MA/Postgraduate Diploma (Arts Policy and Practice) [full-time, part-time]

College of Arts, Social Sciences, & Celtic Studies

Course overview

This programme aims to build an understanding of the performing, visual, and literary arts, film and new media and their associated contexts of culture, education and heritage. This programme is designed to enhance students organisational skills and also to develop policies for the Arts. The part-time option has been designed to support students unable to enlist in a full-time programme.

Students may only apply for the M.A. Those who do not meet the minimum entry requirements may be admitted with relevant professional experience via a qualifying exam, or be admitted to the PDip.

NUI Galway graduates of the Higher Diploma in Arts Policy and Practice (formerly Arts Administration) are eligible to apply for the M.A. Dissertation Only programme. Further information is available on request.


Key facts

Entry requirements

NQAI Level 8 degree or equivalent H2.2. GPA 3.0 or international qualification. IELTS score of 6.5 or equivalent if applicable. Students who do not meet the honours degree requirement but have a level 7 degree (Merit 2) may be admitted to the PDip course with the possibility of progressing to the MA if they receive a minimum of 60% in their coursework during the year.

Duration: 1 year, full-time
2 years, part-time

Next start date: September 2015

ECTS weighting: MA—90, PGDip—60

Average intake: 15

Closing date: You are advised to apply early, which may result in an early offer; see the offer round dates

Mode of study: Taught

Course outline

The programme provides a range of modules balanced between practical training in specific relevant skills and an analysis of policy formation in the arts. It is designed to enhance students administration skills and also to develop policy knowledge in relation to the Arts. Students come from diverse backgrounds either within the sector, be they artists, administrators or managers and also those wishing to enter the sector.

The MA is a full-time programme taken over a twelve month period (September to August). The year is divided into two teaching semesters (September to December and January to April). The summer period will be used to complete a six week placement and a minor dissertation.

The part-time programme is taken over a 24- month period. Both academic years are divided into two teaching semesters each year (September to December and January to April). In Year one, students are required to take 30 ECTS while in Year 2, 60 ECTS must be undertaken including the MA thesis (30 ECTS) for those taking the MA stream.

A 4 - 6 week placement is also a requirement of the programme. 

This valuable placement opportunity is within an organisation of your choosing. Module work includes the production of live campus events and also participation at the TG4 Gradam Ceoil awards. Individual guest sessions are tailored to MA/PDip students.

Applications and selections

Applications are made online via The Postgraduate Applications Centre (PAC). Relevant PAC application code(s) above.

Who teaches this course?

  • Dee Quinn, BA (History & Soc & Pol), H Dip Arts Admin, Dip Film Studies, Dioploma sa Gaeilge, MA Arts Policy & Practice. All NUIG
  • Orla Higgins, B.Comm (NUIG 1990) ,MBS (Marketing) - NUIG 1992, MA in Writing - NUIG 2008/2009
  • James Harrold, BA LLB (NUI)
  • Deirdre Ruddy, BComm FCA
  • Mary McPartlan, MA Hons (NUIG)
  • Jack Harrison, MA Folklore FAHI
  • Rod Stoneman, BA, H Dip
  • Mairead Faherty NUI Galway
  • Rachel Parry NUI Galway 

Requirements and assessment

Students will be assessed on the various modules by a combination of essays, presentations and a combined project. Students will also be required to complete a 16,000 - 18,000 word minor dissertation as their final assessment, to be submitted in early August.

Find out more

PAC code

GYA60 part-time
GYA61 full-time

Fees for this course

EU (Total): €6,015 (MA); €5,965 (PDip): 2015/16
 - Tuition: €5,791 (MA); €5,741 (PDip): 2015/16
 - Student levy: €224 p.a. 2015/16
Non-EU (Total): €13,250 p.a. 2015/16

M.A. EU Full time programme: €6,015
M.A. EU Part time programme:  €3,065 p.a.
P.Dip. EU Full time programme:  €5,965

Postgraduate students in receipt of a SUSI grant – please note an F4 grant is where SUSI will pay €2,000 towards your tuition.  You will be liable for the remainder of the total fee.  An F5 grant is where SUSI will pay TUITION up to a maximum of €6,270.  SUSI will not cover the student levy of €224.

Postgraduate fee breakdown = tuition (EU or NON EU) + student levy as outlined above.

Past Student


Lily McGarry

MA Arts Policy & Practice 2012

"Coming to Galway and doing the MA in Arts Policy and Practice has been the best thing for me. The course covers such a wide subject matter and it gives the students many opportunities to gain practical experience both on and off campus. All the lecturers are actively working in their fields and this means that students are given up to date information on their various areas of expertise. The course has greatly surpassed my expectations; I have gained so much from it, and the support and hands on opportunities that are on offer are something to be prized."

Recent Graduate


Maria Casey

MA Arts Policy & Practice 2014

"The MA in Arts Policy and Practice has equipped me with the essential skills needed to work within the business side of the arts. The course offered me a foundation in all areas of the arts. Through a wide variety of volunteering positions throughout the year this made the MA Arts Policy and Practice unique to any other course. Being taught by professionals within the arts makes this course current and up to date, which is an essential factor to working after the course is completed. I would recommend this course to anyone who has drive and ambition to be creative within the arts."