Literatures, Languages & Cultures

MSc by Research programmes

Develop your subject expertise and research skills at masters level. Choose from 18 programmes across literatures, languages and cultures.

A Masters (MScR) by Research programme is ideal if you have a clear idea for a piece of independent, postgraduate research.

It is typically completed over one year of full-time study, although a two-year, part-time option is available for UK/EU students on most programmes.

On our regular pathway, you’ll attend taught classes and complete two pieces of coursework, as well as receiving training in research methods and writing a 15,000 word dissertation under expert supervision. In English Literature, Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies, and Scandinavian Studies, there is the option to take a different pathway in which you complete a single dissertation of 30,000 words, as well as training in research methods.

We’re here to help you shape your research to suit your interests, skills and intended career path. While many of our students go on to take a PhD, others move into careers in sectors where they can apply project management and research skills in different ways.

What can I study?

All links in our table take you to the University of Edinburgh's online Degree Finder, where you can find out more about what's involved in each MScR. Applications for 2021 entry are now open. 

Celtic Studies Chinese
English Literature I: coursework + dissertation English Literature II: dissertation only
English Literature: Postcolonial Literature

English Literature: Scottish Literature

French Gender and Culture


Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies (IMES)

Italian Japanese
Korean Studies Medieval Studies
Russian  Scandinavian Studies
Scottish Ethnology Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies (Hispanic Studies)

Find out more and apply

You can find out about entrance requirements, start dates, fees and scholarship opportunities for all our Masters by Research programmes on the University of Edinburgh’s Degree Finder. Degree Finder links straight through to EUCLID, the online system for applying to postgraduate programmes at the University.

Applications to start a MScR programme in September 2021 are now open.

Take me to Degree Finder

Get in touch

As a response to COVID-19, some of us are on campus while others are working remotely.

You can contact us Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm GMT.

We can’t answer any calls at this time, but you can email us and one of us will get back to you as soon as we can.

Email us about MSc by Research programmes

If you are holding an offer to study with us, your enquiry is best answered by the College Postgraduate Admissions team.

Email the College Postgraduate Admissions team 

You may also be interested in the University's Online Information Sessions which run monthly throughout the year.

Take me to listings for future Online Information Sessions on the University of Edinburgh website

Where to next?

Take me to all postgraduate study options in Literatures, Languages and Cultures