menu icon
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Latest news
Late Antique and Byzantine Studies MPhil

Late Antique and Byzantine Studies MPhil

Key information

Qualification type

MPhil - Master of Philosophy

Subject areas

Byzantine Studies Late Medieval History Early Medieval History

Course type


Course Summary

This two-year course has been devised as a multi-purpose introduction to the Roman world in Late Antiquity, to Byzantium, the medieval successor of the East Roman Empire, and to neighboring peoples and their cultures. This is a two-year taught course that can be taken as a free-standing degree, or as the first step towards doctoral research. The course includes the completion of a 30,000-word dissertation. You have the option of selecting a focus of study dependant on your knowledge of languages or on your primary interests in the field. Two basic pathways lead into each field of study, one in language training and one in auxiliary disciplines, and you are expected to choose between them at the beginning of the course. Although the two components of the course, Late Antiquity and Byzantium, have been designed to the same specification and are conjoined in a single course, you are expected to concentrate on one or other of the fields. If you wish to apply for the DPhil you will be encouraged to develop your doctoral proposal in consultation with your supervisor during the first few months of your second year, so that you will be well placed to make a doctoral application. About a quarter of master’s students proceed to doctoral work at Oxford; others continue academic study at other institutions. Other career destinations are as diverse as, but broadly in line with, undergraduate history career destinations: law, finance, management consultancy, civil service etc.

Different course options

Study mode

Full time


21 months

Start date



History - Core
Art and Archaeology - Core
History and Byzantine literature - Core

Tuition fees

UK fees
Course fees for UK / EU students

For this course (per year)


Average for all Postgrad courses (per year)


International fees
Course fees for non-UK / EU students

For this course (per year)


Average for all Postgrad courses (per year)


Entry requirements

As a minimum, applicants should hold or be predicted to achieve the equivalent of the following UK qualifications: a first-class or strong upper second-class undergraduate degree with honours in a relevant discipline in the humanities or social sciences. Applicants are normally expected to have a previous degree in history, but for master's applications a number of candidates may be accepted with a degree in a different subject area. You will need to ensure that you link your proposed dissertation topic with your previous expertise when you present it in your research proposal, or that you explain why you want to switch to study history, and to show that you have already done some background research into it. Your submitted written work should show your writing and research skills in their best light, as it will be important to show that you have the necessary skills required for historical research. For applicants with a degree from the USA, the minimum GPA sought is 3.75 out of 4.0.