Application deadline: EU/EER: 15 July, non-EU/EER 1 May
Technology, science and art are part of the pressing challenges of today’s societies – of how problems are defined and how solutions are brought about. Here, the arts, science and technology mix and mingle in important ways. The arts provide scientists and technologists with metaphors to envision their work. The sciences are objects of cultural critique in the arts. The arts continuously incorporate new technologies. And all of them “imagine” our culture’s future.
That is why it is so important to study how the arts, science and technology contribute to modern societies. This programme has roots in the internationally known field of Science and Technology Studies (STS) and is at the same time uniquely embedded in empirical cultural research.
You will study in Maastricht - the home of a world-leading research group in this field - and abroad, in an international research internship. You will be an original researcher who combines the strengths of philosophy, sociology, art and history to raise novel questions and to find relevant answers.
The Research Master in Cultures of Arts, Science and Technology is an intense and highly reputed programme. The programme is designed to give you the best possible preparation for a professional research position. During your master’s, you will therefore not only study theories from history, sociology, philosophy, the arts and the qualitative social sciences, but you will also follow a number of courses that specifically focus on research methods such as qualitative interviewing, conceptual analysis, archival research, ethnographic observations and rhetorical, narrative and discourse analysis. Most importantly, you will actually learn to work with these methods by writing review papers, research papers and proposals. You will work closely with faculty research staff on their projects and gain a ‘behind-the-scenes’ look at how academic research is actually done.
This programma is dedicated to urgent questions of technology, science and arts in society. It brings plenty of opportunities to specialise in a topic that you find important. Based a thorough general understanding you may focus on various developments in technology, art and science. The technologies studied can be complex and simple; the practices of art are as diverse as those of music, contemporary visual arts and literature; the sciences you may write about include the natural sciences, psychology or neurosciences.
In the first year, you will be familiarised with the most relevant theories. These will help you to understand the changing societal position of the arts, sciences and technology. You will also be trained in the application of relevant methods from the humanities and social sciences. The first year is concluded with a joint research project in which you write an edited book, special journal issue or online catalogue entry with your fellow students.
In the second year, you will first work as a junior researcher at a research institute or partner university in the Netherlands or abroad. You will complete your master’s by writing your thesis on a topic of your choice. While working on your thesis, you will also attend monthly seminars to discuss the research process with your peers and get expert support.
CAST offers a curriculum that is oriented to the practice of research. It employs a combination of educational methods within the framework of Problem-Based Learning, such as tutorial groups, lectures, master classes, project work and research seminars. The programme relies on the master-apprentice model to familiarise you with the latest methods in doing research, and you learn by doing. You will also participate in the regular research seminars of the faculty, giving you a ‘behind the scenes’ look at the practice of a large research institute.
With Problem-Based Learning (PBL), you will work individually or in small tutorial groups to seek solutions to ‘problems’ taken from real-world situations. You will also work on various research projects, experimenting with different research skills. Research methods are not taught in separate courses but are integrated into actual research projects on substantive questions. Instructors act as facilitators, giving help as it is needed. This allows you to build independence and develop problem-solving skills that you will need in your career in Maastricht and abroad.
Upon graduation, you will have acquired outstanding skills and you will be able to contribute as an interdisciplinary researcher in a university or knowledge institute. Through rigorous training in theory and methodology, combined with focus on topics of your own choice, you develop both flexibility and specialisation to address the urgent questions of today. This has enabled many graduates to find interesting jobs. Eighty percent of the CAST students find a job within a year of their graduation, and many go on to PhD programmes. Others find work with government agencies, advisory boards, commercial companies and NGOs.