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Postgraduate

MA Art and Science

Blue ink running across a pink background
Blue ink running across a pink background - Credit: Image courtesy of UAL
College
Central Saint Martins
Start date
October 2021
Course length
Two years (60 weeks)
Extended full-time

This pioneering course investigates the creative relationships between art and science and how to communicate them.

You will explore the making and presentation of your work and pursue innovative outcomes in practice and research. This course is part of the Art programme.

Why choose this course at Central Saint Martins

  • Interdisciplinary practice: You will learn from and build working relationships with artists, scientists, curators and other professional practitioners in the fields of art and science.
  • Institutional networks: You will benefit from established links with museums, galleries and institutions. These include Arts Catalyst, the British Library, the Gordon Museum of Pathology, the Royal Society, the Science Museum, Tate and the Wellcome Trust among others.
  • Dynamic teaching: You will attend lectures and participate in seminars which provide a critical context for your research and practical work. These will be complemented by workshops and special access to places of particular interest.
  • Exhibiting opportunities: You will take part in exhibitions and a symposium, bringing together staff and peers as well as professional practitioners and critics.

Meet the Course Leader, Nathan Cohen

Degree Show 2019: Shannon Bono

Degree Show 2017: Maria Macc

Enterprising Practice: postgraduate breakfast at Degree Show One

Alice Cazenave talks about her intriguing camera-less photographs made using leaves

Student work

  • Charlotte-Whiston.jpg
    Charlotte Whiston
  • Jean-Baynham-Matters-of-the-Heart-2014-MA-Art-and-Science..jpg
    Jean Baynham | Matters of the Heart
  • Vera-Bohl-Bite-Me-Tiger-2014-MA-Art-and-Science.jpg
    Vera Bohl - Bite Me Tiger - MA Art and Science 2014
  • Nicolas-Strappini-_-Degree-Show-2017.jpg
    Nicolas Strappini
  • Neus-Torres-Tamarit-.jpg
    Neus Torres Tamarit
  • Jenny-Walsh_Degree-Show-2016.jpg
    Jenny Walsh

Course catalogues

MA Art and Science stories

Facilities

Course overview

MA Art and Science explores the creative relationships between art and science. It examines how they may be communicated through an evolving interdisciplinary practice. On this course, you will investigate new approaches to making and presenting work and ideas that reflect laboratory processess and practices driven by curiosity and research. 

The relationship between art and science expands the boundaries of understanding and invention. It challenges our view of the world. Through their work, artists and scientists contribute to a greater understanding of life in the age of the Anthropocene and how we relate to the world around us. Both require creative insight in their quest for knowledge. They focus on developing new ways in which the innovative nature of their discoveries can be communicated and understood. 

On MA Art and Science, you will explore ways to understand, represent and reinterpret the world. You will question how the measurable can be defined; the invisible envisaged; the senses extended, and perceptions tested. The course structure allows you to investigate the contemporary and historical context of art and science. It embraces the spectrum of interaction, endeavour and the making of forms. You will explore how research and production can have implications for discovery and invention across disciplinary fields.  

The course emphasises critical investigation. The curriculum encompasses reflective practice, contextual awareness, practical processes, research, analysis and debate. These will support you as you develop an independent project. You will be encouraged to co-operate and correspond with artists, scientists and professional institutions, and you will be encouraged to develop a professional network which supports your practice.  

MA Art and Science is situated within the Art programme at Central Saint Martins alongside MA Fine Art and MA Contemporary Photography; Practices and Philosophies. Lectures and presentations of your work offer opportunities for cross-course engagement. Additionally, shows and opportunities for public engagement are supported at interim stages and at the completion of the course.

Course units

MA Art and Science supports the development of your practice through a project proposal and ongoing evaluation. This is introduced and developed during Unit 1. This helps you to structure and manage your work and to articulate your concerns as they change and develop. Practice is complemented by lectures and seminars. These explore key ideas and critical issues, involving a range of specialist staff. Year 1 is more intensively taught, including introductions to workshops. Year 2 continues with a combination of taught and more independent study as you realise your research and practice.

Unit 1: Enquiry Through Interdisciplinary Practice

Through a series of projects, this unit explores relationships between art and science. You will look at both contemporary and historical subjects and related critical issues. Teaching is also delivered through seminars and lectures. These provide a critical and historical context for your research and practice. They will address different approaches to research methods. In seminars, you will discuss emerging issues in art and science. You will address the contribution of interdisciplinary engagement to public understanding. This focus is complemented by practical workshops and introduction to places relevant to art and science research.

Unit 2: Independent Project: Developing Interdisciplinary Practice

This unit represents a substantial opportunity to develop your independent project that takes the form of an in-depth investigation leading to practical outputs and a research paper (with optional presentation). You will have a supervisor or mentor (i.e. Personal Tutor) who will guide the progress of your independent project. Progress is supported through tutorials, critiques, seminars and student-directed group discussions.

Unit 3: Independent Project: Realising Interdisciplinary Practice

In the final unit, you will resolve your independent project. Seminars relating to continuing professional practice will offer guidance for your future development. Tutorials in each unit will also enable you to review progress toward achieving your goals.

You will implement your research and development to create a body of work, expressed through practical outputs using appropriate media. This work is for presentation or show in a format that is appropriate for public dissemination. This includes the possibility of collaborating with students or others to prepare and curate your work. In a student-directed presentation or symposium, you will also have the opportunity to debate key questions arising from your work.

Mode of study

MA Art and Science is offered in extended full-time mode which runs for 60 weeks over two academic years. You will be expected to commit 30 hours per week to study, which includes teaching time and independent study. Year 1 is more intensively taught, including introductions to workshops. Year 2 continues with a combination of taught and more independent study as you realise your research and practice.

The course has been designed in this way to enable you to pursue studies, while also undertaking part-time employment, internships or care responsibilities. 

Credit and award requirements

The course is credit-rated at 180 credits. 

On successfully completing the course, you will gain a Master of Arts (MA degree). 

Under the Framework for Higher Education Qualifications, an MA is Level 7. All units must be passed in order to achieve the MA but the classification of the award is derived from the marks for the second and third units. 

If you are unable to continue on the course, a Postgraduate Certificate (PG Cert) will normally be offered following the successful completion of 60 credits, or a Postgraduate Diploma (PG Dip) following the successful completion of 120 credits.

Learning and teaching methods

During your course you will engage with learning and teaching that includes both online and face-to-face modes. Typically, this will include:

  • Blended delivery; a combination of on-campus and on-line delivery
  • Briefing materials, published guidance and meetings
  • Inductions and technical workshops 
  • Lectures and guest speakers 
  • Independent project proposal document 
  • Collaborative project opportunities 
  • Personal and group tutorials 
  • Seminars and symposium 
  • Presentations and sharing events
  • Recommended reading and viewing 
  • Independent study  
  • Critiques and peer evaluations 
  • Self-critical evaluation 
  • Assessment feedback. 

Assessment methods

  • Research and preparatory work 
  • Independent project proposal 
  • Outputs from group project work and assignments 
  • Documentation of work 
  • Verbal and visual presentations 
  • Written work 
  • Participation in activities and debate 
  • Self-critical evaluation 
  • Realisation or advanced development of an independent project

Staff

Nathan  Cohen

Nathan Cohen

Course Leader, MA Art and Science

Heather Barnett

Pathway Leader MA Art and Science

Adrian  Holme

Adrian Holme

Lecturer, MA Art and Science

How to apply

Opportunities for all

We are committed to making university education an achievable option for a wider range of people and to supporting all of our students in achieving their potential both during and after their courses.

We welcome applications from people with disabilities. If you have a disability (e.g. mobility difficulties, sensory impairments, medical or mental health conditions or Asperger’s syndrome) we strongly encourage you to contact us on disability@arts.ac.uk or +44 (0)20 7514 6156 so that we can plan the right support for you. All enquiries are treated confidentially. To find out more, visit our Disability & Dyslexia webpages.

Entry requirements

The standard entry requirements for this course are as follows:

  • An honours degree 
  • Or an equivalent EU/international qualification.

AP(E)L – Accreditation of Prior (Experiential) Learning

Exceptionally applicants who do not meet these course entry requirements may still be considered. The course team will consider each application that demonstrates additional strengths and alternative evidence. This might, for example, be demonstrated by:

  • Related academic or work experience
  • The quality of the personal statement
  • A strong academic or other professional reference

Or a combination of these factors.

Each application will be considered on its own merit but cannot guarantee an offer in each case.

English language requirements

IELTS level 6.5 or above, with at least 5.5 in reading, writing, listening and speaking (please check our main English language requirements webpage).

Selection criteria

We select applicants according to potential and current ability in the following areas: 

  • The quality of your practice 
  • Ability to devise and develop a self-directed programme of study 
  • The ability to develop and contextualise work in written form 
  • The ability to analyse and evaluate in both visual and oral terms 
  • Eagerness to contribute to the learning environment at postgraduate level. 

What we are looking for

We are seeking imaginative, resourceful individuals who are committed to exploring art in relation to science. 

Making your application

You should apply by clicking on the link to the direct form below. The application form can be saved as you fill it out, so you do not need to complete it all at once. You will also have the chance to review all the information and make any necessary amendments before you submit the application form.

Deferred entry

Central Saint Martins does not accept applications for deferred entry.  You should therefore apply in the year you wish to study.

Transfers

If you are currently studying at another institution and if you have successfully completed 60 credits in the equivalent units and modules on your current postgraduate course and wish to continue your studies at Central Saint Martins, you can apply to transfer. The Admissions Tutor will consider applications on a case by case basis, subject to places being available. You must apply directly to the course via the course webpage as early as possible.

Please check our Student Transfer Policy for more important information and be ready to provide us with your current course handbook and unit transcripts.

You will need to provide an official document (translated into English) from your current university, explaining the learning outcomes of the units you have completed.

Start your application now

Before you apply, please take time to read the guidance below. You will be asked to provide the following information when completing the online application form:

General information

Personal details (including legal full name, date of birth, nationality, addresses)

Current English language level

Current and/or previous education and qualification details

Employment history

Personal statement

Your personal statement should give us information about yourself and why you want to join the course (between 300-500 words) and should include:

  • What are you doing at the moment educationally, professionally, personally?
  • Why do you wish to study on this course?
  • What is your relevant experience?
  • Do you have any relevant skills?
  • Why do you think you are a suitable candidate for acceptance?

Indicative project proposal

The indicative proposal should demonstrate your understanding of contemporary art practice and thinking. The course sets no boundaries to the fields of possible interest, and it is understood that proposals will evolve and change during the course.  (Write between 800 - 1000 words).

We cannot consider your application if you do not provide all the information above.

Application deadline

Communicating with you

After you have successfully submitted your application, you will receive an email confirming we have successfully received your application and providing you with your login details for the UAL Portal.  We will request any additional information from you, including inviting you to upload documents / portfolio / book an interview, through the portal.  You should check your UAL Portal regularly for any important updates and requests.

Please add csm.ukeu@arts.ac.uk to your contacts to ensure that you do not miss any important updates re: your application to UAL.  Also consider altering your spam or junk mail filter to ensure that emails from @arts.ac.uk get through to you.

Application deadline

15 May 2021

We recommend you apply as soon as possible before this date, for equal consideration. We may still be able to accept applications after this date, depending on availability.

When you’ll hear from us

We receive lots of applications for this course. We consider each one equally, so we review them all after the application deadline date. This means you won’t hear from us about any next steps until after this date. Find out more about what happens after you apply.

There are two ways international students can apply:

  • One of our official representatives in your country
  • A direct application.

If you are applying directly you click on the link to the direct form below. The application form can be saved as you fill it out, so you do not need to complete it all at once. You will also have the chance to review all the information and make any necessary amendments before you submit the application form.

Deferred entry

Central Saint Martins does not accept applications for deferred entry. You should therefore apply in the year you wish to study.

Transfers

If you are currently studying at another institution and if you have successfully completed 60 credits in the equivalent units and modules on your current postgraduate course and wish to continue your studies at Central Saint Martins, you can apply to transfer. The Admissions Tutor will consider applications on a case by case basis, subject to places being available. You must apply directly to the course via the course webpage as early as possible.

Please check our Student Transfer Policy for more important information and be ready to provide us with your current course handbook and unit transcripts.

You will need to provide an official document (translated into English) from your current university, explaining the learning outcomes of the units you have completed.

Start your application now

Before you apply, please take time to read the guidance below. You will be asked to provide the following information when completing the online application form:

General information

Personal details (including legal full name, date of birth, nationality, addresses)

Current English language level

Current and/or previous education and qualification details

Employment history

Personal statement

Your personal statement should give us information about yourself and why you want to join the course (between 300-500 words) and should include:

  • What are you doing at the moment educationally, professionally, personally?
  • Why do you wish to study on this course?
  • What is your relevant experience?
  • Do you have any relevant skills?
  • Why do you think you are a suitable candidate for acceptance?

Indicative project proposal

The indicative proposal should demonstrate your understanding of contemporary art practice and thinking. The course sets no boundaries to the fields of possible interest, and it is understood that proposals will evolve and change during the course.  (Write between 800 - 1000 words).

Immigration history check

Whether you are applying online or through a UAL representative you will need to complete an immigration history check to establish whether you are eligible to study at UAL.  If you do not complete the check we will not be able to proceed with your application.

We cannot consider your application if you do not provide all the information above.

Application deadline

Communicating with you

After you have successfully submitted your application, you will receive an email confirming we have successfully received your application and providing you with your login details for the UAL Portal.  We will request any additional information from you, including inviting you to upload documents / portfolio / book an interview, through the portal.  You should check your UAL Portal regularly for any important updates and requests.

Please add csm.international@arts.ac.uk to your contacts to ensure that you do not miss any important updates re: your application to UAL Also consider altering your spam or junk mail filter to ensure that emails from @arts.ac.uk get through to you.

Application deadline

15 May 2021

We recommend you apply as soon as possible before this date, for equal consideration. We may still be able to accept applications after this date, depending on availability.

When you’ll hear from us

We receive lots of applications for this course. We consider each one equally, so we review them all after the application deadline date. This means you won’t hear from us about any next steps until after this date. Find out more about what happens after you apply.


After you apply

What happens next

Initial application check

We check your application to see if you meet the standard entry requirements for the course.  If you do, you will be invited to submit a portfolio through your UAL Portal.

Portfolio

You will be required to submit online a digital portfolio containing up to 20 pages of your work which should contain selected images/documentation of your work/research evidencing your current creative practice. Those working in film and video can upload a compilation film lasting no more than ten minutes.

The only files that can be uploaded as part of the portfolio are:

  • Images: bmp, gif, jpg, jpeg, png
  • Audio: mp3, mp4, ogg, wav, wma
  • Video: avi, mp4, mpg, mpeg, mkv, mov, wmv

Portfolio advice

Your portfolio should demonstrate creative development, whether for a college project or in your personal work. By creative development, we mean ideas that have originated through your own experience and research and progressed towards potential visual proposals. Ideas, visual research and experimentation are more important than finished design solutions and can be shown in 2D work, or through photos of 3D objects and maquettes.

It is important that the creative work you include reflects and demonstrates your thinking, initiative and personal commitment to a particular project, theme or idea.  We are interested in you as an individual, your personal interests, your creativity and initiative in finding out about your proposed area of study. We would also like to know about your favourite designers and artists, where you have seen their work at first hand and how you have acquired more information about the work that interests you.

For more portfolio advice please visit the Portfolio advice page.

Following the review of the portfolio we select a small number of applicants to move on to the next stage of the process.  These applicants will be invited to an interview.

Interview

The interview typically lasts approximately 30 minutes. The interview is used to evaluate the extent to which a candidate demonstrates:

  • A thoughtful and responsible approach to practice
  • The capacity for independent research
  • Appropriate critical and reflective abilities
  • An awareness of the cultural and social context within which they practice
  • Appropriate communication skills
  • A preparedness to participate collaboratively in debate, practice and presentation.

We interview either online or by telephone.

How we notify you of the outcome of your application

You will receive the outcome of your application through the UAL Portal.

Fees and funding

Home fee

£5,870 per year

This fee is correct for 2021/22 entry and is subject to change for 2022/23 entry. Tuition fees may increase in future years for new and continuing students on courses lasting more than one year. For this course, you can pay tuition fees in instalments.

Home fees are currently charged to UK resident nationals. However, the rules are complex and you can find out more on our tuition fees pages.

From 2021/22 entry, most EU students will be charged the International tuition fee rate, although this may depend on your individual circumstances. If you started your course in October 2020  or earlier, you’ll continue to pay Home (UK) fees for the duration of your course. Read more advice for EU students on our Brexit information webpage

International fee

£14,725 per year

This fee is correct for 2021/22 entry and is subject to change for 2022/23 entry. Tuition fees for international students may increase by up to 5% in each future year of your course.  For this course, you can pay tuition fees in instalments.

International fees are currently charged to students from countries outside of the UK. However, the rules are complex and more information can be found on our tuition fees pages.

From 2021/22 entry, most EU students will be charged the International tuition fee rate, although this may depend on your individual circumstances. If you started your course in October 2020 or earlier, you’ll continue to pay Home (UK) fees for the duration of your course. Read more advice for EU students on our Brexit information webpage

Scholarship search

Careers and alumni

Our Postgraduate Art Programme offers valuable opportunities to build transferable professional knowledge and skills. The exchange of perspectives with others through shared units, reading groups and debates helps establish stimulating and productive networks.

The focus on proposing and developing a major independent programme of study is supported by a shared professional practice lecture series featuring guest speakers plus opportunities to attend symposia and critique work in progress across subject areas. The Postgraduate Art Programme has wide-ranging links with professional organisations, collections and galleries, and includes opportunities for interaction and networking according to your personal career direction.

MA Art and Science graduates will be able to enhance communications and creative exchange between areas of art and the sciences, participate effectively in creative projects with an interdisciplinary perspective, work collaboratively in multidisciplinary teams, and exercise initiative and personal responsibility in advancing research skills and subject knowledge as well as in managing their career or further studies. With these attributes and the abilities that underpin them, MA Art and Science graduates will be attractive to organisations that value creative thinking and the effective communication of ideas. They'll also have the potential to develop their interest at research degree level.