Postgraduate study

Design & Digital Media

Awards: MSc

Study modes: Full-time, Part-time

Funding available

Programme website: Design & Digital Media

This is a unique programme of study that addresses the growing need for professional education in digital technology applied to design, including its social, cultural and philosophical implications.

Based in a lively studio environment, the programme develops wide skills in digital techniques and a critical framework to appraise the application of these technologies to design.

The programme addresses the needs of practitioners, managers, decision-makers and educators who want to be informed by first-hand knowledge of the technical possibilities of digital technology and an awareness of social, cultural and business contexts.

Our programme is design and technology led and there are significant demands on our students to create innovative work across a range of creative contexts including visual design, user interface and experience, interactive media, mobile web applications, animation, gaming and virtual environments.

Teaching is through a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical sessions and studios. Projects encourage original thinking and independent achievement within a framework of team-working and creative ability.

Find out more about compulsory and optional courses

We link to the latest information available. Please note that this may be for a previous academic year and should be considered indicative.

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
MScDesign and Digital Media1 YearFull-timeProgramme structure 2017/18
MScDesign and Digital Media2 YearsPart-timeProgramme structure 2017/18

Students will:

  • acquire a broadly based foundation in design technologies
  • develop their ability to work cooperatively in groups in the context of design
  • develop understanding of the potential for new technologies and their new creative uses
  • enable the use of existing digital design techniques in a creative way
  • develop skills in entrepreneurial thinking and business planning
  • find an analytical and critical framework to develop fresh thinking in design

The prospects for employment are diverse. Recent graduates are now working in multimedia and web design for architectural and urban design practices, computer system design and management, and tertiary-level teaching. The programme is also ideal if you are considering continuing on to advanced research at a doctoral level.

Normally a UK 2:1 honours degree or its international equivalent. The subject discipline is not as important as aptitude and commitment to study in this area.

We may also consider your application if you have equivalent professional experience; please contact us to check before you apply.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

For 2018/19 entry, all applicants must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of their English language ability:

  • an undergraduate or masters degree, that was taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country as defined by UK Visas and Immigration

  • IELTS: total 6.5 (at least 6.0 in each module)
  • TOEFL-iBT: total 92 (at least 20 in each module)
  • PTE(A): total 61 (at least 56 in each of the "Communicative Skills" sections)
  • CAE and CPE: total 176 (at least 169 in each module)
  • Trinity ISE: ISE II with distinctions in all four components

For 2019/20 entry, all applicants must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of their English language ability:

  • an undergraduate or masters degree, that was taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country as defined by UK Visas and Immigration.

  • IELTS: total 7.0 (at least 6.0 in each module)
  • TOEFL-iBT: total 100 (at least 20 in each module)
  • PTE(A): total 67 (at least 56 in each of the "Communicative Skills" sections)
  • CAE and CPE: total 185 (at least 169 in each module)
  • Trinity ISE: ISE III with a pass in all four components

Degrees taught and assessed in English must be no more than two and a half years old at the beginning of your degree programme. Language tests must be no more than two years old at the beginning of your degree programme.

Find out more about our language requirements:

  • Edinburgh College of Art Postgraduate Admissions
  • College of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences Postgraduate Office, The University of Edinburgh
  • David Hume Tower, George Square
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9JX

We encourage you to apply at least one month prior to entry so that we have enough time to process your application. If you are also applying for funding or will require a visa then we strongly recommend you apply as early as possible. We may consider late applications if we have places available, but you should contact the relevant Admissions Office for advice first.

(Revised 10 November 2017 to provide more accurate information.)

There are two panel dates for this programme; December 15 and March 30.

Offers will be made to eligible applicants following these dates. Applications will still be accepted after the end of March, however we do advise that you apply as soon as possible.

Applicants who do not meet the entry requirements will be informed on an ongoing basis.

You must submit a reference with your application.

Admission to this programme is highly competitive. Offers are rarely made to applicants who are not able to support their application with examples of high-quality creative activity.

Evidence of prior practical design and/or coding experience, either as part of your undergraduate degree or for personal and professional projects, is one of the criteria that we use when considering applications. You are encouraged to provide a small number of examples of creative work to demonstrate your aptitude and commitment to working in this area, especially if your previous study is not primarily design or coding focused.

You should provide links to online examples of your creative work in your personal statement, or you can upload an additional portfolio PDF containing images and some brief discussion of the work. In both cases, make it clear which parts of the work you are responsible for if another person or group of people was involved and outline the processes and design thinking involved in producing the work. You may be asked to provide additional supporting material or participate in an interview via Skype.

Find out more about the general application process for postgraduate programmes:

Further information

  • Edinburgh College of Art Postgraduate Admissions
  • College of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences Postgraduate Office, The University of Edinburgh
  • David Hume Tower, George Square
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9JX