Communication Design MA

Three Falmouth University students sat round an iMac with graphic design posters on the wall
Communication Design Ma 2022 crop

Work in an interdisciplinary studio environment, where designing and communicating meaningful and effective ideas is paramount. You’ll benefit from frequent industry contact and expert tutors, preparing you for a range of careers in the creative industries.

Key details
Location Falmouth Campus
Course duration 1 year
Attendance Full-time

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Course overview

Develop your individual critical voice through this transformative, studio-based Communication Design master's course. Learning within an industry-focused environment, you’ll stay current by engaging with projects and insights supplied by leading global ‘provocateurs’, including writers, scientists, artists, curators and designers.

You will:

  • Access our purpose-built studio environment, which mirrors leading contemporary design studios
  • Attend lectures by award-winning designers, practitioners and agencies, which have previously included Pentagram, Lewis Moberly, Wiedemann Lampe, Pentagram, Visual Editions, Wolfe Hall, Trapped in Suburbia
  • Develop interdisciplinary creative skills and a portfolio relevant to multiple sectors including graphic design, branding, service design, publication design, exhibition design, UX design, design for social impact, art direction and copywriting
  • Learn the research skills necessary for an in-depth, critical engagement with a given subject  
  • Gain commercial experience through industry-focused engagements

Course details

On this Communication Design MA course, you’ll go on a progressive learning journey via three study blocks: Deconstruction, Reconstruction, and Reinvention. This format allows you to unpack your existing skills and interests, and learn to answer complex communications problems by considering global issues and experimental approaches. You’ll then explore new insights and build towards your final MA project.

Process

Drawing on global, experiential and experimental insights, you’ll examine different components of the design process, and how they can support and enhance your practice.

Intersections

You’ll explore sustainability, ethics, human interaction, and how design for social change can inspire new thinking.

Boundaries

Drawing on critical design theory and catalysts, this Communication Design module allows for a more radical approach to creative practice - exploring the relationship between interdisciplinary research and making at the edges of contemporary design.

Curate and build

You’ll explore the increasing complexity of data in contemporary design problems - part of our evolving and accelerating consumer, technological and cultural landscape - and learn how meaning can be curated and revealed.

Compete

You'll engage in competitive projects set by external bodies and build professional skills relevant to your individual design development, such as publishing, presentations, funding, production and intellectual property.

MA project

This module allows you to realise your final major project in a largely self-directed semester, bringing together practice, theory and an evaluation phase at a key industry or cultural event.

The modules above are those being studied by our students, or proposed new ones. Programme structures and modules can change as part of our curriculum enhancement and review processes. If a certain module is important to you, please discuss it with the course leader.

From module information to course aims and assessment criteria, discover the full course details

How you'll learn

Based in the vibrant studio culture of our multi-million pound School of Communication, you’ll take on project work and competition briefs, and attend lectures and seminars from award-winning studios and professionals.

Falmouth's network of alumni, and our reputation, connects us to many of the country's leading consultancies and agencies, providing insights and reflections on various cultures and models of practice. We run study visits to studios in London and potentially abroad, which may be arranged around conferences and design festivals like the Breda Graphic Design Festival in the Netherlands.

Provocation is a continuous theme and a unique aspect to the course's design. Our annually selected provocateurs contribute through seminar sessions, critiques, lectures and project work. These include leading figures from design and the broader arts fields, and international and award-winning studios who set up debate around the similarities and differences in global practice. They also include interdisciplinary practitioners, such as writers, musicians, architects, artists and scientists, who explore process, collaboration and the origin of ideas.

Assessment methods

  • Individual project briefs
  • Competition briefs (eg. D&AD New Blood, RSA Student Design Awards, YCN Awards) 
  • Design research journal
  • Essay
  • Individual and group presentations
  • Critical review or business plan

Staff

You’ll be guided and supported by tutors and industry professionals with decades of experience teaching and working for leading studios, international clients, and arts and cultural organisations.

Kate Christman staff image

Kate Christman

Senior Lecturer

Kate is a Senior Lecturer in Graphic Design within the School of Communication at Falmouth Universit...

Kate Christman
Picture of Robyn Cook's artwork

Dr Robyn Cook

MA Communication Design: Senior Lecturer & Course Leader

My research is focused on (inter alia) critical pedagogy, epistemology, & ethics in design &...

Dr Robyn Cook

Bryan Clark

Head of Graphic Design

Bryan leads the subject of Graphic Design at Falmouth and is responsible for the undergraduate degre...

Bryan Clark
Andy Neal staff picture

Andy Neal

Senior Lecturer

Andy's career began as a musician; composing and performing material with Detritus, and recording th...

Andy Neal
Ashley Rodolph staff image

Ashley Rudolph

Senior Lecturer, Graphic Design

Ashley is a Senior Lecturer in Graphic Design within the School of Communication at Falmouth Univers...

Ashley Rudolph

Facilities

  • Dedicated MA studio space.
  • Negotiated use of other facilities such as 3D printing, prototyping, film, photographic, textiles and product design studios.
  • Digital printing facilities, Risograph machine, woodblock printing and presses, workshop, and negotiated access to screen-printing studios.
  • Lecture theatres, design lab, break out spaces and meeting rooms.
  • Apple suite, with Adobe CS and full collection of Monotype typefaces.
  • Extensive library facilities and digital collections.
MA Communication Design bottom image

Careers

Communication design is a broad field of study, and your career choices will depend on your own personal project focus. These can include graphic design, branding, service design, publication design, exhibition design, UX design, design for social impact, criticism and writing, teaching, research and PhD study. You can also enter related fields like television, advertising, and the heritage and cultural sectors. 

How to apply

Get in touch

To find out more about this course, how you'll learn and what funding is available, get in touch with our Course Advisors. Click below to submit a form and we'll get back to you as soon as we can. 

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Ready to apply for postgraduate study? You can apply online by clicking the button below.

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About applying to this course

Once you’ve applied, you’ll receive a Falmouth Applicant Portal login, where you’ll find details about next steps. These usually include attending an interview either in-person at the school, online via Skype or by phone. You'll be asked to present an outline of your key interest or Master's proposal and/or a portfolio of work.

We welcome applications from those with revelant equivalent Level 6 qualifications. Our typical applicants hold an undergraduate degree of 2:2 or above, or equivalent experience and an demonstrable interest in the subject.

We'll also welcome your application if you have formal or 'certified' learning (such as training courses not run by universities or colleges) and learning from work experience or self-study. This is called Accreditation of Prior Learning (APEL), and should have been gained within the last five years, and be equivalent to the learning outcomes of our minimum entry qualifications.

APEL applicants using experience to apply should note there is a £200 application fee for entry with advanced standing or with exemption from specific modules or credit.

If English isn’t your first language, you'll need to demonstrate English language skills that are sufficiently developed for successful completion of your studies. We accept a range of recognised English language qualifications that are equivalent to the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic minimum score of 6.5 overall, with a minimum of 6.0 in Reading, Writing, Speaking and Listening.

International applicants who require a student visa to study in the UK must take a recognised language test that is approved and vouched for by the University. Our Applicant Services Team can help with any questions you may have about study visas or suitable language tests.

What we're looking for

We aim to recruit a global and interdisciplinary mix of students in every year group. Most will hold first degrees in traditional entry areas like graphic design, visual communication, illustration, and interaction design. Others may come with particular professional experience, or from broader areas of arts practice, media, performance, or sciences - where subject interest can be clearly identified.

Fees, costs & funding

Tuition fees

£8,500 per year - full-time UK (£250 acceptance fee payable. This is deducted from tuition fees.)

£16,950 - full-time EU/international (acceptance fee up to £1,000 payable, dependent on nationality. This is deducted from tuition fees)

£8,950 per year - full-time UK (£250 acceptance fee payable. This is deducted from tuition fees.)

£17,460 per year - full-time EU/international (acceptance fee up to £1,000 payable, dependent on nationality. This is deducted from tuition fees.)

Find out more about our Graduate Loyalty Discount for Falmouth Alumni, which offers a reduction in course tuition fees.

Typical course costs

  • £540 - Recurring annual costs
  • £400 - One-off costs for the course duration (compulsory trips, final portfolios or shows etc)
  • £750 - Optional study visits and placements for the course duration

If you need to bring equipment or materials with you, these will be outlined in your Welcome Letter.

The figures above don't include accommodation and living costs

Tuition fees are set annually and are subject to review each year. The University may therefore raise tuition fees in the second or subsequent years of a course, in line with inflation and/or the maximum permitted by law or Government policy. Students will be notified of any changes as soon as possible.

Postgraduate funding

There are loans, awards and alternative funding sources for postgraduate studies. Read about them on our Postgraduate Funding page.

Find out about funding

Ask a student

What better way to find out about life at Falmouth University than by asking our current students?

From course details, our facilities and the local area to the social scene and settling in, our students are ready and available to answer any questions you might have. Simply set up your account, send them a question and they'll get back to you within 24 hours.

 

Request information

Do you have questions about the course or studying at Falmouth? Fill in our simple online form and we'll get in touch to support your application journey.

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