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Course options

  • Qualification

    MA - Master of Arts

  • Location

    Merchiston Campus

  • Study mode

    Full time

  • Start date


  • Duration

    1 year

Course summary


This innovative course in vibrant, cosmopolitan Edinburgh allows you to combine academic study with specialised learning about digital and public humanities.

You’ll practice digital research, community engagement and have the opportunity to pursue a placement with partners in the cultural sector, to gain knowledge of and experience in public-facing scholarship in the humanities.

You’ll benefit from the research expertise of an enthusiastic teaching team and our practical experience in working with a range of external organisations, from UNESCO City of Literature Trust and the Edinburgh International Book Festival to our award-winning partnership with the Scottish Prison Service and Fife College.

You’ll engage with theoretical debates at the forefront of the two exciting new fields of digital and public humanities alongside practice-based learning about digital media and tools for humanities research. You’ll consider the interface between theoretical debates on community, culture, media, identity and audiences, and practical examples of community engagement in academia, cultural organisations and the third sector. This course allows you to tailor your programme of study to your individual preferences, from a focus on textual analysis to more digital content and practical applications.

Course details

This course unites academic skills that employers value, such as research, critical thinking, writing and communication skills, with practical skills for the digital economy and creative industries. While the course seeks to enhance your employability, its ethos is also characterised by a strong commitment to raising awareness about social justice and social inequalities, including questions of access to the arts and education, and the impact of and potential solutions to the digital divide.

A compulsory core module in Digital Humanities will develop your knowledge of various methods and approaches to practicing humanities research with digital tools, including online content production, digitisation, online curation, the usage and ethics of big data.

The compulsory Public Humanities core module will introduce you to the different ‘publics’ cultural organisations engage with, and the theory and practice of outreach, access, advocacy, identity and cultural representation.

A compulsory Research Methods module complements these areas with advanced training in generic humanities research and presentation skills. You'll benefit from a range of optional modules in related areas, including Design, Computing and Tourism, alongside literary and cultural studies.

You’ll learn about theory, practices, and debates at the forefront of the Digital and Public Humanities, including a range of subjects from:

Intersections between literary and cultural studies and computing
Theories of the ‘public’ and communities, as they intersect with literary and cultural scholarship
Representations of technology and society in cultural texts, and genre formation in the digital age
Engaging the public with research through practices ranging from exhibition design to cultural heritage development
Community media practice

A work placement option, as well as module choices in related disciplines including Computing, Design, Film and Media, and Tourism, allow you to put learning from core modules into practice.


A range of professional and research roles in different sectors including:

cultural and literary heritage
museums and galleries
web design
data analysis for arts and public sector organisations
outreach for cultural organisations
creative industries

The course will also equip you for further study at PhD level in related subject areas.

Tuition fees

Students living in United States
(international fees)

£ 15,490per year

Tuition fees shown are for indicative purposes and may vary. Please check with the institution for most up to date details.

University information

Edinburgh Napier University

  • University League Table


  • Campus address

    Edinburgh Napier University, 219 Colinton Road, Edinburgh, Edinburgh, City Of, EH14 1DJ, Scotland

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