1. Over the past few decades, the importance of theory in art education has continually increased. The impact of conceptual art from the 1960’s and 70’s has placed a new emphasis on the role of thought in the artistic process. Visual artists/designers increasingly present themselves as researchers. The past twenty years have seen changes as a result of the information revolution that have created a new set of demands for visual artists/designers. They are expected to effectively present and represent themselves culturally and socially.

        Theory education at the Royal Academy of Art therefore focuses on the following aspects:
        • The stimulation of critical (self-)reflection and the undertaking of research.
        • Providing insight into the complex tension between theory and practice, language and image.
        • The development of communicative abilities, both verbally and in writing. The contemporary visual artist/designer is not only expected to position and articulate his/her work in a broader context, he/she must also be able to explain the relevance of art and design for society.
        • The knowledge of, and reflection on, the field of art and the artist’s/designer’s position in the cultural and social field. 
        • The development of a theoretical approach to the work and of tools for critical thinking.
        • The development of research skills.
        • The stimulation of the exploration of an art historical and discipline-specific context.