Fine Arts

Study mode:On campus Study type:Full-time Languages: English
Local:$ 4.19 k / Year(s) Foreign:$ 4.19 k / Year(s) Deadline: May 1, 2024
601–800 place StudyQA ranking:3432 Duration:3 years

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The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) is the highest supervised degree Massey University offers. The degree is awarded for a thesis that demonstrates the candidate's ability to carry out independent research that provides a significant contribution to the knowledge and understanding of a field of study. The College of Creative Arts offers PhD programmes in design, fine arts, visual and material culture, or cross disciplinary areas.

The PhD programme offers supervision from New Zealand's leading faculties of fine art and design and extensive technical facilities, including studio facilities and support. The programme has a close relationship with the world regarded Litmus Research Initiative and other research clusters, such as Affect and Matter, within the College. Candidates can expect to encounter visiting national and international artists, designers, and theorists, and they will have access to exhibition spaces on campus including Litmus and The Engine Room. The programme offers a direct connection into the Wellington, Auckland and New Zealand art and design worlds, plus contact with other art and design researchers.


The PhD in Fine Arts is a thesis-based degree focused on developing a singular, practice-based thesis project that entails working in close co-operation with a supervisory team. The PhD builds on the momentum of Masters-level work and/or equivalent research. Candidates develop and refine the philosophical and theoretical underpinnings of previous creative research into a new, fine-tuned creative work plus a substantial piece of writing (minimum 30,000 words). Together, these works will represent an original contribution to the fields of art and culture.

The thesis is an integrated report of supervised work. If it consists of several studies or cases, the candidate shall demonstrate their relationship to one another. The thesis may consist of the candidate's published or unpublished material, or a combination of both.

Candidates submitting a thesis in the creative and performing arts may prepare a presentation which consists of creative work and written components. Creative works and performance should take a form appropriate to the discipline.

The PhD normally involves research for a minimum of three years full-time, or four years part-time. Research conducted for the Master's Degree may form part of the doctoral thesis.

Enrolment for the PhD degree is available to people who have completed a Bachelors or Masters degree with First Class Honours or Second Class Honours (Division I) or who hold comparable qualifications.

The University's Doctoral Research Committee administers the PhD degree. The Committee will only allow registration if the relevant Head of School/Institute has agreed to provide supervision and facilities for the candidate's research.

Candidates interested in this programme should consult with the Postgraduate Coordinator for the specific subject area.

Massey University Masterate Scholarship

Masterate Scholarships are offered for the purpose of encouraging postgraduate research at Massey University. Applicants must be enrolled or eligible to enrol full-time in a 120 credit research programme towards a Masters degree at Massey University.

Massey University Masterate Scholarship for Māori Students

Masterate Scholarships for Māori students are offered for the purpose of encouraging postgraduate research at Massey University. Applicants must be enrolled or eligible to enrol full-time in a 120 credit research programme towards a Masters degree.

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