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Print_ E Wyatt Show 2019.jpg


Reinventing print

Key details

  • 240 credits
  • 2 year programme
  • Full-time study

Understand the field of print through making, exhibiting, publishing, discussion and writing.

In this expanded field, the histories of media, craft, mechanical and digital (re)production are all open to question. Embracing very different ways of thinking and making, we engage with the digital and physical circulation of images. We explore the differences of virtual space vs hard copy, questioning how shifts in the register of different media affect our lives.

You may use archives, image and text, appropriation, and work in all media, from books to installations, webpages to hard copies. Why, in the context of digital ubiquity, is there still interest in direct material engagement with ink and paper? What value does the hand-drawn trace have in our digital age? Are there already too many images in the world? Why make more?

We aim to develop your potential, encouraging both thinking through making and conceptual understanding of how work communicates. Staff (all practising artists) and students work together within this dynamic flux of difference, questioning established narratives.


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    Show 2019

    Ruta Grigate and Alexandra Pullen

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    Desova, Show 2019. Photograph: Richard Haughton

    Joao Villas

  • Print_Katarina Stupavska _copper_plate.jpg

    Copper plate

    Katarina Stupavska

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    Act 1, Making the Powerhouse

    Lucy Hutchinson


The School of Arts & Humanities is located across our Battersea and Kensington sites.

View all facilities

All full-time students on fine or applied arts programmes are provided with studio and workshop space. There are a number of bookable seminar and project spaces across the site available to all Arts & Humanities students.

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    Print workshop. Photograph: Richard Haughton

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    Print workshop. Photograph: Richard Haughton

  • Print_Facilities_Richard_Haughton.jpg

    Print workshop. Photograph: Richard Haughton

More details on what you'll study.

Find out what you'll cover in this programme.

What you'll cover

During your first year of Print, you’ll undertake three units of study, each worth 40 credits and assessed through a combination of continuous and summative methods.

Your first year will be experimental and diagnostic, allowing you to reflect on your previous work and often radically change your understanding and practice. An introductory seminar and brief introductions to both the workshops and to each other, via short presentations of work, will follow.

A week of cross-College projects and a study trip allow us to discuss exhibitions or archives. You’ll then begin to develop a self-initiated and self-directed body of studio work in whatever form will test and expand your ideas and ambitions. This is supported and challenged (in both years) by tutorials, lectures, seminars, and workshops. Group critiques in the programme and across the School will take place in the first two terms. There will be a studio-based Work-in-progress Show in the second term.

To support your progress, you will be assigned a personal tutor with whom you’ll discuss your work in five tutorials per academic year. You’re also guaranteed tutorials from other members of the programme team each term, and you’ll have the opportunity to request tutorials from other staff from the School.

Although working primarily on your own practice, throughout the year you’ll have access to group critiques, seminars, lectures, workshops and tutorials with other members of the programme team and with staff and students from throughout the broader School. You’ll produce work for studio critiques that take place throughout term one and two.

You will be expected to engage in all aspects of the curriculum and test out new ways of thinking and making. A presentation skills workshop will prepare you for the end of the year assessments at which your progress will be examined.

During your second year you’ll undertake three units of study: Unit 2A (40 credits), Unit 2B (60 Credits) and the School of Arts & Humanities School Unit (20 Credits). These units are assessed through a combination of continuous and summative methods.

Your second year will require a shift towards sharing, distributing and contextualising work. You’re expected to produce a coherent body of ambitious work in a form that reflects your ideas and interests. You’re required to participate in one cross-School group in the first term. There will be an external exhibition project, a student-led final show event and some form of publishing project. You’ll also give a presentation in the lecture theatre about your work and have an opportunity to undertake a talk or workshop experience externally.

Preparations for ​Unit 2B – the Independent Research Project – consist of self-initiated research to develop and realise work. Your work should now have a clear direction and resolution, demonstrating a level of conceptual and technical competency appropriate to your own aims and objectives.

Alongside the participation in Programme-based units, you’ll also participate in the School of Arts & Humanities School unit, which will support you in discussing and evolving your work against a broader frame of reference.

All studio-based MA students follow a weekly schedule of Critical & Historical Studies (CHS), a College-wide initiative that provides you with the intellectual framework to build a coherent relationship between theory and practice.

CHS delivers exciting, thought-provoking and inspiring lectures by experts within the programme and high-profile visiting lecturers. You’ll have the opportunity to explore the theoretical background and aspects of your chosen discipline through a tutored dissertation process, as well as receiving individual tutorial support from our team of expert tutors.

View more CHS information


What you need to know before you apply

Candidates are selected entirely on merit and applications are welcomed from all over the world. The selection process considers creativity, imagination and innovation as demonstrated in your portfolio, as well as your potential to benefit from the programme and to achieve high MA standards overall.

You’re expected to have completed a BA degree. In recent years, students have come from fine art, printmaking, painting, sculpture, photo media, conservation, illustration, design, textiles, architecture and interactive arts courses. While many students enter the course after years of independent work, we also accept students directly from undergraduate courses.

We are looking for candidates who are excited about the potential of engaging with the College-wide peer group, and making the most of the educational opportunities the Programme offers. You may not have made prints before but should have a keen interest in the nature of the multiplied image and the desire to investigate the ideas we engage with.

What's needed from you

Your portfolio is a showcase of your work as an artist or designer and can be made up of images, videos or writing examples. Your portfolio helps us to better understand your application and allows you to show evidence of your ability and motivation to undertake a given programme.

Generally, we’re looking for you to demonstrate your:

  • Creativity, imagination and innovation
  • Ability to articulate the intentions of the work
  • Intellectual engagement in areas relevant to the work
  • Technical skills appropriate to the work
  • Potential to benefit from the programme

Each programme is looking for different things in a portfolio. Each Head of Programme provides specific advice on portfolio requirements in the online application system. We advise you to consider these requirements carefully before submitting your application.

Visit our application portal to view more portfolio requirements

If you are not a national of a majority English-speaking country you will need the equivalent of an IELTS Academic score of 6.5 with a 6.0 in the Test of Written English (TWE). Students achieving a grade of at least 6.0, with a grade of 5.5 in the Test of Written English, may be eligible to take the College’s English for Academic Purposes course to enable them to reach the required standard.

You are exempt from this requirement if you have received a 2.1 degree or above from a university in a majority English-speaking nation within the last two years.

If you need a Tier 4 visa to study at the RCA, you will also need to meet the Home Office’s minimum requirements for entry clearance.

Find out more about English-language requirements

Fees & funding

For this programme

Fees for new students

You'll find tuition fees for 2020/21 entry below.

Home and EU
£9,750 per year
£19,500 total cost*
Channel Islands and Isle of Man
£14,500 per year
£29,000 total cost*
£29,000 per year
£58,000 total cost*


New entrants to the College for MA, MRes, MPhil and PhD degrees will be required to pay a non-refundable deposit in order to secure their place. This will be offset against the tuition fees for the first year of study.

Home and EU

* Total cost is based on the assumption that the programme is completed in the timeframe stated in the programme details. Additional study time may incur additional charges.



Scholarships are awarded for a specific programme and entry point and cannot be deferred without consent from the academic Programme and scholarships panel.

More information

External funding

There are many funding sources, with some students securing scholarships and others saving money from working. It is impossible to list all the potential funding sources; however, the following information could be useful.


Tuition fees are due on the first day of the academic year and students are sent an invoice prior to beginning their studies. Payments can be made in advance, on registration or in two instalments.

Start your application

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Change your life and be here in 2020

The Royal College of Art welcomes applicants from all over the world.

Before you begin

Make sure you've read and understood the entrance requirements
More information about entrance requirements
Check you have all the information you need to apply.
Read our application process guide
Visit our applications portal to get started

Ask a question

Get in touch if you’d like to find out more or have any questions.

Email us at
[email protected]
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