969 MA Art & Design Education, master


The study programme for the Master’s degree in Art and Design Education is a continuation and further development of the national curriculum for hovedfag (subject at second degree level) in Arts and Crafts of 1976 and the former university college curriculum for hovedfag in Arts and Crafts. The Master’s degree programme in Art and Design Education leads to a Master’s degree in the subject.

The curriculum forms the framework for the Master’s degree programme and is aimed at teaching positions and supervisory functions within the fields of design culture and art mediation. The study programme qualifies students for research and development work and for creative/artistic activities where there is a need for practical, aesthetic and pedagogical knowledge at a high level. The Master’s degree programme forms a foundation for PhD studies.

The Master’s degree programme is characterised by creative and innovative activity within the professional field, subject theory and didactics. This requires a systematic and research-oriented approach to both the General Component and to the Master’s Thesis. The Master’s degree programme consists of 120 ECTS which are evenly divided between a general section and the Master’s Thesis.

The General Component involves an aesthetic and creative section, a pedagogic and didactic section and a scientific/theoretical and methodological section. The objective is to gain insight into the particular characteristics of each of these fields, to be able to see how they relate to each other and to use them in an integrated fashion. The goal is to engender a certain shared background between the students and to create an environment which will foster a broad professional understanding. The General Component is a preparation and a prerequisite for completing the Master’s Thesis.

The Master’s Thesis constitutes an individual independent effort. During the independent study the student will work on a problem approach integrating both theory and creative/artistic activity. The Master’s thesis will represent a didactic approach and involve a research/development problem. The problem approach will determine whether the main emphasis in the thesis is of a theoretical or a creative/artistic nature. This dual character makes this Master’s programme more obviously a study both in and about art, design and handicrafts.

Considered as a whole, this means that the programme helps to build and develop knowledge that promotes professional competence in "creative arts" related to the creative work of artists, designers, architects and professional instructors/teachers along with relevant subject theory and subject criticism.

Target Group and Admission Requirements

Admission requirements: Admission is based on completion of a Bachelor’s degree, Cand. mag. degree or earlier teacher education qualification (pre-school - general education - or subject-teacher education) with:

  • A minimum of 60 ECTS credits in specialised art/design subjects, arts and handicrafts
  • Applicants without approved teacher-training must have completed the PPU programme (practical teacher education)

For admission, emphasis will be placed on education, experience with creative/artistic work and teaching experience.

Aim of the Programme

Students will:

  • Have acquired a professional-level understanding of design, art and handicrafts through creative and artistic work, and have some insight into artistic theory.
  • Have acquired some insight into fundamental pedagogical and didactic problems, be able to view the subject in cultural and social contexts, and be able to explain and advance appropriate pedagogical tasks in the subject field.
  • Have acquired some insight into scientific theory and gained experience with methods for defining problems and analysing and systematising experiences; and be able to document this knowledge in written form, through design processes and products, and critical expression related to one’s own research work and that of others.

Further Education opportunities

PhD studies.

Curriculum and structure

Code Course title Credits O/V *) Credits pr. semester
  S1(A) S2(V) S3(A) S4(V)
60MASTOP Master’s Thesis 60.00 O        
60MASTGD General Part – Master’s Degree in
Design, Art and Handicrafts
60.00 O        
Total: 0 0 0 0
*) O - Mandatory course, V - Optional course

The programme is taught at the Notodden campus. The content of the programme is organised into a General Component (the first year of study) and a Master’s Thesis (the second year of study), which are of equal weighting.


The General Component is completed during the first and second semesters and consists of three course units. These are:

  • The Aesthetic Creative Area (30 ECTS)
  • The Pedagogical and Didactic Area (12 ECTS)
  • The Scientific Theory and Methodology Area (18 ECTS)

The aesthetic and creative sections are vital aspects of the programme. These are supplemented by the pedagogical and didactic aspects, which place creativity, art and handicrafts in a critical, social and cultural context where objectives, content, work methods and evaluations are discussed. The scientific theory and methodological area is a tool for critical reflection, and for carrying out research and development work. In the content description, each topic is treated independently. They are organised to allow them to be studied separately, to be viewed in relation to each other and/or integrated.


The Master’s thesis will be completed during the third and fourth semesters. The thesis is an individual, independent effort which will provide the student with knowledge and understanding, and which constitutes roughly one-half of the study programme. The thesis will be characterised by a type of research process that takes place through aesthetic creative and artistic work, with reference to art theory and pedagogy/didactics, and in which the work process is governed by the chosen problem-solving approach. The thesis will constitute a whole in which the aesthetic and creative work and reflection complement each other. A didactic component must be included in the thesis if the main focus of the thesis is not a didactic one.

Teaching and Learning Methods

The Master’s programme is based on individual study, study in groups, lectures, seminars and study trips. Both theoretical and practical study methods are emphasised. The study programme presupposes an independent and systematic approach and active participation in common activities. Obligatory courses and assignments are included as programme requirements. It is expected that students will take considerable responsibility for the planning and completion of their studies. The university college provides teaching for the central parts of the study programme. A period of study abroad may also be included as part of the Master’s Thesis on the condition that approval has been given with regard to the student’s thesis project description.

Assessment Methods

Continuous assessment:

In the course, General Component, four assignments will be completed during the first year of study. These must be assessed as passed by the subject teacher(s) before the candidate may take the final examination. For more information please refer to the course: General Component.

Final assessment:

In the course, General Component, three assignments will be completed and awarded a graded mark as part of the final examination. The final examinations should be completed before the student starts work on his/her Master’s Thesis. For more information please refer to the course, General Component.

The course, Master’s Thesis, involves the completion of the Master’s thesis as a final examination. For more information please refer to the course, Master’s Thesis.

Minor adjustments may occur during the academic year, subject to the decision of the Dean

Publisert av / forfatter Ella Melbye <Ella.MelbyeSPAMFILTER@hit.no>, last modified Ian Hector Harkness - 09/09/2010