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General information

General profile of the programmes
Structure of the two-year research master's programmes
Future prospects
Tutor protocol for Research Masters
Rules for elective courses
Research training individual programme in the third semester
Organisation of the programme
Academic year 2022-2023

The two-year Research Master in Historical, Literary and Visual Culture Studies offers an advanced programme for highly qualified students interested in exploring history, literature or art and visual culture from a distinct interdisciplinary perspective that is based on collaboration, exchange and debate.  The Research Master in Historical, Literary and Cultural Studies consists of three tracks:

  • Art and Visual Culture
  • Historical Studies
  • Literary Studies

Students choose one track with disciplinary and interdisciplinary (core) courses, as well as electives at Nijmegen or other universities which complete their individual research trajectory. Students also choose a personal tutor from the Research Master core faculty who will provide guidance in composing their individual learning trajectory. This programme prepares students for a career in academia, in (higher) education, as well as in cultural, historical or literary institutions such as archives, heritage and conservation institutions, museums and libraries.

General profile of the programmes

This is an English-taught programme that accepts applications from (national and international) students with a BA degree in a relevant field.  The curriculum is structured around trends and shifts in theoretical and methodological approaches that currently inspire the debates within the humanities.  The combination of disciplinary and interdisciplinary components prepares students to employ their skills and knowledge beyond a narrowly defined field so as to contribute to various debates and questions in society.  This Research Master’s aims at training students to gain a deep understanding of the historical, and artistic complexities of a quickly changing world. They learn to assess the relevance and impact of Humanities scholarship and to seek alternative forms of collaboration, co-creation and sharing of knowledge.

The programme consists of three parts of training, practice and research:

The training part is the individual trajectory that includes the interdisciplinary core courses, the disciplinary courses, and the electives. This is a great opportunity to create a tailor-made programme that students carry out under the close guidance of a personal tutor.

The practice part comprises an international research training which students can complete in the form of an internship or for which students can develop an internship or study abroad.

After successful completion of the training part of the programme, students embark on an individual research project under the supervision of a thesis advisor.  The project is based on topical research questions that are embedded in relevant scholarly and/or societal debates. The student is expected to position themselves within a theoretical and conceptual framework, which allows for interdisciplinary, innovative, and original approaches of their topic; identify, collect, and manage relevant data for their research; analyse and interpret these data within a robust methodology; and present their findings in a transparent and convincing manner.  Students will be offered training in various presentation skills and publication methods so as to make their projects known to academic and general audiences; they will be taught to critically consider the societal relevance and impact of their research projects and present these to and discuss these with various interested parties and readerships.

Future prospects

This two-year Research Master’s programme prepares a multinational group of students for careers that require advanced academic competence and research skills, including PhD trajectories. Alumni of this programme have found positions as researcher in a cultural or scientific organisation, assistant of a senior researcher, teaching staff in institutions for higher education, policy-making official in the fields of culture and science, editor in the field of historical or cultural scholarship, (assistant) curator in a museum, critic, scientific staff member of heritage and conservation institutions or archaeological agencies, scientific staff member of publishing companies and text agencies. This English-taught master equips students to find such positions in the Netherlands as well as abroad.

Tutor protocol for Research Masters

As soon as possible – and ultimately before September 15 – each student must select one research staff member from his/her programme or discipline to serve as tutor. The student and tutor will discuss the student's academic planning and progress on a regular basis. The tutor may also invite the student to become involved in his/her research.

The tutor will advise the student on all the decisions and options he/she is presented with during the learning process. All the electives, and modules, courses and masterclasses offered by national research schools need to be agreed upon by the tutor. The student’s individual examination programme needs the explicit approval of the Examination Board, who will ultimately check if it meets the requirements of the Research Master’s.

Although the tutor will guide the student through the entire thesis process, he/she will not automatically become the student's thesis supervisor. The student may request that a different instructor serves as supervisor. The thesis supervisor must be a staff member of Radboud University. This does not apply to the second reviewer, who may be employed elsewhere.

The tutor will also advise on internships and funding opportunities to support the student in all possible areas. Further information can be requested from Maaike van Gerven, International Office Arts (internationaloffice@let.ru.nl). Once a student has found an internship position, they must submit this for approval.

Since April 2020, students submit their proposed internship via Osiris Case. The course coordinator (Director of Studies of the Research Master’s) is asked to approve the proposed internship via Osiris Case. In case of approval, the tutor will in most cases be assigned as the RU-internship supervisor. Osiris Case will inform the student about the approval and the assigned supervisor. Attached to that email the student will find the internship contract and further instructions. The process of approval generally takes no more than two weeks. If the proposed internship cannot be approved, the student will receive a motivated rejection that will help them and their tutor to revise the original proposal and resubmit.

Rules for elective courses

The elective component of the curriculum consists of courses of (research) master programmes (15 EC) and courses offered by national research schools (10 EC). At the start of the academic year, students are required to register with one of the national research schools (via the executive secretary). All optional modules will be chosen in agreement with the tutor. Language courses and transferable skill modules are excluded. The final assignments will have to be accomplished in English.

Courses offered by a non-Research Master's degree programme in the Netherlands must be intensified in workload by students of the Research Master. For this course intensification, students are expected to write a critical report of 1.000 words in English, in which they reflect on the aims and learning outcomes of the course and its contributions to their Individual Programme in terms of acquired theoretical, conceptual, methodological, or other type of knowledge and skill. The student must discuss this paper with their tutor.

International Research Training

In the second year students widen their horizons of research practice and deepen their disciplinary knowledge abroad by means of a research training (internship) or course programme with a research component. The programme encourages students to take the initial steps of the preparation for this research training in the first semester. In principle, all students are expected to spend a period of four months abroad. For foreign research master students similar training programmes in the Netherlands may be taken into account.

The host institutions must be recognised universities or research institutes abroad, and in specific circumstances, in the Netherlands outside Nijmegen. In all cases, the programme must strengthen the (disciplinary and interdisciplinary) learning process in the student's specialisation and contribute to the development and application of their research related skills.

Organisation of the programme

Director of Studies: Prof. dr. M Monteiro (marit.monteiro@ru.nl)
Programme coordinator Historical Studies: Dr. D. Raeymaekers (dries.raeymaekers@ru.nl)
Programme coordinator Literary Studies: Prof. dr. A. Montoya  (alicia.montoya@ru.nl)
Programme coordinator Cultural Studies: Prof.dr. H. Grootenboer (hanneke.grootenboer@ru.nl)
Study counselor: Kim Oyen, MA (studentadvisor-hlcs@ru.nl )
Executive secretary: Cecilia Stutvoet (secr.researchmastershlcs@let.ru.nl)

Academic year 2022-2023

In Nijmegen the Academic Year 2022-2023 starts on 5 September 2022.

Students admitted to the research master Historical, Literary and Cultural Studies must be present at the start of the Academic Year.

For an overview of the Academic Year 2022-2023 at Radboud University, Faculty of Arts, https://www.ru.nl/facultyofarts/stip/study-information/courses-exams/annual-calendar-arts/

NOTE: Time periods in different universities and faculties are not harmonised. Therefore, if you are planning to take any courses offered by another university or faculty, you should always check the scheduling there.