African Studies

Study mode:On campus Study type:Full-time Languages: English
Local:$ 16.8 k / Year(s) Foreign:$ 28.4 k / Year(s) Deadline: Jan 20, 2025
1 place StudyQA ranking:4011 Duration:1 year

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The MSc in African Studies is a three-term course, designed both as a stand-alone interdisciplinary introduction to current debates about Africa, and as a preparation for doctoral research on Africa. This advanced degree programme provides an excellent foundation for those who wish to expand their knowledge of African studies.

There are four components to the MSc in African Studies:

  • the core courses - Methodology, Ethics and Research Strategies, and Themes in African History and the Social Sciences,
  • an optional paper, and
  • a dissertation of 15,000 words.

The teaching on the MSc programme is built around the two core courses. The first core course examines research methodologies and strategies, including the politics of researching and writing on Africa, and is taught in Michaelmas term. The second is a weekly lecture and seminar over two terms (Michaelmas and Hilary term) covering key questions in African history and the social sciences, giving close attention to critical debates and current issues. The core courses form compulsory elements of the degree programme and are open only to students taking the MSc in African Studies.

In addition to the two core courses, you will take an optional paper on a particular theme and within a specific discipline. A wide selection of optional papers is available each year.

Finally, you will write a research dissertation of 15,000 words on a research topic of your choosing, which must include discussion of the comparative reading, historiography, or theory relevant to the dissertation. You will undertake fieldwork at the end of Hilary term.

Supervision for the dissertation element of the programme runs through the year, the dissertation being submitted near to the end of Trinity term. You will submit examined essays for core course one and your chosen optional paper at the beginning of Hilary term and towards the end of Trinity term respectively. You will sit a written examination for core course two in Trinity term. 

1. Academic ability

Proven and potential academic excellence

Applicants are normally expected to be predicted or have achieved a first-class or strong upper second-class undergraduate degree with honours (or equivalent international qualifications), as a minimum, in a relevant discipline in the humanities or social sciences.

For applicants with a degree from the USA, the minimum GPA sought is 3.7 out of 4.0.

No Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or GMAT scores are sought.

2. English language requirement

Higher level

Test

Standard level scores

Higher level scores

IELTS Academic 
Institution code: 0713

7.0 Minimum 6.5 per component  7.5  Minimum 7.0 per component 

TOEFL iBT 
Institution code: 0490

100

Minimum component scores:

  • Listening: 22
  • Reading: 24
  • Speaking: 25
  • Writing: 24
110

Minimum component scores:

  • Listening: 22
  • Reading: 24
  • Speaking: 25
  • Writing: 24
Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE) 185

Minimum 176 per component

191 

Minimum 185 per component

Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE) 185

Minimum 176 per component

191 

Minimum 185 per component

3. SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS

  • Three references (letters of recommendation)
  • Official transcript(s) of previous university-level degrees
  • CV/résumé
  • Personal statement: 500 to 1,000 words
  • Written work: One essay of 2,000 words
  • Clarendon Scholarships. This unique scheme offers around 140 new, fully-funded scholarships each year to academically outstanding graduate students, as well as providing a lively and stimulating community of scholars.
  • Hill Foundation Scholarships. The Hill Foundation Scholarships fund Russian students to study for full-time graduate courses in any subject at Oxford. The Hill Foundation is a charity which aims to create a community of Oxford scholars and alumni who will work to improve Russian life and culture.The scholarship will cover 100% of University and college fees and a grant for living costs (of at least £14,296). Awards are made for the full duration of your fee liability for the agreed course.
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