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Photography

BA (Hons)
Photography
3 years (full-time)
UCAS W640

This practice-based course aims to develop you as a creative practitioner and independent thinker. You will be introduced to a range of research methods and technical skills that expand your understanding of photography and open out your creativity. Individual and group tutorials, workshops, seminars and lectures by visiting speakers, will equip you with the skills to become a confident, unique and professional photographic practitioner. Your learning is supported by lecturebased study to help develop a critical and historical awareness as well as technical workshops to develop your craft skills, including analogue, digital and hybrid practices.

Special Features

  • Practice-based course that aims to provide an exciting and challenging learning environment to develop you as a practitioner and independent thinker.
  • Enables a wide range of diverse approaches to photography and other related mediums as appropriate to your creative development.
  • Manchester and the North West is a rich cultural and artistic centre from which the course benefits via exhibitions.

Course Content

The programme introduces you to a broad range of approaches to photography and encourages you to explore the boundaries of current photographic practice and related media. The programme has strong links with external partners to develop live projects – for example, students have in the past completed a project with Manchester Airport. Through a range of professional, creative and conceptual projects, the course aims to develop a highly individual practice fit for a competitive and contemporary photographic industry.

Year 1

Year 1 is aimed at introducing learning, research, and technical skills. You will be encouraged to undertake a series of set projects introducing approaches that are relevant to the development of a photographic practice.

Photography and Materials

This unit will introduce you to materials used in photographic and lens related practice and consider how their application, through a range of materials and mediums, effects context and meaning. 

The Figure, Photography and Narrative

This unit will introduce you to how the figure is presented through various genres of photography using a range of approaches. You will be introduced to lighting studio and location lighting. You will be introduced to ideas around the figure in photography through genres such as portraiture, fashion, documentary and fine art. 

Unit X

This unit provides an opportunity to explore collaborative and interdisciplinary art and design practice by undertaking work alongside students from Design/Art programmes within Manchester School of Art. The unit covers set project(s) which encourage collaborative, interdisciplinary practice and shared experience. You will engage in lectures and talks from key research staff and students, tutorial group meetings and presentations. The set projects will vary from year to year and are designed to be responsive to creative opportunities.

Contextualising Practice 1

You are allocated to one of four pathways addressing programme-based clusters of cognate practice areas. Lectures, seminars, guest speakers, visits around cultural contexts and professional issues.

Contextualising Practice with Language 1

You are allocated to one of four pathways addressing programme-based clusters of cognate practice areas. The unit includes lectures, seminars, guest speakers, visits around cultural contexts and professional issues.

Year 2

In Year 2 you will develop your own individual style and approach. The emphasis is on ‘risk taking’ and the exploration of and experimentation with ideas, research methods, and imaginative approaches to practice.

Explore and Experiment

This unit will explore a range of genres and approaches to photographic practice. Students will develop conceptual, theoretical, technical and craft skills.  Through workshop, seminar discussion and lectures students will explore and experiment with photography through three projects: Responses One, Responses Two and one self-generated. Students will be introduced to the History of Photography and Contemporary Photographic Practice. Workshop activities will enable students to begin to evaluate the relationship between photography and writing; they will also have an understanding of the importance of craft skills and finish.

Contextualising Practice 2

Delivery of critical, historical and professional issues to enhance your development within practice-based clusters. Delivery to clusters of cognate practice areas. Content consists of selected thematic options in critical and historical areas plus cluster-wide professional and employability issues, facilitating and enhancing the development of both studio-based work and identity as a practitioner.

Contextualising Practice with Language 2

Delivery of critical and historical issues to enhance the student's development within practice-based clusters.  Content consists of selected thematic options in critical and historical areas facilitating and enhancing the development of both studio-based work and identity as a practitioner. Modes of delivery include lectures, seminars, tutorials, guest speakers, visits and placements.

Exhibit in the City

This unit will place an emphasis on teamwork and the development of networking/professional skills through the production of exhibition ready work.  Students will be expected to develop work to a professional exhibition standard by working collaboratively to generate an exhibition of lens related practice in the city/NW Region. They will also be expected to develop skills in fundraising, promotion/publicity, curation and archive the final exhibition through web-based and hard copy exhibition catalogue.

Unit X

This unit explores collaborative and interdisciplinary art and design practice.  You will have the opportunity to engage in a range of external facing learning opportunities which will encourage collaborative, interdisciplinary practice and shared experience; this may take the form of spending time outside of the university and working within the creative community and the public domain.

Year 3

In Year 3 you will focus on realising your creative potential by undertaking a major self-directed project. This practical body of work is supported by the writing of a contextual essay and research projects which will help to critically inform the practical work.

Reflect and Research

This unit requires you to define the direction of your practice in preparation for the next stage of study.This will involve visual investigation, critical reflection, enhancement of relevant technical / conceptual skills and project planning.

Contextualising Practice 3

Programme of research and critical analysis of cultural and professional issues related to a student's individual practice interests.

Contextualising Practice with a Language 3

Programme of research and critical analysis of cultural and professional issues related to a your individual practice interests. A negotiated project focused around an individually defined area appropriate to your aims and ambitions.

Final Major Project : Portfolio and Exhibition

You will identify individual research topics and outline your intentions for their final major project through a written Learning Agreement.  You will undertake independent study supported by peer study groups, group and individual tutorial and practical workshops.  You will apply the knowledge, technical and intellectual skills and abilities attained during the first stage of the final year of study and will refine and focus this into a final body of creative practice.  You are required to produce and present a significant body of work that demonstrates skills and knowledge attained through a sustained focus on a major project of practical work. Emphasis is placed on developing an understanding of how exhibition and staging underpins the context and meaning of practice. You will have the opportunity to investigate various models of the exhibition and display of photographic practice and develop ideas to promote your work externally to related creative professionals.   

Major Project: Portfolio

You will identify an individual research topic and outline your intentions for their major project through a written Learning Agreement.  You will undertake independent study supported by peer study groups, group and individual tutorial and practical workshops.  You are required to produce and present a body of work that demonstrates skills and knowledge attained through a sustained focus on a major project of practical work. You will apply the knowledge, technical and intellectual skills and abilities attained during the first stage of the final year of study and will refine and focus this into a final body of creative practice. You will have the opportunity to investigate various models of portfolio to showcase photographic practice and develop ideas to promote your work externally to related creative professionals.

Unit X

On the third year Unit X, there is a student authored final project leading to a showcase of finished work. The unit includes a brief generated by the student, which leads to the presentation of a significant body of final work. Collaborative and interdisciplinary work can be incorporated into the project in relation to the professional context and ambition of the student.

Assessment

Unit end assessment and final work exhibition at the Degree Show.

Placements

There will be opportunities to undertake live briefs with companies, for example the Fuji Film competition Awards, and Epson awards. You will also be able to undertake professional research project work, for example, with freelance design companies and photographers, museum administration and picture editing.

You can find further details about the curriculum in the Programme Specification Document

Staff


Judges praise 'playful' and 'intriguing' photographs

Shortlist showcases School of Art talent

Graduates

Graduates have gone on to study the MA Photography and/or become photographers, freelance curators, picture editors, exhibition assistants, exhibition artists and teachers.

Making an Application

How to Apply

Apply through UCAS.

If you meet our criteria we will invite you to an Interview and ask you to show us a Portfolio of your work.

You will be notified of our decision through UCAS.

Entry Requirements

UCAS Tariff Points/Grades Required

112 at A2 or equivalent (such as BTEC National Extended Diploma DMM at Level 3 or Advanced Diploma). If applying using Foundation Diploma in Art and Design a minimum of a Merit is required depending on other level 3 qualifications. A Level General Studies is not accepted.

Learn more about MMU's Foundation Diploma in Art and Design.

Specific GCSE Requirements

GCSE Grade C or above (or acceptable alternative) in English Language

Non Tariffed Qualifications

A relevant Level 3 Access to HE Diploma will be considered for entry to this course.

International Baccalaureate26 Points

International Students

A minimum IELTS score of 6 with no element below 5.5 is required.

Check our MMU International site for further information if you are applying with non-UK qualifications.

Fees 2017 Entry

Tuition fees for the 2017/18 academic year are still being finalised for all courses. Please see our general guide to our standard undergraduate tuition fees.

See Money Matters for further information and advice.