Fine Art

You are viewing this course for September start 2024

*Students wishing to study this course on a part time basis should note that the total duration would be 24 months. 

Covering the fundamentals for establishing a career in art, this MA in Fine Art features a highly practical repertoire of modules which will encourage you to direct your studies into areas of art which particularly fascinate you. Technical, stylistic, and conceptual experimentation is enthusiastically encouraged throughout this MA scheme and undertaking this course will push you to develop your skills in your chosen medium, whether that is illustration, drawing, painting, photography, or interdisciplinary studies. Whatever your chosen career path, this MA in Fine Art will signal to prospective employers your commitment to personal excellence, professional rigour, and technical innovation.

Typical Entry Requirements

Entry Requirements 2:1 Bachelors (Honours) degree in a relevant subject area, or equivalent, and submission of a satisfactory portfolio.  Non-graduates will be considered individually based on relevant work experience.

English Language Requirements IELTS 6.5 with minimum 5.5 in each component, or equivalent

Other Requirements Applicants are encouraged to submit an up-to-date CV as part of their application.

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Course Overview

Why study MA Fine Art at Aberystwyth University?

  • Throughout this course, you will become more confident as a creative practitioner of contemporary art and will be equipped with highly valuable skills, expertise, and critical capabilities that are appreciated in a wide range of employment contexts within the Arts and beyond.
  • 24/7 studio access
  • Preparation for the creative and practical realities of life as a professional artist
  • A scheme that provides vocational training and experience in higher education teaching at undergraduate level
  • Opportunity to submit articles for publication and to develop your engagement with critical and public opinion
  • Aberystwyth University is a top 50 university for research power and intensity – REF 2014
  • 100% of Aberystwyth School of Art’s research was either world leading or internationally excellent in terms of research impact – REF 2014
  • 75% of the School of Art’s publications were of an internationally recognised standard or higher – REF 2014
  • Opportunity to work closely with staff in a stimulating research environment
  • Opportunity to study within one of the UK’s up-and-coming Schools of Art and to develop as a confident artist in a comfortable environment 

About this course


One year full-time. The academic year is divided into three semesters, but this course is administered in two parts: Part One runs from October to May; Part Two runs from June to September. 

Contact Time:

Approximately 10-14 hours a week in the first two semesters. During semester three you will arrange your level of contact time with your assigned supervisor.


The taught part of the course (Part 1) is delivered and assessed through lectures, student seminars, practical exercises and exhibitions. Successful completion of your exhibition (Part 2) leads to the award of an MA.

Course Fees:

Please see the tuition fee pages for current tuition fees. Please note that all fees are subject to an annual increase.


Funding opportunities may be available, please check our funding calculator for details.

Modules September start - 2024

Please note: The modules listed below are those currently intended for delivery during the next academic year and may be subject to change. They are included here to give an indication of how the course is structured.

* Also available partially or entirely through the medium of Welsh



The range of posts to which our graduates progress widens all the time. Our alumni have gone on to work:

  • For designing companies
  • In museums and galleries
  • As art teachers
  • On education programmes in galleries
  • In gallery assistant posts
  • producing family-based learning activities in galleries and museums

Our graduates have also taken up exciting internships and traineeships with a variety of national and international organisations, progressed to further academic study (PHDs), and recent MA graduates were selected for the FBA Futures show held yearly at the Mall Galleries in London.


Throughout this course you will develop a wide array of skills that will not only market you as a professional artist, but also as a mature individual with attractive skills and qualities for potential employers. This course will encourage you to:

  • Develop and sustain a self-initiated programme of work
  • Increase your critical faculties
  • Increase your technical possibilities, developing individual abilities in a certain area of art practice to the highest standards possible
  • Develop your skills, knowledge, and hands on experience of artistic processes
  • Develop a conceptual, practical and historical framework for your Art
  • Play an active, learning based role in the operation of the School’s galleries
  • Stage public exhibitions and perform as a professional, exhibiting artist
  • Hold up your work against scrutiny from tutors, peers, critics, and the public
  • Improve your capacity for conducting a critical review of yours and others’ work through discussion, presentation and writing
  • Develop research and study skills
  • Manage the practicalities of exhibition preparation, installation, and curation 

Teaching & Learning

What will I learn?

The course can be studied either full-time or part-time. When studied full-time, the course is divided into two parts over three semesters.  In Part One (September to May), you will study a number of core modules, together worth a total of 120 credits. Modules include Art and Visual Culture, Vocational Practice, Portfolio Development, and Exhibition 1. In Part Two, you will explore and resolve your chosen artistic problem (agreed in consultation with your supervisor), culminating in the second of your two public exhibitions.  This study is equivalent to a Masters dissertation and is worth 60 credits.

How will I learn?

The taught part of the course is delivered through lectures, seminars, and practical exercises. During semester three (June-September), you will arrange your level of contact time with your assigned supervisor.

How will I be assessed?

In Part One, students are assessed via a mix of exhibitions, portfolios, essays, presentations, web-design production, and teaching experience projects. Successful completion of the Part 2 exhibition leads to the award of an MA. 

Student Testimonials

Name: Adam Blackburn

Course: MA in Fine Art

Home Town: Tamworth, UK

Having completed the final exhibition [final assessment element] of my undergraduate degree in Aberystwyth, I felt I was only really beginning to discover my voice as an artist, and hone my individual language of paint. The Master’s degree provided the opportunity to continue with this development almost immediately, in an environment I was comfortable and confident to explore my practice.

The MA in Fine Art provides the opportunity to focus on a particular area of interest, and explore this in a deeper way to that of the undergraduate degree. The skill of being able to critically and objectively view my work has been an important skill that I was able to develop on the Masters course. This is a skill that is very important to possess, and is proving invaluable to me as I currently pursue my PhD.

The School of Art offers a great environment in which to undertake Postgraduate study. The number of Postgraduates each year means that class sizes are not too large which encourages stimulating discussion through seminars, meetings and workshops, and allows opportunity for equal contribution. The guarantee of studio space for both full time and part time students makes the course a very attractive proposition also. The opportunity to work under some high profile academics within the department offers valuable opportunity for collaboration and networking and makes the School of Art a very exciting and inspiring environment in which to undertake Postgraduate study.