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Fine Art

Fine Art
MA 1 year (full-time), 2 years (part-time)
MFA 2 years (full-time), 4 years (part-time)

MA/MFA Fine Art provides a stimulating environment in which you will be guided to develop your creative aspirations, reach a critical maturity, and gain the self-confidence and skills that will enable you to function as a successful artist in today's world.

The programme is studio practice driven and relies on experimentation and critical reflection supported by individualised mentoring, lectures, seminars and group critiques. It emphasises the articulation of ideas, development of working methods and the realisation of independent work. Seminars are structured to investigate a broad range of themes relevant to the practicing artist and provide a rich diet of inspiration.

Special Features

  • The course is taught by practicing artists and maintains active links with an international network of art professionals and organisations.
  • You will have your own spaces within communal studios, with full access to the Faculty’s workshops and other resources.
  • Regular programme of artists talks and studio visits from professionals working in the field.
  • Regular programme of talks by visiting artists organised in association with The Whitworth Art Gallery.
  • The University library has outstanding Art and Design holdings, including a special collection of artist’s books and ephemera.

Course Content

The MA Fine Art is made up of five units totalling 180 credits.

The programme is practice driven and focussed on the development of your existing practice. It will enable you to identify and explore new concepts and approaches negotiated through an individual Working Synopsis.

You will also be encouraged and supported to extend your experience in the professional sphere either through a practical project, research context, exchange, work experience, or other negotiated professional set of interactions with an external partner, groups of students or other art world partner.  

Towards the end of the programme you will consolidate your  research and practice into fully realised body of work for exhibition or other form of public situation as appropriate.  You will also have developed a strategy for the continuation of your practice located and contextualised to the profession or discipline.

If you choose to progress to MFA Fine Art award you will study a further two units of 60 credits each. 

This award is focussed on the continuation of your practice aligned to the research and selection of appropriate public or professional venues and platforms to disseminate a significant body of work. You will be required to produce work for a public audience in the most relevant and appropriate form along with any implicit publicity and dissemination material. 

Year 1

The MA Fine Art is made up of five units totalling 180 credits.

(Unit titles subject to validation)

Unit 1 (30 credits/15 ECTS): Practice 1 - Art - Working Synopsis

Unit 2 (30 credits/15 ECTS) Choice of the following (may be subject to change):

  • Digital Futures
  • Contested Territories
  • Health and Wellbeing
  • The Museum and the City - The City as Museum
  • Negotiated Study
  • Object
  • Women Artists and Surrealism

Unit 3 (30 credits/15 ECTS): Practice 2- Art - Proposition 

Unit 4 (30 credits/15 ECTS): Professional Platforms

Unit 5 (60 credits/30 ECTS): Practice 3 - Major Project (Fine Art, Drawing or Collaborative Practice)

Year 2

The MFA Fine Art continues with the following two units totalling 120 credits:

(Unit titles subject to validation)

Unit 6 (60 credits/30 ECTS): Practice 4 - Contextualising

Unit 7 (60 credits/30 ECTS): Practice 5 - Realisation and Publication

You can find further details about the curriculum in the Programme Specification Document


We have developed a dedicated postgraduate area occupying an entire floor of the main School of Art building, offering an exciting space to be, both intellectually and practically. The centre is located in the newly refurbished Chatham Tower with studios, design laboratories, seminar rooms and extensive workshops that form the nucleus of this vibrant, cross-disciplinary learning environment.

Find out more about Manchester School of Art's facilities.

Student Work

Visit our online MA Show galleries to see examples of recent work by our postgraduate students.

MA Show 2013 - View Work Online   MA Show 2012 - View Work Online   MA Show 2011 - View Work Online

Making an Application

Entry Requirements

You will normally have an undergraduate UK honours degree (or international equivalent) or a degree-equivalent postgraduate diploma or a professional qualification. Alternatively, you may be admitted if you can demonstrate appropriate knowledge and skills at honours degree standard. In addition, you may also need to submit a Digital Portfolio.

How to Apply

To apply please use the MMU Application Form below. In your personal statement please include a web address to an online portfolio containing a selection of images or videos of your past work. You should also explain how you would like to develop your practice during the course.

Download Application Form


MA (1 year full-time)

  • UK/EU £6,480
  • Non-EU International £12,500

MA (2 years part-time, 180 credits)

  • UK/EU £1,080 per 30 credit unit

MFA (1 year full-time or 2 years part-time following completion of MA, an additional 120 credits)

  • UK/EU £1,080 per 30 credit unit
  • Non-EU International £2,085 per 30 credit unit

Also see Postgraduate funding and financial support.

Course Leader