Taught modules, group activities, seminars, excursions and lectures delivered by a team of acclaimed international guest lecturers serve to build essential knowledge and skills in the field of museology and curating. Coursework also involves research and the development of individual and group projects from start to finish.
Degree programme content and structure
The Postgraduate Programme in Curating at Zurich Univer­sity of the Arts (ZHdK) is a discursive platform focusing on key ar­eas of contemporary exhibition­making. It has a strong practical orientation. Taught modules, group activities, seminars, and lec­tures delivered by a team of acclaimed international guest lecturers serve to build essential knowledge and skills in the field of curating. Coursework also involves research and the development of individ­ual and group projects from start to finish.
Our Postgraduate Programme in Curating focuses less on the notion of the exhibition planner as a “genius” or self-sufficient individual author – a highly controversial issue since the 1990s – than on cooperative, interdisciplinary working methods, used, for example, in film productions or by non-governmental organizations. Here, at Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK), exhibition-making and curating mean the creation of innovative structures for the presentation of cultural artefacts through interdisciplinary collaboration. Here, art, digital media, design, and architecture intermesh in new ways. The working methods adopted by curators, artists, architects, designers, museum educationalists, and writers have become increasingly unified, bringing about new forms of communication, lounges, archives, reading rooms, and new virtual forums – along with new means of access and forms of interpretation.
At the same time, we are witnessing a shift in the organization of work processes throughout society. Individual spheres of action are merging on new meta-levels, resulting in increasingly dynamic networks and know-how transfer. Our Postgraduate Programme in Curating responds to these manifold changes in the production of cultural meaning. The course creates a model situation in which students can gain first-hand, practical experience of curating and practise critical reflection. Modular structure ensures that our programme is constantly up-to-date and innovative.
CAS, MAS or doctoral project
The Postgraduate Programme in Curating offers three study opportunities:
CAS: This one-year, part-time programme builds the key skills in all areas of curatorial practice: research, conception, organization, communication, theoretical fundamentals.
MAS: This two-year, part-time programme offers an in-depth exploration of the key areas of curatorial practice and the relevant theory. It offers students the opportunity to develop and mount their own curatorial projects and to access manifold cultural networks. Coursework concludes with a major project and a written dissertation.
PhD Project Outline: The MAS in Curating can be attained through the development of a doctoral dissertation project rather than a curatorial project. We supervise the development of a dissertation project as far as the outline stage (subject and relevance, hypothesis, state of research, methods, writing up the outline) and even the writing of the first chapters. If you are planning to write a dissertation on any area of exhibition production, art education, conveying art to a wider audience, or a related theme within contemporary design and art, and their intersections with society, please contact the course director. Supervision of PhD projects will be provided by Dorothee Richter, director of the MAS Curating, in conjunction with the University of Reading. Cooperation takes the form of a Practice-Based PhD. The programme directors are Susanne Clausen and Dorothee Richer www.reading.ac.uk. Since Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK) is not authorised to award PhD degrees, a doctorate may be earned only in cooperation with an arts university or university abroad. The Institute for Cultural Studies in the Arts (ICS) at ZHdK has a number of cooperation contacts.
The aim of the Postgraduate Programme in Curating is to examine changes in current cultural production and to develop innovative forms of display within that context. Particularly suited to participants from the fields of art, culture, design, and media, our programme opens up new perspectives in the professional field. Our international faculty and our internationally oriented projects help build and maintain affiliations world-wide.
Eligibility and conditions of admission
The Postgraduate Programme in Curating is designed for:
University graduates in the fields of art history, cultural studies, literary studies
The Postgraduate Programme in Curating is also suitable for candidates who have acquired certain curatorial skills through practical experience.
Graduates of arts universities and universities of applied art and sciences (we welcome applications from individuals holding degrees in art, architecture, design, interior decoration and design, installation, photography, theatre, scenography, and music)
Persons working in art, culture, and media
CAS programme details
Duration and workload two semester, it involves 200 contact hours and approximately 200 hours of independent studyCourse times Friday afternoons and Saturday mornings, 10 hours per week
Qualification "Certificate of Advanced Studies (CAS) in Curating", 37,5 ECTS credits
Tuition language Due to growing international demand, the CAS and MAS Curating are offered in English. Candidates may submit seminar papers in either German or English
Venue Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK)
CAS costs and application
Start date Beginning of October 2019
Duration 1 Year / 2 SemestersApplication deadline30 June 2019
Costs CHF 9000.– / CHF 4500.– per Semester (subject to alteration /exklusive of course materials)
MAS programme details
Duration and workload Building on the CAS / four semester, 600 units, comprising class instruction and self study
Class hours Friday afternoons and Saturday mornings, 10 units/week plus project work. Project work requires a certain flexibility.
Degree title "Master of Advanced Studies (MAS) in Curating ZFH", 90 ECTS points
Tuition language Due to growing international demand, the CAS and MAS Curating are offered in English. Candidates may submit seminar papers in either German or English.
Course Venue Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK)
MAS Costs and enrolment
Start date Beginning of October 2019Application deadline30 June 2019
Costs CHF 18 000.– / CHF 4500.– per semester (subject to alteration / exklusive of course materials)