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Design Informatics - MFA/MA
Design Informatics brings together scientific data processing with creative concept development. Our Design Informatics programmes are advanced, full-time courses for professionals and recent graduates. They are extremely hands-on, progressive and designed with industry at their heart.
As a student, you’ll learn to unlock the power of big data, harness massive connectivity, analytic power and industrial-strength simulation to design products and services that will transform lives. You’ll learn to work as part of a team, you’ll be challenged to think differently and you’ll work to overcome 'real world' challenges.
There are four programmes available, which have been tailored specifically to two types of graduate.
At ECA, we run the two programmes for people from a design background. They focus on design, products, media, fashion and architecture. They are:
- MA Design Informatics (one year, full-time)
- MFA Design Informatics (two years, full-time)
Our collaborators in the School of Informatics at the University of Edinburgh run the two programmes for people from a computing background. They focus on informatics, vision and robotics, speech and language technology, sensor networks and machine learning. They are:
- MSc Design Informatics (one year, full-time)
- MSc Advanced Design Informatics (two years, full-time)
Each programme comprises a series of courses which bring together students from both backgrounds: design and programming. You will collaborate across both streams to develop digital, physical and networked artefacts that challenge what we know about interaction design. You will study a combination of core courses, electives that you will be able to follow on your own, a personally defined dissertation and a final project. In this way, you’ll develop the skills to apply your learning to a whole range of real-life problems.
If you choose to study one of our advanced programmes (MFA Design Informatics or MSc Advanced Design Informatics), you’ll also participate in a placement with a leading creative or digital organisation over the middle summer before extending your research focus in the second year with additional courses and a longer, more in-depth dissertation.
These programmes are all about participation and getting involved. As a student, you’ll take part in regular talks, workshops and debates with a whole range of high profile speakers. You’ll enjoy film screenings and game jams and attend regular ‘creative picnics’ with industry partners, along with conferences, exhibitions and festivals where you’ll be expected, not only to attend, but to exhibit.
Top five reasons to choose the programme
- Data is changing the way we live, work and play. Join one of our Design Informatics programmes and you'll become one of a new wave of graduates.
- The experience you’ll gain with us will develop your confidence and leadership skills, your ability to work collaboratively, problem solve and embrace and induce change in this dynamic field.
- Whether you are from a design or computing background, you will collaborate with innovators across all four Design Informatics programmes.
- You will participate in regular creative events that push the boundaries of established ways of working.
- You will have the chance to showcase your ideas and solutions to 'real world' problems at conferences, exhibitions and festivals.
Including journals, image databases, and local collections.
A fully operational, entirely student-run 90-seat theatre housed in a neo-gothic church.
Get information, advice and guidance about your career options.
The Centre for Research Collections (CRC) is the main space for anyone using the University of Edinburgh’s historic collections.
CSE caters to a diverse range of users from occasional exercisers to international athletes.
Work spaces are available across the University. ECA's computers include software tailored to the disciplines studied here.
At the heart of the Evolution House Learning and Research Zone, the ECA Library provides an innovative environment for learning, teaching and research resources in art and design.
ECAfé provides a full catering service to all staff, students and visitors to Edinburgh College of Art.
EUSA represent the student voice. They provide services, run events, and facilitate student societies.
Information and guidance on financial matters for all students of the University of Edinburgh.
A Georgian garden that doubles as a venue for performances in the centre of the city.
The International Office's mission is to encourage internationalisation, enhance the student experience, create and develop partnerships.
The primary collection of books, periodicals, manuscripts, and research material.
By day, a café, bar and study space, and by night a club venue. Potterrow’s dome is also home to the Advice Place and the Potter Shop.
Includes a screen-printing room, relief room, lithography room, process room, intaglio room, and caseroom.
The neo-classical Sculpture Court in the ECA Main Building is home to the many pieces from the Edinburgh Cast Collection, and is regularly used for student exhibitions.
Offering counselling services for students, workshops, consultation and training for staff.
Supporting students with dyslexia, mental health issues and students on the autistic spectrum, as well as those who have physical and sensory impairments.
Talbot Rice Gallery is the public art Gallery for the University of Edinburgh.
Home to six distinctive bars, Teviot is the oldest purpose built students' union in the world.
A hub for the University Societies and setting regular live music, comedy, spoken word and poetry nights.
A bar at the Lauriston Campus which hosts regular events including club nights and gigs.
Scholarships & bursaries
Scholarships available for one academic year of postgraduate study at Edinburgh College of Art. (£5,000 to £15,000)
30 masters scholarships for postgraduate study in any subject area. (£3,000-5,000)
Six GREAT scholarships of £5,000 are available for students from India for postgraduate Masters study for the 2016-2017 academic session.
For students or recent graduates of a Scottish university pursuing an overseas project. (£1500)
For new full-time postgraduate masters students. (£2,500)
For students doing undergraduate honours projects, masters projects or PhD projects. (£2,500)
20 awards of £10k are available to full-time one year taught Masters and Masters by Research programme applicants across the University that meet the specified eligibility criteria.
News & events
Design Informatics Research Seminars are open to all and invite a variety of practitioners to share their story from
Lichtsuchende - a society of biologically-inspired, robotic creatures - is on display at ZKM, Oct '15 - Feb '16.