Fine Art - MA


We are very proud of the Fine Art programme at the University of Edinburgh and the students who take it: they are highly motivated, creative and original thinkers. Many of them have gone on to considerable success in the world of art. They include John Leighton, the Director General of the National Galleries of Scotland and our very own Andrew Patrizio, Professor of Scottish Contemporary Art here at the University of Edinburgh.

What’s different about this programme?

The Fine Art MA is a five-year degree during which you study both History of Art and Art practice. In Art you are given a broad base in your first year – which includes the study of painting, sculpture, photography and intermedia – before you go on to focus your work on a particular specialism. In History of Art in your first two years you study a broad sweep of times, places and artefacts, from Late Antiquity to the present. We have specialists in global art, including Chinese and Islamic, which you will study alongside the Italian renaissance, Impressionism and contemporary art. In third and fourth years you will chose from a range of specialized topics as well as project works in which you can try your hand at curating art objects or being an art critic. In your last year you will write a 10,000 word dissertation on a research topic of your own choosing.

What’s so special about Edinburgh?

Edinburgh is a World Heritage city and, every summer, home of one of the world’s greatest cultural festivals. It is home to major historical collections and some of the UK’s most important contemporary art venues.

Art and History of Art are part of ECA which is in turn part of the University of Edinburgh, one of the world’s leading universities.


Stuart Bennett, Programme Director | View staff profile >


Everything you need to know about finding perfect student accommodation.

Resources for History of Art, Art, Architecture and Landscape Architecture students.

An amalgamation of the University's extensive art collection and ECA’s collection of prints, drawings, paintings and sculpture.

A fully operational, entirely student-run 90-seat theatre housed in a neo-gothic church.

Get information, advice and guidance about your career options.

The Centre for Research Collections (CRC) is the main space for anyone using the University of Edinburgh’s historic collections.

Work spaces are available across the University. ECA's computers include software tailored to the disciplines studied here.

At the heart of the Evolution House Learning and Research Zone, the ECA Library provides an innovative environment for learning, teaching and research resources in art and design.

ECAfé provides a full catering service to all staff, students and visitors to Edinburgh College of Art.

Edinburgh Global's mission is to encourage internationalisation, enhance the student experience, create and develop partnerships.

EUSA represent the student voice. They provide services, run events, and facilitate student societies.

Information and guidance on financial matters for all students of the University of Edinburgh.

A Georgian garden that doubles as a venue for performances in the centre of the city.

Including journals, image databases, and local collections.

The primary collection of books, periodicals, manuscripts, and research material.

Overlooking Edinburgh Castle, our painting studios provide a bright and airy space for working in.

By day, a café, bar and study space, and by night a club venue. Potterrow’s dome is also home to the Advice Place and the Potter Shop.

The neo-classical Sculpture Court in the ECA Main Building is home to the many pieces from the Edinburgh Cast Collection, and is regularly used for student exhibitions.

Caters to a diverse range of users from occasional exercisers to international athletes.

Offering counselling services for students, workshops, consultation and training for staff.

Supporting students with dyslexia, mental health issues and students on the autistic spectrum, as well as those who have physical and sensory impairments.

Talbot Rice Gallery is the public art Gallery for the University of Edinburgh.

Home to six distinctive bars, Teviot is the oldest purpose built students' union in the world.

A hub for the University Societies and setting regular live music, comedy, spoken word and poetry nights.

A bar at the Lauriston Campus which hosts regular events including club nights and gigs.

Scholarships & bursaries

Awarded for an outstanding piece of work by an Honours student (3rd, 4th or 5th year undergraduate).

News & events

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Oliver, Jonathan and Shimal next to their Degree Show work
Oliver Beetschen, Jonathan Piper and Shimal Morjaria with their reimagined Otemachi Tower

The RSA Architecture Prize and the Glenfiddich Artists in Residence Award are among the top honours won by ECA students in this year’s showcase.

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Artist Trevor Jones in front of a piece of his work
Image courtesy of Nivine Keating

Trevor is a Fine Art - MA (Hons) graduate. He is a painter and the co-founder of CreativMuse, an augmented reality platform.


College of Humanities & Social Science Undergraduate Admissions Office


Tel: +44 (0)131 650 3565