The MA programme is for suitably qualified graduates from a range of disciplines wishing to pursue work within the context of politically engaged thinking.
The MA programme has been developed to allow you to combine studio work with theoretical research. Lectures, seminars and workshops will equip you with a grounding in critical spatial practices and related areas of inquiry.
The theoretical module provides a thorough coverage of the historical, philosophical and technological aspects of the intersection of space, power and conflict in light of changing geo-political conditions.
This programme is orientated towards graduates looking to undertake training in research architecture before proceeding onto doctoral studies, or who wish to pursue or enhance their career in the areas of architecture, design, law, journalism, filmmaking, art and curating.
As with our MPhil/PhD track, our MA programme draws practitioners from a wide range of backgrounds, experiences and disciplines. The MA also enables international exposure of student research through participation in exhibitions, symposia and workshops.
A recent external examination report concluded: “This is an excellent course and possibly the most innovative one in the country".
MA Research Architecture begins with a specific core module called ‘Introduction to Research Architecture’ as well as the MA Core Module B, which is shared by students from the whole Visual Cultures MA cohort.
The four assessed components of the MA comprise:
The research project (Studio), actively engages with spatial practice and theory, and concentrates on in-depth analysis of a distinct issue, process or site. This project forms the core of the MA Dissertation, which you submit at the end of the programme.
A series of seminars, workshops and lectures will provide you with the necessary and stimulating information and create a forum for discussion on contemporary approaches and theories in architectural and spatial research.
Find out more about the Centre for Research Architecture.
You will then choose one of the following optional modules:
Every year the MA classes will travel to a place of contemporary interest, generally environments undergoing rapid, intense change where political transformation can be viewed in the development of the built environment.
Visual Cultures assessment are 100% coursework. Normally this consists of essays, sometimes accompanied by creative projects, group projects, multi-media projects, presentations, symposia, reviews, and studio work
The School of Architecture currently provides research specialism in the areas of Architecture & Media, City Design, Social Movements and Future of Work, which are seen as essential to contemporary architectural and urban research. However, the programme welcomes strong applications for other fields of interest as well as traditional academic research.
The Master’s of Research (MRes) RCA is a full-time, one-year programme that offers early-career research students the opportunity to develop and demonstrate mastery in the theory, methods and practice of research within an art and design environment. MRes RCA degrees are offered in four Schools (Communication, Design, Fine Art and Humanities) and are designed to provide early-career researchers with the intellectual, technical and professional tools with which to complete high-quality research projects, whether at doctoral level or within the cultural and creative industries, working across traditional sociocultural, disciplinary and sectoral boundaries.
MRes RCA programmes are delivered through a combination of: structured learning, comprising of lectures and master-classes by practitioners and senior academics; workshop classes based around a set task (a ‘brief’); tutorled seminar classes where students will be asked to reflect on material that they have read or studied in advance; and project assignments that support the structured teaching programme.
The programme provides students with the intellectual, technical and professional tools to pursue their own independent research within academia or industry, drawing on the experience and expertise of world-leading researchers across the College. The ethos of the programme will be collaborative, so students should be prepared to engage fully within their peer group, and with established and emerging research communities throughout the College.
In the development of intellectual engagement, students will be encouraged to demonstrate an advanced understanding of the principles of scholarly research within art, design and the humanities; identify robust research questions that interrogate fundamental questions of knowledge creation and exchange; critically analyse and evaluate complex research data; and situate their own research questions in the wider academic context of their field, understanding how their own research builds on and contributes to existing knowledge.
In the development of technical skills, students will be encouraged to: demonstrate an advanced understanding of the tools, methods, theories and techniques of research in Art and Design; experiment in the development, evaluation and presentation of complex research projects; effectively communicate the aims, methodologies and outcomes of their research to a range of different audiences; and effectively explore and articulate the potential of their research to achieve impact beyond the academic sphere.
For professional development, students will be encouraged to: take responsibility for directing their studies through setting goals and managing time and resources effectively; participate as an active, thoughtful and responsible member of a research community; demonstrate an understanding of and sensitivity to the principles and policies of ethical research; effectively plan and manage a complex research project; define their professional identity through self-reflection informed by theoretical, social and cultural awareness; engage constructively with research partners in order to form collaborations that benefit both their research and the partner organisation
Our MA Architecture course is a research focused programme that expresses and advances our knowledge of built and occupied space, through direct 1:1 scale making. You'll have the opportunity to undertake individual thematic investigations which will incorporate prototyping, experimenting, re-designing and crafting. This will provide a performative basis for the assessment of your design ambition, ability and research achievement.
Our School of Architecture has been ranked in the Architecture top ten by the 2017 Guardian University Guide.
For us, architecture is not only concerned with buildings and construction details, but also how people perceive and understand space at a fundamental level. Our School of Architecture maintains strong relationships with the professionals and organisations in the industry, and our course team are well-placed to provide you with industry links that could lead to further experience and career development.
As well as working intensively at our Canterbury campus, you'll have the opportunity to work periodically in London with our renowned Professor of Architecture, Will Alsop, and also take part in an overseas workshop. At the end of the course you'll become responsible for the design, construction and public exhibition of a full scale immersive installation that will act as a unique expression of the expertise you've developed with us.
This course is project based, supplemented by workshops, lectures, seminars and independent study.
Part-time students are normally taught on a Tuesday but sometimes field trips, study visits or other events take place on other days of the week. You should check before enrolling if you have concerns about the days your course will be taught on.
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