benefit from dedicated careers advice from our Careers and Employability Service.


Individual guidance appointments, career management training programme, access to resources and invitations to events including skills workshops and recruitment fairs are just some of the ways in which they can help you develop your full potential, whether you choose to continue within an academic setting or are looking at options outside of academia.


Get in touch

+44 (0)115 951 5917
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This online prospectus has been drafted in advance of the academic year to which it applies. Every effort has been made to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to course content) are likely to occur given the interval between publishing and commencement of the course. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply for the course where there has been an interval between you reading this website and applying.

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