Whether your aim is to be a practicing design critic or writer, or simply to better understand the context in which your design work sits, LCC's MA Design Histories and Futures will give you the skills and knowledge you need to develop your writerly practice. And if you're interested in progressing to PhD level, the course offers specialised sessions on developing a research proposal with support from current PhD supervisors at LCC.
You'll have access to UAL's globally important Archives and Special Collections, allowing you to study the stuff of design up close, and make new connections and discoveries through your critical practice.
You will also be able to develop your curatorial practice, and consider the archives of the past and their possible futures. The course’s digital presence and activities act as a tool to enable you to gain an external profile as a design writer.
Working with colleagues from across the courses in LCC's Design School portfolio, you will understand and reflect diverse practice throughout your work. Not only will you be encouraged to speak with authority, you'll be supported to produce design history with real impact in a range of contexts.
What can you expect?
You will develop your writerly practice, which will form the basis for a journal of design criticism, hosted online. Representing the diverse perspectives and ideas you are developing, it will allow you to establish a profile in the field on your own terms.
You will have the opportunity to work on a major project that could take the form of archival, curatorial or event-based practice – as well as writerly practice. By the end of the MA, you will have a portfolio of writing and critical design that allows you to speak authoritatively on a host of design contexts and issues.
The course is delivered by tutors from across the School’s range of subject expertise. It is led by experienced researchers and practitioners in design and material culture with extensive exhibition and publication profiles in graphic design, performance, comics, information design, subculture, phenomenology, history of art, critical cartography, participatory design and art, urban studies, research methods, design and media activism, feminist media, architecture, queer theory and many others. In addition, you will engage with practitioners and researchers from across the School.
Who is this course for?
You should be curious and passionate in your appetite for design. The course takes no particular sub disciplinary perspective but embraces design as a whole which demands open-mindedness and an analytical mindset that allows the synthesis of ideas across time, space and discipline.
The course is also aimed at those interested in moving into the museum, heritage or cultural curation sector with design as a focus discipline and will provide the knowledge and skills necessary to navigate this important sector.
Those interested in higher academic study, at MPhil or PhD level are invited to apply as the course offers supervision and guidance in preparing applications for further study as well as methodological grounding in design research methods.
The course is structured around design research, for public consumption and academic study. It encourages and develops writerly practice through units on design history and its situatedness in national identities, the burgeoning field of design criticism, archiving, curating and collecting and design fictions and futures.
This broad-based approach to the subject gives and holistic and analytical education preparing graduates for the ever-changing world of design.
Students are expected to be ambitious, engaged and demonstrate a strong degree of independence. At this level in a dynamic field, an open mind and one that engages with complex, often contradictory ideas is vital.
Students are expected to pursue research and ideas with the help and support of their tutors and the course team but based on their own ambitions and interests.