MA Languages & Image Studies

Graduate Taught (level 9 nfq, credits 90)


MA IN LANGUAGES AND IMAGE STUDIES students are invited to acquire new language skills, or to refresh or extend their knowledge of language(s) already studied (French; German; Italian; Portuguese; Spanish), while developing their critical and analytical thinking via image-centred modules taught from a global perspective by academic experts from UCD’s School of Languages, Cultures and Linguistics.

What will students learn?

Students will work on their language skills and will simultaneously study a range of Image Studies modules which hone their critical thinking skills and expand their ability to engage and comprehend global cultures through study of images, whether film, art, illustration, photography or more.

How will learning be facilitated?

Language study is a cumulative skill, so language will be studied across the entire year. At the same time, Image studies will be explored via individual modules, whether Core or Options. Students all study film analysis and they then bring those taught skills into the study of other Image-centred modules, from a range of options such as photography, film, art, intermediality,  illustration or more.


Each student will complete two Extended Guided essays on topics that are of interest to them, under the guidance of a specialist lecturer from the School of Languages, Cultures and Linguistics.


Curricular information is subject to change

Full Time option suitable for:

Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. Yes

Part Time option suitable for:

Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. No

As a student of this new MA in Languages and Image Studies, you choose which global language you wish to study (French; German; Italian; Portuguese; Spanish), starting at your own current level, whether Beginners, Intermediate or Advanced (CEFR A1-C2). Some students may choose to study two languages across the year. This permits students from a wide variety of backgrounds to take up language learning or to revisit or perfect a language you have already studied. In tandem with language studies, students are introduced to image studies from a multilingual perspective, through a variety of modules centred on global film, photography, illustration, or art, and across a wide range of media, genres and languages. All modules draw on School specialist expertise within individual languages and across a wide range of image-related topics. Flexible teaching and learning styles permit students to identify and pursue their own areas of interest in terms of both language and image studies. Students will be guided in analysis and criticism of a range of different types of image, from the perspectives of language-specific and more widely shared cultural contexts.

The foreign-language and visual/analytical focus of MALI offers valuable opportunities to graduates who wish to simply challenge themselves to enhance their language skills and to think critically through cultural engagement with images, as well as to graduates who wish to consider a range of career areas with an international dimension, from the arts, culture and education, to business, diplomacy, travel and more.

View All Modules Here

Students on this programme take 3 core modules in Language(s) and in Image Studies (global film) and choose 3 option modules from a choice of other Language and Image Studies modules. Students will write two short pieces of independent research, called Extended Guided Essays: all students are encouraged to choose research material that links to the language(s) they are studying and to image-related topics that are of particular interest to them. One of the Extended Guided Essays may be submitted in visual form. 


Please go to the 'Frequently Asked Questions' section to see a draft timetable of the MA in Languages and Image Studies. 

MA Languages & Image Studies (Z372) Full Time
EU          fee per year - € 9100
nonEU    fee per year - € 22600

MA Languages & Image Studies (Z373) Part Time
EU          fee per year - € 4550
nonEU    fee per year - € 11300

***Fees are subject to change

Scholarships available

Scholarships to cover MALI fees will be made available for competitive application to MALI in 2023-24 (one scholarship requires Italian to be studied as Core Language – please indicate if you wish to be considered for the Italian scholarship). To be considered for a MALI fees scholarship please email a formal Letter of Application to MALI Director, Síofra Pierse (, including a copy of your CV and a Letter of statement of interest in this MA.


Applicants should have a min. grade 2.2 or higher in their primary degree (NFQ Level 8 or international equivalent) and ideally ( but not compulsorily) in a cognate area.

 It is not necessary to have previously studied Languages at Third Level before applying to MALI.

As well as intensive interaction with academic specialists and opportunities to participate in the School’s research culture and seminars, you will be able to draw on the James Joyce Library’s extensive holdings in modern languages, literatures, global film and culture.

The following entry routes are available:

MA Languages & Image Studies FT (Z372)
1 Years
Full Time
MA Languages & Image Studies PT (Z373)
2 Years
Part Time

* Courses will remain open until such time as all places have been filled, therefore early application is advised

Application requirements for FT/PT/GradDip:

  1. Personal Statement (500 - 1000 words max: Why do you wish to take this MA in Languages and Image Studies? Any prior experience of Image Studies? Any prior experience of Language Study e.g. BA level studies OR travel OR school OR self-taught OR hobby OR other?) Please also list which 1 or 2 languages you might wish to study (and estimated level).
  2. One Academic Reference
  3. English Language Test (in line with UCD language requirements). Applicants whose first language is not English are required to submit evidence of their English language proficiency. IELTS (Academic) Overall Band Score of 6.5 with no component band score below 6.0 and 6.5 in Writing and Speaking bands normally required or equivalent.
  4. Short writing sample in English (e.g. Essay/ Assignment on current degree topic), with statement that this is entirely applicant's own work.
  5. A short online interview exchange should be expected in advance of final acceptance to MALI

GradDip in Languages and Image Studies is suitable for students who do not wishh to undertake individual research and/or who are unsure of their language learning skills and/or who perhaps wish to begin their studies in January.  If this is the case, please apply for the Graduate Diploma in Languages and Image Studies.

What will my timetable look like?

As a full-time student you will take 60 credits of taught modules across 2 trimesters (ideally 30+30, but minimum 20 + 40). In the 3rd trimester, you will complete one research essay (30 credits).

T1 Core/Option Image Studies modules

Trimester 1

Trimester 1



2-4pm Option 1

Body and Matter: C21 Spanish Art

2-4pm Option 2

Surrealism: Aesthetics of a Global Revolution

4.30-6.30 Core A

Approaches to European Film Analysis

Recap Language Hour

Varies by language/level/ student

T2 Core/Option Image Studies modules

Trimester 2

Trimester 2



2-4pm Option 3

Text and Image in the Early Modern French Book

2-4pm Option 4

Precarious Perceptions 1900-1930: Modernist Literature, Film and Photography

Core Language Hour

Varies by language/level/ student

4.30-6.30 Core B

The Global Prison Film

Language hours vary according to language choice and level of individual students. Language tutorials will be scheduled around students' availability where possible.

Please CLICK HERE to see indicative language timetables (subject to change)

Is the programme also available as a part-time degree? 

Yes, a part-time student will stretch 90 credits over 2 academic years: ideally 45 credits in both years. However, if a student had a strong wish to take 60 credits in the first year, and 30 in the second year, that is also possible. If a part-time student wanted to study 2 languages, they might choose to do a different language in each year.


Wed 14:00 - 15:50