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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Edinburgh College of Art : Art

Undergraduate Course: Art in Context 1 (ARTX08091)

Course Outline
SchoolEdinburgh College of Art CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 8 (Year 1 Undergraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits40 ECTS Credits20
SummaryArt in Context 1 introduces ways to research, analyse, and express ideas about contemporary art. Through a series of exhibition visits, lectures, seminars, and workshops, you will explore contemporary artworks and exhibitions in relation to relevant ideas. You will be taught by a diverse group of artists and researchers from across Edinburgh College of Art and further afield, presenting challenging, engaging, and exciting ways to think about contemporary art.
Course description Art in Context 1 introduces ways to research, analyse, and express ideas about contemporary art.

The course is taught by artists and researchers from across Edinburgh College of Art and further afield, presenting a plurality of diverse voices and perspectives on contemporary art. The lectures and seminars model different approaches to discussing and expressing ideas about contemporary art, based on a case-study approach that introduces an artwork or exhibition alongside a key idea.

Teaching will focus on skills such as close looking within exhibitions and the finding and close reading of relevant texts, alongside analysis and practice of different ways of writing about and expressing ideas related to contemporary art for various audiences. You will put these skills into practice during gallery visits, seminars, and workshops, and will be supported by tutors to develop your own ideas and writing, culminating in a short essay on a contemporary artwork or exhibition and key idea you have identified.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites Students MUST also take: Art in Practice 1 (ARTX08090)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements This course is only available to students on a Degree Programme in the School of Art.
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2023/24, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  30
Course Start Full Year
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 400 ( Lecture Hours 10, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 11, Supervised Practical/Workshop/Studio Hours 20, External Visit Hours 4, Feedback/Feedforward Hours 2, Formative Assessment Hours 1, Summative Assessment Hours 1, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 8, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 343 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) This course has 2 assessment components.
- Summative Assignment 1: Essay plan, 20%, weeks 5-7, Semester 2
- Summative Assignment 2: Essay (800-1000 words or 10 mins audio/video essay and transcript), 80%, week 12, Semester 2
Feedback Formative Feedback

In preparation for their essay, students will submit a formative reflective log in semester 1, week 11 and receive verbal feedback in a peer-led feed-forward group tutorial in semester 2, weeks 1-2.

Summative Feedback

Students will receive verbal summative feedback on their essay plan in a one-to-one feedforward tutorial in semester 2, weeks 7-9, to inform their work on their summative essay. Written summative feedback on the essay, with reference to the learning outcomes, will be provided as per current university policy.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Research contemporary art and relevant ideas
  2. Analyse contemporary art in relation to relevant ideas
  3. Express ideas about contemporary art
Reading List
DeSouza, Allan. How Art Can Be Thought: a Handbook for Change. Durham: Duke University Press, 2018.
McKittrick, Katherine. Footnotes (Books and Papers Scattered about the Floor). In: Dear Science and Other Stories. Durham: Duke University Press, 2021.
Stallabrass, Julian. Contemporary Art: a Very Short Introduction. Second edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2020.
Williams, Gilda. How to Write About Contemporary Art. London: Thames & Hudson, 2014.
Vishmidt, Marina. Speculation. London: Whitechapel; Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 2023.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills 1. Research and enquiry
- Independent research: investigate the broad critical and contextual dimensions of contemporary art
- Handling complexity and ambiguity: navigate a variety of sources and ideas related to contemporary art
- Knowledge integration and application: respond to major developments in current and emergent debates and ideas within contemporary art

2. Personal and intellectual autonomy
- Creativity and inventive thinking: make connections between intention, process, outcome, context and methods of dissemination in contemporary art
- Self-awareness and reflection: open and resilient to critical feedback on research and ideas
- Independent learning and development: situate the significance of the work of other contemporary artists in relation to other artists, contexts, and ideas

3. Personal effectiveness
- Planning, organising and time management: self-management, including planning and developing skills, in research and communication to meet course deadlines
- Assertiveness and Confidence: develop ideas through to outcomes that confirm an ability to select and use relevant sources related to contemporary art and ideas

4. Communication
- Verbal communication and presentation: communicate ideas and information in visual, oral and written forms about current ideas and debates in contemporary art
- Written communications: present ideas and reasoned arguments about contemporary art in the written form of an essay
- Cross-cultural communication: convey the relationship between ideas in contemporary art and wider cultural contexts and environments
Keywordsart,contemporary art,context,exhibition,practice
Course organiserDr James Bell
Course secretaryMiss Hannah Morrison
Tel: (0131 6)51 5763
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