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MA ADS Faculty/Alumni Achievements

A unique programme in South Asia, MA ADS recognizes the potential of creative practices beyond the realm of art and design. Therefore, it is open to creative minds both from within and outside the disciplines of art and design. MA ADS attempts to foster new forms of knowledge in conversation with fields of visual studies, critical theory, creative technologies and scientific inquiry under the premise of art and design. Students devise a self-directed trajectory in studio, writing or a combination of both. This is supported by an integration of courses, seminars, advisors and thesis supervisors, critique panels, visiting lecturers, studio visits and workshops.

The ethos of the programme considers the complex and shifting histories of art, culture and creativity. In light of this awareness, it encourages graduate students to wander into unchartered territories of the future, the past and new interrelations in the present. MA ADS aims to facilitate graduate students in thus connecting their themes of inquiry within a personal, local and global discourse.

The structure of the programme is not only specific to academic and professional needs in South Asia, but is also at par with the global standards of education, studio practices and research in the fields of art and design.

Program Overview

Areas of Specialization:

Specialization/Areas: Creative & Cultural Practice | Art Administration, Education | Curatorial Studies | Research | History & Theory

Duration: 2 Years | 4 Semesters (Time allowed for completion of the program: minimum 2 years, maximum 5 year)

Credit Hours: 60

Concerned Department: Department of Graduate and Interdisciplinary Studies

Career Paths: Artist, Designer, Educator, Academic Researcher, Policy Makers, Social Interventionists, Art Writers, Art Historian, Entrepreneurs, Communications Specialist, Strategist, Environmental Consultancy, Conservationist, Archivist, Arts Journalism, Curator, PhD andidate, Advertising, Art Direction, Design Activism, Design Education, Exhibition & Display Design, Museum Design, Performance Artist, Art Administrator, Film and TV.

  • Admission Requirement & Eligibility Criteria

    Applicants with minimum 16 years of education or equivalent qualification with minimum 45% (2nd division) marks from HEC recognized educational institutions are eligible to apply.

  • Application Process

      How to Apply

      STEP 1 | Online Application:

      Fill out the application form online

      • Visit our online admission portal
      • Click on Apply Online link on the top right of the page
      • Read admission application instructions carefully
      • Check Documents Check List for Admission and fill out the form


      Step 2 | Application Submission:

       Submit in Person or Courier the Application   OR  Submit via Email
      Print the filled-out application form and submit in person or courier it with copies of your transcripts and a demand draft/pay order for application processing fee (Rs. 4000/- in the name of Beaconhouse National University) at 

      Registrar’s Office 
      BNU Campus 
      13 Km Raiwind Road 

      A PDF of filled-out application form, transcript scans and proof of online payment for the processing fee (R. 4000/-) to  admissions@bnu.edu.pk

      ACCOUNT DETIALS for Online payment:
      IBAN: PK50ASCM0000211650512685
      Account Title: Beaconhouse National University
      Bank Name: Askari Bank Limited
      Branch: Gulberg Branch



      For any query related to Step 3 and 4, contact our Admission Office at (042) 38100156 ext 484 and 488 (from 9:30 am to 4:00 pm |Monday to Friday) or email: admissions@bnu.edu.pk

      Step 3 | SUPPORTING MATERIAL to be Submitted for the MA ADS Admission

      1. Portfolio | Writing Sample  Please email the following material to:

      Portfolio: Work samples in visual or textual format
          Send ONE of the following options:
       EITHER a PowerPoint presentation consisting of 10 images of your recent work/projects OR 2-3 Writing Samples: (a reflective essay, an opinion piece or academic paper).  OR 10 images + 1-2 Writing samples 
      2. Statement  Statement of Purpose (500-750 words)
      3. CV  An updated Curriculum Vitae

      Step 4 | SUPPORTING MATERIAL to be Submitted for the MA ADS  Admission

      Interview schedule will be shared with candidates who have successfully completed the online application and sent in their documents.

      For any query, related to Step 3 and 4, please reach out the department at:
      or email us svad.admissions@bnu.edu.pk
      Call or WhatsApp 0333-4051931 | (042) 38100156 ext 256

  • Scholarships

    Master of Art and Design Studies offers two kinds of scholarships; Merit-Based and Financial Assistance (Need-Based Scholarship), for details email us at info@bnu.edu.pk.

  • Procedure for All Transfer Students

    All inter-school and outside BNU transfer cases will be entertained no later than two weeks prior to term commencement.

    The transfer process requires the following documents:

    • Transcripts from your previous institute (recognized university by HEC)
    • Course description of courses studied at previous institute
    • Character certificate by previous institute.

    Please send your details to the Academic Advisor, for assessment of your transfer at this address: 

  • Courses

    • Semester I - Year 1 

        Course Title Course Code  Credit Hrs.
       1. Integrated Graduate Colloquium I
      ADS-538 3
       2. Research Methods and Academic Writing for Art and Design I
      ADS-532 3
       3. Contexts and Strategies in Practice
      ADS-523 3
       4. History of Ideas ADS-537 3
       5. Studio or Theory Elective   3
        Total   15
    • Semester II - Year 1 

        Course Title Course Code  Credit Hrs.
       1. Major Project I ADS-542 6
       2. Research Methods and Academic Writing for Art and Design II
      ADS-544 3
       3. Studio or Theory Elective
       4. Studio or Theory Elective 3
        Total   15
    • Semester III - Year 2

        Course Title  Course Code Credit Hrs.
       1. Integrated Graduate Colloquium II 
      ADS-540 3
       2. Research Methods and Academic Writing for Art and Design III
      Studio or Theory Elective (For Studio emphasis students with permission of Advisor)
      ADS-631 3
       3. Major Project II
        Total   15
    • Semester IV - Year 2

        Course Title Course Code  Credit Hrs.
       1. Graduate Colloquium III
      ADS-630 3
       2. Major Project III & Thesis
      ADS-621 12
        Total   15
  • MA ADS Mandatory Courses

    • Integrated Graduate Colloquia I, II & III | Semester I, 3 & 4

      Course Code: ADS 538, 540, 630 | Contact Time: 3 Hours Per Week | Credits: 3 | Theory

      This series of seminars facilitates a number of themes through readings, writing assignments, guest speakers, and student presentations. Students are encouraged to explore a number of critical, historical and philosophical lenses for creative practice. Students from diverse disciplines discuss such themes to understand and reflect on different intellectual perspectives.

    • Research Methods and Academic Writing for Art and Design I , II & III | Semester 1, 2 & 3

      Course Code: ADS 532, 544, 631 | Contact Time: 3 Hours Per Week | Credits: 3 | Theory

      In this series of research seminars students are exposed to the different tools and techniques of research. They learn to develop, organise, implement and finally present their research in a standardized academic form, a research report. During the first semester, students are given foundations of research methods relevant to art and design through lectures, fieldwork and personal projects. In the third semester students conduct an individual research project for their thesis.

    • History of Ideas | Semester 1

      Course Code: ADS-537 | Contact Time: 3 Hours Per Week | Credits: 3 | Theory

      This course is designed as an introduction to historical progression of change in human modes of being. It foregrounds intellectual development above but in conversation with social, political, economic and technological shifts which influence the creation of new world orders. It is proposed that such intellectual threads may be grasped from the territories of many disciplines thus providing a deep but flexible grounding of theory to practice. Students are thus expected to traverse across disciplinary boundaries to contextualize these ideas into other kinds of practices including fore mostly their own.

    • Contexts and Strategies in Practice | Semester 1

      Course Code: ADS-523 | Contact Time: 6 Hours per week | Credits: 3 | Studio | Theory | Speaking

      In the first semester, under ‘Strategies and Contexts in Practice’, students prepare a proposal for their two-year research pathway. Hybrid in nature, this course combines studio, reading, writing and speaking components. At the end of the course students present their MA proposals to At the end of the course students present their MA proposals to programme committees.

    • Major Project I & II | Semester 1 & 2

      Course Code: ADS-542 & 613 | Contact Time: 6 Hours per week | Credits: 3 | Studio

    • Major Project III + Thesis | Semester 4

      Course Code: ADS-621 | Contact Time: 6 Hours Per Week | Credits: 3 | Studio

      During two-years of MA ADS studies, students are guided in their studio practices and scholarly writings simultaneously in this series of courses. Students follow a supervised but still largely self-directed critical framework to develop studio and/or scholarly research. In consultation with the programme committee and their advisors, the students resolve the ratios for the written and studio components of their theses.

  • Thesis Requirement

    A thesis in the form of a degree show and a written paper is required. There are three options for the M.A. ADS thesis:

     Paths   Thesis Requirement 
     Studio* Emphasis   Exhibition & Reflective Essay of 1500 to 3000 words
     Writing Emphasis  Thesis of 15,000 – 20,000 words
     Studio* & Writing  Exhibition and Thesis of 7,500 – 10,000 words

    * Since the thesis exhibition for the visual component requirement cannot be quantified in a manner similar to the word limit of the written component, it is up to the student’s advisor and a committee member or the programme faculty committee to approve the appropriate quantity of the visual production.

  • Degree Requirement

    60 Credits | 14 courses

    10 Mandatory courses: 3 Major Studio + 1 Studio + 6 compulsory theory courses.

    4 Elective courses: Studio or Theory


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