Scholarships & Funding

Please check back soon for updated information on MA scholarships and PhD studentships to incoming students for 2021/22. These scholarships will recognise excellence, outstanding achievement and potential. The scholarships, worth full tuition fees, are awarded on academic merit and all applicants are eligible, including EU and non EU students.

Scholarships for Masters Students

  • School of Visual Culture - details to be published soon

  • School of Fine Art - details to be published soon


PhD Studentships

Each year NCAD offers a number of Research Student Scholarships to meet the cost of fees for PhD and MLitt students commending study in the autumn. (Living costs are not covered by the scheme). 

Five scholarships will be available for students commencing study in 2021-2.

The scholarships are intended to support new research in the fields that the College has set as priorities: 

  • Design Learning 

  • Visual Culture - contemporary art and design criticism and/or the mediation and display of Irish material culture 

  • Art & Public 

  • Art/Design & Health

  • Education – Art and Design Critical Pedagogies

Students in receipt of the awards can be registered in any of the four Schools of the College. Scholarships can be awarded to full and part time students and cover the full period of registration (up to a maximum of 4 full time years or the part time equivalent). 

The Scholarships are offered after application and interview. Priority will be given to applications which are received by the beginning of May 2021. They are awarded on the basis of the quality of application, and the experience and skills of the candidate. 

On the Research and Innovation at NCAD pages of this website, you will find information on: research topics of current and recently completed PhD students; the work of our teaching and research staff; directions in research; and examples of some of our research and innovation partners.

Queries and support

Please contact 
Fiona Cleary
, Assistant Student Recruitment and Admissions Officer / +353 1 636 4218


Apply for a PhD programme and scholarship at NCAD.

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Postgraduate Scholarships
School of Fine Art

Julie Weber Offbeat Oscillation 2019 MFA Exhibition

Continuing NCAD Graduates and Alumni will be eligible for a reduced tuition fee of €4,400 per academic year. (The normal fee rate is €5,400 per academic year.)

Please contact the NCAD Admissions Office for further information on the application process

Apply for an MFA programme and scholarship in the School of Fine Art at NCAD.

MFA in Fine Art, School of Fine Art, NCAD, Dublin

The MFA Fine Art programme is aimed at artists and recent graduates who want to advance their art practices, engage with the relationships between contemporary art and theory and consider what art might be in relation to today’s social, cultural and political situations. The MFA recognizes that contemporary art is transdisciplinary in spirit, contributing to the diversity of life today. It supports a range of practice-based inquiry across the fields of contemporary art including public art, performance, moving image, post-digital, painting, sculpture, expanded and emergent practices. Themes addressed by MFA students include bodies, objects, spaces, images, genders, sexuality, the postcolony, digital cultures and language.

Students are encouraged to develop their individual research pathway in finding new ways of making, modelling and connecting their projects to the professional field of the visual arts and wider audiences and situations. The spine of this programme is centred upon an experiential art practice engagement with structured components that explore research methods, and lectures in contemporary art practices. The advanced study required at masters level is delivered by leading practitioners in the field, including artists, curators, writers and other relevant professionals. The core components of the course are the studios and technical facilities, project spaces, written elements and critical seminars where students present and test work and reflect on their approach to materials and the theoretical and historical frameworks informing their practices. In their final year of study MFA students produce a  major practice project for public exhibition, they also have a choice to either work on a group public project or an extended writing project. MFA students regularly create public events, publications, artists’ books, seminars and have held exhibitions in venues such as Rua Red, the Hugh Lane Gallery, the Douglas Hyde Gallery, Solstice Art Centre, Frawleys, the Lighthouse Cinema, the Point Depot, and Steambox. Invited curators like Michael Hill, Temple Bar Gallery and Studios, Lívia Páldi, Project Arts Centre, Rachel Gilbourne, IMMA and Patrick Murphy, RHA gallery have participated in public responses to the annual MFA graduate exhibition. The MFA also hosts an annual Studio Award for an advanced artist in residence who contributes to the programme, artists include Alan Phelan, Jaki Irvine, Mark Clare and Níamh McCann.

For further information contact: Professor Philip Napier Dr. Sarah Durcan

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Postgraduate Scholarships
School of Visual Culture

image courtesy Liam Gillick

Postgraduate Scholarships in the School of Visual Culture at the National College of Art & Design: MA & PHD.

The School of Visual Culture at the National College of Art & Design (Dublin, Ireland) is now offering no-fee postgraduate scholarships for the 2020-2021 academic year.

Scholarships are available for the School’s two successful Masters programmes: the MA Art in the Contemporary World and the MA in Design History & Material Culture. One scholarship is available per course, covering all tuition fees. Each successful applicant will be required to act as an 'ambassador' for the respective course, participating in a small number of activities that help to publicise aspects of the course content and experience.  

An additional scholarship is now also being offered for PHD study in the School of Visual Culture.  This opportunity will provide a place for PhD study on a no-fee basis. Research in the School of Visual Culture at present includes projects addressing: the intersection of critical and creative approaches to writing on art, design, material culture and theory; concepts of system, network and infrastructure in art, philosophy and contemporary culture; developments in theories and philosophies of contemporary art and aesthetics; art, design, material culture and the politics of cultural change in contemporary Ireland; material culture and design including dress, product design and architecture in historic and contemporary contexts.  Applications proposing research in any of these areas will be prioritised. 

The scholarships will be awarded on a competitive basis. To apply for any of the scholarship opportunities, please follow the application guidelines outlined here, including in your submission a Scholarship Statement of Interest (c 500 words), outlining your reasons for applying for the scholarship and including a short statement on your ideas for being a course ambassador. 

NOTE: If you have already applied for a masters programme in the School of Visual Culture for 2020, please email your Scholarship Statement of Interest for the attention of Fiona Cleary to by the deadline, Friday June 5th.

The deadline for scholarship applications is Friday June 5th, 2020. Late applications may be considered after this deadline.

Please contact the NCAD Admissions Office for further information on the application process

Apply for an MA programme and scholarship in the School of Visual Culture at NCAD.


MA programmes in the School of Visual Culture at NCAD, Dublin:

The MA Art in the Contemporary World at NCAD is a taught MA programme (with extended MFA options) that examines contemporary art practices and their contexts. The course offers an opportunity for focused engagement with the varied challenges of today’s most ambitious art, bridging the relationship between theory and practice by creating exciting study options for artists, curators and writers. We welcome graduates from a variety of backgrounds, including: fine art; art history; design; philosophy; literature; film studies; architecture; or communications. 

Course content is divided into four strands: (i) ‘Practices’ explores the range of current international art practices and reflects on the varied conditions for the production of art today; (ii) ‘Situations’ is comprised of elective options addressing specific themes relevant to contemporary art and connections between art and other fields of contemporary culture; (iii) ‘Theories’ is a series of seminars focusing on key theoretical approaches to contemporary art; (iv) ‘Writing’ offers students opportunities to explore models and strategies for writing on art. Each year, the course features modules run in collaboration with cultural institutions in Ireland, allowing students to develop work — through art practice, writing, curating and more — that can be created or presented in public settings. In recent years, students have undertaken activities and held public events with the support of The Irish Museum of Modern Art, the National Gallery of Ireland, Goethe Institute Ireland, Temple Bar Gallery and Studios, and other prominent cultural organisations.  

Throughout the course, students are guided through the process of developing research projects and critical/creative practices, leading to the realisation of significant, self-directed work that contributes to the field of contemporary art.  The course can be taken on a full-time or part-time basis, with an extended MFA option — allowing for the development of longer term research or studio practice projects — also available. 

For further information contact: Dr. Francis Halsall ( or Dr. Declan Long ( 


The MA in Design History and Material Culture (DHMC) is a broad and flexible taught MA programme that helps students understand the designed world across space and time. It is unique in Ireland in its focus on designed objects, buildings, spaces and systems and their critical, theoretical, historical and social contexts. Students on the course come from a wide range of backgrounds including art and design practice, history, film, theatre, publishing, anthropology, archaeology, architecture and history of art. They work closely with the curators and collections of the National Museum of Ireland, and alongside other postgraduate students at NCAD. Learning happens through four key interlocking elements: histories, theories, live projects and personal research projects.  Students are supported in developing a high level of research and writing skills combined with flexible and original thinking about the role and form of design and material culture in a range of fields including digital culture, dress, museums and urban cultures.

As well as pursuing individual research projects including a substantial thesis, students are given the opportunity to work with local and national institutions through a series of collaborative projects resulting in publications and exhibitions. In the recent past our partners have included the Irish Architecture Foundation, the National Library of Ireland, the Digital Hub and the National Gallery of Ireland. Our current partnership with the National Museum has resulted in students undertaking projects to research the museum’s collections and to collect material that reflects contemporary culture. Graduates from the course work and practice in a wide range of settings, including academic research, art and design practice, film, theatre and as critics and writers. The course can be taken part time over two years (24 months) or full time over one year (12 months).

For further information contact: Dr. Lisa Godson (godson; or Prof. David Crowley ( 

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More information:
Fiona Cleary
Assistant Student Recruitment and Admissions Officer / +353 1 636 4218