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MA in Photography: The Image & Electronic Arts

Course overview

This MA gives practitioners and theorists the opportunity to research and develop the new boundaries of image-making made possible by technological change within the context of post-industrial culture.

This programme joins theory and practice, equipping you to develop and achieve highly effectively in the new image media culture. Practice uses both digital and analogue technology, still and durational as well as the study and production of interactivity.

The programme allows for specialisation in photography and/or electronic arts – which, in addition to still photography, can include interactive, durational and internet work – but encompasses a broader interpretation of practice.

You'll look at the meaning, production and distribution of images, and the relationship between theory and practice in the context of debates about post-modernism and beyond.

You also participate in enabling sessions in photography:

  • medium/large format cameras
  • portable and studio lighting technologies and their use
  • film technology
  • cinematography
  • digital imaging
  • output systems and processes

and/or in electronic arts:

  • computer and video graphics
  • post-production
  • computer-aided design
  • digital publishing
  • animation
  • animatics
  • 2D and 3D computer animation
  • still and durational image production and manipulation
  • web construction
  • interactivity

There is an MRes which follows the MA into a second year, in order to develop your work/voice. This will count as the first year of a PhD. Find out more about the MRes.

Contact the department

If you have specific questions about the degree, contact the convenor Nigel Perkins

Modules & structure

This programme uniquely joins theory and practice in a way that will equip you with the tools and the vision to develop and achieve highly effectively in the new image media culture. Practice uses both digital and analogue technology, still and durational as well as the study and production of interactivity. 

You will study

  • Photography: Durational & Still; Analogue & Digital
  • Electronic Imagery: Motion & Still
  • Visualisation: Stand-alone & Interactive

The programme draws on a broad range of cultural references and technical practices. It offers the opportunity to take stock of evolving practices and developments in image media culture, and is structured to develop the intellectual imagination within each individual student. This is achieved through a combined study of practice and theory, with extensive instruction through ‘enabling sessions’ which engage technical familiarity; core tutorials; secondary tutorials; Issues in Media and Culture and additional theory course options.

Recognising the rapidly changing definitions and context of these practice areas,and the value/positioning of traditional practices, these categories may also be understood through a variety of practices which involve image construction and presentation both still and durational, including: film/video, animation, interactivity, installations, motion graphics, and hyperspace constructs, as well as evolving new exploratory categories.

The programme provides an opportunity to develop and/or research aspects of visual style, and draw on a broad range of cultural references as well as aesthetic and technical approaches engaged through ‘Practice Theory Sessions’, visiting lectures and the Issues in Media and Culture course. Fundamental to the programme is the space that it creates to make it possible for you to explore, question, change and consolidate your work and your ideas.

Assessment

Original portfolio submission; coursework and essays.

Download the programme specification, relating to the 2017-18 intake. If you would like an earlier version of the programme specification, please contact the Quality Office.

Please note that due to staff research commitments not all of these modules may be available every year.

Department

We are ranked:
27th in the world for communication and media studies**
1st in the UK for the quality of our research***

Media and Communications

We’ve also been ranked by LinkedIn as one of the top graduate universities for media professionals, because so many of our graduates go on to find jobs in the industry.

The department includes some of the top academics in the world for this discipline – the pioneers of media, communications and cultural studies. They actively teach on our programmes, and will introduce you to current research and debate in these areas. And many of our practice tutors are industry professionals active in TV, film, journalism, radio and animation.

We also run EastLondonLines.co.uk – our 24/7 student news website – which gives students the opportunity to gain experience working in a real-time news environment.

And we run regular public events featuring world-renowned writers and practitioners that have recently included Danny Boyle, Gurinda Chadha, Noel Clark and Tessa Ross. So you’ll get to experience the latest developments and debates in the industry.

Find out more about the Department of Media and Communications

**QS World University Rankings by subject 2016
***Research Excellence Framework 2014, Times Higher Education research intensity subject rankings

Learning & teaching

Tutorials

This course is interested in the development of the individual voice. To this end, there are two types of tutorial:

  • Core tutorials - which deal with overall development
  • Secondary tutorials - these are tutorials for each specific area of photographic media

Skills & careers

Skills

You'll develop specific practice skills to a high level, and the articulation/understanding of the pleasures of media consumption.

Careers

Graduates from the programme are extremely successful, with finalists working commercially, developing as artists or continuing to enlarge their academic knowledge. During the course particular attention is given to the development of the individual voice. This, plus students' exposure to a range of technologies, means that our graduates can step into the arena of their choice, or sometimes of their making.

Here are just some examples of the sorts of careers graduates have gone onto:

  • Art Director
  • Artist
  • Animator
  • Senior Interactive Designer
  • Head of Creative Department
  • Head Technical Creative, Experimental Film and Dance
  • Commercial Photography (fashion, editorial, photobooks, social, advertising)
  • Director (commercial narrative)
  • Director Of Photography
  • Installation Artist
  • Interactive Artist
  • Producer
  • Curator

Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths

Student profiles

Sarnath

"Goldsmiths is always electric, with so many ideas floating around, and it was easy to catch one and pursue it for a while."

"The course is a nice hybrid that had elements of both theory and practice. Goldsmiths is always electric, with so many ideas floating around, and it was easy to catch one and pursue it for a while. I enjoyed the lectures, seminars, peer-to-peer interactions and occasional drinks with the tutors. The whole course had a nice balance of old and very new ways of thinking, which is rarer than you’d think. Having a degree orientates your thinking in a certain way and gives you a kind of quiet self-confidence and access to a vast network of people. Being a Goldsmiths graduate undeniably has a certain cultural cachet, but that’s just a cosmetic reason to go to an institution. For me, it was the inner Goldsmiths life that was more important in terms of what I ended up doing."

Entry requirements

You should have (or expect to be awarded) an undergraduate degree of at least upper second class standard in a relevant/related subject as well a level of practical experience in a relevant area.

Equivalent qualifications
We accept a wide range of international qualifications. Find out more about the qualifications we accept from around the world.

English language requirements
If English isn’t your first language, you’ll need to meet our English language requirements to study with us.

For this programme we require:

IELTS 6.5 with a 6.5 in writing

If you need assistance with your English language, we offer a range of courses that can help prepare you for postgraduate-level study.

How to apply

You apply directly to Goldsmiths using our online application system. 

Before submitting your application you’ll need to have:

  • Details of your education history, including the dates of all exams/assessments
  • The email address of your referee who we can request a reference from, or alternatively an electronic copy of your academic reference
  • personal statement – this can either be uploaded as a Word Document or PDF, or completed online

          Please see our guidance on writing a postgraduate statement

  • If available, an electronic copy of your educational transcript (this is particularly important if you have studied outside of the UK, but isn’t mandatory)

You also need to supply visual/audiovisual work (this can include experimental or incomplete material as well as finished projects), and an essay done as part of your degree or diploma, or not more than 1,500 words in English on ‘Culture and Personal Passion’. The statement part of your application should give insight into the unresolved questions you may be thinking about, as well as your aspirations in relation to the MA.

When submitting your application, please also submit (upload under 'additional') an example of your recent work in a related field, or include links to a page hosting that work. Failing which, please post an example of that work to: Admissions Office, Goldsmiths, New Cross, London SE14 6NW, UK. Please make sure you include your application reference number (which you will receive when you enter your online application) and the MA degree title.

You'll be able to save your progress at any point and return to your application by logging in using your username/email and password.

Deadline for applications:

There is no deadline to apply for this programme.

How are applications considered?

Applications are considered on a rolling basis.

Are applicants interviewed?

No. Some decisions are made on the basis of application and portfolio.

Is a portfolio required?

Yes. You'll need to submit 10-20 pictures (or relevant media) of your own work. These can be any subject area that you choose.

Find out more about applying.

Fees, funding & scholarships

Find out more about tuition fees.

Additional costs

The Department pays for all reasonable equipment and materials costs incurred as part of your coursework. However, apart from the agreed use of Goldsmiths equipment and facilities, you fund the costs of your final project/portfolio of work yourself.

Find out more about funding opportunities for home/EU applicants, or funding for international applicants. If you're applying for funding, you may be subject to an application deadline.

Scholarships

The Department of Media and Communications often offers fee waivers for this MA. Find out more on our departmental funding page.

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