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Rebecca Lucas, MA Visual Communication, UCA Canterbury

MA Visual Communication

Visual Communication MA

Canterbury

Course overview

Take your design work to the next level on our MA Visual Communication degree at UCA Canterbury, and become a cultural innovator who can use your work to entertain, inform and persuade.

On this course, you’ll explore the ways in which you can convey messages and meaning through a diverse range of media - from print and motion to digital - and you’ll be encouraged to develop new skills to strengthen and inform your design practice.

You’ll learn to approach design as an agent of change – a strategy for positively transforming behaviours in desirable and sustainable ways.

You’ll also have the opportunity to collaborate with other members of our creative community and enhance your work in the areas needed to become a creative leader within the field of visual communication - an area that spans print media, user experience, motion design, web design, exhibition design and advertising.

MA Visual Communication is designed to help you develop your identity as an author and innovator, equipping you with the skills and knowledge to identify and solve design problems within cross-disciplinary environments, including traditional and digital printmaking, moving image suites and 3D studios.

Led by Hugh Harwood and a team of experienced professional designers with connections at the highest level of industry – including Slawa Harasymowicz and Vida Vega – you’ll learn through a range of lectures, project briefs, workshops, written assignments, group critiques and individual tutorials.

A one-year course of advanced study for furthering your research skills and specialising within your discipline.

A year-long preparatory course of study to ready you for your Master’s, developing your specialist skills, research acumen and confidence in working autonomously.

The Integrated Pre-Masters course has been suspended for 2022 entry.

A year-long preparatory course of study to ready you for your Master’s in the UK, developing your English speaking and writing together with your specialist skills, research acumen and confidence in working autonomously.

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Course details

Course details

The content of the course may be subject to change. Curriculum content is provided as a guide.

Get ready for your chosen postgraduate course with this preparatory year of specialist study. With a mix of online and face-to-face learning, UCA’s Integrated Pre-Masters is designed to give you insight into the study skills required to complete a Master’s, within the context of your creative subject. You’ll build skills in autonomous learning, forming your own targets and goals, honing your research skills, time management and professional practice.

For our students coming from a non-UK educational background, UCA has launched an Integrated International Pre-Masters year, which is based at UCA Farnham.

On this course you’ll prepare for postgraduate study with a mix of online and face-to-face learning that will give you the study skills required to complete a Master’s, and you’ll also improve your English for academic study.

You'll be introduced to the University and the technical workshops and facilities available to you. The first term includes a range of lectures and seminars and you’ll start to explore your creative practice.

Defining Your Practice
You'll explore creative practice in order to inform the detailed development of your project proposal later in the course. The unit aims to provide a structured framework to allow you to investigate the potential of methods, ideas and themes in your discipline as well as helping inform and locate your practice.

 

During term two you begin developing your MA project, evaluating and testing out the aims of your proposal over a sustained period of self-directed study.

Context and Method
Through a series of lectures and seminars, you’ll actively engage in a range of current debates which provide cultural and intellectual context for the consideration of ideas in visual communication. The programme addresses inter-disciplinary issues through the discussion of theory and the consideration of specific design-led work and texts.

Project Development
In this unit you will develop the themes and focus of your final project, evaluating and testing out the aims of your proposal over a sustained period of self-directed study. At this stage, the development of your project will be guided and questioned through tutorials, group critiques and presentations, which will support the progress of your work and provide rigorous critical appraisal from staff, peers and professional practitioners. While encouraging the continued exploration and questioning of your ideas, you will continue the process of developing appropriate methods and strategies for your project’s realisation as you begin to work more independently as a researcher and practitioner, refining your research questions and the research methods you are using.

 

In the third term of the course, you'll apply the knowledge gained through your research to create a final body of work.

Realisation and Dissemination
You'll apply knowledge and experience gained in previous units to the realisation of your final MA project - the culmination and consolidation of your studies in the form of a resolved piece, or body of work. It should show coherence and innovation at a professional level of resolution. You'll also be required to prepare a critical paper intended to reflect upon the specific practical outcome of the MA project, its interpretation and its success as a demonstration of your approach to creative practice through research.

Tuition fees - 2022 entry

UK students:

  • Integrated Pre-Masters course - £10,500
  • MA course - £10,500

EU students:

  • Integrated International Pre-Masters course - £10,500 (see fee discount information)
  • MA course - £10,500 (see fee discount information)

International students:

  • Integrated International Pre-Masters course - £17,500
  • MA course - £17,500

Additional course costs
In addition to the tuition fees there may be other costs for your course. The things that you are likely to need to budget for to get the most out of a creative arts education will include books, printing costs, occasional or optional study trips and/or project materials. These costs will vary according to the nature of your project work and the individual choices that you make. Please see the additional course costs for 2021 entry. The details for 2022 entry will be available here in due course.

Further information
For more detailed information about our course fees and any financial support you may be entitled to please see our fees and finance pages.

The fees listed here are correct for the stated academic year only. Costs may increase each year during a student’s period of continued registration on course in line with inflation (subject to any maximum regulated tuition fee limit). Any adjustment for continuing students will be at or below the RPI-X forecast rate.

To support our students and alumni to progress to the next level of study, we have developed a new range of fee discounts across a range of courses.

Course specifications

Please note, syllabus content indicated is provided as a guide. The content of the course may be subject to change in line with our Student Terms and Conditions for example, as required by external professional bodies or to improve the quality of the course.

Facilities

Visual Communication facilities include dedicated studios with space for both personal and group working; digital media suites with Macs programmed with the latest industry design software including, Adobe Creative Suite, Final Cut Studio, Final Cut Pro, Soundtrack Pro and Autodesk Maya. We have photography studios and processing and printing darkrooms for black and white film-based photography; printmaking studios with access to lithography, screen-printing, etching and relief printing.

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Course studios, UCA Canterbury

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Graphics Print studios, UCA Canterbury

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Digital Media suite, UCA Canterbury

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Course studios, UCA Canterbury

Ka I Lei
Ka I Lei

"Studying at UCA is definitely one of the greatest experiences I’ve had. I can feel creative and energetic vibes everywhere on the campus. The UCA team at the campus are really helpful and friendly, they’re supportive in many ways, regardless of whether we need academic or personal advice."

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

MA course

  • An honours degree or equivalent qualification in the subject or a related discipline

and/or

  • Relevant work experience, demonstrating your ability to study at postgraduate level.

Consideration will also be given to applicants who can make a strong case for admission in relation to a particular project and can demonstrate their potential to satisfactorily complete the course.

 


 

MA course with Integrated Pre-Masters course
MA course with Integrated International Pre-Masters course

A recognised bachelor degree or 3 year diploma with a strong portfolio in a relevant subject.

Don't meet the international entry requirements or English language requirements?

You may be able to enter the course through the following entry pathways:

Pre-sessional English courses

UCA International Foundation courses

The UCA International College

MA course
MA course with Integrated Pre-Masters course
MA course with Integrated International Pre-Masters course

For these courses, we’ll need to see your visual or written portfolio for review. We’ll invite you to upload your portfolio online via your Applicant Portal – further information will be provided once you have applied. If you would prefer to meet the Academic Team in person for a review of your work on campus, this can also be arranged for you.

More portfolio advice

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