The MSc in Psychology of the Arts, Neuroaesthetics and Creativity is the first postgraduate programme in the world for the scientific study of aesthetics and creativity.
At the intersection of the arts and the sciences, the programme introduces you to the psychology and the cognitive neuroscience of how humans generate new ideas, how we appreciate beauty, and how we form preferences.
Aesthetic and creative decisions are relevant in the visual and the performing arts, and in many applied and commercial contexts, ranging from clinical interventions to curating exhibitions, from dance choreography to marketing and advertising. Based in the Department of Psychology, in collaboration with Computing, Media and Communications and the Institute of Management Studies, the course builds critical knowledge, research and communication skills across the arts and the sciences, centred around two key topics: the psychological and brain mechanisms of making (Creativitiy) and appreciating (Neuroaesthetics) art. Conducting a research project with an interdisciplinary focus will prepare you for a research career in aesthetic or creative science, working in the creative industry, or to develop your artistic practice.
Goldsmiths is uniquely placed to offer this programme, with an internationally renowned reputation in the arts and the sciences. Existing courses combining art and psychology often have a largely therapeutic focus and rarely cover the psychology of aesthetic appreciation or creative cognition, in a broader profile. In contrast, business-oriented courses in marketing, advertising and consumer psychology often lack adequate scientific training in experimental psychology or cognitive neuroscience methods, which is required for a scientific approach to aesthetics and creativity. Optional modules based in the departments Media & Communications, Computing, and the Institute of Management Studies will complement and challenge the scientific perspective, acknowledging the richly diverse, unique and culturally-specific nature of human aesthetic and creative practice.
Understanding the relationship between brain, cognition and behaviour is one of the main challenges the scientific community is currently facing. Which neural processes underlie “free” decisions, the formation of new memories, the emergence of conscious experience? Computational cognitive neuroscience is a young and exciting discipline that tackles these long-standing research questions by integrating computer modelling with experimental research.
This Masters programme will foster a new generation of scientists who will be trained in both neurocomputational modelling as well as cognitive neuroscience. Its core topics include theory and practice of biologically constrained models of neurons, cortical circuits, and higher cognitive functions (memory, decision making, language), and fundamentals of cognitive neuroscience (brain mechanisms and structures underlying cognition and behaviour, as well as modern neuroimaging and data analysis techniques). The programme is suitable for students from a variety of disciplines (including psychology, computing, neuroscience, engineering, biology, maths, physics, or related subjects), and students with no prior programming experience are welcome. Thanks to the highly multidisciplinary and cutting-edge nature of the programme, graduates of this Masters will acquire a unique set of complementary skills that will make them extremely competitive in securing research or analyst positions in both academia and industry.
You will study the following modules:
1. Research Project which will be carried out by combining the computational, experimental and data analysis skills that students will acquire over Term 1 and 2.
In Term 1, students will have to choose one amongst the following 4 options (each 15 CATS, level 7):
- Neural Networks (IS57002A)
- Machine Learning (IS71071A)
- Natural Computing (IS71072A)
- Data and Machine Learning for Artistic Practice (IS71074A)
Please note that the new modules may change subject to approval
Please note that due to staff research commitments not all of these modules may be available every year.