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MA Virtual Reality

College
LCC
Start date
September 2020
Course length
1 year 3 months full-time (45 weeks across a four-term model)

MA Virtual Reality (VR) at London College of Communication provides the opportunity to explore and develop the application of VR technologies across filmmaking, visual effects (VFX), animation, games and immersive augmented reality (AR) experiences.

Open Evenings

The next Open Evening for this course will be on:

Thursday 5 December

What is MA Virtual Reality?

Course Leader, Ana Tudor talks through the qualities she looks for in an applicant for MA Virtual Reality at London College of Communication.

Course stories

Facilities

The Digital Space, London College of Communication.
Image © Ana Escobar

Digital Space

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

A 3D model of a wolf produced by an animation student.
Image © Lewis Bush

Animation and Games

Learn about the resources on offer to students studying Animation and Games Design.

empty workshop space with chairs, tables, tv screen's vr booths and coding area

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.

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.

Mode of Study

MA Virtual reality 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.

Course units

Each course is divided into units, which are credit-rated. The minimum unit size is 20 credits. The MA course structure involves five units, totalling 180 credits.

Autumn, Term One

Unit summary:

  • Creative VR Project Portfolio (40 Credits) 

In this unit, you will have the opportunity to explore the full breadth of creative VR applications and begin to explore ways to utilise various software palettes and workflows to develop immersive products.

  • Designing Immersive Experiences (20 Credits)

In this unit, you’ll explore the methods, techniques and critical theories that underpin the conceptualisation and design of VR experiences.

You’ll explore the principles of animation, alongside film and games concept development and use these to develop strategies that help to establish the language and workflow of VR design.

Spring, Term Two

Unit summary:

  • Critical Practice and Exploration (40 Credits) 

During this unit, you’ll draw on your knowledge of VR workflows and technical methodologies in order to produce a portfolio of advanced experimental, technical and critical practice.

This could take the form of interactive application, games or immersive narrative experiences.

  • Collaborative Unit (20 Credits) 

As part of the LCC Screen School-wide strategy to enable collaboration and a project-focused approach to creative practices, you will use this unit as an opportunity to work as part of a cross-disciplinary creative team.

You’ll be encouraged to work with postgraduate students across other courses within the Moving Image and Digital Arts Programme including MA 3D Computer Animation and MA Games Design, as well as courses in other programmes within the Screen School such as MA Sound Arts and MA Film.

Summer, Terms Three and Four

Unit summary:

  • Final Project and Thesis (60 Credits) 

At this final stage of the course, you’ll bring together the knowledge, skills and experience gained throughout your studies to produce a self-directed, longer-form VR project, alongside an associated thesis.

Students will specify, refine and produce an ambitious and substantial VR project that will show that they have an in-depth critical awareness of the area and the highly developed practical skills in production management, design and execution of immersive experiences to deliver a complex project on time.

This major project will demonstrate that the appropriate level of academic and technical proficiency has been reached for the award of a Masters degree.

Learning and teaching methods

  • Lectures
  • Seminars,
  • Tutorials
  • Critiques
  • Workshops
  • Software training
  • Individual research exercises
  • Self-directed study
  • Peer reviews

Assessment methods

  • Submission 
  • Written research and critical reports;
  • Review of design development portfolios;
  • Presentations and formal critiques;
  • Project work;
  • Exhibition of project portfolios;
  • Written thesis.

Staff

Ana-Despina  Tudor

Ana-Despina Tudor

Course Leader, MA Virtual Reality

Danyl  Bartlett

Danyl Bartlett

Programme Director, Moving Image and Digital Arts

How to apply

Opportunities for all

We are committed to making university education an achievable option for a wider range of people and to supporting all of our students in achieving their potential both during and after their courses.

We welcome applications from people with disabilities. If you have a disability (e.g. mobility difficulties, sensory impairments, medical or mental health conditions or Asperger’s syndrome) we strongly encourage you to contact us on disability@arts.ac.uk or +44 (0)20 7514 6156 so that we can plan the right support for you. All enquiries are treated confidentially. To find out more, visit our Disability & Dyslexia webpages.

Entry requirements

Applicants will be considered for admission if they have achieved an educational level equivalent to an honours degree in either animation, illustration, visual communication, graphic design or closely related subject, and present a portfolio of moving-image work. However, we do not exclude candidates who have graduated from other less strongly aligned disciplines.

This 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;
  • Or a combination of formal qualifications and experiential learning which, taken together, can be demonstrated to be equivalent to formal qualifications otherwise required.

APEL (Accreditation of Prior 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

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) is required, with a minimum of 5.5 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 games development, film, animation or VFX practice to be able to successfully complete the programme of study, and have an academic or professional background in a relevant subject
  • Knowledge of visual culture and an ability to engage in critical discussion

 

Making your application

Applications for 2020/21 entry will open in Autumn 2019.

All applications will be reviewed by the course team who will consider key elements when making a decision on your suitability to join the course:

  • Firstly, 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

Before you apply, please take time to read the guidance below. You will be asked to provide the following items and upload documents when completing 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
  • CV
  • Personal statement

Extra information required for applications to this course

  • Portfolio

Transfers

If you have successfully completed 60 credits in the equivalent units/modules on your current postgraduate course at another institution 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. Find out about our UAL External Student Transfer Policy which includes what you need to include in your application.

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

You will be asked to complete a personal statement describing why you want to study on MA Virtual Reality. Candidates will be expected to demonstrate critical knowledge of and enthusiasm for the subject, and a well-articulated rationale for joining the course.

The personal statement is a very important part of your application and should demonstrate to the course team that you are interested in the subject and that you have thought very carefully about why you wish to study on the course.

Ensure that your personal statement it 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.

Deferrals

Deferring an offer

If you are offered a place for 2020/21 but wish to defer to 2021/22, information on how to do this and who to contact can be found in your offer letter. Additionally, International applicants should pay the pre-payment in order to defer. In all cases, deferred places will be held for one year.

Making a deferred application (during 2019/20 for entry in 2021/22)

Home/EU applicants are permitted to make a deferred application.

Applications for 2020/21 entry will open in Autumn 2019.

All applications will be reviewed by the course team who will consider key elements when making a decision on your suitability to join the course:

  • Firstly, 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

Before you apply, please take time to read the guidance below. You will be asked to provide the following items and upload documents when completing 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
  • 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).

For further advice on how to apply please visit the UAL International Application page.

Extra information required for applications to this course

  • Portfolio

Transfers

If you have successfully completed 60 credits in the equivalent units/modules on your current postgraduate course at another institution 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. Find out about our UAL External Student Transfer Policy which includes what you need to include in your application.

Immigration history check

Whether you are applying through a UAL representative or direct application you will need to complete an Immigration History check. If you do not complete the Immigration History Check we will not be able to proceed with your application.

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

You will be asked to complete a personal statement describing why you want to study on MA Virtual Reality. Candidates will be expected to demonstrate critical knowledge of and enthusiasm for the subject, and a well-articulated rationale for joining the course.

The personal statement is a very important part of your application and should demonstrate to the course team that you are interested in the subject and that you have thought very carefully about why you wish to study on the course.

Ensure that your personal statement it 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.

Deferrals

Deferring an offer

If you are offered a place for 2020/21 but wish to defer to 2021/22, information on how to do this and who to contact can be found in your offer letter. Additionally, International applicants should pay the pre-payment in order to defer. In all cases, deferred places will be held for one year.

Making a deferred application (during 2019/20 for entry in 2021/22)

International applicants are not permitted to make a deferred application.


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 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 and interview information

All applicants will be expected to submit an electronic portfolio as part of their application. At application stage, we are as excited to see a portfolio of strong image making or interactive content, that has a sense of sequential play, as we are to see an accomplished portfolio of animation work.

As a student on the course, you will be selected for something specific you portray through your portfolio. This could be a strong illustration or design portfolio that indicates a desire to take work into the 3D space and work with sound and interaction in a virtual format, or an accomplished portfolio of animation work that indicates a commitment to focus on personal development through a further course of study.

  • Your portfolio should have some examples of image-led and visual work from either education or professional practice.
  • It should contain a 3D, live action/VFX or animated showreel of minimum 60 seconds in length. Please state your role (animator, modeller, lighting, story, background) and techniques you have used. Preferably it should a personal work and animated entirely by yourself.
  • It should contain a minimum of five projects and self-initiated projects are also encouraged.
  • If you have links to web projects or media assets, please note these in your CV.

Applicants are usually interviewed by the course team before a place can be offered. Interviews will take place at LCC, or via Skype/telephone.

How we notify you of the outcome of your application

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

Fees & Funding

Home / EU Fee

£11,220 (2020/21).

UAL alumni receive a £1,000 discount

Course fees may be paid in instalments

International Fee

£22,920 (2020/21).

UAL alumni receive a £1,000 discount

Course fees may be paid in instalments

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.

Accommodation

Find out about the accommodation options available and how much they will cost.

Scholarships and Awards

A range of scholarships, bursaries and awards are available to postgraduate students at UAL.

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.

Home / EU and International students

Funding opportunities available for this course:

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