Course content

The MA in Imaging Art and Science is part of a dual pathway MA/MSc programme in Imaging Art and Science

The MA/MSc in Imaging Art and Science is a unique programme in Imaging, designed to equip students with advanced skills in areas relating to image conception, formation, capture, analysis, evaluation and visualisation from the perspectives of art, science and technology.

The University of Westminster was the first institution in the UK to provide academic degrees in Photography, Imaging Science and Technology and has produced world leaders in the fields of Image Science, Imaging Technologies, Photographic Arts and Photographic Theory.

The MA/MSc in Imaging Art and Science is a cross-disciplinary programme built on our experience and proficiency in these fields, run in collaboration by the Westminster School of Media Arts & Design and the Faculty of Science & Technology.   It provides cutting edge education, supported by external links to creative and scientific industries.

MA and MSc Pathways

Students enroll for an MA or an MSc degree, but can potentially change pathway. The MA and MSc pathways share some common syllabus, whilst the majority of the content is distinctive to each degree, to allow for discipline specialisation to be developed within a multidisciplinary environment. Relevant areas include digital image representation and visualisation; digital imaging systems and their performance evaluation; cultural, theoretical, and historical aspects of the production and consumption of images; colour vision, measurement and management; image quality, content and aesthetics; programming for imaging. The course encourages understanding of interdisciplinary issues relating to imaging, by providing space for art/science collaborative projects and hybrid methodologies. Students engage in a Major Project, specific to the MA or MSc pathway, and where appropriate, collaborate with external creative, technological and scientific industries. MA Students obtain their degree from Westminster School of Media, Arts and design and MSc students from the Faculty of Science and Technology.

Course structure and module contents (MA Pathway)

  • Methods-Process-Context (20 credits)
  • Transactions and Public Engagement (40 credits)
  • Colour Imaging dual pathway (20 credits)
  • Image Quality and Content dual pathway (20 credits)
  • Imaging Arts (20 credits)
  • Research Project (60 credits)
  • Option Module from Westminster School of Media, Arts and Design (20 credits)

Methods-Process-Context

Methods-Process-Context is a shared MA/MSc module providing advanced research skills relevant to art, science and inter-disciplinary projects. It offers data analysis/statistics, technical and creative skills, introduction to creative programming and programming for imaging. A range of skills is offered to allow students to tailor their skill-set to support themselves throughout the course.

Transactions and Public Engagement

encourages understanding of interdisciplinary aspects of imaging, and provides a space for art/science collaborative imaging projects, the outputs of which are disseminated in yearly events.

Colour Imaging

is a dual pathway MA/MSc module discussing colour theory, colour vision, colour measurement, appearance and management, alongside the cultural, theoretical, and historical dimensions of colour in visual arts and imaging.

Image Quality and Content

is a dual pathway MA/MSc module, exploring cultural and scientific approaches to image quality. Areas of study include visual psychophysics, image quality models, critical theory and aesthetics.

Imaging Arts

is MA pathway specific; it focuses on the cultural production and consumption of images, issues of visuality and visualisation, and the politics of image aesthetics.

Students must take at least 2 module options from the course. One option can be taken from other relevant Post Graduate courses within the Westminster School of Media, Arts and Design.

The Research Project is a self-directed, pathway-specific body of work undertaken with academic supervision; it often runs in collaboration with relevant industries/organisations.

Who is the course for?

The course is aimed at Art or Science graduates from disciplines relating to Imaging (e.g. photography, media, fine art, or computer science, electrical engineering, mathematical and physical sciences), wishing to specialize in Imaging Arts or Imaging Sciences, while developing a cross-disciplinary outlook, informed by scientific, art and theoretical perspectives. We also encourage applicants with equivalent experience in related fields such as photography, art, science, media or imaging industries.

Who teaches the course?

The course is delivered by staff from the Faculties of Media, Arts & Design, and Science & Technology. The staff team has extensive expertise in imaging science, visual science, computer science, commercial and fine art photography, critical theory and philosophy. It includes researchers of the Computational Vision and Imaging Technology (CVIT) research group, and the Centre for Research and Education in Arts and Media CREAM). Members of the staff team disseminate and publish their research internationally and are also active in consultancy within the creative and scientific industries. Recent publications include Fashion as Photograph, Emerging Landscapes and the classic textbooks Manual of Photography and Langford's Advanced Photography.

Associated careers

Depending on the tailored module/content selection and Major Project topic, graduates of the MA/MSc will be able to work in a range of fields, including: imaging practice and production (e.g. fine art/ commercial photography, film post production and special effects); image management, picture research, curating (e.g. photographic libraries, museums and archives); scientific imaging and processes (e.g. biomedical imaging labs, image processing and analysis, colour management), imaging science research (e.g. optical system development, image quality, imaging performance). Graduates may also work in a number of other areas, including imaging education, research labs and creative applications.

Studying in a multidisciplinary environment will equip graduates with a lateral approach to problem solving, and the ability to communicate disciplinary issues to wide audiences, including the public. Collaboration with the industry will provide graduates with real world research experience, an attribute that is highly prized by prospective employers.

A number of our graduates now work in leading imaging centers in the industry, such as Apple Research Labs, Aptina Imaging, ON Semiconductor, The Home Office Centre for Applied Science and Technology, Moving Picture Company (MPC), Framestore, or research and teach in academic institutions internationally.

Admission criteria

Normally, applicants will require a First or Upper second Honours degree in photography, media, fine art, or other relevant academic discipline; or equivalent experience in a photography, art, and/or media related industrial context.

IELTS Standard 7 is required for both pathways

Employability

Our dedicated Career Development Centre is actively working with an ever-expanding network of over 3,000 employers to provide you with exceptional employability support and guidance. As a result we were nominated as finalists for a significant industry award – the NUE Awards Most Improved Commitment to Employability 2016.

We provide our students with work placements and international opportunities to support them in becoming highly employable, globally engaged graduates, and with one million businesses operating within 20 miles of the University of Westminster, over 84% of our students are in work or further study six months after graduation. Our graduates work in a variety of sectors and organisations, from small/medium-sized companies and start-ups to large not-for-profit organisations and corporates.

During your time at Westminster you will be able to use our comprehensive online vacancy service and meet with our experienced careers consultants, providing you with thorough training and support on CV writing, application forms, interview preparation and assessment centres.

In addition to this, you will receive careers support from academic staff and faculty work placement teams, offering targeted course-specific careers advice and assistance in securing a work placement during your time at Westminster. You can find out more about course-specific career opportunities by visiting the Prospects website.

For more details, visit the employability section on our site.

Career Development Centre

Our Career Development Centre can help and support you throughout your study and after graduation.

We can help you to:

  • find part-time/vacation, placement and graduate jobs, including voluntary experience
  • explore how to develop the skills that employers are looking for
  • plan your career development
  • identify your career options
  • market yourself effectively in CVs, application forms and at interviews
  • develop your enterprise skills

We also organise a range of presentations and networking events with employers, professional bodies, alumni and other organisations throughout the year to help you with career planning.

Find out more about the Career Development Centre.

Work Placements

Our Work Placement Teams are based in your Faculty Registry Office and can help you find a suitable placement, as well as support you in making applications, writing CVs and improving your interview technique.

More details on work placements can be found on our Work placements page.

Study in the city

If you study at the University of Westminster, everything that London has to offer is on your doorstep.

Our central London campuses are ideally located for the city's fantastic learning institutions including libraries, archives and museums, as well as opportunities for shopping, eating out, enjoying London's nightlife or just simply relaxing.

Accommodation

After choosing your course, one of your biggest decisions will be where to live, and we aim to make that choice as easy as possible. Whether you want to apply for our Halls of Residence or live in private housing, we can help you to find the right accommodation.

Fees, funding, bursaries and scholarships

In recent years the University of Westminster's scholarship scheme has been the largest university scholarships scheme in the UK, and our Scholarships Department won the Times Higher Education inaugural Award for Outstanding Support for Overseas Students.

Personal tutoring

All students on courses of a year or more and who are registered for more than three modules will be allocated a personal tutor.

Your personal tutor will be there to support you from induction onwards, helping you to integrate into the University, academically and socially, at an early stage. They will be able to give you advice and support on academic and personal matters affecting your study, as well as developmental advice through regular individual and group tutorials.

Language support

Polylang is a University-wide programme through which you can study a language as a free choice module.

Personal advice and counselling

While most students overcome any problems with help from friends, family or a personal tutor, the University's free counselling and advice services are there if you need them.

International Westminster

With one of the UK's largest international student populations, the University of Westminster has plenty of experience in giving you the help and support you need to make the most of your time with us.

Study Abroad and Summer School programmes

Westminster's Study Abroad programme has been running for more than 15 years, and is one of the largest in the UK – each year we welcome hundreds of visiting students from universities all over the world.

If you are already studying outside the UK, the programme offers you the opportunity to study with us for one or two semesters, or for a period in the summer.

Sport and recreation

The University has extensive sport and recreation facilities, with a sports hall and gym at Harrow, a state-of-the-art gym at Regent Campus, and the University sports ground by the River Thames at Chiswick.

Students' Union

University of Westminster Students' Union (UWSU) aims to make sure you have the best university experience possible by providing a range of activities and support, from sports clubs to society groups, educational advice and social events.