MA-Handbook

Master of Arts English Studies: Literature, Language, Culture

 

1. The MA

1.1 Requirements

This master's degree programme is taught entirely in English and all applicants are required to provide proof of English-language competence to a clear CEFR (Common European Framework of Reference) C1 level. Prospective students must provide documentation of English competence in one of the following ways:

  • Having completed your BA at an institution where the official language of instruction is English. You will need to submit an official statement from your university administrator that the language of instruction across all courses and faculties is English. If you have completed your degree in a country where the national language is English, you do not need to submit proof.

  • IELTS (Academic): overall grade of 7.5 (minimum of 7.0 in each of the four components)

  • Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE) grades A-B

  • Pearson Test of English (Academic): 75 overall (minimum of 70 in each of the four components)

Attention: Any language certificate must not be more than two years old!

The academic prerequisite for admission to the program is an undergraduate degree in English Studies with either a major or a minor in literary and/or cultural studies, equivalent to a minimum of 60LP or one third of your degree.

There are a limited number of places that can be given to applicants with a minor in English and a major in one of the following areas:

• Comparative Literature; Cultural Studies; Cinema Studies; Theatre and
Dance Studies; Philology in other languages

Attention: You still need to have taken classes in English literary and/or cultural studies that amount to a minimum of 15% of your credits.

As the number of applications far exceeds the places we have to fill there is no guarantee that applicants with such subject combinations can be made an offer of admission.


 *All enquires regarding the processing of applications via Uni-Assist should read: http://www.fu-berlin.de/en/studium/bewerbung/master/konsekutive-masterstudiengaenge/uni-assist/index.html

*Enquiries regarding minimum admission requirements can be directed to the English Department via: beratung@anglistik.fu-berlin.de
*Applications close on 31 May each year. NO LATE APPLICATIONS WILL BE ACCEPTED.*

 

2. Application

Applications are usually open in the spring for the respective autumn (October) intake. There is only one intake a year; there is no intake in the spring (i.e. for the semester beginning in April). For detailed information on the application process please see the following link:

http://www.fu-berlin.de/en/studium/bewerbung/master/index.html

  • Only online applications will be considered in the selection process

  • Please do not send your application to the English Department, such applications cannot be processed

  • Please do not send any documents to the English department or the Admissions Office, please read the information on how to apply at Freie Universität Berlin.

  • The Admissions Office and not the English Department is responsible for the admission process. Please address all requests concerning admission to: info-service@fu-berlin.de

 

For application deadlines, please check the online deadline page at Freie Universität:

http://www.fu-berlin.de/en/studium/bewerbung/bewerbungsfristen_master.html

International applicants should check the uni-assist pages to see whether the Freie Universität Masters in English Studies is available for selection on the pull-down menu.

 

3. Enrolment

You will receive confirmation of acceptance from the university, also if you have applied with Uni-Assist.

You are required to enrol by mail. For detailed information on documents to be enclosed with your enrolment form, please see the following link:

http://www.fu-berlin.de/en/studium/studienorganisation/immatrikulation/immatrikulation/index.html

 

The fees at the current time are roughly 312 Euro per semester. This includes a massively subsidised public transport ticket for the whole of Berlin with six months’ validity.

 

4. Contents and Structure (*for students enrolling after October 2013)

The research colloquium is no longer provided for in the new study and
examination regulations (valid from WS 13/14). Students wishing to complete
their degree under the old regulations should contact their supervisor.

The course programme moves beyond the traditional disciplinary segregation within English Studies and seeks to interface Literary Studies, Linguistics and Cultural Studies, thus offering a fresh, uncompartmentalised and international approach to the subjects studied. Courses and study areas will not be confined to one national literature, but will focus on inter- and transcultural phenomena. The programme will develop students' awareness of the linguistic features of literary and non-literary texts as well as the historical and synchronic varieties of English. It also includes the study of historical contexts and intertextual as well as intermedial relationships. Particular emphasis will be laid on improving students' language skills in written and spoken academic English.

Students may specialise in their fields of study, choosing four (out of eight) modules on e.g. literary and cultural theories and histories, postcolonial studies, medieval studies, gender studies, literature and the other media. They also attend two modules on language skills (Academic Writing, Literary Translation, Communication Skills, Contemporary Britain).

The MA generally takes two years, i.e. four semesters. However, exceptions can sometimes be made on the basis of prior study, e.g. an honours year.

The assessment for the MA is composed of the following four parts:

• Four core modules

• Two language modules

• Master thesis

Module content:

• Modules run for one semester (language modules for two semesters).

• All modules consist of two components

• Core modules consist of a 2-hour tutorial and a 2-hour seminar.

• The language modules consist of two tutorials and and run on for two semesters, with one tutorial per semester. The first part always starts in the winter semester, so beginning a language module in the summer semester is not possible.

• Classes begin 15 minutes after the official start time and end 15 minutes before the official end time, e.g. a class scheduled 10-12 begins at 10:15 and ends at 11:45.

• All core modules are assessed only in one component. Assessment usually takes the form of a long essay. In the language modules, assessment may take the form of a portfolio or presentation.

• The modules are offered on a regular basis; four core in the winter semester and four in the summer semester. While the modules keep their title, the content and subjects of the seminars and tutorials offered for each of them will change with every new semester. All language modules start every winter semester. Please check the Lecture and Course Catalogue (Vorlesungsverzeichnis) for up to date information on specific content: http://www.fu-berlin.de/vv


4.1 The Modules

The core modules cover literary studies, linguistics and cultural studies. They are worth 15 credits each. Attendance is obligatory. Assessment usually consists of a 7,500 word essay, except for Literature and Media, which is assessed with either a 7,500 word essay or a media project. Four of the following eight modules must be taken:

• Interfacing Linguistics and Literature (offered in the winter semester)

• Literary and Cultural Theory (offered in the winter semester)

• Constructing Difference: Literary and Cultural Histories (offered in the winter semester)

• Literature and Media (offered in the winter semester)

• Negotiating Gender: Constructions, Representations, Theories (offered in the summer semester)

• Medieval English Literatures (offered in the summer semester)

• Postcolonial Literatures and Varieties of English (offered in the summer semester)

• Studying the Present Moment (offered in the summer semester)

The language modules, unlike the core modules, are spread across two semesters with part 1 in the winter semester and part 2 in the summer semester. The parts are both called tutorials, with one being worth 10 credits and the other 5, i.e. you must complete both parts of the module for the total credits. Assessment differs from module to module – some consist of two essays whilst others consist of a portfolio of work. Two of the four language modules must be taken:

• Academic Writing

• Literary Translation

• Communication Skills

• Contemporary Britain: Language and Identity

The Master’s thesis must be completed within 23 weeks, usually in your final semester. It must be written in English and be ca. 22 000 words in length. It counts as 30 credits.

 

Core Modules

Module name: Interfacing Linguistics and Literature

Prerequisites: None

Course form

Assessment

Weight/

credits

Attendance obligations

Tutorial

Essay in English, 7500 words

5

Yes

Seminar

10

Yes

Credits: 15

the course is offered in the winter term

  

Module name: Literary and Cultural Theories

Prerequisites: None

Course form

Assessment

Attendance obligations

Tutorial

Essay in English, 7500 words

Yes

Seminar

Yes

Credits: 15 LP

the course is offered in the winter term

  

Module name: Constructing Difference: Literary and Cultural Histories

Prerequisites: None

Course form

Assessment

Attendance obligations

Tutorial

Essay in English, 7500 words

Yes

Seminar

Yes

Credits: 15

the course is offered in the winter term

  

Module name: Literature and Media

Prerequisites: None

Course form

Assessment

Attendance obligations

Tutorial

Essay in English, 7500 words

OR

Media Project, to the equivalent of 7500 words

Yes

Seminar

Yes

Credits: 15

the course is offered in the winter term

  

Module name: Negotiating Gender: Constructions, Representations, Theories

Prerequisites: None

Course form

Assessment

Attendance obligations

Tutorial

Essay in English, 7500 words

Yes

Seminar

Yes

Credits: 15

the course is offered in the summer term

  

Module name: Medieval English Literatures

Prerequisites: None

Course form

Assessment

Attendance obligations

Tutorial

Essay in English, 7500 words

Yes

Seminar

Yes

Credits: 15

the course is offered in the summer term

 

Module name: Postcolonial Literatures and Varieties of English

Prerequisites: None

Lehr- und Lernformen

Assessment

Weight/

credits

Attendance obligations

Tutorial

Essay in English, 7500 words

5

Yes

Seminar

10

Yes

Credits: 15

the course is offered in the summer term

  

Module name: Studying the Present Moment

Prerequisites: None

Course form

Assessment

Weight/

credits

Attendance obligations

Tutorial

Essay in English, 7500 words

5

Yes

Seminar

10

Yes

Credits: 15

the course is offered in the summer term

 

Language Modules

Module name: Academic Writing

Prerequisites: For Part 1, None; for Part 1, successful completion of Part 1

Course form

Assessment

Weight/

credits

Attendance obligations

Tutorial I

Essay in English, 2500 words

5

Yes

Tutorial II

Essay in English, 5000 words

10

Yes

Credits: 15

part 1 is offered in the winter term, part 2 in the summer term

 

Module name: Literary Translation

 

Prerequisites: For Part 1, None; for Part 1, successful completion of Part 1

Course form

Assessment

Weight/

credits

Attendance obligations

Tutorial I

Translations totalling 7500 words

5

Yes

Tutorial II

10

Yes

Credits: 15

part 1 is offered in the winter term, part 2 in the summer term

  

Module name: Communication Skills

Prerequisites: For Part 1, None; for Part 1, successful completion of Part 1

Course form

Assessment

Weight/

credits

Attendance obligations

Tutorial I

Presentation with discussion (60 minutes duration)

10

Yes

Tutorial II

5

Yes

Credits: 15

part 1 is offered in the winter term, part 2 in the summer term

  

Module name: Contemporary Britain: Language and Identity

Prerequisites: For Part 1, None; for Part 1, successful completion of Part 1

Course form

Assessment

Weight/

credits

Attendance obligations

Tutorial I

Presentation with discussion (60 minutes duration)

10

Yes

Tutorial II

5

Yes

Credits: 15

part 1 is offered in the winter term, part 2 in the summer term

 

MA Thesis

MA Thesis

Prerequisites: Successful completion of one module in language work and two modules in literary studies/linguistics/cultural studies

Course form

Assessment

Attendance obligations

Individual Research

Written thesis of 22 000 words; must be submitted within six months of registration

No

Credits: 30

 

5 Once you are here

5.1 Module Enrolment – ZEDAT Account, Campus Management & Blackboard

To officially enrol in a module you will need a ZEDAT (Zentraleinrichtung Datenverarbeitung) account username and password. It is important to have these, as you need them to log into both Campus Management, where you must enrol in the modules of your choice, and Blackboard, which is an e-learning platform that stores course information and readings, and is also used for communication.

Your ZEDAT account also gives you a webmail address, which the university will use to contact you, and enables you to use the university's computer pools, some of the library computers, the wireless network on campus, and other services.

Once you have registered at the FU, you should receive a letter with a username and password from the ZEDAT. If you do not receive such a letter then you can go to the help desk at the ZEDAT and ask for a temporary username and password. Once you log on to a computer there, you can then change your username and password.

5.2 Lecture and Course Catalogue

The Vorlesungsverzeichnis or Lecture and Course Catalogue gives you access to specific information about module content in the current semester:

http://www.fu-berlin.de/vv

On this page, you can find our faculty Philosophie und Geisteswissenschaften in the drop-down menu "Fachbereiche". Click on that, and scroll down to the Institut für Englische Philologie (WE 6). By clicking on the link "MA English Studies" you will be taken to a page that allows you to browse the content of the different components of the MA: modules, language modules and the research colloquium. The information here details the specific content of each tutorial and seminar, the professor(s) leading the two components of the module, and the time, day and location of the tutorial and seminar.

5.3 Libraries

MA students have access to a number of libraries including:

• Philological Library (Philologische Bibliothek)

• University Library (Universitätsbibliothek)

• JFK Library (John-F.-Kennedy-Inst. für Nordamerikastudien)

Some libraries like the University Library allow students to borrow books on a four-week loan period, whilst others, such as the Philological Library do not have a lending system with the exception of weekend loans (between 15:00 on Friday and 10:00 on Monday).

To borrow a book you must present your semester ticket with the book(s) you want to borrow at the check-out/information desk.

There are a number of computers in most of the libraries which students can use. Some computers are available solely for searching for books using the online catalogue search engine, whilst others are available for general use. You log into general use computers using your Matrikelnummer as your username, and usually your postal code and the first letter of the name of your street (e.g. 14195h, if you lived on Habelschwerdter Allee at the moment you registered at FU) as your password.

5.4 Residence Registration

Everyone living in Germany, even if temporarily, must register at the Bürgeramt (administrative office for citizens). When coming to Berlin you are supposed to register within 7 days at one of the offices. You will need to show your passport when you register at the Bürgeramt. You will get a proof of registration, which you must look after as it is an important document. To find your nearest Bürgeramt go to the following website and enter your address:

http://www.berlin.de/stadtplan/?grid=dedatlas100&size=5x5&ADR_STREET=Friedrichstra%DFe&ADR_HOUSE=100&show=711

5.5 Opening a German Bank Account

All students will need a German bank account for their time in Berlin. There are many reasons for this. Paying rent will often be a matter of setting up a bank transfer, paying for a second semester has to be done by bank transfer, and if you want to receive the one-time welcome fund (Begrüßungsgeld) you will need to give the bank details of a German bank account. Moreover, a German bank giro account facilitates any kind of money transfer within Germany (any payments, remittance etc.). Ideally you find a branch of any bank near to where live. When opening an account please have the proof of registration with you as well as your passport or ID and your certificate of enrolment from FU Berlin.

 

Vorlesungsverzeichnis