Taught course

Contemporary Art Practice MA

Royal College of Art · School of Arts and Humanities

Entry requirements

Candidates are selected entirely on merit and applications are welcomed from all over the world. The selection process considers creativity, imagination and innovation as demonstrated in your portfolio, as well as your potential to benefit from the programme and to achieve high MA standards overall. Candidates are generally expected to have a good BA degree from a fine art course. You should be able to demonstrate an original and critical approach to fine art as well as an ability to engage with current theories of art and culture that inform their practice.

Visit the RCA website for application dates, details and full entry requirements.

Our Graduate Diploma Art & Design (pre-master's conversion) course can provide a route to progress to this programme.

Months of entry


Course content

Study at the World's number one ranked art and design university for eight consecutive years (2015-2022) in the QS World University Subject Rankings.

Contemporary Art Practice (CAP) is a cutting-edge MA programme in the School of Arts and Humanities that is driven by a post-medium, critical approach to the making and reception of art, where theory and practice come together to form new ways of responding to the contemporary world. The programme supports the development of your art practice within a responsive, dialogical and critical environment with an emphasis on wider political issues – critically interrogating art production in relation to urgent socio-political contexts as well as questioning and redefining practice.
CAP supports ambitious, exploratory and research-driven artists, with programme specialisms in: critical, speculative and social art practices; moving image; performance; writing and techno-aesthetics. Our approach to Contemporary Art Practice is not determined by either technology or material, and CAP students create work using any media possible: from images, installations and moving image works, to publications and sonic art, participatory events, 3D modelling and VR, writing and performance.
The Contemporary Art Practice MA offers a discursive environment in which to discuss contemporary issues for thinking about, making and presenting contemporary art supported by individual tutorials, group critiques, lectures, seminars and workshops that take place across the year. Units are tailored to nurture the development of your art practice from the earliest manifestations of ideas through to platforms for exhibition and making-public, whilst also providing the skills required to be able to situate your practice within current dialogues and debates. Supported individual learning is complemented by generative workshops and collaborative events and exhibitions, with critical feedback offered throughout the degree from world-leading contemporary artists, writers and curators.
Open Days
Join an RCA online or on-campus open day to find out more about this programme - RCA Open Days.

Fees and funding

Visit the RCA website to find out more about scholarships and funding opportunities.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MA
    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

RCA Student Recruitment