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MA in Design (with Specialist Pathways)

Status: Expressions of Interest/Applications open for 2023


Level

9

Duration

1 Year Full-Time

Department

Art & Design, Design


Start Date

02/10/2023

Course Type

Postgraduate Taught courses

Location

Clare Street

This exciting MA in Design is aimed at candidates from creative backgrounds and related fields of study who have a desire to enhance their knowledge and understanding of design capability to positively impact the planet, its societies, and our shared economies. This programme will enable the learner to apply design methods, to explore complexity, to identify business and social enterprise opportunities and to address key needs of the future . Working individually and collaboratively in a hybrid studio format, students will build their core skills and competencies in design, creativity, visualisation, prototyping, mapping, critical thinking and participatory design to develop intellectual rigour and creative research methodologies which respond to contemporary design challenges and opportunities. Through the MA, Students are facilitated to select from a range of specialist pathways to build a mastery in their chosen field of design. This programme empowers students to understand how design can make a real difference to the future of the planet,  how to be transformative professionals through their careers, how to enact social change and how to design better ways of living.  Join us on that journey!

What are the entry requirements?

Any primary degree with a minimum award of Second Class Honours Grade 2. Recognition of prior experiential learning (RPL) from applicants will also be considered for places based on relevant professional and life experience. Equivalent qualifications including the pre-NFQ NCEA National Diploma and applicants holding equal qualifications on the European and International frameworks will also be considered. International students must exhibit a proficiency in the English language.

International Applicants

Non-EU applicants should apply directly to the International Office at LIT allowing plenty of time for completing the visa process. Applications for October 2023 course commencement should be made by Monday September 4th at the latest.
Contact: International@tus.ie   

Who can I contact?

What modules will I study?

  • Modules List

    Title: Core 1: Collaborative Project

    Credits: 10

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    Collaborative Project module offers students the opportunity to develop collaborative interdisciplinary skills by forming an acute awareness, understanding, and ability to reflect upon collaboration as a conscious iterative process. This module not only provides opportunities for students to develop a systematic collaborative process with their peers in response to a problem-based brief, but also gives students a platform to critically reflect on collaboration and develop a group outcome in response to a chosen brief. 


    Title: Core 2: Design Research Methods

    Credits: 10

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    The Design Research Methods module provides students with the opportunity to engage in methodological debates around the place of design within research contexts. The module critically evaluates a range of research methods and approaches to assess their appropriateness to design research applications. The module provides students with generic research literacies in academic and professional design research. In addition to addressing issues to do with design’s epistemology, this module also deals with issues around validity, quality and the protocols and processes of conducting research in an ethical manner.


    Title: Core 3: Circuits of Dissemination

    Credits: 10

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    The Circuits of Dissemination module teaches students how to professionally compose, impart and exchange information. It provides students with the tools to explore circuits for the promotion and distribution of work and practice. It is designed to instil confidence in student discourse, which in turn, professionalises their work and reaches appropriate audiences. It provides students with skills which can bring their work to the attention of relevant publics and present their work professionally across different media. The module equips students with knowledge of, and skills in, the abundance of ways in which one can communicate accurately and effectively.


    Title: Core 4: Contemporary Design Issues

    Credits: 10

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    Contemporary Design Issues offers students the opportunity to analyse, examine and give discourse to a range of issues which not only face individual practitioners but also have a significant impact on the intersections where different disciplines encounter one another. The module provides a platform which allows the students to collectively further their knowledge by observing specific problem-areas from various perspectives and gain new insights into ways in which they can strategically exploit design in order to move towards solutions. This is a foundational part of the programme as it enables the students to consider and tackle present-day issues with creativity, integrity, purpose, and responsibility.


    Title: Elective 1: Applied Actualities

    Credits: 5

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    The Applied Actualities (Live Brief) module provides students with an opportunity to tackle a real-life design brief. It invites authentic and current design issues into the discussion by asking the students to respond to present-day calls for action. As well as encountering new areas of study it also facilitates an important opportunity for students to engage with models of collaborative practice. The Applied Actualities (Live Brief) elective allows for students to elevate their design skills by responding to meaningful and contemporary design issues.


    Title: Elective 2: Applied Animation

    Credits: 5

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    The Applied Animation module allows for students to gain an understanding of cycles of animation production processes. Students are introduced to a variety of techniques which build upon their core skills and competencies. Throughout this elective, cohorts will also elevate their theoretical knowledge about the value of cinematography and scenography.


    Title: Elective 3: Applied Ceramics

    Credits: 5

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    The Applied Ceramics module provides a platform where students develop effective strategies for Ceramic Design. It is a space where the learner demonstrates an understanding of this field and shows an ability of how to manage its properties and processes. Students' outcomes are informed and underpinned by appropriate and reflective research strategies for best/contemporary Ceramic Design practice.


    Title: Elective 4: Applied Fabrication

    Credits: 5

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    The Applied Fabrication module is a workshop-based programme that teaches individuals how to produce objects using digital tools. Applied Fabrication provides students with an understanding of how digital designs speak to software programs for tangible outcomes. This elective is premised on making. It plays a crucial role in highlighting the importance of developing and testing ideas and pulling design results into more advanced and impactful states.


    Title: Elective 5: Applied Fashion

    Credits: 5

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    This Applied Fashion (and Textiles) elective provides students with the opportunity to engage with various mediums of Fashion Design. Students are given freedom to explore Fashion as a metaphor for visual language. The nature of this option is underpinned by contextual, cultural, and theoretical research. Students are given a space where they can question contemporary design structures and rethink existing paradigms by taking advantage of their own experiential and new knowledge. The Applied Fashion (and Textiles) module facilitates a laboratory for experimentation that supports candidates in drawing inferences from traditional processes and innovative technologies for best design practice.


    Title: Elective 6: Applied Futures

    Credits: 5

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    The Applied Futures module explores potential future scenarios in the name of shaping a better world. It involves theoretically forecasting and making decisions on preferred outcomes that are shared between practitioners in the field. Futures thinking plays an imperative role because it looks forward. This elective supports students in developing the skills to collaboratively understand complex systems, long-term perspectives, and demonstrate an awareness of the potential impacts of the designs that they create.


    Title: Elective 7: Applied Graphics

    Credits: 5

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    The Applied Graphics module has been designed for students who wish to work with graphic design and data, and develop their visual skills in order to gain greater insights into systems and processes. The overall aim of this elective is to learn visual design skills and techniques to produce improved data projects and processes through analysis and problem-solving.


    Title: Elective 8: Applied Materials

    Credits: 5

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    This Applied Materials (Sustainability) module invites students to push the boundaries of material development processes, and follow innovative lines of enquiry. It is informed by a range of digital fabrication applications that are appropriate to contemporary design practice and underpinned by themes of sustainability and regeneration. The elective provides students with a space to take risks, collaborate, and prototype outcomes for best design futures.


    Title: Elective 9: Applied Strategies

    Credits: 5

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    The Applied Strategies (Service Design) module provides students with an introduction to theoretical knowledge and practical skills to support design thinking for the design of services. Service design is the process where people interact with the production or delivery of an experience. This can be a people-based experience or an equipment-based occurrence. This elective asks students to work on a project where they can address key tools for society and culture. Students can execute impactful findings that focus on advancement, betterment, and progression.


    Title: Elective 10: Applied UI/UX

    Credits: 5

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    The Applied UI/UX module allows students to demonstrate an understanding of the principles of User Interface and User Experience design. With the acceleration and development of today's digital devices, UI/UX Design plays a vital role in contemporary society. This elective provides a platform where students can predict who their targeted audience is and build appropriate models and wireframes for such users.


    Title: Masters Project

    Credits: 30

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    Throughout the programme students work towards their Masters Project. Depending on the nature of the research, the electives they choose, and the desires of the student, the outcome of the Major Project may be one of a number of diverse and contrasting possibilities. It might be a tangible artefact, a prototype, a socially responsible product, a digitally designed object, a cultural design policy, an interactive educational space, a design management framework, a service design, a re-purposed design, a theoretical study, a proposal for an industrial ecology scheme etc. Regardless of the nature of the students’ designs - and how these come to fruition – the students’ outcomes are meaningful, impactful, and transformative.


Are there opportunities for further study?

Upon successful completion of the Masters in Design (with Specialist Pathways) programme graduates will be able to go on to pursue further study at PhD level.

What are the career prospects?

Present-day, designers are empowered with crucial roles but the designer may not always be the prominent identity. This MA in Design programme provides the student with a platform to secure employment not only in design-intensive sectors, but also to pursue interdisciplinary engagements in establishments across a broad range of sectors. The MA in Design programme is of benefit to those interested in executive careers and cognate disciplines.

More Information

FAQs

Check out some of our top FAQs here.

What Will I Learn?

The MA in Design will broaden participants’ design knowledge and develop skills in interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary design. Partakers in the programme will be prepared to work confidently and competently within a variety of design contexts. Students will collaborate effectively and operate while responding to developments in the field of contemporary issues. Throughout the MA programme students will also have access to an extensive list of industry professionals, artistic practitioners, academic faculty, and creative advisors.

Locally & Globally Connected

The Limerick School of Art and Design and the Technological University of the Shannon: Midlands Midwest actively engage with companies across a variety of sectors and have industry connections in Ireland, Europe and Worldwide.

Future Careers

Graduates will be prepared to work independently or as a team partner at a strategic level across a broad range of sectors. Graduates will use their interdisciplinary design skills to work in a number of pathways including: individual entrepreneurial business, design studios, professional services, government and private organizations, cultural institutions, technology and services sectors.

Notes on Masters Project

Over the course of their studies, MA in Design students work towards their Masters Project. Depending on the nature of the research, the electives they choose, and the desires of the student, the outcome of the Major Project may be one of a number of diverse and contrasting possibilities. It might be a tangible artefact, a prototype, a socially responsible product, a digitally designed object, a cultural design policy, an interactive educational space, a design management framework, a service design, a re-purposed design, a theoretical study, a proposal for an industrial ecology scheme etc. Regardless of the nature of the students’ designs - and how these come to fruition – the students’ outcomes are meaningful, impactful, and transformative.