Master of Art (by research)

The main objective of the MA by research program is to train candidates who are not professionally in the fields of archaeology, museums, heritage preservation or art history, but desires to engage in independent research and writing in those subject areas. Further the MA program is also intended for those who do not intend to embark on a PhD program immediately after the MA. As such the principle objective of the MA by research program is to set the pace for the emergence of a community of scholars with advanced training in these subjects, because these subjects play a pivotal role in the national identity politics that define the contemporary debates on the idea of nation, nationality, and nationhood. Further it is also hoped that persons with advanced training in these areas of research could contribute to a range of industries that include, but not limited to, tourisms, entertainment, television and media, and digital-marketing.

  • Duration: 2-year and extension only up to 6 years from the first registration

  • Medium: English and Sinhala

  • Number of Credits: 60 credits 


1. Bachelor’s Degree in a relevant subject and passing a minimum of ONE Qualifying Course Unit and a Qualifying Interview. The relevant subjects are as follows:
   1.1. For Archaeology: archaeology, history, geology, geography; for Museology: archaeology, history, anthropology, philosophy, tourism, fine arts, science (chemistry, biology, botany); for Heritage: archaeology, history, art history, anthropology, philosophy, architecture, science (chemistry,physics, botany, zoology), engineering, technology, management; for Art History: archaeology, design, anthropology, architecture, literature, Sinhala, sociology, fine arts, history, philosophy
2. A pass in the relevant Postgraduate Diploma offered by PGIAR,
3. Professional qualifications approved by the UGC for admission to master’s programs in the Universities and Higher Educational Institutions in Sri Lanka. Such candidates will be required to pass a qualifying paper or a coursework assignment

Note1: Those applicants who were deemed necessary to take Qualifying Course Units by the Boards of Study of the PGIAR shall be required to register in the specified Course Units offered by the PGIAR in its Postgraduate Diploma or MSc. programs

Note2: Pre-requisites or other conditions pertaining to admission criteria: none


Semester (Duruthu)

MAAR/MAAH/MAMU/MAHR 51015 Research Colloquium and Research Writing– 5credits

MAAR/MAAH/MAMU/MAHR 51025 Ancient Civilization (Independent Study) - 5credits

MAAR/MAAH/MAMU/MAHR 51035 Themes and Theories of Archaeology and Art – 5credits

Semester (Vesak)

MAAR/MAAH/MAMU/MAHR 52045 Managing Heritage (Independent Study) – 5credits

MAAR/MAAH/MAMU/MAHR 52055 Critical Approaches to Ancient Literary Sources – 5credits

MAAR/MAAH/MAMU/MAHR 52065 Modernity and Modernism in Art (Independent Study) – 5credits

MAAR/MAAH/MAMU/MAHR 6307W Thesis- 30credits


1.This is a 60-credit; FOUR semesters; One-year course work and one-year research work

2 The MA consists of 6 compulsory course units and the submission of a thesis on an approved topic.

3.  Number of credits earned from satisfactory completion of the MA thesis is 45 and the number of credits earned by satisfactory completion of the three-course units is 15.

Duration: Minimum duration is TWO academic years (4 Semesters) and the maximum duration is SIX academic years (12 Semesters) inclusive of a two-year extension.

The applications can be obtained from the Administration office of the PGIAR
Duly completed applications should be sent to:
    The Assistant Registrar,
    Post Graduate Institute of Archaeology
    407, Bauddhaloka Mawatha,
    Colombo 07.

on the top left-hand corner of the envelope.
Please forward the following along with your application;
     Certified copy of Birth certificate
     Certified copy of transcript of the degree
     Passport size (3.5cm x 4.5 cm) two (colour) photographs
     Bank slip of application fee (Keep a copy for yourself too)

Application fee

Rs. 1500, International Candidates USD20

Registration fee

Rs. 2000, International Candidates USD25

Total Course Fee

Rs. 180,000, International Candidates USD2000(USD 1000+ USD1000)

The course fee can be paid in three instalments. The first instalment of Rs.60,000
should be paid with the registration. The remaining amounts Rs. 60,000 must be paid before the commencement of the second academic year & Rs.60, 000 must be paid before the end of the second academic year. 

About Us

The Postgraduate Institute of Archaeology (PGIAR) was established on the 1st January 1986, by order dated 18th December 1985, under section 24A of the Universities Act No. 16 of 1978 by the University Grants Commission. The PGIAR is a Postgraduate Institute of the University of Kelaniya. It is the prime institution for postgraduate studies and research in archaeology and subjects related to archaeology in the country.


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Contact us

  • Postgraduate Institute of Archaeology
  • No. 407, 
  • Bauddhaloka Mawata
  • Colombo 7
  • Sri Lanka
  • (+94) 112 685 217