Tudor Studies


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  • Teaching takes place in the evening, allowing you to study for your degree around existing commitments
  • A uniquely multidisciplinary programme that is acutely focused on the period
  • Opportunity to take a work placement in public history or organise a postgraduate conference
  • Taught by leading scholars in the Tudor period: in history, Professors Suzannah Lipscomb, Glyn Parry, and Ted Vallance; in English and Creative Writing, Dr Andy Kesson, and Professors Jane Kingsley and Clare McManus
  • Close to Tudor sites of importance (Hampton Court Palace and the Tower of London) and to crucial research libraries and archives (the British Library and the National Archives)


The Tudors are considered one of the most fascinating and influential periods of history. Our MA Tudor Studies degree is an interdisciplinary investigation of the Tudor age that covers 1485-1603. While considering the traditional areas of high religion and politics, you will also explore material culture, the performative nature of Tudor life, the cultural and artistic context, issues of gender, and the international context, by coupling the study of history and literature. This course positions Tudor history within an international content, taking into account the global connections that significantly contributed to and shaped England’s wealth and power. You will track concepts of Tudor identity and investigate migration from and to the Tudor state and explore ideas about race in this period.

This MA offers a programme of study that is cutting-edge. In line with the latest research in the field, it is genuinely interdisciplinary in nature and approaches the Tudors through a wide range of sources and paradigms. You will examine case studies based on primary sources including documentary, literary or material culture, including artwork and objects. You will directly compare historical and literary approaches to key themes, providing you with a temporal focus without being restricted to one discipline.

You will take a module called Applied Historical Research, which offers you the opportunity to take a work placement or internship in a field related to public history, which could include museums, heritage centres, historic preservation, libraries and broadcasting, or you could put together a one-day postgraduate conference. We have an extensive network of partnerships which include Historic Royal Palaces, The National Archives, the National Trust, Surrey History Centre, and the Mary Rose, as well as television production companies who make historical documentaries.

Teaching takes place on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings and individual tutorials are arranged outside of regular class time at times that are convenient to both you and your tutor.

You will graduate from the MA Tudor Studies as a cross-disciplinary expert in the Tudor period.

You will take five modules: four modules have been designed to sharpen your research abilities and acquaint you with the spectrum of topics that constitute Tudor studies. The MA will provide you with a deep and profound engagement with sixteenth-century history and literature, offering a genuinely interdisciplinary approach to the study of the past, and training you in the close, critical analysis and assessment of Tudor evidence. You will develop the capacity to find your way through contested areas of historiography, and to locate your own work within an existing corpus of scholarship. You will handle and assimilate a wide range of different materials, such as manuscript sources, printed literary texts, and images, and learn how to interpret and engage with them in a critical manner. You will learn how to delve deeply into the minutiae of a research topic, and how to develop an original idea into a substantial piece of work.

You will also write a 15,000-word dissertation in which you will demonstrate the advanced research skills you have gained and apply them to formulating an argument about some aspect of the Tudor period.

One of the modules includes a work placement, in which you will either take up a placement or internship in a field related to public history, or to organise a one-day postgraduate research conference.

Teaching takes place in the evenings to accommodate your existing day-time commitments.

The modules offer opportunities for formative assessment and feedback, and short writing tasks, such as gobbet analyses (of both written primary sources and material culture including portraiture and objects), alongside longer assignments (including, of course, the dissertation), which allow you to showcase your more in-depth research. Feedback follows each assessment and will include formal annotated comments on written coursework and less formal one-to-one feedback in tutorial sessions. Assessment is, however, also varied beyond written tasks in order to help you develop a broad range of skills either for employment or further study. You will be asked to present your analyses of primary sources in one module and given the opportunity to be assessed on practice as research in a second. In a third, you can choose between a reflective essay or a presentation. 

Throughout the programme, you will have a single supervisor or supervisory team that helps direct your learning experience and tailors the programme to your ambitions.

Required modules
Texts and Contexts
Applied Historical Research
Faith, Gender, and Succession: The Crisis Points of the Tudors
Literature and Politics 

MA Dissertation


Compulsory and Required modules
Compulsory and/or required modules may change when we review and update programmes. Above is a list of modules offered this academic year.

Optional modules
Optional modules, when offered as part of a programme, may vary from year to year and are subject to viability.

This Masters is intended to develop key skills which will be useful for those interested in further academic study, and also for future employment in the creative and heritage industries, including publishing, museums and archives, the media, or any sector that prizes effective research and communication skills.

Life at Roehampton

At Roehampton, we can offer all new students the opportunity to live in accommodation on our beautiful parkland campus, including affordable and high-end options.

We offer scholarships, provide hardship funding and help you find advice on managing your finances while you study.

We provide plenty of opportunities for you to get involved, through volunteering, playing sport or music, or joining one of our many active student societies.