Goldsmiths & UCA Epsom: Open Days

Today I went up to London for the Goldsmiths Open Day (specifically MA Design – Critical Practice). It was actually very strange, after studying at a art specialized university for four years, to go to a normal all-round university. I started off in a massive hall where stalls were set up for each course. I basically joined the group of people waiting to be lead to a separate lecture/seminar room about the course. As the presentations got under way, I began to realize that though the course looked right on paper, it really wasn’t what I had expected. It was very similar to the AUCB postgraduate program in terms of overlapping disciplines. And once again it didn’t strike me as the type of course which would be a natural continuation for the path I’m on now and the type of work I do. So unfortunately Goldsmiths is off the list.

MA in Design – Critical Practice

This MA transcends the traditional fields within design, offering you the opportunity to develop your specific practice in relation to multiple design disciplines. The programme emphasises the development of a critical practice through a two-fold consideration of context – examining theoretical or speculative issues alongside those involving practical or material concerns. By engaging with the way discourses infuse design practice, and exploring how practice itself may contribute to evolving design discourse, you will develop knowledge and understanding through active enquiry and reflective process.

What you study

Three strands of study will introduce you to a range of theories and discourses inherent to design practice. You will review and explore the methods and processes used to research and produce design-related ideas, work on briefs that are linked to your theoretical studies, and eventually focus on a major project through which you will develop your design interests and concerns.

The next Open Day I planned to attend is at UCA Epsom. But, based on a number of factors I decided to cancel. All the trips up to London are not cheap for one thing. But, more importantly I have already been to the UCA Epsom campus and know what it’s like so I don’t think a physical trip there is really necessary. I’ve been thinking over my MA options and I’ve come to the decision that if I do an MA, I want to do it in a place I REALLY want to go to rather then a back-up. The experience has to be worth it. I’ve become quite determined to pursue further study at MA level thanks to all the Open Day visits and considering my various options for next year. My back-up plan, in case I don’t get in, is basically my original plan I had started out with this year – go to London anyway, try get a junior design job or at least an internship/work placement to start out with, as well as part-time work to help fund things. So it’s down to just LCC and Central Saint Martins now.

MA Graphic Design & Communication (Professional)

This course has been designed to mirror the experience of working in a contemporary design company or the related creative industries. Working in teams you gain real-life experience by developing briefs, pitching to industry leaders and competing for UCA Epsom MA Design Team and MA Designer of the Year awards.

The industry orientation of this course is concerned with exploring graphic design languages in all their facets through the perspective of your growing understanding of the commercial value in your work. By building professional experience and understanding, you apply innovation to your practice.

Stage 1
In small teams, you work on three briefs, one printbased, one screen-based and one brand-based. This is complemented by contemporary theoretical discourse delivered as lectures and ideas workshops.

Stage 2
This phase of study builds on personal/professional orientation for continued research. You also answer two briefs within your chosen and evolving specialist area.

Stage 3
The final project represents the culmination of your studies and forms a body of work in individual research and practice within a defined field of graphic design and communication. You have the option to resolve your project as practice-based work or through a dissertation or a combination of both.

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