MA Arts Practice (Arts, Health and Wellbeing)

The MA Arts Practice (Arts, Health and Wellbeing) course will be of value to artists, creative practitioners, therapists, community workers and teachers, plus others with an interest in pursuing professional practice within the expanding and vital field of arts, health and wellbeing.

The course is located within the practical world of Arts and Health, where arts practitioners work on the improvement of health environments through arts interventions, or in raising awareness of health issues through the delivery of artworks and events, or through offering individuals and groups practical experiences/projects/workshops that aim to improve wellbeing. Our students reflect the range of creative practices within the field; a key element of the MA is the scope of projects undertaken with the NHS, arts organisations, social services, local authorities, charitable trusts, schools, and colleges. The course will enable you to develop professional skills and experience within relevant critical and contextual frameworks and will equip you with the tools and principles you need to succeed as arts, health and wellbeing practitioners.

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Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
Part-time 18 Months September Cardiff (ATRiuM) B
Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
Part-time 18 Months September Cardiff (ATRiuM) B

You will develop new ways of looking at your own practice within the field of arts, health and wellbeing. You will explore distinct areas of arts practice, professional practice, research, and evaluation while reviewing your own and fellow students’ work-in-progress. Through negotiation, you will develop proposals for new work that will form the framework for further development. The course is structured to enable you to fully realise your ambitions for your practice.

The MA Arts Practice Arts, Health and Wellbeing course begins in October each year and runs over 18 months.

Part One: October – March

  • Arts Practice 1 – Review and Develop (40 credits)
  • Research and Development of Creative Practice (20 credits)

Part Two: April – September

  • Arts Practice 2 – Progress and Situate (40 credits)
  • Professional Practice within Arts, Health and Wellbeing (20 credits)

Part Three: October – March

  • Arts Practice 3 – Refine and Resolve (60 credits)


You will study over a number of designated weekend sessions, held at approximately monthly intervals at our Cardiff campus, allowing you to study alongside other personal and work commitments you may have.

Weekends will include lectures, seminars, guest speakers and workshops; your study will be further supported via on-line tutorials. This blended approach to teaching, which combines face to face teaching with online support for study will enable you to develop as an independent, enterprising artist.

You will be encouraged to share your ongoing practice and research within a supportive learning environment, which broadens access to knowledge and experience, fosters communities of interest and common areas of creative practice within the cohort. Distinctive features of the course include, for example, the use of presentations of ongoing practice as a vehicle for learning and group critique, where students discuss their work with their peers and tutors.


Modules are largely assessed via practical outcomes, project proposals and research folios. Some modules make use of presentations and discussion of working methods and final outcomes. We will give you regular verbal feedback to help you develop your understanding during each module.


Facilities at our Cardiff campus range from photographic darkrooms and professional – level printers to video and audio production studios.

Subject to induction in their use; you will be able to borrow a full range of equipment including cameras, microphones and lighting.

Our specialist library offers a comprehensive range of textbooks, research journals and other physical and on-line resources, as well as an inter-library loan service.


Our MA Arts Practice staff are actively engaged in research, they embody a high level of knowledge, expertise, and professional experience across a range of arts practices.

You will benefit from interdisciplinary teaching delivered by a teaching team with extensive experience in exhibiting, project management, project realisation and practice within the public realm, NHS, and community contexts.



We regularly revalidate courses for quality assurance and enhancement

At USW, we regularly review our courses in response to changing patterns of employment and skills demand to ensure we offer learning designed to reflect today’s student needs and tomorrow’s employer demands.

If during a review process course content is significantly changed, we’ll write to inform you and talk you through the changes for the coming year. But whatever the outcome, we aim to equip our students with the skillset and the mindset to succeed whatever tomorrow may bring. Your future, future-proofed.

A good undergraduate degree in a related discipline such as art/design or other areas of creative practice, or a significant body of practical/professional work in the field of the arts, that demonstrates competencies equivalent to a Bachelors degree.

Applicants with appropriate qualifications in related fields such as teaching, art training, arts administration, occupational therapy, arts therapies, health sector management, arts and disability, social services, community work, youth work, or a period of professional employment in the field, will also be considered.

All suitable applicants will be contacted by the Course Leader for an informal chat as part of the consideration process. This could take place on campus or off campus via telephone or Microsoft Teams.

Full-time fees are per year. Part-time fees are per 20 credits. Once enrolled, the fee will remain at the same rate throughout the duration of your study on this course.

August 2024 - July 2025 Fees


August 2025 - July 2026 Fees


Student Perks

At the University of South Wales, you’re investing in so much more than a degree. We strive to provide our students with the best possible experience, no matter what you chose to study. Whether it’s access to top of the range mac books and PCs, state-of-the-art facilities packed with industry-leading equipment and software, masterclasses and events led by industry experts, or a wide range of clubs and societies to meet likeminded people, better tomorrows start with extra perks.

Each course also has their own unique student benefits to prepare you for the real word, and details of these can be found on our course pages. From global field trips, integrated work experience and free course-related resources, to funded initiatives, projects working with real employers, and opportunities for extra qualifications and accreditations - at USW your future, is future-proofed.

Click here to learn more about student perks at USW.

Additional Costs

As a student of USW, you’ll have access to lots of free resources to support your study and learning, such as textbooks, publications, online journals, laptops, and plenty of remote-access resources. Whilst in most cases these resources are more than sufficient in supporting you with completing your course, additional costs, both obligatory and optional, may be required or requested for the likes of travel, memberships, experience days, stationery, printing, or equipment.


Funding to help pay for (or cover) course tuition fees and living costs

Whilst you’re studying, you’ll have two main financial obligations – tuition fees and living costs. There’s lots of financial help available from the University of South Wales and external funding sources, that may provide loans (which have to be paid back) and grants, scholarships and bursaries (that don't).

To learn about course fees, funding options, and to see if you are eligible for financial support, visit our Fees and Funding pages.


USW Postgraduate 20% Alumni Discount 2023/24

The University of South Wales is offering a 20% reduction in tuition fees for all University of South Wales* graduates starting a taught/online*** MA,MSc, LLM,MBA or DBA course from September 2023 (this includes students starting a course in January/February 2024). T's and Cs apply. Click here for more details and eligibility criteria: USW Postgraduate Alumni Discount 2023/24

Our students have progressed to employment as freelance arts practitioners working to commission and within community contexts, work with health boards, charities, local authorities and in the education sector. We are proud to have alumni who now have positions of responsibility in health boards and in advisory roles in the Arts Council of Wales. Graduates from this course are shaping the future of arts and health strategic development and practice.

We take pride in our professional links within this sector and provide support for our students to work with creative professionals through live projects.

Previous projects have included:

  • NHS Health Boards
  • Mental Health Unit, Royal Glamorgan Hospital: Mixed media workshops with patients
  • Ty Hafan, Cardiff: Mixed media workshops with paediatric oncology patients
  • Salisbury District General Hospital: internship
  • Llantrisant Hospital: Residential psychiatric provisions; painting and printmaking project
  • North Bristol NHS Trust: Photographic Panels
  • Cardiff and Vale University Health Board: Project with patients and staff in dementia wards
  • Aneurin Bevan University Health Board: Photographic panels
  • Cwm Taf Morganwwg University Health Board: Photographic panels
  • Swansea Bay University Health Board: Photographic panels


  • Aberdare, Park Lane School: Painting and mural project
  • Neath Port Talbot College: Textile project
  • Ysgol Crug Glas: Stained glass project
  • Ty Coryton: Pinhole photography and printmaking
  • Heronsbridge School: Sensory arts project
  • Ty Gwyn Special School: Painting project

Local Authorities

  • Caerphilly: Inside Out Project: Creative arts rehabilitation programme
  • Powys: Arts activities pack for looked after children


  • Making Minds, Pontyclun: ‘Hope flags’ textile project with voluntary participants
  • Oasis, Cardiff: Printmaking project; ‘Self and place’ with centre users, exhibited at St Fagans Museum
  • Community Lantern Parade, Bristol
  • The Gate Arts Centre: Dance project with women over 60 years
  • Cartrefi Cymru: Mixed media workshops, Adults with leaning difficulties
  • Macmillan Cancer Care and Grief Space: Arts workshops
  • Quest Busters: Dance project with carers

Graduates can also apply to study a PhD or research degree.