Renaissance Latin Culture

Course Outline
The MA in Renaissance Latin Culture is a one year, full-time degree (or two year, part-time degree) that offers a unique approach to Renaissance studies through reconstructing and re-enacting some of the training and perspectives of Renaissance humanists. While acquiring cutting edge research, analysis and communication skills, students also learn to read and speak Latin, to design exhibitions that articulate renaissance world-views, and to write imaginary funding proposals from the perspective of Renaissance humanists.

The programme examines the development of Renaissance culture (art, literature, language and society), providing students with a deep understanding of the emergence of the modern world through a period of classical revival. As well as providing an historically-informed perspective upon modern debates about the purpose and value of a humanities education, the course equips students with the knowledge and skills to undertake sophisticated historical and linguistic analysis of renaissance history, language and culture.

Why Choose This Course

This course is unique in offering students progression from beginners' Latin to an immersion experience in Spoken Latin as part of a reconstruction of the lived experience of renaissance humanists within the wider context of historical study of the early-modern period. Students also explore humanist world views through collaborative exhibition design and imaginative funding proposals from the perspective of Renaissance humanist scholars. This emphasis upon engaging with humanist lives and thought through lived experience and reimagining represents a ground-breaking pedagogical innovation to supplement and augment the acquisition of formal training in historical analysis.

Placement or Study Abroad Information

The course offers a pathway towards pursuing further study abroad at leading History Departments and Neo-Latin centres in the UK or in continental Europe (especially Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany and Austria).

Placements are not part of the course programme, but graduates will be offered access to workshops and advice regarding job placement and employment options.

Entry requirements

Candidates should hold an honours primary degree with a 2H1 (or equivalent) in History, Classics, Art History or a related discipline. Candidates who hold an honours primary degree with a 2H2 will also be considered subject to the approval of the course selection committee. Some applicants who do not fulfil the usual entry requirements may be invited for interview to satisfy the selection committee of their suitability for the course.

English Language Requirements: IELTS 6.5 with no individual section lower than 5.5 or TOEFL equivalent.

If you are applying with Qualifications obtained outside Ireland and you wish to verify if you meet the minimum academic and English language requirements for this programme please click here to view the grades comparison table by country and for details of recognised English language tests.

English Language Requirements

Applicants that are non-native speakers of the English language must meet the university approved English language requirements available here.

For applicants with qualifications completed outside of Ireland

Applicants must meet the required entry academic grade, equivalent to Irish requirements, please find our grades comparison by country here.

International/non-EU applicants

For full details of the non-EU application procedure please visit our how to apply pages for international students. In UCC, we use the term programme and course interchangeably to describe what a person has registered to study in UCC and its constituent colleges, schools, and departments.

Not all courses are open to international/non-EU applicants, please check the fact file above.

For more information please contact the International Office.

Assessment Info


Assessment in the taught component of the course consists of written assignments (essays, funding proposals), in-class language tests, oral presentations, and collaborative exhibition design.

The dissertation, worth half of the total mark, and undertaken under the supervision of a staff member, reflects the importance of independent research.

Subjects taught

This 12-month course consists of two parts – a taught component which focuses upon skills training and historical contextualization, and a supervised research phase in which students produce a 15,000-word dissertation on an aspect of Renaissance history.


In part one, students take the following modules:
LT6001 Beginners Latin (15 credits)*
CC6008 Palaeography and Manuscript Based Research (10 Credits)
HI6077 The Classical Revival 1250-1500 (10 credits)
HI6078 New Worlds, Ancient Texts (10 credits)
HI6079 Schola Latina (15 credits)

* If the student has already passed LT6001 (or its equivalent), s/he must take 15 credits of Latin modules chosen in consultation with the Director of the MA in Renaissance Latin Culture.


In part two, students work closely with an academic supervisor to complete a 15,000-word dissertation on a topic of their choosing within the broad area of renaissance studies, allowing them to pursue research on any aspect of the cultural, political and social history of the period.

Additional Teaching Mode Information
The part-time option will be taught during weekday working hours over 2 years.


Further details on the modules listed above can be found in our book of modules. Any modules listed above are indicative of the current set of modules for this course but are subject to change from year to year.

University Calendar

You can find the full academic content for the current year of any given course in our University Calendar.


1 year Full-time; 2 years Part-time

The course is designed to encourage sustained, guided learning that evolves from skills training and acquisition of contextual knowledge in small groups to independent research and writing under close personal supervision. During the first two semesters, there will typically be around 8 contact hours per week. Students will consistently have homework for language classes and assigned readings to complete for historical modules. Required study time typically increases in advance of language tests and assignment submission dates.

Two more intensive periods of study occur at the beginning of the course (two days intensive training in palaeography for module CC6008) and at the beginning of the third semester (a week-long summer school involving immersion in Spoken Latin for module HI6079). Students will be advised of the dates for these intensive periods of study well in advance.

Enrolment dates

Start Date: 9 September 2019

Post Course Info

Skills and Careers Information

What can I do after I graduate with a [MA in Renaissance Latin Culture]?

The course provides students with advanced analytical, research, writing and presentation skills which may be employed in a diverse array of professional contexts, while also reflecting on how renaissance humanists promoted their own careers and educational reforms, providing students with case studies of how to market and develop ideas in the humanities. Graduates will be fully equipped to pursue further historical research either in education or for employers in the private sphere. They also receive training in exhibition organisation and funding applications which can launch them into careers in heritage or the arts. Spoken Latin skills are increasingly in demand for teaching the language at secondary school level. Potential career paths also include marketing and fund-raising, especially in the spheres of arts, heritage and education.

Occupations associated with [MA in Renaissance Latin Culture]

Within the sphere of arts and heritage, graduates could progress to careers as researchers, museum curators, fund-raisers and teachers.

The course also provides ideal training for those who wish to continue on to PhD study in any area of Renaissance history and culture.

What are our graduates doing?

Graduates in this area have an exceptionally high success rate in attaining national funding for PhD and postdoctoral research posts.

One recent graduate in this area is working as a research fund-raiser, assisting in the design process and application procedure for research projects at Irish universities. She has been employed in research offices in several Irish universities, developing funding applications in the sciences, arts and humanities.

Another recent graduate attained a prestigious research post at leading centre for Neo-Latin studies in Innsbruck, Austria.

A third recent graduate who participated in early pilot courses in Spoken Latin is now teaching History and Latin in a secondary school in Cork.

More details
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  • Qualifications

    Degree - Masters (Level 9 NFQ)

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