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Taught Course FAQs


What is a taught postgraduate course?

A taught postgraduate course generally involves taking taught modules offered in the qualification of your choice, you may be asked to submit essays or projects during that time. This is then usually followed by independent research, leading to you writing a dissertation on a topic of your choice.


What can the University of Warwick offer taught course students?

Warwick can give you the largest choice of taught postgraduate courses in the UK with over 150 courses on offer.

We have a large and diverse population of students on taught courses, now almost totalling 8,796.

The results of the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise (RAE) again reiterate Warwick’s position as one of the UK’s leading research universities, with Warwick ranked at 7th overall in the UK (based on multi-faculty institutions) and the top University in the Midlands.

All taught courses are therefore developed and delivered by experts in their field who draw upon the research excellence of Warwick staff. This ensures that material used is at the cutting edge of academic research and discovery.


How can a taught postgraduate course benefit me?

It can help you to undertake more advanced and detailed study in the subject of your first degree. You can develop the skills and subject knowledge necessary for a research degree. You can deepen your knowledge and learn the specific skills necessary for your chosen career in the wider workplace either straight after your first degree or as part of a process of continuing professional development when you have been in the workplace for some time. You can change direction and develop new skills by studying for a programme that differs from your previous studies.


How will I be taught?

Teaching is mainly carried out through seminars, workshops and lectures. Your dissertation work will normally be individually supervised on a one-to-one basis.


How will I be assessed?

Assessment is mainly through coursework but some of the courses in the sciences and the social sciences may be assessed through formal examination.


What kinds of qualifications are offered for taught courses?

The majority of courses offered are Master's degrees, namely: Master of Art (MA), Master of Business Administration (MBA), Master of Science (MSc) or a Master of Law (LLM), Master of Clinical Sciences (MClinSci).


How are these courses structured?

The exact structure will depend on the individual course but generally you will spend three-quarters of your time taking your taught courses (usually between October and June) and the remainder (April or June to September) researching and writing your dissertation on a topic of your choice. This structure will be reconfigured over two years if you opt to undertake the course on a part-time basis.


Can I take modules in a number of departments?

Warwick offers a number of interdisciplinary Master's courses. These can be found both in the main academic departments and in specialist research centres.


Can I study for a Master's Degree part-time?

Most taught postgraduate courses at Warwick can be studied part time. A small number are available by Distance Learning, including the MBA, the MA in Religious Education and the MA in Educational Management. Unless the course is designed specifically for part-time study, taught courses will normally include some compulsory day time sessions. Warwick advises overseas students who wish to study part-time to check with their local embassy to ensure that their visa allows for part-time study.


Do you have any other kinds of qualification for taught courses?

Some disciplines offer Postgraduate Award, Postgraduate Certificate and Postgraduate Diploma qualifications. These are shorter courses and usually consist of at least part of the taught elements of the comparable Master's degree. Some vocationally-orientated Postgraduate Certificate and Postgraduate Diploma courses are offered and these are usually designed to be taken part time. Warwick also offers a range of Flexible Masters courses which are focused on Continuing Professional Development.


What are Flexible Master's courses?

Flexible Master's courses are designed to meet the needs of professional students who may wish to undertake advanced study alongside their continued employment. They are extremely adaptable as regards time and content whilst retaining the necessary intellectual and academic rigour expected at Master's level.


What qualifications are available in the Flexible Masters courses?

Warwick is offering a series of new courses at a Master's Level and it will also be possible to register for a number of other qualifications also at a postgraduate level. These will include:

  • Postgraduate Award (PGA) - 20/40 CATS points
  • Postgraduate Certificate - 60 CATS points
  • Postgraduate Diploma - 120 CATS points
  • Master's Degree - 180 cats points

Students are expected to register for the appropriate award level. It is possible to start your course by taking one or two PGA's*; if you then find that you want to develop the course further you can re-register for a higher level award.


What are the entry requirements for a taught postgraduate course?

You will normally need at least a lower second class degree (2:2) or an equivalent qualification in an appropriate subject.

Some departments will ask for at least an upper second class degree (2:1) or an equivalant. They may also ask for some form of work experience.

If you do not have a degree of the required grade you may be, in exceptional circumstances, considered on the merits of your previous experience. We advise you to contact your preferred department at an early stage to discuss your eligibility.

Full details of departmental admissions requirements and key contacts can be found on-line using the A-Z listings.


How long will it take me to study for a postgraduate taught qualification?

Usually the standard period of study needed for a postgraduate taught qualification is as follows:

Master's (MA, MSc, LLM) - 1 year Full-Time
Master's (MA, MSc, LLM) - 2 years Part-Time
Flexible Master's - 2 to 8 years Part-Time
Postgraduate Diploma - 9 to 12 months Full-TIme
Postgraduate Diploma - 18 to 24 months Part-Time
Postgraduate Certificate - 6 to 12 months Full-TIme
Postgraduate Certificate - 12 to 18 months Part-Time

The periods of study for Diplomas and Certificates can vary and some are designed to be taken part-time by students in directly related professional employment. Some Master's degrees are available part-time over three or four years. The periods of study listed above should only be used for general guidance, detailed information can be found in individual departmental entries.


Do you accept visiting postgraduate students?

If you are a postgraduate student from another UK university or from an international higher education institution you are welcome to join the Warwick Graduate School as a visiting student for periods of three to twelve months.

As a visiting student you will not be registered for a formal University qualification but you can, with the agreement of the relevant academic staff, follow individual taught courses or undertake a period of supervised research at Warwick.

Find a Course

A-Z of Taught Courses

A-Z of Academic Depts

Funding Your Taught Course

Application deadlines

Places on taught postgraduate taught courses are limited, so you should submit your application as early as possible.

If you are an international applicant and need to obtain a student visa, you will need to leave plenty of time for this process.

For this reason, international applicants must submit their application by 31 July for courses that begin in September. If you are a UK or EU applicant, there are no deadlines for applications to postgraduate taught places.

Please note that some departments will have earlier deadlines; you should check the information in the Application Fact File on each individual postgraduate taught course webpage (you can find a list of taught courses on the A-Z webpage).