MA Public Humanities

Faculty of Arts and Humanities

Arts and humanities at Sheffield isn't just about academic excellence. We want to get ideas and discoveries out into the world, where they can enrich people's lives.

Public engagement is more important than ever. It has to be first-rate to have an impact. And we're leading by example.

You can take your fascination with your subject and turn it into a fulfilling career that benefits society. We can provide you with the skills and experience you need to do it. You'll get hands-on experience with digital technologies, public engagement and cultural heritage.

The Faculty of Arts and Humanities at Sheffield is a family of departments and incorporates: Archaeology, Interdisciplinary Biblical Studies, The School of English Literature, Language and Linguistics, History, The School of Languages and Cultures, Music and Philosophy.

About the course

The MA combines hands-on training in project management and digital technologies with the study of cultural heritage and public engagement – their value, their impact on societies and what forms they may take in the future.

You get to design and undertake your own projects, which may draw on your existing specialist subjects or explore new areas.

You will select pathway modules, which are core for the course, and combine these with modules taught by staff from across the Faculty in their areas of expertise – history, music, literature and so on.

Experts from the Humanities Research Institute (HRI) and staff with practical experience in public engagement and cultural heritage will open your mind to the full potential of digital technology and theoretical and practical elements of public humanities.

Core modules are designed to simulate real-life projects and you'll hone your project management skills on work placement with an appropriate organisation in Sheffield.

We ask you to do some independent study and keep a journal reflecting on your work. You'll be assessed on your coursework and a dissertation.

Core modules

You'll choose one or two core pathway modules from:

  • Digital Humanities
  • Public Engagement
  • Cultural Heritage

Other core modules are:

  • Introduction to Public Humanities
  • One appropriate linked project module
  • Dissertation


  • Project work
  • Workshops
  • Work placements
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials

You'll do some independent study and keep a journal reflecting on your work.


  • Coursework
  • Dissertation

Apply now

MA applicants: select 'Interdisciplinary Faculty Programmes' as the faculty on the postgraduate online application form.

Postgraduate diploma/certificate applicants: select 'Faculty of Arts and Humanities' as the faculty on the postgraduate online application form.

Faculty of Arts and Humanities student

Key facts

Course duration

  • 1 year full-time
  • 2 years part-time

Entry requirements

You'll need a 2:1 in an appropriate subject. To talk about your qualifications, call us or send us an email:

T: +44 (0)114 222 9707

English language requirements

Overall IELTS grade of 7.0 with a minimum of 6.0 in each component, or equivalent.

Entry requirements for international students

Fees and funding

For information about funding opportunities for postgraduate study, please contact us.

Financial information for postgraduate taught courses

Mike Pidd

We're working on a project with Sheffield's Showroom Cinema to explore how additional film content, eg interviews with directors, descriptions of a film’s historical and social context, can be delivered to cinema-goers via their mobile phones. This project hopes to enable the cinema industry to generate additional revenue from the content using mobile micro payments.

Mike Pidd, Digital Manager Humanities Research Institute

Your career

The MA Public Humanities is designed to prepare you for a career in communicating ideas, working directly with the public or behind the scenes. You could go into the arts and heritage industry, publishing, theatre, education, government or the media.

You'll get a lot of experience with digital technology on the course. This makes you the kind of project manager employers are looking for – someone who can lead the work on public engagement and cultural heritage projects.

Humanities Research Institute

The HRI is a world-leading centre of research, which fosters interdisciplinary and collaborative research. The Institute has expertise in design and support for innovative digital technologies and public engagement projects with staff, students and external partners.

Humanities Research Institute

About the faculty

The Faculty of Arts and Humanities at Sheffield is a family of departments with a reputation for excellence in research and public engagement.

We specialise in interdisciplinary MAs. This kind of study encourages you to think differently and see connections that others might not notice – a valuable asset if you're looking for a job or funding for a PhD.

We believe that the arts and humanities play a vital role in society, contributing to culture and enriching our lives.

We know that you can take your passion for a subject and turn it into a fulfilling career. And we can show you how to do it.

Bob Shoemaker

Digital humanities is fun and rewarding because you can reach such a wide audience by making quality resources available on the internet. I love learning about the unanticipated ways in which users engage with our websites, both in academic research and in the creative sector.

In the last decade I have co-directed several projects, notably the Old Bailey Proceedings Online, London Lives, Connected Histories, and Locating London’s Past. My experience in developing these projects feeds directly into the modules I teach.

Professor Bob Shoemaker, Department of History

Apply now

You can apply for postgraduate study using our Postgraduate Online Application Form. It is a quick and easy process.

MA applicants should select 'Interdisciplinary Faculty Programmes' as the faculty on the form.

Postgraduate diploma/certificate applicants should select 'Faculty of Arts and Humanities' as the faculty on form.

Postgraduate Online Application Form

Any questions?

If you'd like to know more about any aspect of our courses, contact us:

Ida Kemp
T: +44 (0)114 222 9707