Professional Photography


Start dates: September 2024 / September 2025

Full time: 1 year (12 months)

Part time: 2 years (24 months)

Location: Distance learning

Department(s): School of Arts

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You’ll join an online course that will equip you with the confidence and ability to progress your personal professional photographic practice, with creativity, intellectual rigour, and ethical practice at its heart. You will also work with online platforms to establish a presence within professional fields, supporting your career aspirations.

This online-only course will enable you to pursue projects globally, regionally or locally, responding to issues you most care about, whilst receiving valuable mentorship from industry professionals. 

You’ll cover a compact structure of 5 compulsory online modules using interactive features of the virtual learning environment (VLE). All modules aim to enhance your knowledge, skills and critical abilities, while supporting your individual practice. 

Your course will follow our established campus-based MA arts degrees and meet employers' needs within the creative industries. 

Attend an open day or webinar Ask a question Order a prospectus

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Why Oxford Brookes University?

  • An international professional teaching team

    You will be taught by working professionals from within the creative industries from across the globe.

  • A bespoke learning journey

    You will decide what you want to photograph and set your own agenda. We will provide the professional context.

  • Career focused

    You will set your own career expectations and explore how to fulfill them through the development of best practice strategies.

  • Weekly formative feedback

    Each week you will receive formative feedback from lecturers, fellow students and mentors to support your creative progression.

  • Innovative online teaching strategies

    This course employs innovative teaching strategies and online platforms to deliver teaching that provides maximum engagement in an online environment and a supportive community of learning. 

Course details

Course structure

In Semester 1, you will be introduced to the Exploratory Photography Project module that introduces the concept of a personally instigated body of work, and a Histories, Theories and Ethics module where you’ll explore the history of the medium alongside relevant critical theory. These will include practical workshops, guest talks, and lectures, designed to build your creative output, professional self-awareness, critical awareness, and communication skills.
In Semester 2, you will explore the professional environment of the creative industries relating to photography within the Professional Practice module and undertake a Research and Context module in which you will complete your final dissertation. These will support you in considering research as a fundamental aspect of contemporary photography in both academic and industry contexts.

In Semester 3, you’ll complete your self-initiated Major Photography Project. You’ll explore multiple outputs including both still and moving-image creation, the self-published book, the exhibition portfolio, and the commissioned portfolio. 

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Learning and teaching

This course is usually studied over 12 months. However, a part-time option is available to complete the course over 24 months to achieve the necessary credits.

As a full-time student, you will take 5 core compulsory modules covering:

  • Exploring the Photographic Project
  • Professional Practice
  • Critical Theory: Histories, Theories, Context and Ethics
  • Critical Theory: Final Dissertation
  • Final Major Project

At the end of the year, you will complete your studies with an online exhibition of work and a 6,000-word dissertation. 


Your assessments will be diverse, and will support different learning styles - you’ll have a real opportunity to showcase your strengths. Your learning may be assessed by a combination of individual or group coursework, examinations, and presentations. The assessment methods chosen will be based on your learning needs, individual aims and the academic standards expected for the course.


After successfully completing this postgraduate degree, you’ll be prepared for a wide choice of career options in the rapidly transforming media industry and creative industries.

You can use the qualification as a gateway into a wide range of careers, such as the roles below: 

  • Professional photographer
  • Director of photography
  • Cinematographer
  • Publisher
  • Creative director
  • Art director
  • Photo editor
  • Curator
  • Documentary filmmaker
  • Post-production
  • Content strategist
  • Researcher
  • Digital marketing and advertising
  • Marketing communications
  • Social media management
  • Web content management
  • Teaching and education
  • Media research
  • Digital strategist
  • Brand marketing consultant

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Our Staff

Grant Scott

Grant Scott, BA Photography Subject Coordinator, specialises in photography, the moving image, visual narrative and professional practices, and teaches across the course. He is a working photographer and has written three books on photography including 'The Essential Student Guide to Professional Photography'. Grant is also the founder/ curator of and the presenter/producer of the weekly podcast 'A Photographic Life'.

Read more about Grant

Entry requirements

International qualifications and equivalences

How to apply

Application process

Tuition fees

Please see the fees note
Home (UK) distance learning full time

Home (UK) distance learning part time

International distance learning full time

International distance learning part time

Home (UK) distance learning full time

Home (UK) distance learning part time

International distance learning full time

International distance learning part time

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

Tuition fees

2024 / 25
Home (UK) distance learning full time

Home (UK) distance learning part time

International distance learning full time

International distance learning part time

2025 / 26
Home (UK) distance learning full time

Home (UK) distance learning part time

International distance learning full time

International distance learning part time

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

+44 (0)1865 534400

Fees quoted are for the first year only. If you are studying a course that lasts longer than one year, your fees will increase each year.

The following factors will be taken into account by the University when it is setting the annual fees: inflationary measures such as the retail price indices, projected increases in University costs, changes in the level of funding received from Government sources, admissions statistics and access considerations including the availability of student support.

How and when to pay

Tuition fee instalments for the semester are due by the Monday of week 1 of each semester. Students are not liable for full fees for that semester if they leave before week 4. If the leaving date is after week 4, full fees for the semester are payable.

  • For information on payment methods please see our Make a Payment page.
  • For information about refunds please visit our Refund policy page

Financial support and scholarships

For general sources of financial support, see our Fees and funding pages.

Additional costs

Please be aware that some courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees. Specific additional costs for this course are detailed below.

Programme changes:
On rare occasions we may need to make changes to our course programmes after they have been published on the website. For more information, please visit our changes to programmes page.