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Master of Fine Arts

Course resolutions

The course resolutions detailed in this page apply to all courses included in the table below under section 1 (course codes). 

These resolutions must be read in conjunction with applicable University By-laws, Rules and policies including (but not limited to) the University of Sydney (Coursework) Rule 2014 (the 'Coursework Rule'), the Coursework Policy 2021 (the 'Coursework Policy'), the Learning and Teaching Policy 2019, the Resolutions of the Faculty, University of Sydney (Student Academic Appeals) Rule 2021, the Academic Honesty in Coursework Policy 2015 and the Academic Honesty Procedures 2016. Current versions of all policies are available from the Policy Register: https://www.sydney.edu.au/policies

Part 1: Preliminary

1 Course codes

Code Course and stream title
RMFINART-02
Master of Fine Arts

Part 2: Admission requirements

2 Eligibility for admission to candidature

(1) To be eligible to be admitted to candidature by the Associate Dean (Research Education), an applicant must:

(a) hold or have completed the requirements for:

(i) the degree of Bachelor of Visual Arts (Honours) from the University of Sydney; or

(ii) the degree of Bachelor of Visual Arts and the Graduate Diploma of Visual Arts from the University of Sydney; and

(b) present evidence of having the aptitude required for undertaking the course, by the method nominated, through a research proposal and a portfolio of creative work.

(2) The Dean or Associate Dean (Research Education) may admit to candidature an applicant who does not meet the requirements of sub-clause (1), provided that the applicant holds a qualification or qualifications that, in the opinion of the Faculty, are equivalent to those prescribed in sub-clause (1).

3 Application for admission to candidature

(1) In addition to requirements prescribed in the HDR Rule, an applicant for admission to candidature must submit to the Faculty:

(a) the proposed method of candidature: by thesis comprising a body of creative work for exhibition and a written component; or by written thesis only;

(b) a proposed course of research and advanced study;

(c) for applicants wishing to proceed by thesis comprising a body of creative work for exhibition and a written component, a portfolio of creative work reflecting the applicant's recent art practice; and

(d) for admission to part-time candidature, a statement that the applicant will have sufficient time available to complete the requirements of the degree in accordance with these resolutions.

4 Credit transfer

The HDR Rule specifies the conditions for the granting of credit for previous studies, including the effect on completion times.

Part 3: Candidature

5 Appointment of supervisory team

For each candidate, the Associate Dean (Research Education) will appoint a supervisory team of at least two supervisors, one of whom will be lead supervisor in accordance with the HDR Rule and the Supervision of Higher Degree by Research Students Policy 2020.

6 Control of candidature

The HDR Rule specifies the conditions for the control of candidature by the University.

7 Location of candidature and attendance

The HDR Rule specifies the conditions for the location of candidature and attendance by candidates at the University.

Part 4: Requirements

8 Degree requirements

(1) To satisfy the requirements of the degree all candidates must:

(a) complete any specified probationary requirements;

(b) attend any prescribed weekly seminars; and

(c) conduct research on the approved topic.

(2) Candidates proceeding by written thesis only must also write a thesis embodying the results of the research.

(3) Candidates proceeding by thesis comprising a body of creative work for exhibition and a written component must also:

(a) submit for examination, at an exhibition by candidates, a substantial exhibition, screening, performance or installation of works; and

(b) submit a research paper on an area relevant to the creative work.

(c) if commencing during or after 2021, complete within the first year (full-time equivalency) of candidature a minimum of 6 credit points of study from Table R as determined in the relevant Faculty milestones statement and any other studies as required by the supervisor(s) of the research project.

9 The thesis and the research paper

(1) A candidate proceeding by written thesis only shall produce a thesis that:

(a) meets the requirements specified in the HDR Rule; and

(b) is in the range of 25,000 to 35,000 words.

(2) A candidate proceeding by thesis comprising a body of creative work for exhibition and a written component shall produce a research paper that:

(a) meets the requirements specified in the HDR Rule; and

(b) is in the range of 10,000 to 12,000 words.

10 Units of study

Candidates will be required to complete either 6 or 12 credit points of units of study from Table R.

Part 5: Enrolment and progression

11 Probation

(1) A candidate is normally accepted for candidature on a probationary basis for a period not exceeding one year according to the provisions of the HDR Rule.

(2) In the probationary period each candidate must:

(a) complete any specified seminar programs;

(b) develop and present a refined research proposal to the satisfaction of the Supervisor and Sydney College of the Arts HDR Coordinator; and

(c) meet requirements in accordance with the Progress Planning Review for Higher Degree by Research Students Policy and Procedures.

12 Time limits, earliest and latest submission dates

The HDR Rule specifies the allowable completion times and submission dates available for full- and part-time candidates in this course.

13 Mode of attendance

(1) The attendance pattern for this course is normally full-time in the first year of candidature.

(2) Candidates may apply to change to part-time candidature thereafter.

14 Discontinuation of candidature

A candidate may discontinue enrolment in a unit of study or the degree subject to the conditions specified by the HDR Rule.

15 Suspension of candidature

A candidate may suspend enrolment from the degree subject to the conditions specified by the HDR Rule.

16 Leave of absence

A candidate may take leave of absence from the degree subject to the conditions specified by the HDR Rule.

17 Progress

A candidate is required to maintain satisfactory progress towards the timely completion of the degree. Progress will be reviewed annually according to the provisions of the HDR Rule.

Part 6: Examination

18 Examination of the thesis

(1)  Examination of the thesis will be conducted in general accordance with the standards prescribed by Academic Board for the Masters by Research, which are set out in the Thesis and Examination of Higher Degrees by Research Policy 2015.

(2)  The Faculty Research Education Committee will act in place of the HDR examinations sub-committee of the Academic Board to determine the outcome of the examination in cases where all examiners recommend award of the degree. In all other cases, the matter will be referred to the HDR Examinations Subcommittee for determination.

19 Award of the degree

The degree is awarded at the Pass level only.

Part 7: Other

20 Transitional provisions

(1) These resolutions apply to students who commenced their candidature after 1 January 2021. Students who commenced their candidature prior to 1 January 2021 may complete the requirements in accordance with the resolutions in force at the time of their commencement.