Students on the MA History of Political Thought and Intellectual History  will take a core course together with a selection of individual course modules, and complete a Masters dissertation. The core course, which runs across two Semesters, is taken by all students and taught by a selection of staff within the University. In addition to the core, students choose their preferred modules from a menu of specialist options. After the completion of coursework in semesters one and two, the dissertation is undertaken over the spring and summer months, under the supervision of an expert in the relevant subject area. The programme also offers obligatory language training in a modern European language, or in ancient or Medieval Latin.

The MA may be taken on a full or part-time basis. All full-time students, in addition to the core course (60 credits) and the dissertation (60 credits), will take further units of study adding up to at least 60 credits spread over two semesters. Students taking the MA part-time over two years will take the core course in their first year and complete their dissertation in their second year. A further 30 credits must be taken in both years one and two. Each course is taught in two-hour weekly seminar blocks and is assessed through coursework and/or by exam.

Students are also encouraged to attend the History of Political Ideas seminars at the Institute of Historical Research.