MA Service Experience Design and Innovation

The MA Service Experience Design and Innovation is a practice-based professionally oriented course, which combines theory with practice in a project-led curriculum using a range of interdisciplinary perspectives. The curriculum has a professional focus with a distinctive emphasis on the development of high-level design thinking, innovative research, communication, service experience design, value proposition design, change and project management, communication, and future envisioning. The course will build a strong global emphasis through its cross-cultural and transnational approach to unit content and projects and through international partnerships.

Additional costs: 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. 

Reasons to Apply

  • Be taught by a diverse team of staff with internationally recognised research profiles. As contemporary leading practitioners in social innovation, service design, proposition design, user-research, prototyping, emerging technologies and project innovation management, they bring a forward-looking real world experience to the course.
  • Students and staff work closely with the “What if?” - asking game-changers in the discipline, both nationally and internationally.
  • Live projects underpin the curriculum. Discovering, defining, developing and delivering innovative experience solutions in real private and public sector scenarios, across all realms of life from health and environmental care to leisure, government policy, business, transport IT science, energy, nutrition, culture and humanitarian.
  • Disruptive technologies - how the Internet of Things, Big Data, Virtual Reality, 3D printing and Artificial Intelligence or a unique mash-up of off-shelf technologies can positively influence our near future.

Funding opportunities

Find out about the range of funding options available for postgraduate study.

Use UAL's fees and funding calculator to estimate how much your studies may cost you in your first year, and what funding may be available to you.

Postgraduate loans of up to £10,000 are now available for eligible UK and EU students. A full list of eligibility criteria and information on applying can be found on the postgraduate loans webpage.

Facts

Course Leader

Monica Biagioli (Acting Course Leader)

Course Location

London College of Communication 
Elephant and Castle
Find Us

Study LevelPostgraduate
Study ModeFull time
Course Length1 year 3 months full time (45 weeks across a four-term model)
Home/EU Fee

2017/18: £8,500 (Full-time)

UAL alumni receive a £1,000 discount.

Course fees may be paid in instalments
A range of scholarships, bursaries and awards are available to postgraduate students at UAL. 

International Fee

2017/18: £17,920 (Full-time)

UAL alumni receive a £1,000 discount.

Course fees may be paid in instalments.
A range of scholarships, bursaries and awards are available to postgraduate students at UAL.

Start Date25 September 2017
Application Route

Direct to College

Application DeadlineApplications are accepted, and offers made, throughout the year. Early application is advised.

Content and Structure

Content

The course is structured to develop strategic and creative expertise within the design and delivery of innovative service experiences. Students are encouraged to undertake projects that will tackle many of the social, corporate and environmental challenges facing the 21st century. Projects may be as diverse as conceiving services to mitigate the digital divide of the senior citizens of London borough, to designing a virtual reality in-store experience for a global insurance company, through to realizing an innovative business proposition for a personal start-up.

It is aimed primarily at students who have a graduate design discipline and wish to broaden their understanding of innovation and design as a collaborative interdisciplinary process. However, the course would also be of interest to students from social science backgrounds and related fields.

Structure

On the course you will have the opportunity to take part in design projects, workshops and study tours. These will be embedded in a sound theoretical framework of lectures, case studies, seminars and tutorials.

Terms 1 and 2 of the course will provide you with a detailed knowledge of core theory and skills in innovation and creativity. The skills and knowledge obtained will enable you to articulate design ideas, observations and solutions creatively as designers, as well as demonstrating rigour and critical evaluation in your work. You will be able to apply your design thinking strategically and add value to new and challenging contexts.

Term 3 builds on the knowledge and skills you have acquired and applies these to the creation of original design research projects. This involves the development of a major project on the basis of extensive research, investigation and a firm methodological approach.

In term 4 students will continue with the development and production of a final major project that will need to demonstrate the testing of ideas, exploring the context of the project as well as identifying key issues such as appropriate discourses, research methodologies, materials and media through which you can effectively communicate your ideas. The course will challenge existing orthodoxies and encourage design related communication, service and product innovation problems to form the focus of the final major project.

Autumn, Term One

Unit summary:

  • Service Experience Design for Social and Corporate Innovation (40 credits)
  • Entrepreneurial Strategy and Project Management (20 credits)

Spring, Term Two

Unit summary:

  • Collaborative Unit (20 credits)
  • Global Design Futures (20 credits)
  • Individual Concept Development (20 credits)

Summer, Term Three

Unit summary:

  • Global Design Futures (continued)
  • Individual Concept Development (continued)
  • Major Project (60 credits) 

Autumn, Term Four

Unit summary:

  • Major Project (continued)

If you are unable to continue or decide to exit the course, there is a possible exit award. A Postgraduate Diploma will be awarded on successful completion of the first 120 credits.

Course Structure

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.

Staff

Acting Course Leader: Monica Biagioli

Senior Lecturer: Silvia Grimaldi

Lecturer: Lara Salinas

Associate Lecturer: Cordula Friedlander  

Associate Lecturer: Hena Ali

Associate Lecturer: Phillipa Rose

Reader: Alison Prendiville

The course teaching is also complemented by a range of guest lecturers from industry practitioners.

Careers

There are numerous possibilities open to graduates from this course. You will find your new knowledge and skills useful for careers in industry, local authorities or non-profit organisations. Alternatively, you may decide to pursue an academic career.

Student Jobs and Careers at UAL

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:

  • Own-It (intellectual property issues)
  • ArtQuest (career development resource for artists and designers)

Entry Requirements

Recruitment and admissions

An Honours degree in a relevant subject, or a professional qualification recognised as equivalent to an Honours degree in a design-related or creative discipline. Applications from students with good degrees from social science backgrounds will also be welcome. If you do not have the required qualifications, but do have professional experience, you may be eligible to gain credit for previous learning and experience through the Accreditation of Prior and Experiential Learning (APeL) i.e. professional experience or a combination of courses and work experience.

Your experience is assessed as a learning process and tutors will evaluate that experience for currency, validity, quality and sufficiency.

Language requirements (International/EU)

All classes are conducted in English. If English is not your first language, we strongly recommend you send us your English language test score together with your application to prove your level of proficiency. If you have booked a test or are awaiting your results, please clearly indicate this on your application form. When you have received your test score, please send it to us immediately.

  • The course requires IELTS 6.5 (or equivalent) with a minimum of 5.5 in each of the four skills
  • You can check you have achieved the correct IELTS level in English on the Language Requirements page.

For further information about visas and application advice please view the Study at UAL International pages.

Selection Criteria

The MA Service Experience Design and Innovation team is looking for open-minded applicants from a broad spectrum of backgrounds from across the world. 

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:

  1. Firstly they will look at your qualifications and transcript (or projected results)
  2. Then they will scrutinise your personal statement, portfolio, major project proposal, and any previous work experience

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:

  • Open-mindedness and a desire to explore service experience design and innovation at a high level
  • A desire to work across discipline and professional boundaries to explore the future of the subject at a time of growth and expansion

Personal Statement (300-500 words)

Your personal statement should give us information about yourself and why you want to join the course. What are you doing at the moment educationally, professionally and personally? Why do you want to study MA Service Experience Design and Innovation? Do you have any relevant experience? Why do you think you are a suitable candidate.

Portfolio (Maximum 6 projects)

All applicants will be expected to submit a digital portfolio. This should include a maximum of six projects and supporting material as described above. These should be clearly annotated and organised.

If you are applying directly from a BA course without experience of professional practice you must be able to demonstrate a good knowledge of design practice, supported by a good degree and portfolio work. For those applying from social science backgrounds, research based around a relevant topic needs to be demonstrated. In all instances, enthusiasm for the course is paramount.

Please note, you can submit text and as many website links as you need to, but the portfolio form does not allow you to upload files.

Major project proposal

All candidates will be expected to outline their major project ideas in the application. This should describe the area of interest - the field of study and the particular focus of their intended work across the year. This should include an overview of how you intend to go about producing the project - the methodology.

Interview advice

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

Home / EU and International students

Funding opportunities available for this course:

Any questions? Please email funding@arts.ac.uk or visit Postgraduate Funding page.

How to apply

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. 

Required information for all postgraduate course applications

You will need to enter the following information in the online application form:

  • Personal details (including full name; date of birth; nationality; permanent address and English language level)
  • Current and/or previous education and qualification details
  • Employment history

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).

Extra information required for applications to this course

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 (300 – 500 words)

Portfolio

Major Project Proposal

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.

Start your application now

Applications are accepted, and offers made, throughout the year. Early application is advised.

Apply now

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.

Enquire about this course

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.

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