Programme syllabus

One-Year Master Programme in English with Specialisation in Irish Literature60 Credits

Programme code
HEIIA
Responsible
Billy Gray
Approved
Approved by the University Faculty Board, 12 February 2013.
Valid from Autumn semester .

1. Objectives of the Educational Programme

1.1 Objectives, as Specified in the Higher Education Act (1992:1434), Chapter 1, 9 §:

Second-cycle courses and study programmes shall be based fundamentally on the knowledge acquired by students during first-cycle courses and study programmes, or its equivalent.

Second-cycle courses and study programmes shall involve the acquisition of specialist knowledge, competence and skills in relation to first-cycle courses and study programmes, and in addition to the requirements for first-cycle courses and study programmes shall:

- further develop the ability of students to integrate and make autonomous use of their knowledge
- develop the students‘ ability to deal with complex phenomena, issues and situations, and
- develop the students‘ potential for professional activities that demand considerable autonomy, or for research and development work.

1.2 Degree Objectives, as Specified in the Higher Education Ordinance (1993:100), Appendix 2:

Knowledge and understanding

For a Degree of Master (60 credits) the student shall
- demonstrate knowledge and understanding in the main field of study, including both an overview of the field and specialised knowledge in certain areas of the field as well as insight into current research and development work, and
- demonstrate specialised methodological knowledge in the main field of study.

Competence and skills

For a Degree of Master (60 credits) the student shall
- demonstrate the ability to integrate knowledge and analyse, assess and deal with complex phenomena, issues and situations even with limited information
- demonstrate the ability to identify and formulate issues autonomously as well as to plan and, using appropriate methods, undertake advanced tasks within predetermined time frames
- demonstrate the ability in speech and writing to report clearly and discuss his or her conclusions and the knowledge and arguments on which they are based in dialogue with different audiences, and
- demonstrate the skills required for participation in research and development work or employment in some other qualified capacity.

Judgement and approach

For a Degree of Master (60 credits) the student shall
- demonstrate the ability to make assessments in the main field of study informed by relevant disciplinary, social and ethical issues and also to demonstrate awareness of ethical aspects of research and development work
- demonstrate insight into the possibilities and limitations of research, its role in society and the responsibility of the individual for how it is used, and
- demonstrate the ability to identify the personal need for further knowledge and take responsibility for his or her ongoing learning.

1.3 Objectives of the Programme

On completion of the programme the student will be able to

- demonstrate broad knowledge and understanding of the development of literary theory from the twentieth century until today,
- demonstrate the ability to apply this knowledge in the form of individual literary text analyses of with a high degree of theoretical awareness of the relationship between language, literature and culture,
- demonstrate advanced knowledge of Irish literature in English,
- independently plan and carry out a well-defined literary research task in Irish literature which demonstrates theoretical insight and awareness of one’s own ideological and ethical values,
- demonstrate the oral and written ability and proficiency necessary to argue effectively in clear academic English for complex interpretations and analyses of literary and critical texts and to actively be able to interact with others in a critical and constructive environment.

2. Main Structure of the Programme

The programme consists of six courses. In the first semester of the programme, all students take two 7.5 credit courses in Irish literature (Contemporary Irish Fiction, and The Body and Desire in Irish Poetry), and two 7.5 credit courses (Modernism, Postmodernism and Postcolonial Studies, and Scholarly Writing in Literary Theory and Criticism). Students who have already written a degree thesis in literature at undergraduate level may have the possibility to replace Scholarly Writing in Literary Theory and Criticism with a 7.5 credit course at undergraduate, or advanced level, in a related subject area, if it is relevant to these topics planned. During the second semester of the programme, the courses Ireland in Film and Drama (7.5 ECTS-credits) and Advanced Literary Theory (7.5 ECTS-credits) are studied as well as the Degree Thesis of 15 ECTS-credits.

3. Courses of the Programme

Modernism, Postmodernism and Postcolonial Studies 7.5 credits
The course consists of the cultural and ideological meanings of the concepts, modern, postmodern and postcolonial and how these are used as narrative and explanatory apparatus in the study of literature. The central themes of the course are the links between modern and postmodern and the context of the postcolonial in the study of literary texts.

Contemporary Irish Fiction 7.5 credits
The course aims at developing an in-depth knowledge of representative works in the genre of contemporary Irish fiction, by analysing, reflecting upon, evaluating and applying literary terms and theories in the context of contemporary Irish fiction. A number of texts are read from the viewpoint of different schools of literary theory, such as poststructuralism and psychoanalytic theory. Besides being introduced to theoretical texts, students will study a number of critical articles dealing directly with the texts studied on the course.

The Body and Desire in Contemporary Irish Poetry 7.5 credits
The course aims to deepen the students’ knowledge of representative works of contemporary Irish poetry, by analysing, reflecting upon, evaluating, and applying literary theories and relating these theories to the concepts of the body and desire. The course consists of a study of contemporary Irish poetry from a theoretical point of view. The representations of the body and desire in literary works are studied from a variety of modern and postmodern theoretical perspectives, such as feminism, psychoanalysis, political, existential and ethical theory and criticism. Besides being introduced to theoretical texts, students will also study a number of critical articles dealing directly with the poetry studied on the course.

Ireland in Film and Drama 7.5 credits
The course aims at developing the students’ understanding of representative works in the genres of contemporary Irish film and drama by analysing, reflecting upon, evaluating, and applying literary terms and theories in the context of contemporary Irish film and drama. The works are studied from a variety of theoretical perspectives, such as postmodernism, postcolonialism and film theory. Besides introducing students to theoretical texts, they will also study a number of critical articles dealing directly with the drama and films studied on the course.

Scholarly Writing in Literary Theory and Criticism 7.5 credits
This course is studied during the first semester of the programme and aims at preparing the student for writing the Degree Thesis by developing knowledge and skills in literary criticism and scholarly writing. During the course the student will write a process-oriented essay on a well-defined literary problem.

Advanced Literary Theory 7,5 credits
This course is taken during the first half of the second semester of the programme and aims at further developing the student’s knowledge in contemporary literary theory. In contrast to the earlier Literature and Theory course studied, the students taking this course are confronted with extracts from theoretical, original texts (in English translation) which they interpret and discuss. The students then apply these theories to a limited number of literary texts in order to further develop their critical thinking and theoretical awareness, both orally and in writing. In this way the course acts as a scholarly base and source of inspiration for the thesis work.

Degree Thesis 15 credits
The programme ends with an individual thesis project which enables students to reach the goals of the programme. Students deepen their knowledge within an area of Irish Literature by independently planning and carrying out a well-defined research task which contributes new knowledge to the field. The work is carried out as a writing process where students present and discuss their work with the supervisor and with their fellow students. The work is presented in the form of a scholarly essay which follows appropriate critical praxis for acknowledgment and documentation of sources.

4. Degree Awarded

Students who fulfil the objectives of the programme and pass all the courses will – upon application – receive a Filosofie magisterexamen, huvudområde: Engelskspråkig litteratur (Degree of Master of Arts (60 Credits), Main Field of Study: Literatures in English).

5. Required Entry Qualifications

  • Bachelor of Arts Degree with a major in English comprising at least 180 credits, containing an essay in the subject of English of at least 5000 words, or equivalent knowledge. The content of the essay and the method used should be relevant to the chosen specialization in the Master programme

6. Other Information

The title of the programme will be specified on the degree certificate.