Master of Arts

A Master of Arts (Latin: Magister Artium or Artium Magister; abbreviated MA or AM) is the holder of a master's degree awarded by universities in many countries. The degree is usually contrasted with that of Master of Science. Those admitted to the degree have typically studied subjects within the scope of the humanities and social sciences, such as history, literature, languages, linguistics, public administration, political science, communication studies, law or diplomacy; however, different universities have different conventions and may also offer the degree for fields typically considered within the natural sciences and mathematics. The degree can be conferred in respect of completing courses and passing examinations, research, or a combination of the two.

The degree of Master of Arts traces its origins to the teaching license or Licentia docendi of the University of Paris, designed to produce "masters" who were graduate teachers of their subjects.[1]