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Digital Service Design MSc

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Subject area: Computer Science
Mode of study

1-year full-time

PG code

I200PDIGSEDE

Start date

September

Location of study

Brunel University London campus

Digital Service Design MSc

Overview

Digital service design is the art of building customer experiences with a strong digital element. The Digital Service Design MSc is a new multi-disciplinary course which has been specifically created to help graduates develop exceptional user experience design for digital products and services.

The course features close integration with leading digital companies to help you develop a deep knowledge of both design theory and practice as well as to equip you for employment in the digital sector. As a result of enrolling on this course, you will have the opportunity to form a network of industry contacts which will be invaluable when you enter into the world of employment.

The course has been designed in collaboration with Wilson Fletcher, a leading digital design studio, to closely mirror current professional practices. In the course, you will have the opportunity to apply for an industry internship at the end of your third term. Additionally, some of our digital design partners may also offer dissertation opportunities.

You’ll work on a number of individual and group projects based on real-world briefs, which will help you develop the technical, interpersonal, creative and strategic skills needed to succeed in the digital service design industry.

You’ll be able to explore areas of design and rapid prototyping, innovation methodologies, interview and workshop facilitation, journey mapping, customer research methodologies, project management, how to develop and present actionable recommendations, and much more.

By the end of the course you’ll be able to:

  • Generate ideas and turn them into viable concepts and working prototypes
  • Work in multidisciplinary teams in a studio setting and take responsibility for your work
  • Problem-solve and design for both user and business needs
  • Understand the skills, tools and methodologies necessary to develop compelling strategies, products and services
  • Design and develop experiences, products and services of high quality with digital media at their core
  • Demonstrate a critical and practical understanding of the issues relevant to digital service design and their use in the context of modern industry and commercial environments
  • Have a thorough and clear understanding of the methodologies and professional skills necessary for effective digital service design in a business environment
  • Reflect – critically and in-depth – on relevant aspects of the state-of the art of both the practice and theory of digital service design

Selected students may have the opportunity for a company-sponsored dissertation project.

Graduates will be equipped to work in leading digital design agencies and consultancies as well as innovative blue-chip companies that have design departments. Fields you might go into after this course include app development, copywriting and content design, digital design, digital product design, digital project management, front-end development, information architecture, interaction design, product management, research, service design, strategy, user experience design, UX architecture.

Brunel’s Women in Engineering and Computing mentoring scheme provides our female students with invaluable help and support from their industry mentors.

Enquiries

Contact our Enquiries team.
Course Enquiries: +44 (0)1895 265599 (before you submit an application)
Admissions Office: +44 (0)1895 265265 (after you submit an application)


Course content

Brunel’s MSc course in Digital Service Design prepares you for roles in the fast-growing digital industry by providing a course led by industry experts and practitioners. 

Compulsory modules

Digital Design Methodologies

An introduction to digital service design. You will learn methodologies and approaches currently used as best practice. You will learn how to select and apply the most appropriate method for any given project or challenge.

Example topics include:

  • market and user research methodologies
  • journey mapping
  • design thinking
  • storytelling
  • designing omni-channel experiences
  • portfolio building

Digital Innovation

Gain the knowledge and skills necessary to implement digital business models and technologies that help organisations to capitalise on business opportunities.

Example topics include:

  • understanding and justifying change
  • change management
  • digital business models
  • managing technology risks
  • ethical issues in change

Systems Project Management

Develop a critical awareness of the central issues and challenges in information systems project management.

Example topics include:

  • traditional project management techniques and approaches
  • the relationship between projects and business strategy
  • the role and assumptions underpinning traditional approaches
  • the ways in which the state-of-the-art can be improved

Digital Service Applications

Build upon the methods and skills learned in the Digital Design Methodologies module studied in term one, with the added context of a variety of projects based on real-world briefs.

Example topics include:

  • prototyping
  • understanding product life cycles and building effective roadmaps
  • product design
  • how to move design into production
  • behavioural design

Research Methods

Support to help you develop the skills needed to design a scholarly piece of research work that addresses an identified problem area within a chosen field of study. This module will introduce methods of data collection and analysis when conducting empirical research, in both private and public sector environments. Example topics include:

  • questionnaire and interview design
  • qualitative and quantitative analysis

This module is essential preparation for the dissertation

Data Visualisation

Learn how to visually present insight drawn from large data sets to communicate your findings. You will gain an understanding of human visual perception, data visualisation methods and techniques, dashboard and infographic design and augmented reality. An emphasis is also placed on visual storytelling and narrative development.

Example topics include:

  • understanding human visual perception
  • data visualisation methods and techniques
  • dashboard and infographic design
  • augmented reality
  • visual storytelling and narrative development

Dissertation

Your dissertation is an opportunity to showcase your enthusiasm and skills to future employers. It also serves as valuable experience especially if you choose to undertake an industry-based dissertation project.

You will be encouraged to critically examine the academic and industrial contexts of your research, identify problems and think originally when proposing potential solutions.

As preparation for the dissertation, you will be given a grounding in both quantitative and qualitative methods of data collection and analysis to enable you to conduct empirical and/or experimental research.

Some of our digital design partners may offer dissertation opportunities.

Read more about the structure of postgraduate degrees at Brunel and what you will learn on the course.

Entry criteria 2019/20

  • A 2:2 (or above) UK Honours degree or equivalent internationally recognised qualification in Arts, Design, Social Sciences, Computer Science, or Humanities.
  • Applicants with other qualifications and industrial experience (relevant to the subject area) may be considered and will be assessed on an individual basis. Industrial certifications may be taken into account.

Entry criteria are subject to review and change each academic year.


International and EU entry requirements

If your country or institution is not listed or if you are not sure whether your institution is eligible, please contact Admissions

This information is for guidance only by Brunel University London and by meeting the academic requirements does not guarantee entry for our courses as applications are assessed on case-by-case basis.

English language requirements

  • IELTS: 6.5 (min 6 in all areas)
  • Pearson: 58 (51 in all subscores)
  • BrunELT: 65% (min 60% in all areas)

You can find out more about the qualifications we accept on our English Language Requirements page.

If you require a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK, you must prove knowledge of the English language so that we can issue you a Certificate of Acceptance for Study (CAS). To do this, you will need an IELTS for UKVI or Trinity SELT test pass gained from a test centre approved by UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) and on the Secure English Language Testing (SELT) list. This must have been taken and passed within two years from the date the CAS is made.

Should you wish to take a pre-sessional English course to improve your English prior to starting your degree course, you must sit the test at an approved SELT provider for the same reason.

We offer our own BrunELT English Test and have pre-sessional English language courses for students who do not meet requirements or who wish to improve their English. You can find out more information on English courses and test options at the Brunel Language Centre.

Teaching and learning

You will be taught by our lecturers and practising researchers through a mixture of lectures, seminars, lab sessions, guest lectures from industry experts, talks and studio workshops. This is theory-based teaching based upon up-to-date research in an exciting area.

You will always have a personal academic tutor who will provide both academic and pastoral support. They’ll provide one-to-one supervision for your dissertation project.

Academics and guest lecturers on the course come from a wide variety of backgrounds and have experience working on high profile projects at companies like Wilson Fletcher, M&S, The Telegraph, W12, Virgin Media, BBH, IDEO, Friday, SapientNitro, RBS, and Hugo & Cat.

Research seminars and external site visits are also a feature of this course.

Should you need any non-academic support during your time at Brunel, the Student Support and Welfare Team are here to help.

Assessment and feedback

You’ll be assessed through a combination of coursework, examination and dissertation. You’ll also be expected to produce a portfolio of evidence for the Digital Design Methodologies module. Examinations are held in May.

Read our guide on how to avoid plagiarism in your assessments at Brunel.

Fees and funding

Fees for 2019/20 entry

UK/EU students: £10,140 full-time

International students: £18,720 full-time

Some courses incur additional course related costs. You can also check our on-campus accommodation costs for more information on living expenses.

Read about funding opportunities available to postgraduate students

UK/EU students can opt to pay in six equal monthly instalments: the first instalment is payable on enrolment and the remaining five by Direct Debit or credit/debit card.

Overseas students can opt to pay in two instalments: 60% on enrolment, and 40% in January for students who commence their course in September (or the remaining 40% in March for selected courses that start in January).