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Contemporary Arts Practice with Industry Experience - MA

This course is designed for students to refine their subject specific practice through creative industry experience, studio based experimentation, contextual research and critical dialogue to enable them to graduate as professional artists within the wider context of contemporary arts networks.

During your time with us, you will be encouraged to undertake independent contextual and theoretical research that will improve your capacity for independent enquiry, creativity and professional practice.

There are plenty of opportunities to get involved in group exhibitions, residencies and live projects as we work closely with key cultural organisations within the north-west.

Course Details

You will contextualise your work via rigorous analysis of relevant cultural discourses and reflective studio-based practice. Running alongside this, is the notion of embedding this practice within the creative industries through public exhibition as well as responses to opportunities provided by our industry partners. Studio production is emphasised as a key driver for practice development and there is a challenging seminar programme and a comprehensive schedule of visiting or visits to artists/art professionals and venues.

The programme structure consists of five modules, four of which are delivered within a collaborative framework allowing all students across the master's in art and design programmes (Contemporary Fine Art, Socially Engaged Arts Practice and Design for Communication) opportunities to engage with your peers whilst working through individual assignments focused around each programme. The remaining one module is tailored to the specific programme learning outcomes.

During the first semester, focus is placed upon you investigating, critically-reflecting and presenting ideas and findings; developing an understanding of research methods for practice; experiencing different strategies and a broad approach to the subject area.

Importance is placed on developing the ability to explore, manage and present research content/drivers and potential of your individual practice, the ability to identify and articulate practice-derived and research issues from your studio production or live projects, and the ability to analyse, critically reflect and present your developing concerns and any potential outcomes.

Semester two focuses upon developing student knowledge, ability and application to explore different practical and theoretical issues relating to a variety of practices in art and design, and the creative and cultural industries.

Visit the website for further information on modules.

Teaching and Assessment

This course uses a range of teaching and learning settings including lectures, seminars/workshops, tutorials, situated learning (e.g. ‘live’ projects) and independent learning. The combination of these aims is to develop an environment that allows you to progressively take ownership and direction of your learning so that you may develop as independent, life-long learners. The process of master's level study, relating to an individual and independent arts practice, is one of dense critical self-reflection; this is achieved by including self-directed projects where you have the opportunity to negotiate your learning and assessment requirements.

You will take five core modules and will study one day a week. Full-time students will have concentrated module delivery in both the morning and afternoon. If studying part-time, you will have concentrated module delivery in the mornings alongside full-time students.

Indicative to the course are:

  • formal lectures
  • seminar presentations
  • workshops
  • critical analysis and independent learning

Award specific learning activities include exercises; team and peer-based learning, studio practice and critical seminar-events, site visits, visiting professionals, work placements, online activities and critical debates.

You will be assessed throughout the course on:

  • Body of work and contextual research: e.g studio/portfolio/exhibition/publication/etc.
  • Reflective journals: log or sketch-book/statement/critical writing/seminar or other presentation*

All submissions are comprised of a body of arts practice: ‘studio’ plus a contextual and critical research portfolio, and reflective logs/journals. As the ‘thesis’ is embedded in the practice there is no requirement for a separate, written dissertation - although you may elect to do so, if appropriate, by negotiation with final award Course Team.

*You can negotiate the format of your submissions, in response to the needs and priorities within your practice, and in line with contemporary professional practice habits.

School of Arts and Media

The School of Arts and Media is the largest School at the University of Salford with more than 4,000 creative students. Across sites at MediaCityUK and the University's Peel Park campus, we offer a huge variety of courses, from fashion image making and styling, television and radio, creative writing and music to journalism, animation, design and performance.

Careers

Our graduates have exhibited successfully in a range of venues and biennales. Many graduates establish themselves within the local creative economy and develop a studio presence in the region and beyond.

We encourage students to pursue an international profile and presence as soon as possible in support of their professional reputation. Opportunities during the programme offer exhibition experience and encourage students to make professional links with arts networks in the region.

The majority of our graduates continue with their creative careers. Graduates are particularly visible in the region – in group studios, exhibitions or events.

Many graduates support their practice via teaching or demonstrator roles in further or higher education establishments. A number of graduates find work with museums or galleries. Our graduates are particularly proactive in initiating art-based projects, for example establishing new venues and curating group exhibitions. A number are successful each year in securing artist residencies at home and abroad.

Some of our students succeed through related professions in education, community development, healthcare environments or enterprise. Some graduates prefer to apply their creative practice to commissioning, consultancy or other professional outcomes.


Visit the Contemporary Arts Practice with Industry Experience - MA page on the University of Salford website for more details!

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