The MRes in Latin American Studies is a specialised degree that provides a unique opportunity for students interested in Latin American history, anthropology, geography, and culture to broaden and deepen their knowledge of Latin America and to develop an independent research project on a topic of their choice.
Students gain an in-depth overview of key research problems and debates in the field of Latin American studies as well as an introduction to a range of research methods particularly useful for undertaking scholarly work on Latin America.
Students are taught by leading scholars in the field of Latin American studies.
Students who successfully complete the programme receive a University of London Master of Research degree.
In their first term, students take Research Themes and Debates in Latin America, a 30-credit module that provides a historical introduction to key research problems and debates in the field of Latin American studies. Students learn how to recognise, problematise, and analyse themes and tropes within Latin American studies and identify where gaps in knowledge exist or where new approaches could enrich the field. In developing these skills, students become independent scholars.
In their second term, students complete Research Methods in Latin American Studies, a 30-credit module that introduces the range of methods that can be applied in humanities and social science research in Latin American studies. Students are introduced to the practical issues that may be encountered in the field while conducting research in Latin America.
Over the summer term, students complete a dissertation of 30,000 words based on their own independent research.
Structure and assessment
All modules are core and compulsory.
Research Themes and Debates in Latin America - 30 credits
This module provides a historical introduction to key research problems and debates in the field of Latin American Studies which will enable students to identify promising approaches and research projects in the field. This module will enable students to recognise, problematise, and analyse themes and tropes within Latin American Studies and identify where lacuna exist or where new approaches could enrich the field. It developing these skills, it will enable students to develop into independent scholars.
Research Methods in Latin American Studies - 30 credits
This module introduces students to the range of methods that can be applied in humanities and social science research in Latin American Studies. In addition to providing students with theoretical underpinnings, students will be introduced to the practical issues which may be encountered in the field while conducting research in Latin America.
Independent research-based dissertation of 30,000 words (including footnotes) - 120 credits
Students are assessed through written assignments and a research-based dissertation of 30,000 words. For the module Research Themes and Debates in Latin America, students will produce a portfolio of reports on topics within the module (5,000 words total).
For the module Research Methods in Latin American Studies, students will produce a literature review of 2,000 words and a dissertation proposal of 3,000 words.
How you study
This degree can be taken full time over one year or part time over two years.
The normal minimum entrance requirement is a First or Upper Second Class Honours degree from a university in the UK or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.
We will consider applications from candidates who do not meet the formal academic requirements but who offer alternative qualifications and/or relevant experience.
The Institute offers students a range of resources in Latin American studies that are unparalleled in the field. The ILAS Library collections, which have been integrated with the Senate House Latin American and Caribbean Studies collection, include more than 90,000 volumes.
The holdings cover most aspects of Latin America and the Caribbean: the geographical spread covers all territories of Central and South America and the islands of the Caribbean, as well as the islands of the South Atlantic and Antarctic territories administered by Chile and Argentina. Most of the material is focused on the humanities and cognate social sciences.
Through the ILAS collections, students also have access to primary materials that will be useful for their dissertations—for example, the material of the Political Archives, which includes pamphlets, posters, and reports from every country in the region. The ILAS Special Collections also contain many rare materials that are difficult to find elsewhere in the UK; some items are difficult to access even within Latin America itself, and are frequently in better condition than those in Latin American libraries and archives.
Lecturing and Teaching
Students will have two hours of teaching each week during term-time. Teaching takes place in small, intensive seminars led by Institute lecturers. These are designed to facilitate discussion and enable students to deepen their knowledge and develop their ideas.