Photography (N0211A310019)

Type of programme Mode of study Profile of the programme Standard study length Language Instruction Department
Continuing Master's Programme full-time academically oriented 2 years English Department of Photography

Guarantor of study programme

Štěpánka ŠIMLOVÁ

Programme objectives

Continuing studies in photography are aimed at furthering the student's creative and intellectual development, deepening their knowledge and talents with regard to their individual focus and abilities. The Master's degree emphasizes intensive, deep and concentrated work on one's own education in close cooperation with teachers and leads students to the ability to reflect in the creative and theoretical field. The program encourages curiosity, an authorial approach with a deeply cultivated morality, honoring all things human, fosters discussion and a respect for other points of view while maintaining one's own integrity. It develops the ability to work with feedback, positive criticism, and dialogue as essential tools for the reflection and expansion of the creative personality and its work for the benefit of society.

Profile of a programme graduate

A graduate of the Master's program in photography is a complex, independent and creative personality and potentially, a successful visual artist. They are equipped with the knowledge, skills and competences that make them capable of creative independent or team work, reflection on their own work, critical thinking in relation to the use of a wide range of media, especially photography and technical images. They can approach visual art and visual culture from a theoretical, historical, technological, social, and/or philosophical perspective. In addition to developing their talents and acquiring additional knowledge, the student refines their awareness of the role of the artist in society, deepens their attitudes and opinions based on a humanistic outlook, takes an active interest in the pressing problems of the contemporary world and society, and creates or joins platforms that help solve these problems. Based on an understanding of existing systems, it seeks positions from which systems can be reflected and changed.

Expertise Graduate Degree:

Professional skills

Graduates of the programme:

General competencies

Graduates of the programme:

-are able to work in a team (e.g. film crew or art-research teams);

-are capable of a deep-dive in to the understanding of different cultures with which they may engage in a constructive dialogue

Rules and requirements for creating study plans

The basic framework for the conception of curricula at AMU is created, firstly, by the AMU Internal Evaluation Rules, specifying the basic principles of the accreditation process; the current practice is further formally anchored by the AMU Accreditation Regulations; it defines the parameters common to all study programmes taught at AMU and at the same time delegates part of the responsibility for subject specifications (theatre, music, dance, film/television) to the faculties.

The curriculum is created in accordance with the AMU Study and Examination Regulations, which, based on the specifics of higher artistic education, defines the main compulsory subject within the typology of subjects: it is a key artistic (or talent) subject of a profiling basis, for which the assessment is always carried out on a commission basis and which does not allow for re-attestation. An important role in the assessment system is played in many disciplines by the so-called 'cloistered examination', i.e. the presentation of an artistic output before a committee: the principle is a comprehensive assessment of the student's knowledge and skills acquired in several sub-subjects and applied in a collectively produced work (e.g. in theatre disciplines). Another specificity of the curricula is the flexibility allowed in the distribution of credits (60 ECTS per academic year) between the winter and summer semesters, based in some disciplines on the more significant study and creative load associated with the completion of artistic outputs in the summer semester.

The theoretical and historical basis of the field is a compulsory part of all study programmes, in the case of academic programmes in the form of compulsory subjects of a profiling basis co-determining the profile of the graduate and forming part of the state final examination.

Each study plan also includes compulsory completion of discipline-specific English language instruction, with a minimum of 6 ECTS per study cycle.

Classification is awarded according to the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS), which was introduced under the Bologna Agreements of 1999 with the aim of unifying and integrating the higher education system in the European Union.

Courses completed by examination are graded on an A-E scale (F = fail), other courses are graded pass/fail; a combination of both certifications is not possible.

The standard length of a lesson is 45 minutes. The basic organizational forms of instruction are lecture, seminar, exercise, and workshop; the last three forms of instruction include, to varying degrees, the creation of artistic outputs. Teaching takes place either on a weekly basis or in the form of intensive blocks or workshops.

The curriculum automatically assumes prerequisites in the form of sequences of courses, indicated by an ascending number after the course title. This type of prerequisite is not specifically mentioned in Annex BIII for individual courses. If a course has a non-sequential prerequisite, it is explicitly listed in Appendix BIII for the course. In the same sense, we do not list prerequisites; these are determined by the mandatory inclusion of the course in a particular year and semester along with other courses. The curriculum does not make use of equivalencies.

The curriculum includes compulsory, compulsory elective and elective courses. In terms of credit load, the first year differs from the second: in the first year, students have to obtain almost 30 compulsory credits each semester, while in the second year it is 20 (in the ZS) and 17 (in the LS). The first year is thus more focused on direct teaching, the second on independent creative activity within the studios.

The key compulsory subjects are the studios. In the accreditation file, this is always one compulsory course for 4 credits - Photography Department Studios 1 to 4. Five separate studios are included under this course, from which the student chooses just one for the semester (called parallels).

In the first year, there are also important Master's Practicums that students must take two per semester (autumn and winter practicum in ZS, spring and summer practicum in LS). Each practicum is divided into four separate courses (Author's Research and Analysis, Theoretical Introduction to a Topic, Visual Project Creation, Verbal Explication and Presentation). Within the practices, students always work on one specific topic, within which they learn to orient themselves theoretically, historically and especially to grasp the topic creatively and to present and explain their work appropriately. The emphasis is placed on the process of research and creation itself, less on the results, which, in terms of the deliberately limited time for subtopics, are often in the nature of a developed idea. In the teaching of the projects, the heads of the studios take turns (depending on the topic, more than one may be involved), and the theoretical and research part of the projects is provided by the theoreticians of the department. Practicals are not part of the studio teaching, but are separate groups of subjects that complement and extend the studio teaching. Detailed descriptions of a few selected practicum topics are available in a separate appendix inserted at the end of the accreditation file for Part Dl.

Theory is developed in the Texts and Contexts 1 and 2 courses (intensive reading and discussion seminar), in addition to the MA Projects section (Theoretical Introduction to the topic), and in the second year in Diploma Seminar 1 and 2.

In addition to the studio and projects, skills-based learning is also developed in Graphic Design and Photography 1 to 4, and in the second year in New Media and Multimedia 1 and 2.

The programme offers students two groups of PV courses. The PV courses of type A (profile-based courses) include practical and craft-oriented photography and art workshops. Eight workshops are offered to students in this group, each of which is assessed at 3 credits. Each student must earn a minimum of 12 credits in this group.

In the next group are faculty PV B courses in art history and theory and social sciences.

Students must take required courses for a total of 100 credits, workshops (PV A courses) for a minimum of 8 credits, and PV B courses for a minimum of 4 credits. The remaining 8 credits are reserved for electives.

Most of the courses are provided by internal members of the Faculty of Arts.

The curriculum includes electives: Elective courses are offered both at the faculty level and by the photography department itself. Elective courses provided by the department include Profile Author Exhibition (Assoc. Mgr. Mgr. Martin Stecker, Assoc. Mgr. Štěpánka Šimlová, prof. Mgr. Rudolf Prekop, doc. MgA. Hynek Alt, MgA. Markéta Kinterová, Ph.D., 1-2 ZS/LS) and KF Modules (usually provided in cooperation with external artists and experts and focused on specific topics and specific aspects of contemporary art and artistic operation: e.g. Documentary Photography and Sociology, Ferrotype in the Outdoors, Photogram, Book Binding, Staged Photography Module, Video Formats and Codecs), subjects expanding soft skills - (Portfolio 1-3).

The elective courses also include key knowledge and skills courses from the Bachelor's degree (e.g. History and Theory of Photography 1 and 2, Contemporary Photography and Art 1 and 2, Photographic Techniques 1 and 2, Computer Work and Digital Imaging 1 and 2, Introduction to Contemporary Graphic Design 1 and 2). Students have the opportunity to supplement or repeat the knowledge that is a prerequisite for studying at the advanced level.

Teaching is carried out over twelve weeks in ZS and over fourteen weeks in LS.

In the summer semester, the last two weeks of teaching are the so-called „implementation“ weeks. During these weeks, teaching is not scheduled, but students work on completing their creative outputs or theoretically oriented written work according to an individual schedule.

Teachers of all subjects are available to students for individual consultations by mutual agreement between students and teachers.

General information about admission process

The purpose of the admission procedure is to test the applicant's ability to further develop their talents, theoretical knowledge and professional skills. The candidate applies for admission to the Master's programme by submitting an application form and a Master's project with compulsory theses.

The admission procedure is two-rounds. In the first round, the committee will assess the submitted homework without the presence of the applicant. The second round consists of the following parts: a test on art history and theory and a general cultural overview; a conceptual assignment on a given topic; an interpretation of the homework; and an interview during which the applicant will explain their motivation and vision for the study.

The admissions committee assesses the applicant's talent and knowledge requirements for study by means of a score with a minimum threshold. The Admissions Committee will propose applicants who have met this threshold to the Dean of FAMU for admission to study.

For admission to the Master's degree programme at the Department of Photography, the applicant shall submit:

  1. an exhibition of 8-12 photographs representing the applicant's work
  2. a mock-up of an original photographic publication
  3. a set of 8-20 photographs or an intermedia project in the field of visual arts on any topic (different from the photographs submitted in the previous sets - point 1 and 2)
  4. a master's project that includes:
  1. a motivation letter which includes

The admissions committee assesses the applicant's talent and knowledge requirements for study in the form of a score with a set minimum threshold. The Admissions Committee will propose applicants who have met this threshold to the Dean of FAMU for admission to study.

Applicability to other types of academic programmes

The Master's degree programme in Photography is a continuation of the Bachelor's degree programme in Photography. Graduates of the follow-up Master's programme in Photography are eligible to apply for admission to the doctoral programme in Film, Television and Photographic Arts and New Media.

The programme is also open to graduates of Bachelor's degree programmes from art schools of various disciplines, as well as from schools providing education in the humanities and social sciences. In principle, the programme is open to all talented and motivated graduates of undergraduate programmes in any field.

Parts of the state final examination and their contents

The GCSE consists of two parts:

  1. The Graduate Art Performance (linked to the courses Photography Department Studios 1- 4; Spring/Summer/Fall/Winter MA Practicum: Authorial Research and Analysis; Spring/Summer/Fall/Winter MA Practicum: Visual Project Creation; Spring/Summer/Fall/Winter MA Practicum: Verbal Explication and Presentation; Clausura Examination 1-4; Exhibition Project 1-3; Author's Presentation; New Media and Multimedia 1, 2; Technical Preparation for the State Final Exam; Preparation for the Artistic Part of the Final Project; Graphic Design and Photography 5-8; Jan Měřička workshop: Your own colorful space 1, 2)
  2. Written Thesis (related to the Master Thesis Seminar 1 and 2 courses)

State final exam

  1. The Graduate Art Performance (linked to the courses Photography Department Studios 1- 4; Spring/Summer/Fall/Winter MA Practicum: Authorial Research and Analysis; Spring/Summer/Fall/Winter MA Practicum: Visual Project Creation; Spring/Summer/Fall/Winter MA Practicum: Verbal Explication and Presentation; Clausura Examination 1-4; Exhibition Project 1-3; Author's Presentation; New Media and Multimedia 1, 2; Technical Preparation for the State Final Exam; Preparation for the Artistic Part of the Final Project; Graphic Design and Photography 5-8; Jan Měřička workshop: Your own colorful space 1, 2)
  2. Photography book (related to the courses Photography Department Studios 1-4; Graphic Design and Photography 1-4; Drawing 1, 2; Screen Printing Workshop: Custom Color Space 1, 2; Typography and Contemporary Image)
  3. Thesis defense (related to thesis seminar 1, 2)
  4. Theoretical examination in the history and theory of photography (related to the courses Texts and Contexts 1, 2; Thesis Seminar 2)

In the theoretical oral examination, two questions/topics are drawn (see list of topics below). The student has 30 minutes to prepare independently. The examination consists of two parts:

(a) Theoretical oral examination - lecture: a coherent presentation by the student in the form of a ten-minute lecture on the first topic drawn. Additional questions from the committee members are asked after the lecture. The lecture does not have to exhaust the topic systematically; the student should present his/her approach to the topic and combine historiographical data with theoretical opinion. It is advisable to choose a few specific examples (artists, theorists, etc.) on which the student will demonstrate his/her attitude and understanding of the problem convincingly.

b) Theoretical oral examination - debate: Debate with the members of the committee on the second topic drawn.

Thematic areas of the theoretical oral examination

  1. Specificity of photography and intermediality
  2. Reproducibility (graphic, photographic and digital reproduction techniques; the problem of reproduction and documentation of art)
  3. Photographic portraiture and the problem of identity in modern and contemporary times
  4. Objectivity as an epistemic ideal: scientific photography
  5. Photographer as witness: ethical and political dimensions of photography
  6. Vernacular (amateur and commercial) photography
  7. Apparatuses and machines of vision: the technical conditions of photography
  8. Art as post-production: found, appropriated, recycled, archived photographs
  9. The photographic canon and its institutionalization (historiography, exhibition, market)
  10. Photography and new media (remediation, calculated and operative images, technological convergence)

The list of literature on SZZ is published on the department's website: https://foto.amu.cz/studenti/magisterska-zkouska-dejin-teorie-fotografie/

Other academic duties

Characterisation of professional practice

Anticipated job placement for graduates (typical employment)

Due to the systematic care and attention given to their talent, the graduate is an artistic personality or professional with a solid educational foundation and the potential for further creative growth. In addition to various opportunities in different genres of photography (artistic, documentary and documentary, reportage, advertising, fashion, portrait, industrial or scientific photography, for example), they are also equipped for publishing, curating, teaching and collaborating on audiovisual works. Furthermore, they can work as a freelance visual artist, team photographer, freelance photographer or art director. Graduates can also find employment in scientific projects or within various cultural platforms (galleries, magazines, festivals, agencies, etc.). Graduates can continue their studies in the doctoral programme at FAMU or in doctoral programmes of other Czech or foreign schools.

Accreditation validity

Study programme valid from Study programme valid to
2022-06-17 2032-06-17

Studijní plány programu