Narratives are told through artefacts, text, sound, images and film, which are integrated into the physical environment. This is achieved in three ways. Firstly, through the design of hard physical structures, materials and form, which tend to remain fairly fixed over time. Secondly, through text, light, image, sound and digital media which can change rapidly. Thirdly, through the soft and most unpredictable dimension of human presence and interaction.
On this course, theories of space and narrative will be introduced and debated through lectures, seminars and conferences. You will also have access to an online compendium. Theory is integrated with practice in team projects. You will gain insight into professional practice through placements, live projects and visiting practitioners. During the course, you will progress towards independent thinking. You will establish your own critical position, allowing you to graduate with a clear set of principles to underpin your future career.
Unit 1: Methodology and Scope of the Design of Narrative Environments
This unit consists of a series of short, group projects. It will introduce you to a variety of research methods, multidisciplinary collaboration and the scope of narrative environment design. You will also be introduced to the theoretical, socio-economic and cultural context of practice. Unit 1 also integrates personal and professional development. This will enable you to become an active member of a learning community. You will develop your skills in research, communication, reflection, planning, decision-making and creative practice.
Unit 2: Challenging, Originating and Repositioning Narrative
On this unit, you will have the opportunity to define your own direction. You will research and design a major project proposition. You may opt to do an industry case study or a placement to gain direct insight into opportunities and working methods in industry. The case study or placement will enable you to appraise your own abilities, ambitions and career direction.
The major project proposition is self-directed. You will define your own research question, aims and objectives. You will compile a research document and assemble your own collaborative team to develop a visual design proposition. This unit allows you to engage with the professional world and become a reflective, creative and critical practitioner, as well as explore your career options.
Unit 3: Challenging, Originating and Repositioning Narrative Environments 2
In this unit, you will write a project rationale which will contextualise and justify your direction. You will prototype, test, produce and install your major project where feasible. Unit 3 concludes with a critical evaluation of your major project. This project enables you to define your own professional and personal goals. It also encourages you to reflect on the dynamics of the industry, to consolidate your experience and advance your skills and knowledge.
Mode of study
MA Narrative Environments is offered in extended full-time mode which runs for 60 weeks over two academic years. You will be expected to commit 30 hours per week to study, which includes teaching time and independent study.
The course has been designed in this way to enable you to pursue studies, while also undertaking part-time employment, internships or care responsibilities.
Credit and award requirements
The course is credit-rated at 180 credits.
On successfully completing the course, you will gain a Master of Arts (MA degree).
Under the Framework for Higher Education Qualifications, an MA is Level 7. All units must be passed in order to achieve the MA but the classification of the award is derived from the mark for the final unit only.
If you are unable to continue on the course, a Postgraduate Certificate (PG Cert) will normally be offered following the successful completion of 60 credits, or a Postgraduate Diploma (PG Dip) following the successful completion of 120 credits.