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Course content

Overview

MA Design Future Society is an 18-month programme, leading to a joint award with Mannheim University of Applied Sciences. The programme includes study at both universities.

All students registered on the programme may apply for Erasmus+ funding which will contribute to travel and living expenses during the five month exchange. The School of Design and Leeds University’s International Office and Language Centre will provide support for applications for funding, visas and pre-sessional language tuition.

At the School of Design and Fakultät für Gestaltung, Mannheim University of Applied Sciences you will be able to develop your practice in well-equipped studios and purpose-built computer clusters so you can build your skills on both PC and Mac. There are computer-aided design (CAD) suites with access to the latest design software and some of the latest design technology, such as digital printing and laser cutting facilities, and colour analysis/prediction labs, eye-tracking technology and digital photography.

Course content

Fundamentally multi-disciplinary and collaborative, course content encourages innovation and autonomy in response to set briefs and self initiated study supported by expertise in research, strategic thinking and practical implementation of communication design.

In the first semester students undertake theoretical and practical study in integrated media, semiotics, philosophy, sociology and research methodology in order to identify and manage complex social issues and communicate insights and design proposals by effectively employing advocacy skills and presentation techniques. Team work and collaboration are essential to the successful generation and implementation of creative solutions, therefore students are required, within this context, to demonstrate independent judgement, decision-making and personal responsibility.

In Semester 2 there is a five-month exchange programme to Mannheim which involves the application of design thinking within a different cultural environment through independent and group social projects; presenting significant challenges in comprehension, interpretation, empathy and communication. Students are encouraged to develop entrepreneurial attitudes in seeking opportunities for collaboration; contributing to professional development by operating in new areas of influence and articulating complex information into a coherent creative proposal.

In the third semester you will return from Mannheim and the programme concludes with a major research dissertation or innovation project, independently conceived and managed, demonstrating abilities in research, holistic understanding and applying contemporary knowledge to solving future problems.

Modules

Year 1

Compulsory modules

  • Integrated Communication (Design Future Society)
  • Social Aesthetics
  • Design and Society
  • Research Methodology
  • Social Design Projects
  • Design Futures

Year 2

Optional modules (selection of typical options shown below)

  • Dissertation - Digital Social and Mobile Design
  • Digital Innovation Project

Learning and teaching

Lectures, seminars, tutorials, creative and technical workshops, creative studio sessions, group learning, group critiques and peer assessment. There will be an emphasis on social and situated learning where dialogue, reflection, intuition, critical analysis and judgement are exercised within the context of group learning and group assignments, supported by utilising social media networks and content sharing to connect students from both institutions.

Assessment

You’ll also be assessed by a variety of methods. Your own creative work will be assessed via portfolios and projects, reports, presentations and literature reviews. Formal examinations do not contribute to assessment. Full details of assessment for each module can be found via the programme catalogue.

Applying, fees and funding

Documents and information you need

  • A copy of your degree certificate and transcripts, or a partial transcript if you’re still studying (please submit an official English translation if necessary)
  • Two academic references (in certain circumstances a professional reference may be considered)
  • Evidence of your English language qualifications, if English is not your first language
  • A personal statement, including evidence of your motivation and interest to study this particular programme and an indication to your future career plans.
  • An electronic link or pdf to your digital portfolio. Your portfolio should show evidence of successfully generating and articulating concepts.

English language requirements

IELTS 6.5 overall, with no less than 6.0 in any component.. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

Improve your English

International students who do not meet the English language requirements for this programme may be able to study our postgraduate pre-sessional English course, to help improve your English language level.

To find out more, read Language for Arts and Humanities (6 weeks) and Language for Social Science and Arts: Arts and Humanities (10 weeks).

How to apply

APPLY 

Applicants may be invited to attend an interview with the programme manager either by phone, Skype or in person.

Read about visas, immigration and other information in International students. We recommend that international students apply as early as possible to ensure that they have time to apply for their visa.

Fees

Read more about paying fees and charges.

For fees information for international taught postgraduate students, read Masters fees.

For January 2019 entry:

  • UK/EU Fees - TBC
  • International Fees - TBC

Scholarships and financial support

If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There may be help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government. Find out more at Masters funding overview.

If you have the talent and drive, we want to make sure you can study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There is help available for UK, EU and international students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government.

The School offers the School of Design Taught Postgraduate Award, which are 5 awards of £3,000.

Career opportunities

Employment opportunities are broad and varied as there is growing demand for communication professionals with social enterprise skills in design and innovation with a clear focus on social and cultural interaction and collaboration. Therefore employment prospects extend beyond the traditional agency model into research, strategy and planning roles within a broad range of companies and organisations. In addition graduates could also consider academic research and take advantage of the significant number of calls for research proposals that currently identify social need.


Visit the Design Future Society MA page on the University of Leeds website for more details!

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