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Course content

Are you a photographer who wants to further develop and broaden your knowledge and skills? Our Photography Master’s degree focuses on contemporary photographic practices across a diverse range of genres. You’ll be given the opportunity to explore and deepen your understanding of photographic practice and culture.

What will you study?

Our popular MA Photography course has achieved success through the production of student work of the highest standard. Some of the most important photo festivals and exhibitions, both national and international, have included University of Bolton photography students’ work. Their work has also been acquired/collected by local and national galleries and other collections.

We’ll encourage and guide you to develop a critical understanding of the key issues in contemporary photographic culture. You’ll look at ethics, social responsibility, meaning and context in photographs, and see how they are influenced and informed by these issues through a series of research-informed practical assignments. You’ll also explore the work of contemporary practitioners and the relationship between their work and the photographic market.

Our highly skilled and experienced teaching team will encourage you to develop a systematic understanding and critical awareness of knowledge relevant to advanced photographic practice. We also offer opportunities to engage with external creative industry professionals across the full range of photographic cultures. Successful graduates have experienced career progression across a number of creative industry sub-sectors, as freelancers and curators, working for charities, and in broadcasting. Others have chosen to teach in higher and further education.

Course Highlights:

  • Our custom-designed photography department offers outstanding facilities, including darkrooms, a dedicated computer suite with a high output printing facility and four studios with specialist lighting.
  • We have strong, well-established links with a number of important institutions and organisations, including national Galleries, The Royal Photographic Society, Chetham’s Library, and The Worktown Archive at Bolton Museum & Art Galleries.
  • Guest lecturers have included John Bulmer, Chris Coekin, Geoff Dyer, Francis Hodgson, Brian Griffin, Dewi Lewis, Ian McMillan, Simon Roberts, Pieter Van der Houwen and Tom Wood. Specialist masterclass workshops are run by invited practitioners.
  • You’ll have the opportunity to develop a large-scale project resulting in an exhibition (online or in a designated space) on a personally researched theme.

Key Features:

  • The MA Photography programme is practice-based and industry-focused, offering you rich learning experiences and discipline-specific and transferrable employability skills.
  • As a successful postgraduate student you’ll be able to continue your studies to gain teaching qualifications or go on to study further for an MPhil/PhD.
  • You’ll have access to an exciting visiting speaker programme, providing insight into industry experts’ professional practice and up-to-the-minute developments in the sector. Our specialist tutors and technical support staff have professional experience and industry connections.
  • By the time you graduate, you’ll be practiced in the application of business management skills such as creating a business plan and writing proposal briefs for commission, exhibition and project work.
  • We make use of e-learning through the University’s virtual learning environment (VLE). All modules will be supported via the VLE helping you to keep up-to-date with the module delivery, even if there are occasions when you can’t attend classes.

For more information please visit

Visit the Photography (MA) page on the University of Bolton website for more details!




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