Skip navigation

Enter your details to receive an email with a link to a downloadable PDF of this course and to receive the latest news and information from Northumbria University

* By submitting your information you are consenting to your data being processed by Northumbria University (as Data Controller) and Campus Management Corp. (acting as Data Processor). To see the University's privacy policy please click here

CLOSE

This full-time taught research course gives you the opportunity to carry out in-depth original research into design practice while developing the skills to become an independent, critical thinker and effective design researcher.

The taught modules provide a framework of transferable skills that apply to all researchers as well as those relevant to your chosen pathway subject of Arts, Design, English Literature, History, Social Science, or Media.

You will gain an understanding of research methods while developing expert professional skills in communication, self-management, and project planning. You will devise and deliver a significant research-based project in the form of a dissertation or practical arts based project, to demonstrate your interests and ability to think independently.

Whether you go on to further PhD study, or work as a researcher for a range of public services and professions, this course gives you the research and professional skills for a successful career. 

This full-time taught research course gives you the opportunity to carry out in-depth original research into design practice while developing the skills to become an independent, critical thinker and effective design researcher.

The taught modules provide a framework of transferable skills that apply to all researchers as well as those relevant to your chosen pathway subject of Arts, Design, English Literature, History, Social Science, or Media.

You will gain an understanding of research methods while developing expert professional skills in communication, self-management, and project planning. You will devise and deliver a significant research-based project in the form of a dissertation or practical arts based project, to demonstrate your interests and ability to think independently.

Whether you go on to further PhD study, or work as a researcher for a range of public services and professions, this course gives you the research and professional skills for a successful career. 

Course Information

Level of Study
Postgraduate

Mode of Study
1 year full-time
1 other options available

Department
Northumbria School of Design

Location
Design Building, City Campus East

City
Newcastle

Start
September 2019

Book an Open Day / Experience Design

Visit an Open Day to really get an inside view of what it's like to study Design at Northumbria. Speak to staff and students from the course and discover your funding options.

You’ll learn through a combination of discipline-specific and core framework modules that develop your research skills.

You’ll undertake a dissertation or project of 20,000 words (or 10,000 word dissertation in support of a practical project for Arts practice researchers). This can be either a specialist, in-depth study based upon a substantial body of subject-relevant sources or a you can take a broader ranging approach crossing over a number of disciplines.

You will also take two discipline-specific modules that examine the key themes, traditions, and debates in your chosen discipline.

You’ll be assessed by a mixture of traditional and innovative practices, including dissertation (or equivalent project), oral and written presentations, critical reviews, and portfolios of work.

The academic team will help you develop the skills required to plan, manage and review your learning.

Book an Open Day / Experience Design

Visit an Open Day to really get an inside view of what it's like to study Design at Northumbria. Speak to staff and students from the course and discover your funding options.

Mark Bailey is Director of Innovation Design and leads the University’s partnership with Unilever. He spent 10 years in the Aerospace industry working on advanced passenger and business jet concepts.

After graduating from Northumbria’s School of Design, Bruce Montgomery became a designer for fashion brands including Katherine Hamnett, Moschino and Jeff Banks.

Matthew Lievesley has helped develop improved care-pathways for people with Type II Diabetes in collaboration with Newcastle University Medical School.

Dr Irini Pitsaki specialises in Design Management and Strategic Brand Management with more than 15 years of experience as a researcher and lecturer in higher education.

Dr Mersha Aftab’s current work looks at Role of Design at strategic level in multinational industries. Her passion for teaching led to a full time lectureship teaching Innovation.

Dr Stuart English is a specialist in design led innovation, and the creator of Ideas-lab. He leads a portfolio of postgraduate programmes.

Elizabeth MacLarty has a degree in Fine Art from Leeds University and her research interests include the relationship of theory to practice, particularly in Design Education teaching practice.

Teaching Staff / Profiles

Book an Open Day / Experience Design

Visit an Open Day to really get an inside view of what it's like to study Design at Northumbria. Speak to staff and students from the course and discover your funding options.

Northumbria's School of Design was named one of Europe’s top design schools by US Business Week magazine and has an international reputation for innovation and creativity.

It has been fitted out with state-of-the-art facilities and the latest in design technology including:

  • Dedicated exhibition gallery and outdoor show spaces
  • Modern presentation rooms with the latest screening facilities
  • Digital photography studio
  • CAD suites
  • Traditional letterpress and screen printing
  • The latest in computer numerically controlled machinery
  • Extensive 3D prototyping workshops
  • Industry standard textile, printing, knit and garment
  • Construction facilities
  • Sound studios and recording booths
  • Interaction and animation studios
  • Mobile laptop facilities
  • Postgraduate, research and consultancy suites

Alongside teaching staff with experience as designers, technicians, craftsmen and journalists, you’ll also learn from visiting designers and design professionals.

Facilties / Northumbria School of Design

Book an Open Day / Experience Design

Visit an Open Day to really get an inside view of what it's like to study Design at Northumbria. Speak to staff and students from the course and discover your funding options.

Northumbria is in the UK top 10 for research power in Arts and Design. The School of Design hosts three research groups:

Design Issues

This research group addresses complex social and cultural issues from a design perspective. We work on themes such as social care issues with the Carers Centre Newcastle and Alzheimer’s Scotland; socio-economic challenges with Newcastle YMCA and Traidcraft and mental health issues.

Design Innovation and Research Methods

This group focuses on innovating and creating value across society by applying design-led innovation better research methods to support the work of designers in context. Work involves the industrial and commercial sector, such as design's role in corporate innovation and creativity in product manufacturing and service organisations.

Design Making

This research group focuses on materials and the cultural and technology benefits of making in society. Researchers work in product, industrial, interaction, service, textile, craft, fashion and interior design disciplines.

Research / Communities of Practice

Our Communities of Practice are led by professors and academic experts and include innovators in residence along with MA and PhD students engaged in research, innovation and enterprise projects with external partners.

Book an Open Day / Experience Design

Visit an Open Day to really get an inside view of what it's like to study Design at Northumbria. Speak to staff and students from the course and discover your funding options.

This course will give you skills for life-long learning, including critical skills and attitudes, presentation skills, and the ability to reflect and evaluate. These are all attractive traits and in demand from employers.

You’ll be able to demonstrate critical awareness of research and scholarship in your chosen design discipline and show that you are self-motivated, disciplined and possess a thirst for independent learning.

Throughout the course, you’ll build on your undergraduate skills, adding intensity, complexity and depth of study as you also develop communication, time management and highly developed research and inquiry skills.

Your studies have a real world focus and you’ll have the opportunity to work with external partners and industries to develop your experience and network of contacts. We seek to nurture home-grown talent to support and grow the economic, social, cultural and intellectual capital of the region and beyond.

Book an Open Day / Experience Design

Visit an Open Day to really get an inside view of what it's like to study Design at Northumbria. Speak to staff and students from the course and discover your funding options.

Northumbria boasts an illustrious design alumni list including Sir Jonathan Ive, principal designer of the iPad, iPhone and iMac. Rob Law MBE, Founder of Trunki, Nicola Morgan, Designer, Lanvin, Paris, and Tim Brown, Chief Executive, IDEO.

As a graduate you’ll be able to demonstrate critical thinking and judgement and will leave equipped with excellent practical, communication, and transferable skills.

You will become an expert on your chosen research topic and well placed to use this as a platform to excel in your career and contribute to the community and the wider world in which you live.  

There are considerable opportunities for you to advance your studies further, with advice in writing PhD and funding applications available to support students.

On graduating, you will have a qualification which may enhance your promotion prospects in the fields of teaching, professional research, museums and archives, public policy, and project management. 

Book an Open Day / Experience Design

Visit an Open Day to really get an inside view of what it's like to study Design at Northumbria. Speak to staff and students from the course and discover your funding options.

Entry Requirements 2019/20

Standard Entry

Applicants should normally have:

A minimum of a 2:1 honours degree in a design discipline, or an equivalent professional qualification or substantial experience working within an area of design.

Applicants with 2:1 honours degree in a related subject may be considered, and applicants who do not meet the entry requirements may also be considered depending on the strength of their application and experience.

International qualifications:
 
If you have studied a non UK qualification, you can see how your qualifications compare to the standard entry criteria, by selecting the country that you received the qualification in, from our country pages. Visit www.northumbria.ac.uk/yourcountry
 
English Language requirements:
 
International applicants are required to have a minimum overall IELTS (Academic) score of 6.5 with 6.0 in each component (or approved equivalent*).
 
*The university accepts a large number of UK and International Qualifications in place of IELTS.  You can find details of acceptable tests and the required grades you will need in our English Language section. Visit www.northumbria.ac.uk/englishqualifications

Fees and Funding 2019/20 Entry

Full UK Fee: £6,990

Full EU Fee: £6,990

Full International Fee: £15,000

ADDITIONAL COSTS

There are no Additional Costs

FUNDING INFORMATION

Click here for UK and EU Masters funding and scholarships information.

Click here for International Masters funding and scholarships information.

Click here for UK/EU Masters tuition fee information.

Click here for International Masters tuition fee information.

Click here for additional costs which may be involved while studying.

Click here for information on fee liability.

 

 

If you'd like to receive news and information from us in the future about the course or finance then please complete the below form

* By submitting your information you are consenting to your data being processed by Northumbria University (as Data Controller) and Campus Management Corp. (acting as Data Processor). To see the University's privacy policy please click here

Modules Overview

Modules

Module information is indicative and is reviewed annually therefore may be subject to change. Applicants will be informed if there are any changes.

DE7001 -

Design Thinking (Core, 30 Credits)

You will learn concepts and principles of design thinking delivered in three knowledge portfolios; creative thinking, research principles and contemporary influences on design, these fields of knowledge are supported and informed by academic staff research specialisms.
Creative thinking methods will enable you to frame problems from multiple perspectives and synthesise new opportunities and possibilities from interrelated factors. You will develop a practical knowledge of advanced design research methods. Through contemporary influences you will learn to situate design in the contemporary world and identify the impact of external factors on your own design practice.
The underpinning knowledge and understanding will be applied in the context of a team project with industry or other collaborating organisation, which will help you learn effective ways of working in multi-cultural/multi-disciplinary teams. Recent industrial collaborations have included Procter and Gamble, The Centre for Process Innovation National Centre for Printable Electronics and the Academic Health Science Network.

Through this module you will learn about three fields of design knowledge described above, which you will interpret relative to your own practice and in line with your PDP. You will apply this knowledge in co-creative practice and will reflect on your experience to summarise the utility and limitations of methods employed.
You will appreciate the transferability of design thinking and will be able apply your knowledge in different contexts and domains.

More information

EF0126 -

Academic Language Skills in FADSS Level 7 (Optional, 0 Credits)

The purpose of this module is to develop the participant’s ability in study skills and English language skills for academic purposes.

The module is designed to develop the participants as independent learners. The module is supported by a teaching and learning plan which outlines the formal sessions, together with the tutor-directed study and independent reading. An interactive approach to seminars will draw upon the directed learning undertaken and participants’ own experience of study skills. Directed learning will centre upon a range of activities including pre-reading, preparation for interactive activities and use of the discussion board on the e-learning platform.
Independent learning will focus upon the participants identifying those skills which they need to develop and understand through a range of learning activities that might include extended reading, and reflection. The sessions will attempt to follow the principles set out by the CEM model (Sloan and Porter, 2008)

More information

EL7028 -

MRes Dissertation (Core, 90 Credits)

In this module you will identify a research question and produce a 20,000 word dissertation which represents the culmination of your postgraduate studies on the MRes programme. It will enable you to apply the skills you have acquired in other modules and yield a discrete body of primary sources related to an identifiable area of enquiry. As an exercise in research it is intended to develop further your research skills and your ability to work independently. Dissertation topics will be supervised by an appropriate tutor, who will guide you through the various stages of formulating, researching and writing this substantial piece of work. You will operate at a higher level of independent learning and research than in the taught modules, albeit with the support of a supervisor who has specialist knowledge in your chosen area of interest.

More information

HI7011 -

Research Development (Core, 30 Credits)

In this module you will develop an aspect of your research project and present it in a professional manner to an audience of academics and students. You will work with classmates to organize, advertise, and present a one-day symposium of research papers that express your scholarly projects. The module aims to advance your professional skills and professional abilities by practice. You will learn how to effectively present a piece of research, develop event planning skills, gain practical project management experience, all of which are necessary to sustain this type of work.

More information

VA7029 -

Research Methods (Core, 30 Credits)

In this module you will be equipped with a range of core skills essential to research in the arts, as well as specific methodologies appropriate to your specialist field of enquiry (as historian, critic or theoretician). There are four key elements to the module: identifying the key issues and methodologies appropriate to your subject; identifying and retrieving appropriate data and sources; understanding ways to evaluate and employ these sources, and the implications of doing so; and developing and a practicable appreciation of how theory, research methods and practice mutually inform the creation of knowledge in the arts.
On completing the module you will have an enhanced awareness of how the choice of methodologies can fundamentally influence the direction of your research, and be able to: Understand and employ a range of advanced research skills, methods and critical approaches necessary to conduct a major academic research project in the arts; exhibit enhanced skills in the identification and evaluation of research sources relevant to your specific project and articulate a strategy for retrieving and utilising those sources; understand the characteristics of research questions, and frame your specific research questions within a feasible and sustainable topic of enquiry, appropriate to available research materials; develop original responses to the historical and conceptual questions posed by the research topic and to be able to situate your research within the larger context of research in the arts; communicate complex arguments and methods in written, visual and verbal form in a clear and credible way.

More information

Study Options

The following alternative study options are available for this course:

Any Questions?

Our admissions team will be happy to help. They can be contacted on 0191 406 0901.

Applicants Contact Details:

bc.applicantservices@northumbria.ac.uk

Current, Relevant and Inspiring

We continuously review and improve course content in consultation with our students and employers. To make sure we can inform you of any changes to your course register for updates on the course page.

Your Learning Experience find out about our distinctive approach at 
www.northumbria.ac.uk/exp

Terms and Conditions - northumbria.ac.uk/terms
Fees and Funding - northumbria.ac.uk/fees
Admissions Policy - northumbria.ac.uk/adpolicy

You might also be interested in...

Order your prospectus

If you're a UK/EU student and would like to know more about our courses, you can order a copy of our prospectus here.

Get a downloadable PDF of this course and updates from Northumbria School of Design

Enter your details to receive an email with a link to a downloadable PDF of this course and to receive the latest news and information from Northumbria University

* By submitting your information you are consenting to your data being processed by Northumbria University (as Data Controller) and Campus Management Corp. (acting as Data Processor). To see the University's privacy policy please click here

+

Northumbria Open Days

Open Days are a great way for you to get a feel of the University, the city of Newcastle upon Tyne and the course(s) you are interested in.

+
+

Virtual Tour

Get an insight into life at Northumbria at the click of a button! Come and explore our videos and 360 panoramas to immerse yourself in our campuses and get a feel for what it is like studying here using our interactive virtual tour.

Back to top