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 MA in Heritage Publication

The M.A. in Heritage Publication is a taught programme which is designed to provide archaeologists, local historians and students interested in Ireland’s heritage with a training in publication and presentation skills in different media. It is intended that this will facilitate the creation of material in which recent archaeological discoveries are explained and presented to the local communities in which the excavations have taken place as well as to the Irish public at large and to those with a professional interest in the field.

Full-time students may take the M.A. degree course in one year. Part-time students may take the individual modules over a number of years, depending on the availability of their time and funds.

The programme may lead to doctoral study in the field for suitably qualified graduates.

Aim of the Programme

The aims and objectives of the programme are:

  • • The development of practical and theoretical skills which will facilitate a competence in heritage publication and presentation
  • • The development of audience awareness and identification of the variety of approaches required when presenting archaeological material to people of different age groups and varying levels of educational and professional attainment
  • • To enhance the student’s sense of historical and geographical context as a backdrop to the presentation of archaeological information
  • • To facilitate critical engagement with the problems of presentation and education on heritage issues.

Programme Structure and Content

The MA programme consists of six taught modules. Students will additionally complete a dissertation of 15,000-20,000 words on an approved topic.


Autumn semester (September – January)

  • • The history and landscape of Ireland AD 400-1700  

This module provides students with a broad overview of historical developments in the Irish landscape from late prehistory to the Cromwellian plantations. Students will be required to familiarise themselves with the key social, political and linguistic changes impacting on Irish settlement patterns. This overview will enable students to locate specific sites and monument types within a broader context of regional and national development and will facilitate the presentation and marketing of their material to a wider audience.  

  • • Multimedia authoring

Overview of Multimedia authoring tools available to teachers and children, e.g. Hyperstudio, Flash, PowerPoint, Genesis & Ultima. Use of painting tools, titling, using clip art, saving, adding text to your project, adding buttons, movies, adding sound, editing your work, transitions and presentation. Copyright

  • • Principles of professional and technical communication and information design

Introduction to technical communication; audience analysis; information design; typography; forms of technical writing; graphics and illustrations; style; mechanics; writing technical manuals; designing and writing online help; writing for new media.

Spring term (February – May)

  • • Archaeological writing, illustration and cartography

In this module, students are introduced to the theory and practice of archaeological writing and heritage representation both within the field of professional archaeology and in the community at large. Students will be expected to develop skills and practical knowledge of narrative grammar and structures and an ability to create coherent storylines. Basic practical skills in cartography, illustration, photography are outlined and case-studies provided.  

  • • Archaeological re-enactment, experimental archaeology and public presentation of heritage 

This module provides an overview of various methodologies deployed in the visual and dramatic presentation of archaeological material. The educational value of experimental archaeology is also explored in both its practical and theoretical aspects and methods for archiving such experiments through film, radio and new media are outlined.  

  • • Research tools: historical archives and museum records

This module introduces students to the research archives available for the study of prehistoric, medieval and early Modern Ireland. These include national and regional collections and include manuscript collections, museum records and folklore collections (both documentary and material) as well as printed material. In addition, students will also be exposed to the use of on-line resources such as electronic reference managers and databases and quantative methodologies such as statistical analysis and the use of SPSS.


A variety of assessment methods will be used including written assignments, projects, and course work. The taught modules will be assessed by a combination of continuous assessment, written assignments and practical evaluation of skills acquired. No modules will be linked for assessment.

The dissertation (18 credits) will form half of the final assessment and the six taught modules (18 credits) will form half of the final assessment. Students will be required to attain at least a C grade for the dissertation regardless of the grades attained for the six taught modules if they are to complete the programme successfully.

The minimum qualification is normally a second-class honours degree: grade two in a cognate discipline. In the interests of encouraging work-based learning, however, students with a professional qualification such as archaeology licence-holders, granted under the National Monuments Acts of Ireland 1930-1994 will also be accepted. Applicants with equivalent qualifications or substantial relevant experience may also be considered but final selection may require attendance for interview and/or the submission of written work.

Fees (EU and non-EU)

For more information about fees for this programme, please go to the postgraduate fees 2016-17 page – click here

How to Apply

  1. Download and complete the application form - click here
    • The application form must also include your university transcripts.
    • In the case of non-native English speakers, a copy of IETLS is also required, or equivalent.
  2. Return the application form plus application fee* by email to: admissions@mic.ul.ie or by post to:
    • Admissions Office, Mary Immaculate College, South Circular Road, Limerick, Ireland
    • Telephone: +353 61 204348/204929

Mary Immaculate College, South Circular Road, Limerick, Tel:+35361 204300  V94VN26

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