Postgraduate
MA Beginnings of Early Christianity

University College Cork

Course Overview


The programme consists mainly of Celtic Civilisation modules, together with designated modules in Archaeology, History, Folklore and Latin.

Students will examine the coming of Christianity to Ireland, the often complex and subtle ways in which the new religion established itself within the framework of indigenous culture, and the influence which a Gaelic ecclesiastical diaspora had on the growth of the Church in medieval Europe as a whole. Irish religious culture will also be explored through the lens of such key areas as the cult of the saints, and tales of supernatural voyages and visions. A student’s particular interests are served not only by the wide range of modules on offer but also through research on a special topic; and for more direct engagement with the primary sources, instruction in early Irish and in Latin is available. The field-trip module is an optional part of the programme (participation in which entails additional costs) with visits to early Christian sites in Ireland, grounding literary study in encounters with what physically survives of a distant world. Students will put what they have learned to use, and hone their research and writing skills, by producing a Masters thesis.

What you need to know

Where is the course located?

Cork City

What is the length of the course?

12 Months Full-time (1 Year)


When can I apply?

You can apply today

When does the course start?

September

Placement options


Application Closing Date

Open for applications

Number of Places

Fees and Funding

Non-EU Tuition Fees

€ 13,000

Living Costs per year

€ 10,000

Application Fee

€ 60

Features and Benefits


  • This programme explores the religious experience of the first European people beyond the boundaries of the Roman empire to become Christian.
  • The writing of a Masters dissertation is an invaluable opportunity to develop in-depth knowledge, as well as research and writing skills, with one-on-one supervision by internationally recognised experts in the field.
  • It is unique in the comprehensiveness of its approach, with modules dealing with literature, history and archaeology, together with language courses to enable students to get closer to the original texts while a field trip will bring direct encounters with the surviving remains of early Christian Ireland.
  • It is a one-year course with small class sizes.

Entry requirements

How to Apply

Once you are ready to start your application, please click on APPLY NOW

As part of your application, you will be required to submit:

  • Your academic history and transcripts (Actual and/or Predicted Grades)
  • Proof of English proficiency (typically IELTS or TOEFL scores)
  • 2 letters of recommendation
  • A copy of your passport
  • Personal Statement
  • CV/Resume
  • Extra requests for certain courses

Minimum entry requirements

  • Candidates should normally hold an honours primary degree with Second Class Honours Grade 1 (or equivalent) in a relevant discipline.
  • Candidates who hold a primary degree with a Second Class Honours Grade 2 will also be considered subject to the approval of the programme selection committee.

English Requirements

  • DET Minimum Requirements (Duolingo)
    College of Arts, Celtic Studies, and Social Sciences: All Programmes: DET 110-115 + Skills Check, DET 120 or more eligible for full offer.
  • IELTS Minimum Requirements
    College of Arts, Celtic Studies, and Social Sciences: All Programmes: 6.5 Minimum individual sections 5.5.
  • TOEFL Minimum Requirements
    College of Arts, Celtic Studies, and Social Sciences: All Programmes: TOEFL 90 Listening – 17; Reading – 18; Speaking – 20; Writing 17
  • Cambridge Proficiency Exam
    College of Arts, Celtic Studies, and Social Sciences: All Programmes: 176 overall with not less than 162 in each element of the test
  • Cambridge Advanced Exam
    College of Arts, Celtic Studies, and Social Sciences: All Programmes: 176 overall with not less than 162 in each element of the test
  • Pearson PTE
    College of Arts, Celtic Studies, and Social Sciences: All Programmes: Minimum Score of 63 with no section score below 51

Special Entry Requirements

Career Prospects


An MA degree in The Beginnings of Irish Christianity, besides preparing a student for further study in the field of Celtic Studies, can also provide an additional qualification and a mark of distinction for students pursuing advanced degrees in such fields as Classics, English, History or Medieval Studies. It is also a useful qualification for pursuing careers in the heritage, local history and broadcasting sectors; and it would be of interest to those working in the fields of religious education and pastoral care within the Christian Churches.

Notes