Material and Visual Culture MA


This MA provides a broad based training in social science approaches to the analysis of material and visual media; ranging from art, photography, film and media within visual anthropology; to consumption, museum anthropology and cultural heritage, landscape and genres (such as clothing and the built environment), within material culture.


Mode of study

  • Full-time 1 year
  • Part-time 2 years

Tuition fees

  • UK/EU Full-time: £8,500
  • UK/EU Part-time: £4,250
  • Overseas Full-time: £16,750
  • Overseas Part-time: £8,500

Application date

  • All applicants: 1 August 2014

More details in Application section.


What will I learn?

The programme covers a range of contexts such as production, exchange and consumption, and uses anthropological perspectives based on the comparative study of societies, historically and culturally. Skills training is given in Social Anthropological field research and analysis, and in specific methods for the study of material and visual forms.

Why should I study this degree at UCL?

UCL Anthropology is the world's leading centre for the study of Material and Visual Culture. We publish the Journal of Material Culture and several relevant book series, and have nine specialist staff in this field.

The department is one of the largest anthropology departments in the UK. Our excellent results in the 2001 and 2008 Research Assessment Exercises show that we are the top broad-based anthropology department in the UK.

Students are encouraged to take full advantage of the wider anthropological community in London and the department's strong links with European universities and international institutions.


Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. The programme consists of one core module (45 credits), three optional modules (45 credits) and a research dissertation (90 credits).

Core Modules

  • Critical Issues

Options

  • The following is a selection of possible option modules:
  • Anthropology and Photography
  • Advanced Topics in Digital Culture: Ethnographies of the Digital
  • Documentary Film and the Anthropological Eye
  • Anthropology of Art and Design
  • Social Construction of Landscape
  • Transforming and Creating the World
  • Anthropology of the Built Environment
  • Mass Consumption and Design
  • Risk, Power and Uncertainty
  • Anthropology of Nationalism, Ethnicity and Race
  • Gender, Language and Culture
  • Full list of Departmental Options running in 2013/14: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/anthropology/faq

Dissertation/report

All MA students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a 15,000-word dissertation.

Teaching and Learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, group presentations and discussion, tutorials, independent directed reading, interactive teamwork, laboratory and practical work, video, film and web based courses. There will also be visits to museums, galleries and other relevant sites. Assessment is through coursework, unseen examination and the dissertation.

Further details available on subject website:


Scholarships available for this department

Commonwealth Shared Scholarship Scheme   (CSSS)

This scholarship is to assist prospective Master's students from developing Commonwealth countries who are of excellent academic calibre but for financial reasons would not otherwise be able to afford to study in the United Kingdom. Students must not have previously studied for one year or more in a developed country and must hold the equivalent of a UK first- or upper second-class undergraduate degree. Students must have applied to study one of the 10 eligible Master's programmes. Students must return to their home country on completion of their degree.

Childcare Support Grant

Selection based solely on financial need.

Graduate Support Bursary

For a prospective UK Master's student from under-represented background enrolling on a participating programme . Selection based solely on financial need.

Dame Mary Douglas Awards

To be considered for one of these awards, you must apply to one of our eligible courses by Wednesday 14th May, 2014. There is no need for a separate application. The fee waivers will be awarded on academic merit. The awards are only available to those intending to start in September 2014, and do not already have a significant scholarship or award.

Further information about funding and scholarships can be found on the Scholarships and funding website.


Entry requirements

A minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree in a relevant discipline from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.

International equivalencies

Select your country for equivalent alternative requirements

English language proficiency level: Good

How to apply

Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

The deadline for applications is 1 August 2014.

Who can apply?

The programme is particularly suitable for students with a prior degree in anthropology, but it is will also appeal to students with degrees in neighbouring disciplines who wish to be trained in anthropological and related approaches to material and visual culture.

What are we looking for?

When we assess your application we would like to learn:

  • why you want to study Material and Visual Culture at graduate level
  • why you want to study Material and Visual Culture at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to this programme
  • how your personal, academic and professional background meets the demands of a challenging academic environment
  • where you would like to go professionally with your degree
Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.


Career

The programme can lead to careers in a wide range of areas such as architecture, media, commerce and aspects of development work where an emphasis on the material and visual environment is central.

Employability

The programme is designed as an advanced research degree providing exposure to a vanguard and creative field within anthropology and related disciplines. Students learn how to apply ethnographic theory and methodology in material and visual culture to a wide range of case studies highlighting material culture in the wider world - ranging from art, through photography, clothing, consumption, cultural memory, monuments and the built environment.
The degree can lead to forther doctoral research or careers in a wide range of areas such as architecture, media, museums, business and aspects of development work where an emphasis on the material and visual environment is central.


Next steps

Contact

Mr James Emmanuel

T: +44 (0)20 7679 1040

Department

Anthropology

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Prospectus subject

Anthropology

Faculty overview

Social and Historical Sciences


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Student View

"I chose to apply for graduate study at UCL because the programme was extremely attractive, the supervisors that I was going to work with were great, and because the environment at my department fosters healthy competition and self-development."

Javier Sajuria

Degree: PhD

Subject: Political Science, Faculty: Social and Historical Sciences

Student View

"UCL provides its students with the opportunity to enrich their networks in the academic and business world. I have attended many career open day events organised either by UCL itself or by companies outside UCL."

Katerini Pylarinou

Degree: PhD

Subject: Geography, Faculty: Social and Historical Sciences