MA Fine Art - Liverpool John Moores University

Fine Art MA

Course fees (2018/19 entry)

Option / fee Value
Home/EU full-time annual tuition fee: £6,250
Home/EU part-time tuition fee: £34.75 per credit
International full time annual tuition fee: £13,250

Course type



Liverpool School of Art and Design

Study mode

Full Time & Part Time

About your course

Taught by leaders in their field, this Masters programme provides you with the opportunity to investigate all proponents of fine art and its practice in production, material intervention, media and curation.

  • Course available to study full time (1 year) and part time (2 years, day study)
  • Develop your work in state-of-the-art workspaces and facilities within the modern, purpose-built and RIBA award-winning John Lennon Art and Design Building
  • Direct links with Liverpool’s most significant arts organisations, such as TATE Liverpool, Biennial, Bluecoat and FACT
  • Career opportunities through networking and collaboration in professional fields
  • Studio space provided for full-time students
  • The School of Art and Design offers a unique collaborative environment for postgraduate students. VIDEO: Hear about postgraduate research from the Director of School

Generous scholarships and bursaries available for home/EU and international students.

If you study this programme full-time, you will be offered studio space in our award-winning John Lennon Art and Design Building.

Introduction to the School

Liverpool School of Art and Design is organised around strong disciplinary cultures within a dynamic environment that supports interaction and debate between staff and students within and across subject areas.

Our programmes are geared towards combining teaching and work-related learning with practical knowledge, enabling you to succeed in your chosen career beyond graduation. Teaching is individually tailored and oriented around each student, with the week divided between lectures, seminars, tutorials, studio supervisions and workshops.

Research excellence

In the 2014 REF, 85% of research submitted by Art and Design: History, Practice and Theory at LJMU was either recognised internationally, or considered as internationally excellent. This research helps ensure that our postgraduate courses are positioned at the leading edge of developments in the field and that you have an opportunity to study alongside leading experts.

Research is organised thematically to bring together disciplines and exploit their methods to address issues of significance and concern to the broader culture of the city and beyond. Our internationally excellent research informs our curriculum and underpins our teaching, and all our staff, including Readers and Professors, are involved in the day-to-day delivery of undergraduate as well as postgraduate and research programmes.

Research includes:

  • contemporary art and design practice
  • international art
  • sound and the visual arts
  • art history
  • curatorial practice
  • art and creative technologies
  • environmental art
  • contemporary printmaking
  • illustration
  • urban architecture

We are also particularly interested in interdisciplinary methodologies.

Why study this course at LJMU?

The programme offers tremendous opportunities to develop interdisciplinary approaches with programmes in Architecture, Sociology, Film, Media Studies and other disciplines within the University.

The Programme offers you the opportunity to work with Tate Liverpool, Liverpool Biennial or FACT, as part of a unique partnership programme. There are also opportunities to work with other UK and overseas partners such as Grizedale Arts and Van Abbemuseum, and with local dynamic hands-on organisations such as The Royal Standard, CBS and MAKE. You will be encouraged to develop further collaborations with partners in business, neighbourhoods and the public sector in the realisation of projects.

Top class facilities

Studying at the Liverpool School of Art and Design will give you the opportunity to develop your work in state-of-the-art workspaces and facilities within a stimulating and critically demanding environment. Lectures, seminars and tutorials take place in the John Lennon Art and Design Building and are also hosted by some of our partner organisations. This enables you to benefit from University academic debate and the practical input/critical discussion generated from the presentation of your work and ideas in a range of professional environments.

Once enrolled on the programme, you will also have access to the Exhibition Research Lab (ERL). The ERL is a creative partnership led by Liverpool School of Art and Design and Liverpool Biennial, which acts as an interface to collaboration with local, national and international artists, designers, creative industry commercial partners and public audiences.

Programme outline and structure

LJMU’s Masters in Fine Art provides an opportunity for a small group of students, from a diverse range of backgrounds, to develop their practice in relation to a global context that is filtered through the rich artistic infrastructure of Liverpool.

The programme is open to those wishing to develop a broad range of practices, including the production of objects and material interventions, the development of media-based projects and those wishing to pursue critical, theoretical and curatorially-based approaches. Taking Liverpool as a starting point, the programme explores wider questions of art production, distribution and reflection in an age of globalisation.

The course encourages artistic research and the development of new ways of working which challenge our assumptions around culture, identity and ecology. Taught in consultation with significant international institutions such as Liverpool Biennial, Tate Liverpool and FACT, the MA Fine Art offers unique access to specialist knowledge and experience of working in the public realm, museums and galleries and with technology.

The course is offered full (1 year) and part time (2 years). As a full-time student you will be offered studio space at the School’s John Lennon Art and Design Building.

You will have around nine hours guided learning each week, although we would expect your self-directed input to be substantially more. There will also be blocks of time scheduled for concentrated research activity, critique and symposium throughout the programme.

Master projects will be realised within curated events held in and around Liverpool. 2016 MA students recently held a show at The Royal Standard, titled Fantastic Rubbish

What you will study on this degree

Please see guidance below on core and option modules for further information on what you will study.

  • Studio practice

This will help you to develop your practice in relation to your own concerns and locate it within the broader context of Contemporary Fine Art practice

  • Collaborative practice

You will be introduced to various strategies, examples and processes in the planning and delivery of art project initiatives.  Through collaborative practice you will test and develop a relevant working process within the safe environment of the Fine Art peer group

  • Research and Practice 1 and 2

You will select topics relevant to your practice and overall concerns in consultation with tutors. These could be particular artists, biennial and survey themes, arts policy and infrastructure, or your own work. Research and writing will be supported by tutorials and writing workshop

  • Major project

Develop an initial proposal through to an exhibition or equivalent, developing a body of work and reflection along the way

Further guidance on modules

The information listed in the section entitled ‘What you will study’ is an overview of the academic content of the programme that will take the form of either core or option modules. Modules are designated as core or option in accordance with professional body requirements and internal Academic Framework review, so may be subject to change. Students will be required to undertake modules that the University designates as core and will have a choice of designated option modules. Additionally, option modules may be offered subject to meeting minimum student numbers.

Academic Framework reviews are conducted by LJMU from time to time to ensure that academic standards continue to be maintained.

Please email if you require further guidance or clarification.

How will I be assessed?

Our expert academics design the course delivery and assessment around contemporary research and give focus to your development in Fine Art practice and appreciation

Assessment methods differ slightly for each of the modules but usually involve presenting practical work in a viva voce situation with supporting research or textual material.

Staff research interests

​Research in the School of Art and Design is centered around the ART LABS research centre.

ART LABS comprises four research labs focused on the following themes: contemporary art; 3D digital art and applications in the real world; the uses of art and cultural enrichment; exhibitions and curatorship and design discourse and practice.

Academics teaching on the MA Fine Art who are internationally-recognised for their academic excellence include:

Imogen Stidworthy

Imogen has worked as a tutor at the Ecole des Beaux Arts de Lyons (BA) and the Piet Zwart Institute, Rotterdam (MA), and as an external examiner at Middlesex College of Art, London and The Royal College of Art in The Hague (NL); from 2006-2012 she worked as an Advising Researcher at the Jan van Eycl Academy in Maastricht (NL), and was appointed at LJMU as a senior lecturer in 2012.

Bedwyr Williams

Bedwyr is a sculptor, performer and filmmaker who shows nationally and internationally and has represented Wales in the Venice Bienalle.

John Byrne

John Byrne’s research is based around an analysis of the terms ‘autonomy’ and ‘use value’ as a means to re-investigate the complex relationships between the production of art works and the kind of labour, or work, that making art might be in a globalised neo-liberal economy. Byrne is a founder member and member of the editorial board of The Autonomy Project - an ongoing investigation and reformulation of the notions of autonomy and use value within contemporary and modern art.

More information on ARTS LABS can be found on the Centre's web pages.

Entry requirements (Home)

  Applications to masters study within Fine Art will normally be considered in the light of their ability to meet the following criteria:

  • A good first degree in a visual arts related subject
  • An appropriate reference
  • Satisfactory portfolio of work. Applications cannot be considered by the Programme Team until a portfolio of work is received *.
  • Successful interview - Applicants must provide evidence in the interview, of their learning capability, study opportunity and commitment to a postgraduate programme of study.

*Please forward up to 10jpegs, video or sound clips when completing the online application form. Alternatively, should you have any difficulty in doing so, please forward these to after submitting your application. After submitting the application form you will receive a confirmation email which will include your Applicant ID, please ensure you quote your Name and Applicant ID in any correspondence.

Applications from non-standard applicants are welcomed. In exceptional circumstances applications from mature Fine Art practitioners without sufficient qualifications will be considered. In such circumstances applicants must be able to demonstrate that they have the appropriate knowledge and skills to degree standard.

The above should demonstrate that the applicant has a sufficient level of knowledge to embark upon the programme (including the linguistic competence) and to complete the programme within the time limits.









Entry requirements (International)

LJMU welcomes applications from international students. In addition to normal entry requirements, you will be expected to demonstrate a very good level of English language competence, for example an IELTS score of 6.0-6.5 or equivalent. Please note: specific courses may require higher levels of English language competence. If you have applied to study a full-time taught Masters, MRes, MPhil or PhD at LJMU, you should check if you require an Academic Technology Approval Scheme or ATAS certificate. It can take four to six weeks to receive an ATAS certificate, so please make sure you apply as early as possible. You can find out more on the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) website. Alternatively, contact LJMU’s International Admissions Team for guidance. Please note: international students entering on a Tier 4 visa cannot study part time. Students entering the UK on alternate types of visa may be in a position to study part time. Please contact LJMU’s International Admissions Team for further details before making your application.  In order to obtain a visa you will also need to show evidence that the money required to cover your tuition fees and living expenses has been in your bank account for at least 28 days prior to submitting your visa application. So please make sure that your finances are in place before applying. For more details, go to our international website

For advice on any aspect of the application process, please contact LJMU’s International Admissions Team.

Application and selection

See entry requirements section above.

Will I be interviewed?



6.5 (Minimum of 5.5 in each component)



Is RPL accepted on this programme?


Please Note: All international qualifications are subject to a qualification equivalency check via NARIC.

Financial support

Tuition fees

All students enrolled on postgraduate taught programmes at LJMU are liable to pay an annual tuition fee. You can opt to pay your tuition fees in full at the start of each academic year or in instalments. If you need advice about how to pay your tuition fees, please email LJMU's Student Funding Team.

Bursaries and study awards

Applications for this year's scholarships have closed. Details for the 2018 scholarships will be available soon.

The Liverpool School of Art and Design offers students across all taught postgraduate programmes opportunities to apply for scholarships aimed at broadening student knowledge and experience.

The Michael Pugh Thomas and Julia Carter Preston Legacy scholarships consist of a number of £1,000 awards and are open to full-time and part-time home and international students who wish to study for a postgraduate qualification in art and design with LJMU. Part-time applicants can only apply once over the two years of their course.

To be considered for the scholarships, you must submit a 500 word letter to after being formally offered a place on a Masters programme in the School of Art and Design. The application deadline for scholarships is the 16 June 2017.

Please ensure you include your name, contact details, the full title of the course you have applied to study on and 500 words stating why you should be awarded the scholarship, the benefits it will bring to your studies and any exceptional circumstances you face in studying for a postgraduate qualification. Further information for international students about finance, fees and scholarships can be found here.

The School's main travel bursary for existing students, The Susan Cotton Travel Awards, consists of three European Awards of £1,400 and two International Awards of £2,200. The awards are intended to help you undertake significant domestic or international travel in support of your work and personal development. The awards aren't necessarily about academic study, instead they focus on the spirit of travel and adventure. Previous winners of the bursary have travelled to a tropical island to experience life at its most basic, cycled the length of the Danube, spent a month in Morocco and inter-railed through Europe.

Funding sources

There are many ways to fund postgraduate study for home and international students. From Postgraduate Masters Loans and Professional and Career Development Loans (PCDLs) to International Scholarships and subject-specific funding, you’ll find all of the information you need on our specialist postgraduate funding pages.

Graduate employment

This Masters offers opportunities for work-related experiences and will prepare you for roles in the cultural sector as well as for further research

The John Lennon Art and Design Building is a knowledge hub for the region’s creative industries and we will enable you to establish significant links with the relevant professional fields in which your future career will develop. We aim to expose you to artists and protagonists on the international stage of current contemporary art practice, which will offer opportunities for networking and collaboration.

You are encouraged to exploit the networks you encounter during the course to further your employment and career opportunities. The whole programme is geared towards facilitating a practical understanding of how you might exploit your own practice in the professional sphere.

International Study

International applicants are required to demonstrate equivalent qualifications to the standard requirements for entry when applying for courses at LJMU.

Students must also demonstrate a proficiency in communicating through English, for example via an IELTS tests or equivalent.

Please note: UK visa restrictions mean that international students are only permitted to study on a full-time basis.

Please contact LJMU’s International Team by visiting for more information and advice.


LJMU has launched a range of generous international scholarships for students enrolling at the University.

These prestigious scholarships take the form of tuition fee waivers and are available for outstanding international students applying for taught postgraduate programmes and research degrees.

You will need to complete an additional application form in order to be considered for these scholarships. Full eligibility criteria and the online application form are available here:

Applications for these scholarships are welcomed from:

  • new international applicants
  • current LJMU international students hoping to progress onto postgraduate study at the University
  • LJMU international alumni

The University reserves the right to withdraw or make alterations to a course and facilities if necessary; this may be because such changes are deemed to be beneficial to students, are minor in nature and unlikely to impact negatively upon students or become necessary due to circumstances beyond the control of the University. Where this does happen, the University operates a policy of consultation, advice and support to all enrolled students affected by the proposed change to their course or module.
Further information on the terms and conditions of any offer made, our admissions policy and the complaints and appeals process.

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