Master of Fine Arts in Digital Arts

Master of Fine Arts in Digital Arts

Course information

Course title Master of Fine Arts in Digital Arts
Course code PMFADGAPDR0
Postnominal M.F.A.
Level of qualification Second Cycle
National Qualifications Framework level Level 7
Duration 6 Semesters
Mode of attendance Part-time Day (by Research)
Total ECTS credits 90
Coordinator Vince Briffa
Delivered by Faculty of Media and Knowledge Sciences
This programme of study is also offered on a full-time basis. Please consult the Registrar’s website for more information pertaining to courses offered by the University.

The course is designed to provide the required practical and theoretical skillset for interdisciplinary contemporary art and design practice, through focusing on mentored studio practice. The degree promotes the investigation and deeper integration of art and technology, fostering innovative dialogue between the visual, the auditory and the media arts, where studio practice becomes the locus that integrates established and emerging technologies with traditional materials and art processes. The degree empowers students to create a body of work that reflects the complexity of the world around us, becoming innovative practitioners and sophisticated professionals who understand how to position themselves in the international contemporary art and design ecology.

Prior to registering for the degree, a prospective student should consult the Department in order to create a well-structured, focused and viable Research Proposal with one of the Department's resident academics.

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The Course is open to applicants in possession of either:

(a) a Bachelor’s degree obtained with at least Second Class Honours or with placement in Category II from this or another university, in the Creative Arts and/or Media or any other area as deemed relevant by the Board, together with a substantial portfolio of recent works or

(b) a professional qualification/qualifications and/or experience deemed by Senate, on the recommendation of the Board, to satisfy in part the admission requirements to the Course, provided that applicants may be required to complete a preparatory programme as specified in bye-law 5 of the bye-laws for the course, together with a substantial portfolio of recent works.

All applicants who are not in possession of a first degree in the Creative Arts and/or Media shall be interviewed and evaluated by an interviewing board composed of at least three members. Applicants shall be asked to provide evidence of their professional experience in the Creative Arts and/or Media by means of a portfolio.

All prospective applicants are required to establish contact with the Department in order to discuss their proposal prior to formal application.

Preparatory Programme

All applicants may be required to follow a preparatory programme as specified by the Board.

The preparatory programme shall comprise not less than 30 and not more than 60 ECTS credits as directed by the Board. Applicants shall be required to obtain an overall average mark of 55% or better in the preparatory programme prior to their registration as regular students on the Course.

The admission requirements are applicable for courses commencing in October 2020.

For more detailed information pertaining to admission and progression requirements please refer to the bye-laws for the course available here.

UM currently hosts over 1,000 full-time international students and over 450 visiting students. The ever-increasing international students coming from various countries, in recent years, have transformed this 400-year old institution into an international campus.

Our international students generally describe Malta as a safe place, enjoying excellent weather and an all-year varied cultural programme. Malta is considered as the ideal place for students to study.

You can compare your national qualifications to the local requirements by visiting our qualifications comparability webpage.

Access more information about our admission process and English language requirements.

After you receive an offer from us, our International Office will assist you with visas, accommodation and other related issues.

Local/EU/EEA Applicants: Annual Enrolment Fee: Eur 400

Non-EU/Non-EEA Applicants: Total Tuition Fees: Eur 10,800
Yr 1: Eur 5,400 - Yr 2: Eur 5,400
By the end of the course students will be able to:

Knowledge and Understanding

1. Give value to interdisciplinarity and place importance in considering all factors affecting intervention and outcome in art and design practice.
2. Demonstrate self-critical and reflective abilities regarding their work and its process and possess rational appreciation of the work and process of others.
3. Acquire knowledge through empiricism and academic enquiry.
4. Contribute to the body of knowledge and understanding of issues within their subject area.
5. Demonstrate a sustainable and focused approach to the initiation, planning and development of an independently managed body of work to achieve high standards of professionalism and excellence.
6. Engage in an analysis of contemporary art and design in order to define the context of their studio practice.
7. Work with and integrate technology as a tool to further artistic and design practice.
8. Justify art and design decisions by reference to art and design history, industry practice, and key artists and designers.


Intellectual Skills

1. Demonstrate conceptual ability through the development of ideas, appropriate theoretical underpinning and insightive ingenuity by combining personal insight and critical analysis in the creation of individual work at Master’s level.
2. Apply conceptual and creative thinking to problem solving through a progressively developed awareness of interdisciplinary possibilities.
3. Manage Learning Contracts to achieve specified objectives and recognise the context of their work within a wider field of practice.
4. Critique texts and investigate source materials critically and empathetically and generate informed opinion through oral and written forms.
5. Acquire knowledge through sustained journaling practices.


Subject Skills

1. Justify appropriate use of media, technology and techniques, and the translation and application of practical skills, in relation to idea or concept through to outcome.
2. Demonstrate practical expertise and advanced knowledge in one or more specialised fields within a subject area.
3. Plan, develop and execute an extensive programme of work in negotiation with specialist staff.
4. Develop solutions for the problems encountered during the realisation of their conceptualisation in material forms, and develop sophisticated manipulation of materials in the advancement of their concept.
5. Provide a comprehensive evaluation of the results generated through work evidenced as studio practice.
6. Communicate stages of progression evidencing reflective conceptualisation and intelligent problem solving with appropriate materials and technologies.


Practical and Professional Skills

1. Demonstrate self-discipline, manage time through work schedules, and to set objectives through independent and self-directed learning.
2. Apply rigorous self-evaluation and respond positively to constructive criticism, particularly in the assessment of their work and development.
3. Consolidate previous thought and reflections in response to work presentations and viva voce situations.
4. Develop skills in decision-making, problem-solving and inter-personal relationships involving peers and management in personal and wider business situations.
5. Evidence capacity to interpret complex information and knowledge from words to practices and vice versa.
6. Innovate new solutions to existing problems and to anticipate new developments of improvements to the artwork and/or its design process.
The course is primarily intended for local and international practicing artists and designers at any stage of their career, who would like to take their practice forward through informed and mentored interdisciplinary studio practice. The course focuses on practice-based research within a supervised studio environment during the entire course of their study, thus affording more time for informed studio practice, expanding it into previously uncharted territories through experimentation.
The course provides the necessary knowledge in practice-based and interdisciplinary art and design research, allowing the applicant to specialise in the selected area through supervised studio practice.

Furthermore, students will be able to further their studies at doctoral level in any area of practice-based or practice-led art and design research.
Click here to access the Programme of Study applicable from 2020/1.

Last Updated: 30 September 2020

The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
Unless for exceptional approved reasons, no changes to the programme of study for a particular academic year will be made once the students' registration period for that academic year begins.

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