Full-time, 1 year; Part-time, 2 years

Gray’s School of Art Masters (MA) course has been developed to offer a programme of advanced specialist study in Art and Design, which builds upon the school’s recognised disciplinary specialisms within a wide range of subject areas, whilst importantly offering a thematic context to your chosen area of study, based on four key themes:

  • Sustainable Cultures
  • Socially Engaged Art & Design Practices
  • Digital Futures
  • Curatorial Practices

This MA course offers clear and very specific opportunities to develop and extend your personal practice[s] and expertise, within a chosen discipline: Curating, Painting or Jewellery for example (see below), whilst developing and supporting deeper critical understanding, and engagement with external professional contexts and networks within that discipline or given sector.The key strengths and nature of this MA programme is as follows:

  • Clear Specialist Study Routes
  • Individual Support from Specialist Tutors
  • Established Links with Creative Industries & Partnership Opportunities
  • Strong Critical Context at its Core
  • Possible Work Placements / Support For Interdisciplinary Collaborations
  • Enhanced Employability within Art & Design Sector – CPD Opportunities
  • Established Clear Links to Higher Degree Levels

The MA programme enables students to specialise in their chosen subject area, and aligns students with specialist academic tutors and technical staff, in order to offer Masters students clear and explicit subject specific experiences within the following areas:

MA –  Communication Design, or MA – Illustration,
MA – Painting
MA – Fashion, or MA – Textiles
MA – Jewellery, or Digital Jewellery and MA – Ceramics,
MA – Contemporary Art Practice; or MA – Printmaking
MA – Curatorial Practices

The course offers a distinct subject based route and self-selectable pathway to best suit your individual and professional expectations. This subject driven pathway guides you in the development of your personal creative practice, based on a studio environment model (on or offsite), supported by subject specialist staff. The course supports more collaborative and socially engaged practices, where you might be working in a negotiated professional environment whilst still supported by our specialist staff alongside an external professional mentor (MA Curating for example in collaboration with Peacock Visual Arts).


Each subject route is delivered through taught and self-directed modules addressing the development of both studio and specialist practices; research methods; critical enquiry; and collaborative and professional practices, culminating in a major Masters project where you will produce a formal exhibition of your Masters creative practice supported by a written thesis.

The following examples illustrate just two of the various specialist routes or thematic opportunities presented by this Masters programme:

  • MA Curatorial Practice: delivery will be based on established partnership between Gray’s School of Art and Peacock Visual Arts. This specialist route draws on the curatorial experience and networks of partners to deliver an innovative, industry-focused programme uniquely positioned to support students ambition to engage in regionally/nationally & International cultural debates.
  • MA Jewellery: interdisciplinary digital jewellery, using advanced manufacturing processes and sustainable design thinking this specialist route results from a unique partnership between Gray’s School of Art and MAKE Aberdeen. Drawing on the specialist design experience within the school and extensive technological resources of RGU to deliver an innovative, industry-leading programme.

HOW YOU WILL LEARN – Full-time or Part-time

In full time mode, the development of your own individual creative practice is supported by regular contact with specialist academic staff and the technical facilities, whilst also engaging in a programme of collaborative seminars or external study activities, presentations and discussions.

“Supporting and mentoring new creative talent, is beneficial for our organisation and the region as well as the students’ future.”
Claudia Zeiske, Director of Deveron Projects, Huntly

The part-time delivery mode is a more blended learning experience through distance and on-campus delivery. You will benefit from support by CampusMoodle, RGU’s virtual learning environment, whilst also benefiting from face-to-face tutorials with tutors and attending a commensurate number of seminars and workshop sessions.


Based in the North East of Scotland, Gray’s School of Art is located on a beautiful riverside campus and prides itself on producing graduates that both thrive in and make a significant contribution to the creative economy locally, nationally and internationally. This course will provide you with the specialist subject expertise and experience necessary to develop professionally as an independent creative studio based practitioner or work within cultural and socially engaged environments.

The course has close connections with creative and cultural professions within the region including: Deveron ProjectsGrampian Hospitals Art Trust (GHAT)Peacock Visual Arts, Woodend Barn, MAKE Aberdeen and LookAgain – links that will enable you to better engage in developing professional understanding and contexts.


Graduating from this course you will have developed a professional, Masters level specialist subject expertise within your individual practice, built deeper critical and analytical skills whilst learnt how to apply these to identify and engaging in wider career opportunities. Graduates from this course may pursue professions such as artist, designer, curator, exhibition manager, cultural project manager, studio manager, educator or researcher

For further information about the MA course @ Gray’s and how to apply contact:

Jon Pengelly

MA Programme Leader

E: T: 01224 263644