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Postgraduate

MA User Experience Design


College
London College of Communication
Start date
September 2022
Course length
1 year 3 months full-time (45 weeks across a four-term model)

MA User Experience (UX) Design at LCC is a professionally focused, design-led course that will equip you with the specialist skills to conceive, prototype and produce human-centred experiences in an interactive digital context.

Why choose this course at London College of Communication

    • Industry Engaged: This MA is highly engaged with UX industry practice and the future of UX as a professional discipline. You’ll benefit from live UX briefs, studio visits and partnership with leading London UX industry professional and studios such as ustwo, Made by Many and AKQA.
    • Design led UX: The course puts studio practice at the centre of what students do. Supported by the community of practice at LCC and grounded in a critical awareness of design methods and processes, you can expect to be designing new digital experiences from the start.
    • Interdisciplinary: In the professional design world, UX designers perform many different tasks and are expected to have skills in research, interaction design, product prototyping, concept development and evaluation. This constellation of skills means the course delivers technical and critical training at an advanced level, in a highly interdisciplinary context.
    • Skills: Key to building the expertise of a UX designer is a working understanding of industry standard UX prototyping tools, alongside user research methods that inform designs. You will learn practical skills alongside theoretical, within a critical framework, to become a discerning and conscious designer.

Open Evenings

The next Open Evening for this course will be announced soon.

Course videos

Online Open Day.

(Recorded February 2022)

Course Leader, John Fass, gives an overview of studying MA User Experience Design at London College of Communication.

Graduate showcase

Explore work by our recent students on the UAL Graduate Showcase

  • Objects of Oppression
    Objects of Oppression, Jinsong Liu, 2021 MA User Experience Design, London College of Communication, UAL
  • FlexiKit
    FlexiKit, Svaney Shen, 2021 MA User Experience Design, London College of Communication, UAL
  • Not for Sale
    Not for Sale, Damul Yang, 2021 MA User Experience Design, London College of Communication, UAL
  • Performative Journeys
    Performative Journeys, Alex Newson, 2021 MA User Experience Design, London College of Communication, UAL

Student work

  • Erick-Montenegro.jpg
    Erick Montenegro, Erick Montenegro, 2020. MA User Experience Design, London College of Communication, UAL. 2020 MA User Experience Design, London College of Communication, UAL
  • Fei-Liang.jpg
    Fei Liang, Fei Liang, 2020. MA User Experience Design, London College of Communication, UAL. 2020 MA User Experience Design, London College of Communication, UAL
  • Hugh-Allen.png
    Hugh Allen, Hugh Allen, 2020. MA User Experience Design, London College of Communication, UAL. 2020 MA User Experience Design, London College of Communication, UAL
  • Jialuo-Chen.gif
    Jialuo Chen, Jialuo Chen, 2020. MA User Experience Design, London College of Communication, UAL. 2020 MA User Experience Design, London College of Communication, UAL
  • mengjiao-huang.jpg
    Mengjiao Huang, Mengjiao Huang, 2020. MA User Experience Design, London College of Communication, UAL. 2020 MA User Experience Design, London College of Communication, UAL
  • Tanvi-Kulkarni.jpg
    Tanvi Kulkarni, Tanvi Kulkarni, 2020. MA User Experience Design, London College of Communication, UAL. 2020 MA User Experience Design, London College of Communication, UAL
  • Tonicha-Child.jpg
    Tonicha Child, Tonicha Child, 2020. MA User Experience Design, London College of Communication, UAL. 2020 MA User Experience Design, London College of Communication, UAL
  • Wing-Yan-Wong.jpg
    Wing Yan Wong, Wing Yan Wong, 2020. MA User Experience Design, London College of Communication, UAL. 2020 MA User Experience Design, London College of Communication, UAL

Course films

Symposium: Mushon Zer-Aviv & Dr Maya Indira-Ganesh: Systems, processes and meanings

Staff and students from MA User Experience Design host a series of online conversations with leading designers, academics and thinkers which discuss the radical design imaginary and its place in a dematerialising digital world.

Symposium: Assoc. Prof Laura Forlano and Dr Dan Lockton: Materialising experience

This symposium brings together important global voices in a series of dialogues that explore the outer reaches of the discipline.

Student voices: Nayla Fayoumi

Nayla speaks about her final year project, Craft, a platform that enables employees to shape their job accordingly to their skills and interests.

Student voices: Wan Li

Wan Li tells us about her collaborative and multi-sensory final piece.

Course stories

Facilities

  • A close-up of the moveable type available in the Letterpress area.
    Image © Lewis Bush
    Printing and Finishing

    Discover our printing techniques, from Lithographic Printing to Print Finishing and Bookbinding.

  • Student reading a book in between two bookshelves in the Library
    Students in the Digital Space. London College of Communication, UAL. Photograph: Alys Tomlinson
    The Digital Space

    The Digital Space is an open-plan, creative hub with computers set up with specialist software.

  • Students using the computers in the Digital Space
    Student in Creative Technology Lab, 2020. London College of Communication, UAL. Photograph: Tim Boddy
    Creative Technology Lab

    A multi-purpose space that supports students with: Creative Coding, Physical Computing, Projection Mapping, Games, and Virtual Reality.

Course overview

On this industry focused and design-led course, you'll learn how compelling user experiences are designed, tested, and evaluated.

The course covers the advanced studio skills of user experience design, including the methods and practices of user research through the critical-theoretical background.

What can you expect?

You'll gain knowledge of the relevant tools, materials and practices that make up user experience design in the context of the community of practice represented by London College of Communication.

With a focus on design for complex systems, emerging technologies and integrated experiences, you’ll develop an informed approach which builds on a foundation of graphic, communication and interface design values through open inquiry and creative risk-taking.

Work experience and opportunities

The methods and tools of user research are emphasised throughout and you will be challenged to collaborate on live industry briefs covering varied topics such as UX for wearable technologies, smart cities, data visualisation and social transformation.

The course is intended for people who have completed an undergraduate degree in design, social sciences, digital technologies, media and communications, and associated degrees.

We also anticipate that applicants will be working designers wishing to deepen their practice and develop new opportunities.

Mode of Study

MA User Experience Design is in Full Time mode which runs for 45 weeks over 15 months. You will be expected to commit 40 hours per week to study.

Contact us

Register your interest to receive information and updates about studying at UAL.

Contact us to make an enquiry.

Course units

In 2019 UAL declared a Climate Emergency and pledged to ‘make sustainability a required part of the student learning experience’. In response to the climate and ecological crisis the Design School set in place an ambitious Sustainability Action Plan to fully embed responsible practices within the curriculum and in everything we do.

As part of this initiative we have updated our course handbooks against a set of social and environmental sustainability principles to ensure that learning outcomes reflect the urgent need to equip students with the understanding, skills and values to foster a more sustainable planet. Our aim is to change the way students think and to empower them to work towards a sustainable future.  

Autumn, Term 1

UX Studio Practices (40 credits)

This unit aims to provide you with a critical understanding of user experience design in the context of contemporary studio practice.

It will help you position your approach to the subject relative to the current theoretical ideas and working practices of user experience design.

You will also develop a critical awareness of how physical, personal and social contexts shape design processes.

Spring, Term 2

Macro UX (20 credits)
Collaborative Unit (20 credits)

The Macro UX unit involves working with an external partner on live briefs. You can choose to work with industry or third sector organisations around a set of broad themes including; UX for smart city technologies, UX for cultural placemaking, UX for the future of publishing and UX for archives and collections.

The Collaborative Unit is designed to enable you to identify, form and develop collaborative working relationships with a range of potential partners. These could be: postgraduate student colleagues at the college or university level; postgraduate students at other Higher Education Institutions; external parties (e.g. companies, cultural organisations, community-based groups, NGOs, charities etc.)

Summer, Term 3

Micro UX (40 credits)

This unit is intended to allow you to work with a different external organisation, exposing your evolving practice to different views and alternative methods.

Collaborations are organised around broad themes including; UX for health and wellbeing, UX for data visualisation, UX for human-robot relations, and UX for performance and public participation.

You will be expected to initiate and implement a UX design project around two of these themes, drawing on the research journey you devised and the design process you established in Macro UX.

Autumn, Term 4

Final Major Project and Portfolio of Writing (60 credits)

The aims of the Final Major Project and Critical Context Report are to offer you the opportunity to engage in a major research-led project in which the emphasis will be on defining, analysing and developing an individual and focused approach to user experience design.

Learning and teaching methods

  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Workshops
  • Guest speakers
  • Group and individual tutorials 

Assessment methods

  • Practical Projects
  • Critical Reports
  • Presentations through a range of media
  • Developmental Blogs for reflective practice
  • Research Proposals Portfolio of Evidence

How to apply

Information for disabled applicants

UAL is committed to achieving inclusion and equality for disabled students. This includes students who have:
     
  • Dyslexia or another Specific Learning Difference
  • A sensory impairment
  • A physical impairment
  • A long-term health or mental health condition
  • Autism
  • Another long-term condition which has an impact on your day-to-day life
Our Disability Service arranges adjustments and support for disabled applicants and students. Read our Disability and dyslexia: applying for a course and joining UAL information.

Entry requirements

The course team welcomes applications from open and inquiring minds of all kinds. Applicants interested in deepening their practice to include user research and in pursuing further study as a way of developing a valuable professional qualification. Students open to learning in a new collaborative and critical way, eager to ground their work in real-world research and be willing to take creative risks and make mistakes along the way.

Applicants will have a portfolio of digital design work that demonstrates awareness of the creative and critical aspects of UX design and may also be returning from adjacent careers in the design industry such as graphic design, information design or interaction design.

The course attracts applicants from a broad range of backgrounds, from all over the world, from an Honours degree course in a subject such as:

  • Graphic Design
  • Interaction Design
  • Interactive Media Design
  • Web Design
  • Communication Design
  • Computer Science
  • Digital Design
  • Product Design
  • Anthropology
  • Sociology
  • Or those with other, equivalent qualifications.

The course team also welcomes students with relevant experience or those who may have previously worked in the industry, or non-traditional backgrounds, as well as those already within employment. The course has been designed to accommodate flexibility in educational engagement. Your experience is assessed as a learning process and tutors will evaluate that experience for currency, validity, quality and sufficiency.

The educational level may be demonstrated by:

  • Honours degree (named above);
  • Possession of equivalent qualifications;
  • Prior experiential learning, the outcome of which can be demonstrated to be equivalent to formal qualifications otherwise required.

APEL (Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning)

Applicants who do not meet these course entry requirements may still be considered in exceptional cases. The course team will consider each application that demonstrates additional strengths and alternative evidence. This might, for example, be demonstrated by:

  • Related academic or work experience
  • The quality of the personal statement
  • A strong academic or other professional reference
  • OR a combination of these factors

Each application will be considered on its own merit but we cannot guarantee an offer in each case.

Language Requirements (International/EU)

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 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.

  • IELTS 6.5 (or equivalent), with 6.0 in each of the four skills.
  • If your first language is not English, you can check you have achieved the correct IELTS level in English on the Language Requirements page.
  • For further details regarding international admissions and advice please visit the International Applications page.

Selection criteria

Offers will be made based on the following selection criteria, which applicants are expected to demonstrate:

  • Sufficient prior knowledge and experience of and/or potential in a specialist subject area to be able to successfully complete the programme of study and have an academic or professional background in a relevant subject.
  • Critical knowledge of and enthusiasm for the subject area and capacity for research-led design, intellectual inquiry and reflective thought through: contextual awareness (professional, cultural, social, historical); evidence of research, analysis, development and evaluation (from previous academic study and employment) and a grounded understanding of the world of sonic, visual and networked culture and be able to engage in and contribute to critical discussion.
  • In the project proposal a description of the area of interest, 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 and the methodology.
  • The portfolio should be conceptual and research-based, you must show your thinking and making process and a curious nature to explore, test and experiment.
  • A willingness to work in the physical realm with networked digital systems and in areas of design research and practice that challenges preconceptions.
  • A willingness to work with networked digital systems and an awareness of how they shape the varied contexts of human behaviour.
  • Also to show a willingness to work as a team player, good language skills in reading, writing and speaking, the ability to work independently and be self-motivated.

Making your application

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:

  • First, they will look at your qualifications and transcript (or projected results).
  • Secondly, they will review your personal statement and portfolio.

There is no requirement for an academic or professional reference.

Required information for all postgraduate course applications

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

  • 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.
  • CV.
  • Personal statement.

Before submitting your application, you will need to agree to the terms and conditions for how we process your data – these are explained in the application form. Once you have submitted the online application, we will send you a confirmation email.

Please note, if you’re an international applicant we will ask you 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

  • Portfolio
  • Study Proposal for the Major Project
  • Video task

Start your application now

The online application 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 press submit.

Apply now

Deferring your place

This course accepts requests from offer holders to defer their place for one academic year. Deferral requests are granted on a first-come, first-served basis until all deferral places are filled, or a deadline has been reached, whichever is sooner. Read our Admissions Policy for details, including how to request a deferral and by when.

External Student Transfer Policy

If you are currently studying at another institution and have successfully completed 60 credits in the equivalent units/modules on your current PG course and wish to continue your studies at London College of Communication, you can apply to transfer.

The Admissions Tutor will consider applications on a case by case basis, subject to places being available. You must apply directly to the course via the course webpage as early as possible.

Further information about the external student transfer policy can be found on the Office for Students Information page.

CV

Please provide a CV detailing your education, 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.

Personal statement advice

Please say why you are applying for this course, outlining relevant prior experience and knowledge of the subject. Ensure that your personal statement is well written, clear and free of any spelling mistakes.

It is your chance to impress the course team by showing a strong interest in the subject, demonstrating what you feel you would bring to the course, your appreciation of what the course can offer you and how you feel it might help you in the future. This can be demonstrated through work experience, previous studies and your personal experience.

Study proposal (300-500 words)

Applicants must submit a study proposal for the Major Project outlining the intentions of their MA research (300-500 words).

Please include a description of the area of interest, field of study and the particular focus of the intended project, and an overview of how you intend to go about producing the project and the methodology.

It is important to recognise that these ideas will inevitably develop and change during your study on the course and only serve to inform your application at this stage.

If you have links to web projects or other media, please note these in your CV.

Application deadline

12 January 2022 or 13 April 2022

The equal consideration deadline has now passed. However, this course will remain open to applications until places have been filled. We recommend you submit your application as early as possible to allow the Admissions team to quickly resolve any queries.

If this course requires a portfolio, we will request this separately after initial processing of your application is complete. Once we request your portfolio, you will have 7 days to submit it.

When you'll hear from us

This course receives a high volume of applications. We need to make sure that we give all applications equal consideration, so the course team will review them in two rounds. This means that offers won’t be sent to successful applicants until after the relevant application deadline date. Outcomes for Round 1 will be released by 31 March 2022 and outcomes for Round 2 will be released by 30 June 2022.

Remember to check the outcome of your application in the UAL Portal. If you apply in Round 1 and don’t hear back from us, we will consider your application within Round 2.

Find out more about what happens after you apply.

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:

  • First, they will look at your qualifications and transcript (or projected results).
  • Secondly, they will review your personal statement and portfolio.

There is no requirement for an academic or professional reference.

Required information for postgraduate course applications

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

  • 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.
  • CV.
  • Personal statement.

Please note: we will ask you for copies of certain documents (for example, English language qualification/certificate and copies of any previous UK study visas). Read our immigration and visa information to find out if you need a visa to study at UAL.

You can only apply to the same course once per year. Any duplicate applications will be withdrawn.  Read the UAL international application advice for further information on how to apply.

Extra information required for applications to this course

  • Portfolio
  • Study Proposal for the Major Project
  • Video task

Start your application now

There are 2 ways international students can apply to a postgraduate course:

The application form can be saved as you fill it out, so you do not 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.

Deferring your place

This course accepts requests from offer holders to defer their place for one academic year. Deferral requests are granted on a first-come, first-served basis until all deferral places are filled, or a deadline has been reached, whichever is sooner. Read our Admissions Policy for details, including how to request a deferral and by when.

External Student Transfer Policy

If you are currently studying at another institution and have successfully completed 60 credits in the equivalent units/modules on your current PG course and wish to continue your studies at London College of Communication, you can apply to transfer.

The Admissions Tutor will consider applications on a case by case basis, subject to places being available. You must apply directly to the course via the course webpage as early as possible.

Further information about the external student transfer policy can be found on the Office for Students Information page.

CV

Please provide a CV detailing your education, 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.

Personal statement advice

Please say why you are applying for this course, outlining relevant prior experience and knowledge of the subject. Ensure that your personal statement is well written, clear and free of any spelling mistakes.

It is your chance to impress the course team by showing a strong interest in the subject, demonstrating what you feel you would bring to the course, your appreciation of what the course can offer you and how you feel it might help you in the future. This can be demonstrated through work experience, previous studies and your personal experience.

Study proposal (300-500 words)

Applicants must submit a study proposal for the Major Project outlining the intentions of their MA research (300-500 words).

Please include a description of the area of interest, field of study and the particular focus of the intended project, and an overview of how you intend to go about producing the project and the methodology.

It is important to recognise that these ideas will inevitably develop and change during your study on the course and only serve to inform your application at this stage.

If you have links to web projects or other media, please note these in your CV.

Application deadline

12 January 2022 or 13 April 2022

The equal consideration deadline has now passed. However, this course will remain open to applications until places have been filled. We recommend you submit your application as early as possible to allow the Admissions team to quickly resolve any queries.

If this course requires a portfolio, we will request this separately after initial processing of your application is complete. Once we request your portfolio, you will have 7 days to submit it.

When you'll hear from us

This course receives a high volume of applications. We need to make sure that we give all applications equal consideration, so the course team will review them in two rounds. This means that offers won’t be sent to successful applicants until after the relevant application deadline date. Outcomes for Round 1 will be released by 31 March 2022 and outcomes for Round 2 will be released by 30 June 2022.

Remember to check the outcome of your application in the UAL Portal. If you apply in Round 1 and don’t hear back from us, we will consider your application within Round 2.

Find out more about what happens after you apply.

After you apply

Communicating with you

After you have successfully submitted your application online, you will receive an email confirming your application and providing your login details for the UAL Applicant Portal. Please add @arts.ac.uk to your contacts to ensure that you do not miss any important updates re: your application to UAL.

Please log into the portal, as this is where we will send you important updates and requests, and you can contact us with any questions you may have about your application.

What happens next

Portfolio

  • The portfolio of work should evidence your aptitude, skill and engagement in the field of user experience design or an adjacent practice.
  • Please submit an edited selection of work from up to 5 projects (maximum 19 images) accompanied by a short caption for each project acknowledging the motivation, development, realisation and impact (one/two sentences maximum).
  • Indicate your role and contribution to any collaborative projects included. We welcome developmental work, sketches, tests, process-led experimentation in the portfolio.
  • For those applying from non-design backgrounds, research-based around a relevant topic should be demonstrated. Please provide as much context as possible to explain your research, articulate the outcomes and impact.
  • 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. In all instances, enthusiasm for the course is paramount.

Video task

We'd like you to submit a 2-3 minute video to help us learn more about you.

  • Please speak clearly in English and face the camera.
  • Your video task is submitted along with your portfolio via PebblePad.
  • Read our guidance for more information about how to submit your video task and the file types we accept.

As part of your video task, please respond to the following direction:

  • We would like you to identify one project from your portfolio which challenged you and your understanding of user experience design. Explain how this experience has inspired you to apply to MA User Experience Design at London College of Communication?

In total, you must submit no more than 19 portfolio of work ‘images’ plus 1 video ‘image file’ (a total of 20 ‘image’ files) for this part of your application.

Interview

Applicants are usually interviewed by the course team before a place can be offered. Interviews will be held online, and details will be sent via the UAL Portal.

How we notify you of the outcome of your application

You will receive the outcome of your application through the UAL Applicant Portal.

Requesting feedback

This course receives a high number of applications, and we can’t provide feedback to everyone who is unsuccessful. We can only provide feedback after you’ve had an interview.

If you would like to request feedback – please email lcc.ukeu@arts.ac.uk if you are a Home or EU applicant, or lcc.international@arts.ac.uk if International. We are only able to provide feedback to you directly, or to someone you have told us in writing can receive it on your behalf.

Fees and funding

Home fee

£11,550

This fee is correct for 2022/23 entry and is subject to change for 2023/24 entry. Tuition fees may increase in future years for new and continuing students on courses lasting more than one year. For this course, you can pay tuition fees in instalments.

Home fees are currently charged to UK nationals and UK residents who meet the rules. However, the rules are complex. Find out more about our tuition fees and determining your fee status.

International fee

£23,610

This fee is correct for 2022/23 entry and is subject to change for 2023/24 entry. Tuition fees may increase in future years for new and continuing students on courses lasting more than one year. For this course, you can pay tuition fees in instalments.

Students from countries outside of the UK will generally be charged international fees. The rules are complex so read more about tuition fees and determining your fee status.

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