Skip navigation

About MRes Degrees

If you're considering postgraduate study and you already have quite a clear idea about an area of research you'd like to pursue, then an MRes could be the ideal choice.

MRes, or Master of Research, qualifications sit somewhere between taught postgraduate degrees (e.g. MA or MSc) and research degrees such as PhD. They typically consist of a few taught modules focusing on practical training in research methodologies, which lead into an extended independent research project.

If you're interested in pursuing a career in research, whether that's within academia via a PhD or in the commercial sphere, than an MRes would be an extremely valuable qualification.

Northumbria offers MRes courses across many subject areas including Arts, Design, Exercise Science, Humanities, Healthcare, Psychology and Social Sciences.

Who should study an MRes?

An MRes is ideal if your main goal is to undertake research training.

This might be because you want to prepare for a PhD. Though an MA or MSc includes a dissertation, an MRes offers much more research experience. It also provides more extensive research training, allowing you to hit the ground running when you start a PhD.

Alternatively, you might actually choose an MRes because you don't want to do a PhD. Many professions value research skills, but a full three year PhD may not be necessary. An MRes offers a shorter, more focused route to to research training.

What's it like to study an MRes?

Studying an MRes will involve some of the taught instruction that defines an MA or MSc. But you'll spend most of your time on extended research projects like those involved in a PhD.

The exact balance between taught and research units varies between different MRes programmes.

Some may start with methodological training before transitioning into an extended research project. Others may mix core taught units with independent project tasks.

Whatever the format for your MRes the emphasis will very much be upon your own research work. Taught units will support this, but will not account for a large part of your overall grade.

How long is an MRes?

Our MRes programmes are usually one year of full-time study. A part-time degree will normally last two years.

What are MRes research projects like?

In some ways the research you'll do for an MRes is a lot like the final dissertation required for an MA or MSc.

You'll select a topic, be assigned a supervisor and conduct an independent investigation before presenting your findings. As you'd expect, however, the research required by an MRes is much more extensive.

This might mean that you'll be expected to complete multiple research projects. This is more likely for technical or professional subjects that require training in different types of research.

Or, you might simply complete one large project. If so, you can expect this to be much longer than the dissertation for a taught degree.

The academic scope of your research may also be more demanding. You won't be judged by PhD standards (for which a substantial original contribution to knowledge is required). But you may be expected to be closer to this level than an equivalent MA or MSc dissertation.

The advantage of this is than an MRes really does provide a full academic research experience. Whereas the dissertation is a single (but significant) part of a taught Masters, your work on an MRes will make you a proficient and professional researcher.

11 courses found

Back to top