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History of Art MA

The UCL MA in History of Art is renowned for its world-class teaching and its diverse and dynamic research community.

Overview

The MA in the History of Art at UCL offers a lively and exciting programme of study for students trained in a range of disciplines, including (but not limited to) History of Art, Philosophy, History, Comparative Literature and Film Studies. Each year we welcome more than forty students from all over the world to join the Department and to contribute to its research community. Our MA students participate in all levels of the Department’s research culture, many of them staying with us to complete doctoral research degrees under our supervision. Others seek careers curating in museums and galleries in the United Kingdom and abroad.

Programme Details

The Department takes a holistic approach to the History of Art. Students are encouraged to think and work beyond the boundaries of chronology and geography – to question and be critical of the ways in which art’s history has been written. The Special Subject seminars allow students to delve deeply into a single area of research, be it contemporary art or German art and culture during the Weimar period. In ‘Methods, Debates and Sources in History of Art’, our MA Core Course, students are asked to engage with the broad theoretical and methodological debates that have come to frame the History of Art as a field of study. Combined, these seminars prepare students for undertaking independent research on their MA dissertation. These MA dissertations, developed through extended supervision with one member of the Department, often form the basis of doctoral research. Several have been awarded the Association for Art History Postgraduate Dissertation Prize.

Work in the classroom is combined with research undertaken in museums and archives throughout London, weekly research seminars and lectures, artist talks and symposia held in the Department as well as throughout the University. Students past and present attest to the vibrant research culture, the rigorous methodological training in the field and the camaraderie between members of the MA cohort. 

Departmental Funding 

Fer-Garb Scholarship 2021-22

We are delighted to welcome applications for the Fer-Garb Scholarships! These scholarships are for home MA students who have been accepted for study on the History of Art Masters Programme at UCL (2021-22 academic year). The scholarships will cover fees and living expenses for one year of full-time study (or two years part-time). There will be two scholarships available for 2021 entry

We particularly encourage applications for the scholarship from individuals belonging to underrepresented groups in academia, who may not otherwise be able to take up a place to study. We also particularly encourage students who are interested in pursuing a PhD following their MA study. 

The Scholarship will enable outstanding students in financial need to fulfill their potential. In order to apply for the Scholarship home students should already have been offered a place on the MA in History of Art at UCL, using the normal application procedure

The Scholarship has been created thanks to the generosity of a History of Art Alumnus, with the aim of supporting the most promising students to pursue the MA in History of Art at UCL, regardless of financial hardship. At the donor's kind request, the Scholarship has been named in honour of his teachers Professor Briony Fer and Professor Tamar Garb.

How to apply:

Students wishing to be considered for the awards should submit the following materials:

  • A statement indicating their wish to be considered for the scholarship, which demonstrates how you fulfil the aims of the scholarship, and your reasons for wishing to pursue this particular programme of study in the History of Art department at UCL. (approximately 500 words)
  • An up-to-date CV
  • Your transcripts
  • All applicants also have to declare any other sources of funding

Applications should be sent to the PG Administrator Naomi Quinn-Friedman (naomi.quinn-friedman@ucl.ac.uk) by Friday 14th May 2021 at 5pm.

Arnold Hayward Stevenson Scholarship 2021-22

We welcome applications for the  Arnold Hayward Stevenson Scholarship from home students who have been accepted for study on the History of Art Masters programme at UCL, and who express an interest in developing a course of study in pre-1800 painting and/or decorative arts. The Scholarship, of £10,000, must be used for payment of tuition fees. 

Deadline: Friday 14th May 2021 at 5pm.
Value: £10,000 (to be used to cover tuition fees)
Eligibility: Home
Criteria: Based on both academic merit and financial need.

How to apply: 

Students wishing to be considered for the awards should submit the following materials:

  • A statement indicating their wish to be considered for the scholarship, which demonstrates how you fulfil the aims of the scholarship, and your reasons for wishing to pursue this particular programme of study in the History of Art department at UCL. (approximately 500 words.
  • An up to date CV
  • Your transcripts
  • All applicants should also declare any other sources of funding

Applications should be sent to the PG Administrator Naomi Quinn-Friedman (naomi.quinn-friedman@ucl.ac.uk) by Friday 14th May 2021 at 5pm.

The Next Steps

For details on:
-Entry Requirements
-Fees and Funding
-How to Apply

Please visit the UCL Graduate Prospectus

Contact

Naomi Quinn-Friedman, Graduate Teaching and Learning Administrator: +44 (0)203 108 4011

Student Testimonials:

Chiara Traversaro

Chiara Traversaro, MA Student 2019-2020

What I liked most about the MA was its stimulating environment, not only in the seminars – through the discussions with professors and fellow students – but also in the wealth of other opportunities that the Department offers (research seminars, public talks, book launches, and others). All of this enriched my experience as a MA student and made me feel part of a community of researchers and art historians.

Alexander Swanson

Alexander Swanson, MA Student 2019-2020

The Core Course focus on methods, historiography, and current faculty research offered a collaborative environment for MA students. As the one time per week that the entire cohort gathered, the Core Course gave a chance to learn and discuss questions of the field with classmates from a range of backgrounds, many of them outside art history. Most weeks we would go overtime to bring in issues not only of art, but also of philosophy, psychoanalysis, anthropology, and visual studies (to name a few). The combination of lectures, student presentations, and discussions was particularly productive. This course, along with the keen teaching focus of the dissertation, was reason enough for me to choose the UCL MA in History of Art.

Samuel Vladimirsky

Samuel Vladimirsky, MA Student 2019-2020

Having entered this programme without an undergraduate degree in the history of art, it was so rewarding to find myself in such a welcoming and academically challenging environment with an international cohort of students and faculty. The programme catered to my individual interests, and expanded them tenfold! The core course provided a strong theoretical framework that profoundly changed the ways in which I approach images, while the special subjects were remarkably interdisciplinary, and, in my case, offered novel ways of thinking about art through psychoanalysis and anatomy. When COVID-19 broke out, the Department stayed in constant communication, and was beyond understanding and supportive of its students. 

Daisy Clery

Daisy Clery, MA Student 2016-2018, PhD 2020-2024

I joined the History of Art Department to study for an MA. At once rigorous and creative, the departmental approach was like nothing I had experienced before. In the end, my only PhD application was to UCL.