About us

Welcome from Professor Robert Meyrick, Head of the School of Art.

Welcome to the School of Art at Aberystwyth University. As one of the highest-ranking art departments in the UK, our aim is to introduce you to the best scholarship in the arts, to assist you in reaching your learning potential and to gain the knowledge, confidence and skills to forge a career in today’s market.

The School of Art is not just an academic institution. It is a caring community of staff and students from different backgrounds and nationalities. With that diversity in mind, we offer a range of stimulating, creatively challenging courses in Fine Art, Art History and/or Creative Arts, degree schemes that provide you with the opportunity to combine the practical, historical, theoretical and curatorial study of art.

While numbers cannot tell the whole story, the success of our specialised and combined courses in drawing and painting, book illustration, photography, printmaking, new media as well as our vocation-oriented, hands-on education in art history is borne out by statistics. We perform exceptionally well in the National Student Survey (NSS) and other league tables. NSS scores are consistently in the 90%s – and in many categories reach 100%.

We also perform considerably ahead of Wales and national sector-wide averages: in The Times/Sunday Times we ranked No. 6 among UK Art & Design 2019 (No. 9 in 2018, No. 13 in 2017). We were No. 1 in Wales in 2017, 2018 and 2019.

The Guardian ranked us No. 6 in UK Art & Design 2019, standing at No. 3 in UK for ‘satisfied with course’, No. 4 in UK for ‘satisfied with teaching’, No. 2 in UK for ‘satisfied with feedback’, and No. 4 in UK for ‘career after six months’.

The Complete University Guide 2018 ranked the School of Art No. 2 out of 81 UK providers for ‘overall student satisfaction.’

According to NSS2019: Aberystwyth is the top university in England and Wales for overall student satisfaction; 97% of our art graduates were satisfied with the teaching on the course; 100% of our art graduates agreed that their course was intellectually stimulating and that they were challenged to achieve their best work; and 92% of Aberystwyth fine art students were overall satisfied compared to the UK sector average for fine art of 78% satisfaction.

At the School of Art, you have access to state-of-the-art teaching facilities. You will be studying art and/or its histories surrounded by works of art from our internationally renowned museum collection. The School and its museum are housed in one historic, Grade II*-listed building.

The research of our staff of exhibiting artists, publishing art historians and practicing curators actively informs our teaching. It promotes critical and interdisciplinary thinking and provides you with an inspiring learning environment. The practical and transferable skills you learn here opens up a wide range of career options.

100% (HESA 2016 & 2017) and 99% (HESA 2018) of our graduates are in work or further study within six months of graduating. Our former students are entering careers in the creative industries as artists, children’s book illustrators, graphic designers, university professors, researchers and curators. Since 2015, five of our graduates have featured on Sky Arts Landscape Painter of the Year – including the 2017 winner Tom Voyce – and on Sky Arts Portrait Painter of the Year.

Alumna Edwina Ellis has designed several coins for the Royal Mint, including four £1 coins depicting Welsh, English, Scottish and Northern Irish bridges, a £2 coin marking 150 years of London Underground, and, in 2019, a 50p coin commemorating Stephen Hawking with a design inspired by his theories on black holes.

Browse through our webpages to discover more about our courses. I recommend that you book your place on one of our Open Days to meet with our staff and students, and to experience the School of Art, university and town for yourself. Those who visit us tend to choose studying with us, to live and learn in a vibrant coastal town surrounded by countryside of outstanding beauty.

A warm welcome awaits!