Royal College of Art: History of Design MA - V&A/RCA (Design & Material Culture, Performance, Photography)

InstitutionRoyal College of Art
Department School of Arts and Humanities
Telephone 020 7590 4444
Study type Taught


Offered jointly by the Royal College of Art and the Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A), the MA creates critical histories through artefacts and our interactions with them, whether in design, performance, photography or material culture more broadly. We see the history of design and material culture as interdisciplinary, and offer teaching and research expertise from the fifteenth century to the contemporary, exploring areas such as geography, performance studies and design research.

V&A/RCA History of Design MA embraces history that is public-facing, experimental and committed to academic excellence, connected to communities in public museums and art schools. We see history as practice-based and bring a distinctly global outlook to historical questions, placing local histories in comparative context and tracing diverse, global networks through material culture.

When applying for this programme, you select one of these specialist pathways.

Design & Material Culture Design and material culture perspectives into history.

Performance New insights into the culture, economics and politics of performance.

Photography Understanding photographs as artistic, scientific, technological and social artefacts.

About the RCA The Royal College of Art, is an internationally renowned art and design university, providing students with unrivalled opportunities to deliver art and design projects that transform the world.

A small, specialist and research-intensive postgraduate university based in the heart of London, the RCA is a high performing institution, a radical traditionalist in a fast paced world. The RCA's approach is founded on the premise that art, design creative thinking, science, engineering and technology must all collaborate to solve today's global challenges.

In March 2020 the RCA was named the world’s leading art and design university for the sixth consecutive year in the QS World University subject rankings.


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