Rhetoric MA

Rhetoric MA
“Speech is a powerful master” said Gorgias. We shape who we are and how we live by the ways we speak and express ourselves – publicly and privately. Since ancient Greece the theory and practice of “speaking well” has been at the heart of European culture and public life and of our ideals of free speech and human dignity. As communication cultures change, our rhetoric changes as well. This course provides a unique opportunity in the UK to study an exciting and rich field of intellectual and practical relevance and a unique preparation for a wide field of professional careers.

Entry and Admissions

Award Type:




Study Mode:

Full time and Part time

Delivery Method:


Course Length:

Full-time: Three Semesters over 12 months, Part-time: Three Semesters over 24 months


School of Language, Literature and International Studies

Partner Colleges:

No Partner College



Start Date:


Entry Requirements:
Seminars, lectures, self-study, tutorials, workshops, online learning activities

Assessment is by coursework and a dissertation (MA only)

Upper second class BA/BSc in a relevant discipline (e.g. Languages or other Humanities disciplines, Philosophy, Sociology, Psychology, Law, Politics, Media and Communication related disciplines)

Course Content

Course Outline:
The new MA in Rhetoric at UCLan is unique in the UK. It provides you with the opportunity to study the rich history and theory of the practice of speaking, or more broadly, communicating, well – and to master that practice yourself. For the rhetorical tradition, human expression and meaning are a unity of action, emotion and reason. Expression reflects the life we live, and it helps to sustain, change and improve it; Rhetorical ideas are at the heart of what it means to be human. Rhetoric has been at the centre of European culture since its beginning and is a fascinating and intellectually serious and challenging topic in its own right, as well as a unique preparation for a career in many fields of professional activity or in research and education. The ability to express your thoughts and motivations, reason convincingly, speak persuasively and deliberate with others constructively is crucial in politics, art, science and business – in all fields of public life. But also in the personal sphere it is in language that we shape who we are and how we live. Everywhere where language is used to investigate, express, influence, shape and contest identities and truths, to relate people to each other, to overcome, respect or indeed create differences and to create and disseminate knowledge and understanding, rhetoric is working.

In today’s society, communicative practice and competence is more important than ever before and changing faster than ever before. Understanding the rhetorical dimension and mastering it is enriching for anyone and significant to the world you live in. In the words of the Roman rhetoricians: “speaking well means living well”. Become human, study rhetoric!

The course consist of the following modules:

1. History and Theory of Rhetoric 1 (antiquity to 19th Century)

2. History and Theory of Rhetoric 2 (20th Century and contemporary developments)

3. Political Rhetoric

4. Rhetoric of Narrative and Image

5. Power in Talk

6. Research Seminar – Guided Research Topic

7. Dissertation

Course at a Glance

Year 1

  • Comprehensive understanding of the history, theory and current status of the field of rhetoric.
  • Ability to apply rhetorical theory and skills in a critical and reflective manner to the functioning of discourse in culture and society broadly construed and in a variety of personal and professional settings.
  • Ability to carry out research at MA level in aspects of rhetoric

Learning Environment & Assessment:

Academic Expertise

We are committed to delivering academic learning of the highest quality, helping you to stretch your mind and fulfil your university ambitions.

Learning outcome & aims

We aim to create the perfect blend of knowledge, practical experience and relevance to equip UCLan graduates with the confidence and skills they need to get ahead in the world of work.

Industry links & professional accreditation

Links with academic societies across the world are being developed; conference participation by students is encouraged and supported

Work experience and international opportunities

At UCLan we work with a range on businesses and organisations, many of which provide work experience opportunities and project briefs to enable to you gain real work experience whilst you undertake your postgraduate programme. Your course tutor will advise on opportunities available within your course and UCLan’s Careers Service can provide help, advice and guidance on how to apply for them and how to make the most of these opportunities.

Graduate Careers

UCLan’s Academic Development and Employability team offer ongoing supportive careers advice and guidance throughout your course and after graduation, along with a range of modules, work experience opportunities and events to help you acquire the skills to make you stand out to potential employers in today’s competitive market.


UCLan is recognised for its outstanding course provision which gives students the skills, knowledge, and personal attributes necessary to succeed at the University and in their future careers. To find out more about the experiences of our students, read our success stories.

Progression Routes

From foundation courses through to world-leading research degrees, you can study a wide range of subject areas at UCLan. Whether you want to develop your knowledge in a subject you enjoy or gain further qualifications to enhance your career, at UCLan there are numerous progression routes for you to follow.

Fees & Funding

The standard fee for UK/EU students studying this course is below. For further information including the availability of bursaries/scholarships or student financial support please view our Fees and Finance pages. TBC

How to Apply

If you are interested in applying for this course, our comprehensive How to Apply pages will guide you through the process. Here at UCLan, our aim is to encourage you to develop your potential and we offer a flexible approach to admissions, which reflects our commitment to all those who would benefit from our courses.

About UCLan

Course Enquiries

University of Central Lancashire,
PR1 2HE,

United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0)1772 892400