Master of Studies - MSt
The MSt or Master of Studies is unique due to the fact that it is only available to students who attend either of the Oxbridge universities, Oxford, or Cambridge. However, like most master's programs throughout the UK, the course of study is the same, with a module study and a thesis required during the final year of study in order to obtain the Master of Studies degree.
It is closely related to the degrees of Master of Science and Master of Arts, but is a more specialized field of study and research, than the more general counterpoints. In terms of the educational hierarchy it is usually ranked greater than, or in some cases equal to, a Bachelor of Philosophy, but lower than obtaining a Doctor of Philosophy degree.
The MSt is also sometimes given to students who begin work towards a doctorate degree at the graduate level, but for some reason decide not to finish their research to obtain the Doctorate. In this case the degree is only applicable to graduate students who have not yet defended a dissertation, or to those who have already completed at least two years of research in the doctorate program.
Students who receive a marginal fail on their PhD thesis may also be awarded the Master of Studies degree as a lower substitution. In some institutions, in order to apply to be accepted into a doctorate study degree students must complete the Masters of Study, so it is always a good idea to research the topic before enrolling in a specific university, as requirements differ throughout universities.
In particular at Oxford, the Master of Studies stands out from the MA due to the fact that Oxford gives out Master of Arts degree's to their undergraduate students, and the MSt requires post graduate work, so there is a larger distinction between educational levels.
Also specific to Cambridge, is the fact that many students enrol in the degree program with the intention of transferring to a PhD Philosophy line of course work. Although acceptance into the Doctorate study program is not guaranteed simply by signing up for an MSt degree. Instead those who display a great deal of promise will be allowed to transfer, which makes it the perfect degree for those who are not yet sure of the amount of schooling they are willing to invest in.
-- Other Masters Degrees --
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