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MA Interaction Design Communication is a practice-led design course that prepares students to design for an increasingly technologically informed and interdisciplinary design world with skills in the following areas: interaction design, design prototyping, physical computing, user-centered design, open source digital platforms, design research, foresight and insight, experience design, communication design, speculative and critical design, interactive design and digital arts.
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London College of Communication
|Study Mode||Full time|
|Course Length||1 year 3 months full time (45 weeks across a four-term model)|
2017/18: £8,500 (Full-time). This course also includes an additional conference travel and residential fee of £900.
A range of scholarships, bursaries and awards are available to postgraduate students at UAL.
2017/18: £17,920 (Full-time). This course also includes an additional conference travel and residential fee of £900.
A range of scholarships, bursaries and awards are available to postgraduate students at UAL.
|Start Date||25 September 2017|
Direct to College
|Application Deadline||Applications are accepted, and offers made, throughout the year. Early application is advised.|
MA Interaction Design Communication provides an opportunity for experimental practice in an area of design that increasingly explores the intersection of the physical and digital domains. With a focus on synthesising thought through rigorous design prototyping (making), digital processes and user perspectives, the course is highly reflective of interdisciplinary practice within the contemporary design, media and communications industries.
The course's integrated approach to critical thinking provides you with the opportunity to work with critical ideas in an applied design context – for example psycho-geographic practice as empirical research or engaging with other critical theories of space to generate user perspectives. This ensures that ideation processes take on both the macro as well as micro opportunities for innovation and speculation crucial to building a portfolio of highly engaged work.
As well as placing you in a position to work across the broad spectrum of interaction, design and communication, the course is just as interested in design questions as design answers. This means that the course also prepares you for progression to further design research at MPhil/PhD level as well as to advanced self-directed experimental practice.
LCC has an outstanding team of practitioners and published researchers and enjoys a rich programme of visiting speakers. The course also benefits from a cross-European collaboration with design industry professionals and higher education institutions and there is an opportunity to visit at least one other centre in Europe during the course.
This course is taught within the Design School
Each course is divided into units, which are credit-rated. The minimum unit size is 20 credits. The MA course structure involves six units, totalling 180 credits.
Term 1 of the course introduces you to the technologies and concepts that are core to the practice and theory of interaction design. Following an induction programme that sets the scene for the course, you will see how contemporary interaction, design and communication practice uses a range of technologies and concepts, and you will experience the interrelationship between theory and practice. This phase allows you to acquire the important foundations of knowledge across several disciplines including interaction, design and communication. These are critical for the development of subsequent stages of the course. You will be introduced to key design prototyping and technical skills in this phase that will be essential for your practice throughout the rest of the course.
Term 2 offers you the opportunity to use both the critical and technical skills gained in Phase 1 to produce speculative and critical design projects. We also explicitly explore the intersection of the physical and digital domains, introducing you to the applied skills needed to work with physical computing, sensors and data environments. During this phase you will also develop a project proposal for your final major project and thesis in Phase 3.
You will undertake a final major research project which relates to the expanded field of interaction, design and communication. This will involve a self-directed major practical project and the completion of a related thesis, which demonstrates your critical reflection, analysis and original research. With access to broad theoretical models spanning the discipline, you will apply these models to your own specialist area of interest to produce a critically aware major project that after assessment will usually be presented at your postgraduate show.
If you are unable to continue or decide to exit the course, there are two possible exit awards. A Postgraduate Certificate will be awarded on successful completion of the first 60 credits and a Postgraduate Diploma will be awarded on successful completion of the first 120 credits.
I'm a better team leader now - I know what it's like to be on the other side - and I'm a better team player now, because I can manage myself.
"Here we have been taught to think as well as to do."
"I've worked with people from more than 10 different countries - where else could I get that experience?"
"It's a very well balanced combination of theory and practice. For overseas students it's very good that it is so intense and that you have to attend five days a week."
"I really enjoyed the course for all its opportunities. We had much better support than you get on other courses. The lectures and seminars were great."
In addition to tuition fees you are very likely to incur additional costs such as travel expenses and the cost of materials. We strongly suggest you read the information on our Additional Costs page.
The information outlined is an indicative structure of the course. Whilst we will aim to deliver the course as described on this page, there may be situations where it is desirable or necessary for the University to make changes in course provision, for example because of regulatory requirements or operational efficiencies, before or after enrolment. If this occurs, we will communicate all major changes to all applicants and students who have either applied or enrolled on the course.
Please note that due to staff research agreements or availability, not all of the optional modules listed may be available every year.
In addition, the provision of course options which depend upon the availability of specialist teaching, or on a placement at another institution, cannot be guaranteed. Please check this element of the course with the course team before making a decision to apply.
You will work with highly qualified and experienced educators in multimedia who deliver the course and who retain close involvement with the industry, continuing their professional practice and, in the majority of cases, engaging in scholarly research at an international level. In addition, there will be visiting experts from the industry itself.
Course Leader: Eva Verhoeven
Specialist Tutor, Design Prototying & Physical Computing: Nicolas Marechal
Specialist Technician: Tom Lynch
Specialist Technician: David King
The course also benefits from the School of Design Practitioner in Residence Programme. This year the course will work with Matt Rice from design studio Sennep.
Graduates of the course are equipped to work in an increasingly technologically informed and interdisciplinary design world with real skills in the following areas: interaction design, user experience, design prototyping, physical computing, user-centred design, open source digital platforms, future casting, foresight and insight, design research, experience design, design for embedded technologies and the internet of things, communication design, value engineering, thought leadership, interactive and digital arts.
Some international students choose to remain in the UK to gain valuable industry experience whilst others return to their home countries to pursue successful careers.
A significant proportion of our graduates start their own companies and in some instances further develop their course Final Major Projects and take them to market.
We know what it takes to be successful in your chosen field. Your tutors are professionals in their own right and understand what you need to help you establish your career.
Careers and Employability is dedicated to helping students build up work-relevant skills, knowledge, experience and networks throughout your time here.
Creative Opportunities is the UAL job and work placement website for students and graduates, advertising hundreds of creative opportunities each month. This includes ArtsTemps in-house recruitment agency, placing students and graduates in paid temping roles within the University.
UAL houses a number of organisations which promote aspects of career development in the arts and media, and which hold regular workshops and careers fairs. These include:
MA Interaction Design Communication has a particular aim to appeal to communication designers who are interested in exploring these new and emerging areas of design practice.
The course seeks students who have a critical understand of how technologies and digital culture are affecting design practices, and who are keen to work with network digital systems, and in areas of design research and practice that challenge preconceptions.
Although not an entry requirement, you should be comfortable with some basic coding (some i.e. HTML CSS) in order to communicate ideas with colleagues, although strong creative experience in this area is an advantage. We will introduce you to various coding languages and design prototyping platforms during the course, but expect that individuals will develop their skills base within specific project work.
Applicants are expected to have an honours degree, preferably in a related subject. However, we do not exclude candidates who have graduated from other less strongly aligned disciplines.
All classes are conducted in English. If English is not your first language, we strongly recommend you let us know your English language test score in your application. If you have booked a test or are awaiting your results, please clearly indicate this in your application. When asked to upload a CV as part of your application, please include any information about your English test score.
For further information about portfolio preparation, visas and application advice please view the Study at UAL International pages.
All applications will be considered by the course team who will consider key elements when making a decision on your suitability to join the course:
Academic or professional reference are not required for this course.
Offers will be made based on the following selection criteria, which applicants are expected to demonstrate:
In the application form you will be asked to complete a personal statement describing why you want to study MA Interaction Design Communication. Candidates will be expected to demonstrate critical knowledge of and enthusiasm for interaction design, and a well-articulated rationale for joining the course.
Please provide a CV detailing your education and qualifications and any relevant work or voluntary experience. If English is not your first language it is important that you also include in your CV details of your most recent English language test score.
Applicants will be asked to upload an electronic portfolio as part of their application. If you have links to web projects or media assets, please note these in your CV. The portfolio should include a minimum of five web projects and media assets, and should show examples of each of the following:
The portfolio should evidence an applicant's knowledge, understanding, skills and engagement with the field of Interaction Design and/or adjacent fields. The portfolio should demonstrate intellectual curiosity and open mindedness and a strong commitment to the subject as well as to sustained study at postgraduate level.
We are interested in the developmental narratives of projects and the 'thinking through making' and recommend that this is evidenced in the portfolio.
All candidates will be expected to outline an idea for their major project in the application. This should describe the area of interest - the field of study and the particular focus of their intended project. This should include an overview of how you intend to go about producing the project - the methodology. It is important to recognise that these ideas will inevitably develop and change across the year of study on the course and only serve to inform your application at this stage.
Applicants are usually interviewed by the course team before a place can be offered. Interviews will take place at LCC, or via Skype/telephone.
Funding opportunities available for this course:
You can begin your application for this course using our online application form – the link to this is below. Before you apply, we recommend you take some time to read the course Entry Requirements section to learn about the application process, including detailed guidance on the extra information we will ask you to provide later in the process.
You will need to enter the following information in the online application form:
Before you can submit the form, you’ll also need to agree to the terms and conditions for how we process your data – these are explained in the form.
Please note, if you’re an international applicant we will need to contact you separately to ask for copies of certain documents (for example, English language qualification/certificate and copies of any previous UK study visas).
Once you have submitted the online application form, we will send you a confirmation email.
From January 2017 you will be emailed a link to our online application tool, where you should submit the extra information we require for the selection process:
Personal statement (500 - 800 words)
Project proposal (400 - 800 words)
The course leader will then review your work, may invite you to interview, and will then make a decision on your application, from January 2017.
The admissions team will be in touch after that to let you know the outcome and to guide you through the next steps.
Applications are accepted, and offers made, throughout the year. Early application is advised.
The application form can be saved as you fill it out, so you don’t need to complete it all at once. You will also have the chance to review all the information and make any necessary amendments before you submit the application form.
We will send you emails as you progress through the application process, so do check your inbox (and junk folder, just in case). These emails will contain important information about your application, and links to the online forms you should use to submit the extra information required.
If you haven’t found the information you’re looking for or want to ask us a question about this course, please fill out our enquiry form.