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University of Otago
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Master of Arts (Coursework) (MA(Coursework)) in English

This course is available

On-Campus

Level of Study

Master's Degree

Duration

1 year

Next start date

Expected Jul 2024

Campus

University of Otago

Summary

The Master of Arts (Coursework) programme is designed to give students the skills sought-after by employers around the globe, with a balance of specific subject knowledge plus broad-based transferable skills – such as oral and written communication, and analytical skills.

The degree is also an possible qualification for the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD).

The MA(Coursework) normally requires either 12 months or three semesters of full-time, or equivalent part-time, study and entails completion of papers and a dissertation.

The dissertation is a major piece of supervised research of up to 20,000 words.

The primary aim of the MA(Coursework) is to provide candidates with a grounding in their chosen subject area within a wider disciplinary frame. The degree cultivates the skills needed to identify a significant topic, design and implement a significant piece of research, and present the findings in a form acceptable to an expert readership.

Why study English?

Language is power. We use language for the whole range of activities that make us human, from passion to politics; we negotiate through language in every waking moment of our lives. Literature is language at its most effective.

English at Otago is designed to fulfil three main aims: opening up the vast and delightful range of literatures written in English; providing a grasp of the concepts and techniques for analysing texts; and improving communication skills of every kind.

By taking English you will find your perceptions sharpened, your understanding deepened and your enjoyment enhanced - for life. Above all, you will equip yourself for a career in almost any sector of society.

Literature in English embodies a high level of creative insight into human behaviours, preoccupations, politics and passions. By learning about language from its best practitioners, students gain critical skills that are valued by employers, governments and educationalists; skills that are essential for people taking an active role in an open society.

Career opportunities

English develops key skills in critical thinking, cultural awareness, and communication, which are essential in all workplaces, and are increasingly sought after by employers.

Our graduates are working as editors, copy-writers and in publishing, as creative writers or journalists, teachers, librarians and educational administrators.

English graduates may be found in the public service, as analysts, diplomats, politicians, and policy-makers. Others have become ministers of religion, arts administrators, and broadcasters.

Otago has an excellent record of preparing students for postgraduate study in English and related disciplines, both in New Zealand and overseas. Recent Otago graduates have gone on to study at top Universities such as Oxford, Cambridge, St. Andrews, and Harvard, and Otago graduates hold positions at universities in Britain, Australia, and North America.

Entry criteria

Admission to the programme shall be subject to the approval of the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Humanities).

Every applicant must either

  • be a graduate, or
  • have alternative qualifications or experience acceptable to the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Humanities).

In considering an applicant's qualifications, regard will be had to the detail of the course of study followed to gain the qualification, as well as the applicant's performance in the programme. Applicants must normally have achieved an average grade of at least B in the papers at the highest level in the programme.

English language requirements

  • IELTS (Academic module) (including IELTS Online) - Overall score of 6.5, no individual band below 6.0.
  • TOEFL iBT - Overall score of 90 and a writing score of 21.
  • C1 Advanced (previously Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE)) or C2 Proficiency (previously Cambridge English Proficiency (CPE)) - Overall score of 176 (with no individual band below 169).
  • Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic - Overall score of 58 with no communicative skills score below 50.
  • Language Cert - International ESOL: C1 Expert (LRWS) with a high pass overall and no less than a pass in each skill OR C2 Mastery (LRWS) with a pass overall and no less than a pass in each skill.
  • NZCEL - NZCEL 5 Academic endorsement
  • English New Zealand's Accredited Pathway Assessment - Assessment Level 3 (with no skill lower than Level 2).
  • APIEL Advanced Placement International English Language Examination - Grade 4 or higher.

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