Geography - Spatial Justice

Students will gain insights into 'third spaces', grassroots movements, and forms of solidarity that may significantly lead to re-thinking current inhabitants' rights to the city, shared resources, and the right to living in healthy places in Ireland. Through unique public engagement opportunities with civil society partners and cutting-edge research modules, students will gain training in ethical, collaborative and responsible research practices; fieldwork; and working with civil society, community-based, NGO, cultural and government partners. The MA in Spatial Justice can be taken either full time (1 year, MHN66) or part time (2 years, MHN67).

For the part time programme (MHN67) please go to

Geographers have a particular set of perspectives on justice: we may speak of spatial, environmental and land, and place justice. Maynooth Geography is internationally known for its research expertise about such concerns as related to: the Irish housing and homelessness crisis, the severity of Direct Provision in relation to Europe's migration and refugee crisis, the HIV/AIDs epidemic, and other current health and environmental crises. Our staff are internationally recognised for their work related to: housing justice; economic and work justice; land justice; health justice; the 'right to the city'; place-based memory work; social and ecological commons; ethical geographies; vital geographies; sexualities and genders; migration; environmental justice; feminist methodologies; and activist scholarship. Working with Maynooth Geographers are our public engagement partners, which have included the Pavee Roads Home research group, Maynooth Housing Justice Research Group, the Irish Housing Network, Right to Water, Dublin Bay North Choice and Equality Network, and the Movement of Asylum Seekers in Ireland. Our research-led and community-based teaching and learning approach in this course has been recognised nationally by the Irish University Association and will be featured soon in a Digital Badge Course through Campus Engage.

This MA is flexible in delivery, innovative in emphasis, and stresses experiential- and field-based learning opportunities for students to develop ethical research skills and other employability competencies.

Subjects taught

This MA is flexible in delivery, innovative in emphasis, and stresses experiential- and field-based learning opportunities for students to develop ethical research skills and other employability competencies.

The 'MA Geography: Spatial Justice' offers a wide-ranging programme of taught modules, delivered through lectures, seminars, fieldwork, practicals and civil society partnerships, with an emphasis on teaching and learning informed by participatory action research.

Degree structure: 90 credits, taken over 1 year full-time (MHN66) or 2 years part-time (MHN67).

Students must take 70 compulsory credits, which develop competencies in field methods, spatial thinking, and theory and applied research methods in spatial justice, and includes a 30-credit independent minor thesis focused on a topic of the student's choosing as related to spatial justice. Depending on the students' research focus, s/he will take an additional 20 optional credits, with at least 10 credits in Geography and up to 10 credits of electives in Anthropology, Law, Media Studies and Sociology. In Geography, taught modules consist of ten, 2-hour seminars. All modules are 100% continuous assessment, with a range of assessment types (academic essays, field research journals, applied research projects, mapping projects, blogs, vlogs and videos, field-based reports, individual and group presentations, other). Please see the list of possible classes below and in course finder.

Compulsory modules (70 credits)
GY607 Field School (10 credits)
GY608 Thinking Geographically (10 credits)
GY609 Thesis (30 credits)
GY619 Public Engagement (10 credits)
GY629 Spatial Justice: Geographies of Social & Environmental Change (10 credits)

Indicative Optional Modules in Geography (can select from 10 to 20 credits):

GY621 Dublin Urban Laboratory (10 credits)
GY626 Critical Ecologies (10 credits)

Further optional modules, from other departments (can select up to 10 credits)

AN622G Winter School of Ethnography (5 credits, instructor approval required)
AN647 Foundations of Medical Anthropology (5 credits)
AN692 Anthropology and Development (10 credits)
AN693 Anthropology of Digital Media (10 credits)
AN694 Immigration and Diversity in Higher Education (5 credits)
LW634 Gender, Sexuality, Law (10 credits)
MD624 Irish Media History (10 credits)
MD632 Media Publics (10 credits)
SO617 Quantitative Analysis (10 credits)
SO620A Qualitative Analysis (10 credits)

Entry requirements

Students should normally have earned a 2.1 or above in Geography (either subject degree in Geography or overall) or related disciplines. A personal statement is required so the Director can give consideration to applicants with relevant academic, work or professional experience if coming from a different background than the social sciences and/or if earned a 2.2 mark.

Applicants must have a recognised primary degree which is considered equivalent to Irish university primary degree level.

Minimum English language requirements: please visit Maynooth University International Office website for information about English language tests accepted and required scores. The requirements specified are applicable for both EU and non-EU applicants.

Maynooth University's TOEFL code is 8850

Application dates

Closing Date : 30 June 2023


1 year full-time, 2 years part-time


In general, there are two levels of fees payable. EU students from EU countries including Ireland pay a subsidised level of fees for both taught courses and research programmes. Tuition fees for students from outside the EU are not subsidised and are thus somewhat higher than for EU students.

Post Course Info

Our graduates acquire valuable research, analytical and critical, spatial thinking, ethical and professional skills. The skills learned allow our graduates to find employment in various fields, such as: administration; education; services; creative industries; and working with NGOs and local government authorities. A number of our graduates go on to pursue a PhD.

More details
  • Qualification letters


  • Qualifications

    Degree - Masters (Level 9 NFQ)

  • Attendance type

    Full time,Part time,Daytime

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