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Film and Photography MA



Price on request


  • Type


  • Methodology


  • Duration

    1 Year

  • Online campus


  • Delivery of study materials


  • Support service


  • Virtual classes


Film and Photography at the University of Derby has a long history of excellence. Our MA programme teaches Film and Photography as a fine art practice, offering a contemporary and exciting programme.

Our campus offers access to well-resourced facilities that inspire students to explore diverse methods as image makers, working across analogue, digital, still or moving image and multi-media installation.

We will inspire you to shape your individual creative practice with relevant theoretical knowledge and experimental approaches, informing a personal voice and engagement within the creative industries.

We are looking for applicants who are strongly motivated, reflective and independently minded. The course supports projects that enable you to focus on a specialist aspect of film or photographic practice, along with proposals (major project) that combine or explore the relationship between the two disciplines. We value interdisciplinary debate that utilises the collective knowledge and experience of students and staff.

You will become part of our lively research culture with access to see visiting speakers on all School of Art courses and staff research seminar series where colleagues present their research.

About this course

We aim to attract well-motivated students who wish to further their study in a stimulating and professionally orientated learning environment. This course builds on the success and experience of our previous postgraduate programmes and is informed by the importance of adaptability in a rapidly changing global industry. The University is committed to your long-term success, and if you choose this course you will benefit from support that has secured for Derby a ranking of 15th highest for graduate employment amongst UK universities (HESA 2015). The University hosts the International Film and Photography FORMAT exhibition and conference in collaboration with Derby QUAD, which attracts artists from all over the world. This provides a unique opportunity for Derby students to showcase their work, to network, and create and establish contacts in industry. Strong employer links have already been established within our courses, which have been designed to take into account the needs of a diverse range of potential employers. In addition to the Film and Photography industries students find employment in education, museums, the libraries and archives sector, publishing and broadcasting as well as finding the skills acquired through postgraduate study support a wide range of entrepreneurial activity.

For international students you will need to have qualifications and experience that are at the same level as for a UK student applying for the same course. If English is not your first language, you'll also need an IELTS score of 6.0 or equivalent.

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  • Access
  • School
  • Project
  • Staff
  • Art
  • Image
  • University
  • Investigate
  • Practice
  • Creative

Course programme

What you will study

You will study modules such as:

Postgraduate Certificate

This stage is an opportunity to reflect on your creative practice, investigate and evaluate strategic approaches, and produce a body of practical work that demonstrates your research. You are encouraged to develop your ability to contextualise and critique your work and the work of others. You are supported in this by studying contemporary debates and theories that will help to underpin your practice.

Reflective Processes in the Visual Arts
  • This double module focuses on reflection and re-evaluation, research and experimentation using a wide variety of learning methods. It is an opportunity to consider the implications of your ideas in both the context of contemporary debate and practice and, more broadly, the ever-changing social, technical and economic context that working artists face. This module provides you with a foundation of creative and critical knowledge on which to build your Masters project.
Art in Theory
  • This single module will extend your knowledge and understanding of international contemporary art practice. Through identifying and examining your aims and methods for producing and disseminating art, you will develop the theoretical knowledge needed for independent research. You will be guided in research methodology and study skills, gaining an understanding of scholarly conventions and ethical issues. Assessment is by oral presentation and response to questions (40%) and a revised written and illustrated version of your presentation of approximately 1,500 words (60%).
Postgraduate Diploma

This stage will support you in a process of defining and refining your personal creative project combined with the ongoing development of your subject knowledge and critical development. You have an opportunity to consider how the meaning of your work is manipulated by such elements as display, location, audience and medium as well as evaluate and rehearse a range of presentation skills appropriate to the professional standards of postgraduate study. To complement your creative practice you are asked to identify and study the work of other artists who share similar concerns as your self. This stage has its own distinct identity but may also be seen as a preparation for a major practical project.

Negotiated Study
  • This double module provides the chance to identify and focus on a research question and produce some creative practical responses through a body of work in Film or Photography. The emphasis of the module is on making and personal evaluation and on developing your individual voice as an artist.
Critical Study
  • This module will help you to acquire the language and skills needed to locate and explain your practice in the professional art world. By undertaking a critical study of your practice in relation to the international context of contemporary art you are empowered by an advanced level of knowledge and understanding of art and art theory to articulate what is original and distinct about your own practice. You have the opportunity, through scholarly research and production of an extended essay, to demonstrate that you can explain, justify, and critique the aims and methods of your practice with academic rigor and authority appropriate to Masters level study.

This stage is particularly exciting. You will be expected to demonstrate your capacity for independent scholarship. You continue to benefit from the support of the school’s research community with advice as well as the challenge and stimulus of critical questions from fellow students and staff. You also continue to enjoy the privileges of university membership, however you are expected to take a high degree of ownership of your learning and full responsibility for the critical judgments you take of your own creative practice. The focus of the stage is on the realization of a practical body of mature work and your understanding of its place and significance within the context of contemporary practice; your locus standi.

Independent Scholarship and Critical Reflection
  • This triple module is an opportunity for you to demonstrate your deep engagement with the subject, an appropriate application of creativity and imagination to your project, and your intellectual and critical awareness. You will be expected to produce a significant and mature body of practical creative work that demonstrates the realisation of your individual practice and its location within the award you have chosen.

Additional information

UK/EU fee - 
£735 per 20 credits* (2019/20)

International fee - 
£14,250 for the full programme (2019/20)

Film and Photography MA

Price on request