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Digital Culture (MA)


Course Description

On this MA you will interrogate digital culture as you develop and think through your own projects in our bespoke Centre for Cultural Studies media lab. You will undertake research and writing that incorporates contemporary art, software studies, critical theory, philosophy and cultural studies. http://www.gold.ac.uk/pg/ma-digital-culture/

Our modes of art, experimentation, work, sociability, politics and economies are changed in tandem with the development of digitality. Many of us are now continuously wired into our networks for fun, at work, and at home. We often find ourselves at the margins of networked relationships where different flows of power form from the residue we leave behind in electronic memories. On one hand we find ourselves policed by the ability to sort large amounts of information on the move, on the other, new spaces grow from technical innovation, experimentation and artistic methods.

Join our MA Digital Culture and help create new insights within these logics. Your writing and projects will be supported in an interdisciplinary environment. You do not necessarily need to have an initial project in mind, nor a technical background, just an enthusiasm for learning and experimentation. Each year we have a very lively mix of students who bring prior experience from across the arts, humanities, and sciences.

The MA in Digital Culture helps students develop and realize innovative projects and prepare for, or to create a bridge towards, a critical career in the cultural, creative, educational, analytical, and computational sectors.

This program is based on the research excellence in cultural studies (Scott Lash), software studies (Matthew Fuller), media philosophy (Luciana Parisi) and critical practices (Graham Harwood).

The MA in Digital Culture grew out of the prior MA Interactive Media: Critical Theory and Practice.

Contact the department

If you have specific questions about the degree, contact the Centre for Cultural Studies.

Modules & Structure

We use art methodologies alongside those from computing and cultural theory. A key method adopted in the Lab is to make the space between theory and practice ambiguous. The class makes and explores things, attempting to explain the phenomena being looked at or thought about. Explanation in this context is not necessarily a reduction of phenomena to literature or a system of logics, but can instead be thought of as knowledge incorporated into a thing that we create, look at or point to, through figuring out a proposition.

In practice this means we may:

-Learn MySQL databases and explore how their integral model of entities and relations create new forms of governance and aid in the performance of different scales of power
-Build simple telephony systems while taking inspiration from early/current data networks and their relationship to cultural change, resource wars and political insurrection
-Explore systematic failure within computation by exploring hacking and security issues such as creating fork bombs, doing penetration testing and reviewing the need for cryptography post-Snowden

We actively work with cultural theory in a world with computation as a central pillar. The Digital Culture Unit in the Centre for Cultural Studies, under whose auspices this programme is run, has been a pioneer of practice-led theory. This method pursues a form of working on projects that at the same time undertakes research and writing that incorporates contemporary cultural theory, philosophy and cultural studies. The Masters, therefore, is also ideal for students with primarily theoretical interests who wish to ground these with concrete knowledge and experience.

Building on the Digital Culture Unit's research excellence in software studies, media philosophy and digital art, students will learn to employ cutting edge research and practice-based methodologies to enhance their own skill set. The programme gives you the opportunity to develop critical and speculative theoretical and practice-based research on the ways computational media technologies are embedded in the technical, cultural, aesthetic, and political structures of society and how we interact with them. The applications of such work are highly diverse. The degree helps students to prepare for or to create a bridge towards a critical career in the cultural, creative, educational, analytical, and computational sectors.

Skills

You'll develop skills in:

Theoretical and practice-based research methodologies
Software and hardware production including basic electronics, programming, networking, telephony, relational database analyses
Group working skills
Event planning and production

Careers

The programme helps students to prepare for a critical career in the cultural, creative, educational, analytical, computational sectors.

Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths.

What our alumni are doing now

-Joao Wilbert (2008/9) has a background in web design and is now a Creative Technologist working at Google Creative Labs. http://www.jhwilbert.com
-Maria Beatrice Fazi (2008/9) has a BA in Philosophy and is now completing her PhD on Computation and Aesthetics at the Centre for Cultural Studies.
-Lisa Baldini (2010/11) is a New York based curator. In 2012 she has curated Code of Contingency.
-Loes Borges (2010/11) has a BA in Media and Cultural Studies and is now lab manager at the Digital Art Lab in Zoetermeer, (NL). http://www.loesbogers.com
-Tom Keene (2011/12) has a BA in Fine Arts and is now collaborating with Furtherfield, London-based media arts organisation, co-director of Brixton Remakery, a community-led recycling initiative. http://www.theanthillsocial.co.uk
-Marcos Chitelet (2011/12) has a BA in Design and is co-founder of the design agency DID, as well as political web platform Sentidos Comunes, and FaceEnergy, a start-up developing projects on energy efficiency for the city of Santiago, Chile.

Prizes and awards

In 2011, Alexandra Sofie Joensoon and Cliff Hemmet – both students from the MA – won a prestigious prize at the media arts festival Ars Electronica. Alex and Cliff created a low cost DIY telephony server together with sex workers activist group X-talk. Today the project is a platform for critical reflection on how communication practices and structures are materialised in the sex industry.

Funding

Please visit http://www.gold.ac.uk/pg/fees-funding/ for details.

Visit the Digital Culture (MA) page on the Goldsmiths, University of London website for more details!



All Available Videos:


(Student Profile)

Cristobal Bianchi

106.gif I found out about Goldsmiths five years before I decided to leave Santiago de Chile for study in the UK. I came to Goldsmiths not only for its good reputation, but also to work with an interdisciplinary curriculum that would allow me to integrate my experience and interest in poetry, art education and cultural theory. In Chile I worked in art education with children in social risk, and also in an art collective called Casa Grande.

I moved to London in September 2004. From the beginning I found myself in a great academic environment with diverse options of seminars, talks, lectures and screenings. It was wonderful to discover a particular interest for creativity, critical thinking, and open ways to create links between practice and theory. This critical learning allows me to explore my own thinking much further, not just in the College, but in the entire city and in public events where I meet my classmates and teachers. All of them have become a strong network of help and discussion. I’ve also had the opportunity to work as a Visiting Tutor in a different department, which allows me to get experience in education and meet other staff and students.


(Scholarship)

Goldsmiths Masters Scholarships - 20+ Awards

Please note that scholarship schemes and awards are subject to the availability of funds, and the details given here are subject to change at any time. we therefore encourage you to check this information regularly.

Value of Scholarship(s)

£1,000

Eligibility

Home and EU students (full-time and part-time).

Application Procedure

Applications for 2015 entry are now closed.

Further Information

http://www.gold.ac.uk/pg/fees-funding/scholarships-2016/


(Scholarship)

Banco Santander Scholarships - 7 Awards

In partnership with Banco Santander, Goldsmiths will be awarding seven scholarships to outstanding candidates from within the Santander Universidades network. Each scholarship provides a £5,000 fee waiver and is tenable for one year only.

Value of Scholarship(s)

£5,000

Eligibility

Scholarships will be open to students applying to study a taught masters degree (excludes MRes and Masters by Research) in any discipline starting in September 2016. The countries targeted (although not exclusively, should exceptional candidates apply from other eligible countries*) will be:Mexico
Brazil
Colombia
China
* The Santander Universidades scheme covers institutions in Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Chile, China, Colombia, Germany, Ghana, Mexico, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Russia, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, United Arab Emirates, UK, Uruguay and USA.

Application Procedure

Your scholarship application should be completed online through your myGoldsmiths account. This is the online account that you created in order to apply for a course at Goldsmiths.As part of the application, you'll be asked to answer three questions relevant to the award that you are applying for.For more information, please see the Banco Santander Scholarships page.

Further Information

http://www.gold.ac.uk/pg/fees-funding/scholarships-2016/


(Scholarship)

The Goldsmiths' Company Postgraduate Bursaries - 4 Awards

Please see website for more details

Value of Scholarship(s)

£5,000

Eligibility

Students on taught postgraduate programmes (not including MA Filmmaking or PGCEs) starting October 2015. You must be: a UK student; new to postgraduate study; experiencing financial difficulties. You should also demonstrate academic potential and you must not be in receipt of any Goldsmiths, AHRC or ESRC funding.

Application Procedure

Applications for 2015 entry are now closed.

Further Information

http://www.gold.ac.uk/pg/fees-funding/scholarships-2016/



Entry Requirements

You should have (or expect to be awarded) an undergraduate degree of at least upper second class standard in a relevant/related subject or an experiential background, in a relevant subject, and an ability to engage with cultural theory. You might also be considered for some programmes if you aren’t a graduate or your degree is in an unrelated field, but have relevant experience and can show that you have the ability to work at postgraduate level. IELTS 7.0 (including 7.0 in the written test).

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