Cultural Studies Masters Program Information
Cultural studies is the in-depth examination of cultures' roles in society, their formations across the globe and the factors that affect their identities. Explore what you can learn in a master's degree program and what's required for admission. Get an idea of postgraduate careers and information on doctoral programs.
Master of Arts (M.A.) programs in cultural studies commonly offer interdisciplinary curricula that teach the fundamentals of cultural theory and practice. Applicants will need to have a bachelor's degree to be considered for admission, among other standard master's degree program prerequisites.
Most programs provide instruction regarding the ideological influences in cultures, and students gain deeper understanding of the experiences cultures have and the various perceptions regarding cultures. Programs generally model ways for students to connect areas of culture with art, community and society.
Many cultural studies programs require students to engage in research-based work, and students may gain skills in a variety of research methods, including ethnographic, textual and performance-based styles. Students are often encouraged to collaborate with others, building learning networks within their field. Graduates can continue their educations at the doctoral level or begin professional careers in a multitude of fields.
A baccalaureate degree must be earned before entering a master's-level program. Cultural studies applicants should submit transcripts from all previously completed coursework. Programs may also request a resume, writing sample and letters of recommendation.
Throughout an M.A. program in cultural studies, students commonly explore the formations, roles, struggles and changes within and among cultures. Students usually have the option to customize their coursework according to their interests; for example, they might participate in classes and research projects related to film analysis, oral history or archival studies. Students may enroll in classes that address topics such as:
- Global culture and media
- Comparative nationalism
- Environmental rhetoric
- Feminist theory
- American resistance
- Cultural politics on music
- Education as labor policy
- Religious theories
- Medieval literature
Popular Career Options
A graduate with a master's degree in cultural studies can find a career in various cultural, social, artistic, educational and advocacy fields. She can find an occupation that is tailored to her unique skillset and knowledge. Individuals might pursue positions as:
- Cultural researchers
- Museum administrators
- Media commentators
- Program developers
- Documentary filmmakers
Individuals who graduate from an M.A. degree program in cultural studies may choose to pursue doctoral work in a variety of areas, including the humanities, the arts or social sciences. Ph.D. programs in cultural studies further investigate aspects of culture and require students to pursue extensive studies on their areas of personal interest.
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