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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Edinburgh College of Art : History of Art

Postgraduate Course: History of Art MSc Dissertation (HIAR11114)

Course Outline
SchoolEdinburgh College of Art CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate)
Course typeDissertation AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits60 ECTS Credits30
SummaryA 15,000 word dissertation on a topic relating to history of art, demonstrating your ability to conduct advanced independent research in your subject of study, at postgraduate level.
Course description Having completed the taught part of the MSc, the Dissertation permits you to implement your academic training in contextualising research findings, on a topic that you define as relevant to your discipline. These will be presented in a coherent text (the dissertation), adhering to academic conventions and implementing an appropriate structure, which enhances understanding of your chosen topic. In terms of the skills required for its successful completion, the dissertation is the longest and most important academic text you will produce during the MSc.

Assessment is based upon an 15,000 word written paper, which involves an in-depth exploration of a particular topic.

Teaching is by individual supervision. You will work one-on-one with a member of staff whose research specialism, as far as possible, corresponds with the topic you are focusing on for your dissertation. The pattern of 3-4 supervision meetings is outlined in the course syllabus. In addition, there are three group workshops, to address common issues including structure and time management, organised throughout the year.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2023/24, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  None
Course Start Block 5 (Sem 2) and beyond
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 600 ( Dissertation/Project Supervision Hours 4, Supervised Practical/Workshop/Studio Hours 3, Feedback/Feedforward Hours 2, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 12, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 579 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) A 15,000 word dissertation on a topic relating to the history of art, submitted at the end of August.
Feedback You will receive written feedback and a one-to-one meeting to discuss two pieces of FORMATIVE ASSESSMENT as follows:

(1) a Dissertation Statement outlining the aims of and issues raised by the dissertation (1 or 2 sides of A4) together with a chapter by chapter plan (roughly a paragraph describing the focus of each chapter), a research plan and an initial bibliography. This should be submitted by the advertised deadline, around the end of April.

(2) By the end of May you are invited to submit a draft of some portion of the text (not more than 1 chapter, i.e. 3-4,000 words); accompanied by a revised list of chapters.

Written feedback on student dissertations will be provided.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. produce an extended piece of original research in history of art.
  2. structure a sophisticated intellectual argument across 15,000 words
  3. devise and demonstrate an appropriate methodology, through which to frame your questions and articulate your findings
  4. present your work in line correctly and in line with appropriate academic conventions, including bibliography, footnotes, and illustrations where necessary
Reading List
Umberto Eco, How to Write a Thesis. Cambridge, Mass, and London: MIT Press, 2015. This is available as an e-book on the library website.

Anne d┬┐Alleva, How to Write Art History. London: Laurence King Publishing, 2010.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Visual and critical analysis; Clear thinking and the development of an argument; Independent research; Presentation and communication skills; Organisation and planning.
KeywordsDissertation,History of Art,independent research
Course organiserDr Iain Campbell
Tel: (0131 6)51 3120
Course secretaryMiss Chloe Hancock
Tel: (0131 6)50 4124
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