MA Graphic Design

Discover yourself as a designer. Challenge your capabilities and hone your unique perspective.


Join an exciting space for learning, networking and debating graphic design practices. Develop your design thinking and creative processes to an advanced level.

Examine the building blocks of effective and award winning studio work and design culture; from design contexts to new and emerging models and insights that will support your personal development and creative ambition.

Our reputation within graphic design sees our graduates working in some of the world’s leading, and award-winning studios and agencies.

It’s these professional organisations and award-winning practitioners who have helped inform the course, alongside many years of experience growing new thinking and teaching in the field.

You will:

  • Have the opportunity to access a huge breadth of cross cultural and international thinking and contribute to the future of graphic design practice around the world
  • Examine your personal practice in relationship to the ever-evolving nature of the subject globally and culturally
  • Acquire and develop the skills needed to develop your graphic design career or business venture.

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Course Details

Level: 7
Duration: MA 2 years; PGDip 15 months
Mode of study: Online, part-time
Total MA fee: £12,150
3 start dates per year: January, May and September
Next welcome week: 18 September 2023
Next start date: 25 September 2023
Application deadline: 11 September 2023

Why this course?

This MA is built to help you take your next career leap; developing a practice that is robust, adaptive and forms a new step in your professional journey and life.

Whether you’re looking to refine a point of difference for your work or examine business approaches to inform opportunities for your studio practice, our course will equip you with the industry insights and elevated design thinking needed to reach your professional aspirations.


MA: You will need to complete four 30-credit modules and one 60-credit project (180 credits in total). All modules on the course are compulsory and must be passed in order to complete the award.  PGDip:  You will need to complete four 30-credit modules (120 credits in total). All modules on the course are compulsory and must be passed in order to complete the award. A dissertation (major project) is not required. Please note the module orders are subject to change.
Module 1 - Contemporary Practice (30 credits)

In this module, you are introduced to the development of graphic design today and the variety of contexts in which it is made and understood.

As with the central ethos of the course, you seek to examine local and global perspectives of the subject and the emergent skills required to address problems and deliver messages for both regional and global audiences. 

Fundamentally, it is concerned with design and designing and the academic and research skills to enable effective and fully engaged participation in the course. It seeks to establish the fundamental essence of being a graphic designer today and the ability to use curiosity, risk, play and care in the delivery of a message. 

Module 2 - History and Futures (30 credits)

In this module, you’re introduced to how graphic design interprets narrative, to distil, reform or remodel stories for a new purpose. 

You will apply a more in-depth critical and contextual understanding to your practice. You will connect theory and practice (praxis), and examine key themes and issues facing the subject and those who collaborate within it today.

This module also begins to question the role that design and the designer have to play in society and the creative community and networks it is part of. 

Module 3 - Studio and Entrepreneurship (30 credits)

Having already studied emergent fields of practice within the first module, you now examine some of the building blocks of studio practice from a business perspective. 

You learn how to manage the day to day aspects of a studio’s life, but also reflect on innovative ways of working at distance and collaborating with other partners around the world. 

You reflect on the subject through specific design studio case studies, structure and strategies for project work and intellectual property guidance required to develop a creative service or product today. 

You will develop an actual artefact or entrepreneurial idea that will be personally or culturally inspired, but rooted firmly in a graphic design field. 

Module 4 - Application and Interactions (30 credits)

In this module, you apply your own practice and knowledge to specific graphic design projects. The briefs allow a scoping of interests but also to question the role and ethics of working as a designer today; how ideas can be applied and how respective audiences can be understood and reached. 

Throughout this module, you will engage with skills development pertinent to your areas of interest. 

The module also examines the relationship between personal and highly strategic briefs. This is achieved by examining self-initiated projects, competitions and industry-set briefs; the latter being collated from annual opportunities from design studios or client set opportunities.

These client set briefs (as with the design studio) will be drawn from global organisations that enable you to respond to challenges beyond your normal experience and share learning and differing international perspectives. 

Module 5 - Final Major Project (MA only) (60 credits)

Your final MA project is built on learning from previous modules and allows you to position yourself and your work for next steps following graduation.

Project work therefore can develop from a number of perspectives; being research or theory led (for further research study at PhD level) or personally or professionally orientated (for independent or studio practice).       

How you will learn

Benefits of learning online with us

Falmouth Flexible
With Falmouth Flexible, you access your course content, interactions with other students and tutors, and learning resources, through Canvas, an easy-to-use online platform. You can access the course wherever you are in the world, and you can stop, pause and rewind lectures whenever you wan
Learning approaches
Each module will utilise a variety of learning approaches, for example: -Online presentations to introduce key concepts -Lectures -Challenges -Briefs -Case studies -Regular webinar discussions -Keeping a reflective journal on your ongoing development -Personal and group reflection --Own project/business launch (MA project).
Student support
As one of our students, you’ll have access to a range of services designed to support your studies and make your time with us as enjoyable as possible. Falmouth’s comprehensive online library of books, journals, and resources A Student Advisor team to answer non-academic queries Online software tutorials via LinkedIn Learning The Students' Union community Career advice, CV creation, practice interviews, and more via our careers platform
All assessments are taken and submitted online. Assessment methods for the masters degree in Graphic Design can typically include: Practical assignments, for example designing a digital tool or process to aid collaboration Written assignments, for example writing a business plan for your own business Work-based assignments that are grounded in your existing practice, where you apply tools such as storytelling or market research.

How students study with us

No visas or moving costs
• Access course from anywhere in the world
• Spend approx. 20-25 hours studying each week
• All course materials are available on demand
• Revise on the days and times that suit you best
• Course modules broken down into weekly
• Fit studies around work, family and social life
• Support with non-academic queries from a
student adviser team

Additional Support

As one of our students, you’ll have access to a range of services designed to support your studies and make your time with us as enjoyable as possible. -Our comprehensive online library of books, journals, and resources -A Student Advisor team to answer non-academic queries -Online software tutorials via LinkedIn Learning -The Students’ Union community -Career advice, CV creation, practice interviews, and more via our careers platform

Career prospects and opportunities

In addition to the guidance offered by our tutors, you can also access our RealWORKS, our careers and employability service throughout your studies, and for up to 5 years following graduation.

Our expert team will help you identify potential opportunities in the UK or internationally, prepare for job interviews, advise you on starting up your own business, and more.

MA Graphic Design careers

Our MA in Graphic Design will allow you to explore a wide range of creative disciplines to acquire the professional skills that will fuel your graphic design career and/or business venture.

Following graduation, you’ll hold the expertise needed to set up your own practice, start freelancing, or work within an agency. Your learning will be supported through challenging set project briefs and exciting workshops; you’ll even get to take on self-initiated projects that explore an array of disciplines, including:

  • Graphic design
  • Typography
  • Publishing
  • Editorial design
  • Design for social good
  • Service design
  • Digital design
  • Motion graphics
  • New media
  • Entrepreneurialism

How to apply

Benefits of learning online with us

An honours degree at 2:2 level or equivalent in areas such as Graphic Design, Visual Communication, Illustration, Photography, Fashion, Textiles, Animation, Film or Fine Art.

We also accept applicants with no undergraduate degree but a clear demonstration of subject related skills and knowledge whether self-taught or gained through industry experience.

Digital portfolio: Submit a digital portfolio of your graphic design practice. This may include previous project work and your current work-in-progress. It can take the form of a link to your blog or website and/or be presented as an interactive PDF. This will help the admissions team assess your suitability for MA study online

If your first language is not English, you’ll need to take one of the following tests to verify your proficiency:

  • IELTS – minimum overall score of IELTS 6.5 with at least 6.0 in Reading, Writing, Speaking and Listening
  • TOEFL iBT (online test) – minimum of 88 overall and at least 21 in all 4 components
  • LanguageCert (online test) – a High Pass from the ESOL B2 Communicator test in reading, writing, speaking and listening (2 parts)

We accept a number of additional English language qualifications as well.

Candidates without a degree or formal qualification are also encouraged to apply. If you have prior learning or experience with this subject, you may even be able to apply for Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL).

If you’re unsure whether you’re eligible to apply, please get in touch with our course adviser team for advice.


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Share your details in order to receive information about this high quality online masters course.

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