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b15 Months
££7,150 (£6,600 for HCA Graduates who have completed undergraduate course at HCA within the last 2 years)
Fees per anum UK
DUniversity of Wales Trinity Saint David
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Start date: September 2023

This dynamic Masters programme offers makers, from a wide range of disciplines, an exciting opportunity to advance their individual creative practice. You will be guided through the academic research process to support and develop your practice. Our students can find the process initially daunting but ultimately liberating. This is a course that supports you to find your voice.

We are inviting dynamic creative practitioners to apply to study on our MA in Contemporary Crafts at HCA. Graduates, makers or craft practitioners who are looking to develop and extend their creative practice would hugely benefit from this course. It is project-led and studio-based and is supported through tutorials, seminars and access to a wide range of craft workshops. We have developed an exciting blueprint for the course which brings together craft practice, theory and professional practice.

More about the course

The course will immerse you in exciting conversations about thinking and making. You will have the opportunity to build both your academic- and practice-based skills and see how they inspire and inform each other. Challenged to consider the context of your practice in terms of contemporary crafts you will be given the critical tools to extend your vision. The programme will encourage you to expand boundaries, think conceptually, and extend your own visual, technical and creative vocabulary. Your practice will be informed by rigorous research, experimentation and exploration, all designed to foster innovation in your thinking and your practice.

Modules are project-led and studio-based, supported by close supervision, group tutorials, lectures, seminars, and access to a wide range of workshops and facilities. There is an emphasis on the development of both professional and entrepreneurial skills that aim to ensure the viability, relevance and sustainability of your practice long after the course has finished.

  • Reflect on and analyse the central concerns, concepts and focus of your practice and develop a research proposal that will be the platform for your MA study.
  • Engage with research methodologies to underpin and inform your MA practice.
  • Explore and extend your ideas, media and processes.
  • Develop both professional and entrepreneurial skills for both creative and commercially sound practice.
  • Individual and small group tutorials and dedicated supervision and support.
  • Dedicated individual studio spaces.
  • Access to a wide range of craft workshops including textiles, printmaking, small metals, jewellery, ceramics and the forge, supported by photography, film, IT and library facilities.
  • Applicants should have an personal understanding of their particular discipline and be able to demonstrate their ability to sustain research at MA level.
  • Applicants should be (or about to become) graduates. Preference will be given to good honours graduates although exceptional applicants from a non-academic background will also be considered.
  • Professional makers, designers, photographers, craftspeople and fine artists who wish to reposition their practice may also qualify.
  • Applicants should submit a short proposal of up to 500 words, detailing why they are applying to the programme of study, supported by a portfolio of current practice, which will form the basis of discussion within the interview.

After this course

The course fosters post graduates in their realisation of their individual creative ambitions and goals. The programme provides a platform for the building of skills and confidence to nurture and drive independence, creative engagement and critical awareness, essential elements of contemporary designer-maker and artist-maker identities.

Many post-graduate students on completion of the course establish themselves as ‘sole traders’ or creative professionals with portfolio careers. The broad range of transferable skills developed over the course allows graduate Master practitioners wide opportunities in the creative arts sector through consultancy, community arts, teaching and residencies whilst others want to further extend their research and practice by studying for a PhD.

MA Contemporary Crafts student Cheryl Kirby with artwork

The MA in Contemporary Crafts gave me a versatile, stimulating and stretching experience that has created a much sharper focus in the design practice.

Ruth Maddox

Ruth Cameron Swan with her MA Contemporary Crafts exhibition work

Studying at Master level, my making become a purposeful and professional endeavour of which I am proud. This was made possible by achieving a meaningful understanding of how theory and practice mesh together. It felt empowering.

Ruth Cameron swan


MA Contemporary Crafts

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What you will study

Post Graduate Certificate

This Postgraduate Certificate is the diagnostic stage of the programme.

Your initial purpose or suggested area of inquiry is developed through contextualising research and experimental visual assignments. You can choose to broaden and deepen your knowledge in the subject of first degree, or investigate an associated area.

You will amass new study skills in research methodology, and use critical and creative practice to achieve Postgraduate Certificate objectives.

Post Graduate Diploma

This is the applied research and development stage of the programme. You’ll be expected to develop advanced skills of enquiry in your specialist discipline, or obtain new interdisciplinary skills in the furtherance of a generalist approach.  You’ll also consider the entrepreneurial, business and professional skills that underpin your specialist field of practice.

Consolidating at the end of the Postgraduate Diploma, you will have positioned your individual study area ready for evaluation for the final stage of MA.

MA is the advancement of individual practice.  This is the consolidation and outcome of the programme.

Your proposal from the Postgraduate Diploma is progressed and substantiated by critical analysis and contextualising evaluation. You’ll be expected to use advanced knowledge and skills and demonstrate your understanding by conducting a complex enquiry in both theory and practice.  You will be required to use sophisticated critical judgement and visual discrimination to achieve MA objectives.