MA Advertising, Branding and Communication

Course summary

Overview

Today, good things don't come to those who wait. But to those who move.

As a student in the MA Advertising, Branding and Communication course at the University of West London, you will become a strategic thinker and communicator to create cutting edge advertising, brand and design campaigns. We build your understanding of brand communication, professional graphic design, advertising strategy and creativity to help prepare you for your future career.

Why choose this course?

Communication is at the centre of the way we live our lives. Today's communication systems and tools are complex, sophisticated and extremely powerful. However, the usefulness of these systems and tools depends on those who know how best to use them creatively and strategically.

As consumers become more knowledgeable and knowing, we must create the right kind of conversation. Advertising, Branding and Communication is lightning fast - responding to consumer needs, aspirations, and trends, in highly innovative relational and meaningful ways.

This course has a vocational focus, giving you the professional experience required to kick-start your career after graduation.

Career and study progression

Upon graduation, you can work as a brand designer, account handler, graphic communication designer or idea strategist, making your creative mark in the demanding worlds of branding or advertising. You will bring your knowledge of contemporary innovation and brand strategy to a range of industry projects.

You may also wish to undertake postgraduate study to specialise in a subject you’ve already studied, or to explore something new.

For more details please see the Career and study progression section.

working on the laptop during workshop

Course detail

This course delivers in-depth, real time real-world real-value education. You will:

  • work industry hours, at industry pace and on industry projects and internships
  • learn to research, apply and present design innovation, brand narrative with mentored design partnerships/teams on industry set briefs
  • have the opportunity to collaborate across other post graduate courses delivered in the London School of Film Media and Design and the London School of Music
  • gain specialist skills and knowledge in your course
  • gain insight and professional practice from working alongside students
  • explore a range of evolutionary and revolutionary processes
  • build a professional understanding of today's competitive global environments related to design, advertising processes and the management of communication
  • develop your own project driven by your new knowledge.

Key study topics are divided into five categories:

1.    Creative:

  • thinking creatively
  • idea and concept creation
  • visual language
  • information hierarchies and design
  • content creation and management.

2.    Practice:

  • creating campaigns
  • account handling
  • project proposals
  • presentations and pitching
  • value chain, value proposition and the five performance objectives
  • internship
  • consultancy major project or dissertation
  • advertising
  • branding
  • innovation
  • communication agency business modelling
  • start-up culture
  • relational real-time communication
  • branding strategies - architecture, values, essence, extensions.

3.    Theoretical background:

  • aesthetics and design
  • communication
  • epistemology
  • taxonomies
  • teleologies
  • innovation
  • differentiation.

4.    Research methods and approaches:

  • qualitative
  • quantitative
  • data analytics
  • ethnography
  • cultural probes.

5.    Management:

  • collaborative working
  • intellectual property and copyright
  • profit and loss – funding and applications strategy
  • project management.

Graph showing modules

Modules:

  • Research for the Creative Industries
  • Communication Management
  • Communication Application
  • Innovation
  • Professionalisation
  • Internship or Industry Mentored Brief
  • Master's Project or Dissertation.

Entry requirements

We expect you to have:

  • An undergraduate degree earned at 2:2 or above.

International students need to meet our English language requirement at either IELTS at 6.5 or above, and a minimum of 5.5 for each of the 4 individual components (Reading, Writing, Speaking and Listening).

In some countries where teaching is in English, we may accept local qualifications. Please visit http://www.uwl.ac.uk/international/your-country to check for local equivalencies.

We offer pre-sessional English language courses if you do not meet these requirements. Find out more about our English Language courses

Fees

Fees for home and EU students

Main fee
£6,950

Fees for overseas students

Main fee
£10,995
Find out if you are a home or overseas student.

Funding

A range of loans, bursaries and scholarships are available to help you fund your studies.

Students on some Masters courses may be eligible to apply for a Postgraduate Loan of up to £10,000 as a contribution towards their course and living costs. Find out how to apply for a Postgraduate Loan on GOV.UK

Other loans available to postgraduate students include Professional and Career Development Loans, which also allow you to borrow up to £10,000.  Find out more about Loans on GOV.UK

Additional funding is available to some types of students, such as disabled students. Find out more about funding opportunities

Within the university, we offer a range of scholarships and bursaries including:

  • The William Brake Bursary: a £1,000 award for candidates on undergraduate or postgraduate degree courses
  • The Mollie Clay Scholarship: a £2,500 scholarship awarded to an outstanding student
  • Exclusive alumni discounts: a £2,000 discount on taught postgraduate courses or a 10% discount on research courses, exclusive to students who graduated from the University of West London.

Other scholarships are also available, including awards for specific subjects. Find out more and check your eligibility for the scholarships and bursaries listed above.


Please note that fees given are per academic year unless otherwise stated, and may be subject to change. Costs can increase each year.

How to apply

If you have any queries, you can email the Course Leader, Catarina Lelis, at catarina.lelis@uwl.ac.uk, with a short summary of interests in or experience of design, innovation, branding or creative management.

To apply now, click the 'Apply for this course' button below.

Apply for this course

UK and EU students

Click the red 'Apply now' button above for details about the application process for this course.

An online application form is available for many of our courses so you can apply for your place directly. Your application will be dealt with by our Admissions team who will be in touch with you.

The process is different if you are applying for a research degree, apprenticeship or a range of specialist courses. Clicking 'Apply now' will take you to the details relevant to you.

Find out more about how to apply for:

International students

Complete our application form for international students. We have an online application form for international students or you can download the print version (Word, 186kb).

You can also review the relevant information about the qualifications we accept from your country and our English language requirements, as well as details about your visa application.

More about the application process for international students.

During the course

Notable aspects

A blended-learning environment is at the centre of this inspiring and critically reflective community.

Teaching methods

Postgraduate taught courses are taught through a range of:
- lectures
- seminars
- industry visits
- group tutorials.

Emphasis is put upon supporting your independent exploration, reflection and application of ideas.

Full-time students have scheduled teaching and/or activities for up to two or three days a week and have access to workshops and studios for the rest of the week as agreed with their subject specialist tutor.

What our students say

Sukey Parnell, Research Degree student

'The ongoing patience, support, enthusiasm and care from the team at UWL has been invaluable. A research degree is not achieved alone but is dependent on a team sensitive to each individual candidate's needs and vision – that's the environment you can expect here.'

Laura Bakalka, MA Advertising, Branding and Communication

'I am approaching my third month into the course, and I am still as enthusiastic today, as I first was when I joined the MA programme. Unlike many universities, UWL warmly welcomes newcomers, providing endless engaging events, trips, support, not to mention the mind-blowing workshops! It amazes me that professional instructors, with high credentials are the ultimate example of the word modest!'

Jobs and placements

The Professionalisation module is an immersive module that covers the key professional creative and technical skills that anchor industry. 

Through seminars and practical workshops you will:

  • explore the working life of a professional
  • gain a better understanding of industry narratives
  • understand historical approaches used within the  field of advertising, branding and communications.

The Internship or Industry Mentored Brief is an important module and an integral element of the MA Advertising, Branding and Communication. This is a module designed to develop the experience of advertising, branding and communication through experience in industry or doing a professional live mentored brief, with one of our mentors.

The University of West London has its own 'W5 Productions' which will support appropriately-skilled students find relevant work placements or an industry mentored brief in the creative industries.

Career and study progression

The MA Advertising, Branding and Communication course is designed to give you industry relevant knowledge and specialist training in accordance with course learning outcomes. As a graduate of the course you would potentially be qualified to enter the industry in a number of roles related to your specific course, as follows:

  • Brand and design managers
  • Marketers
  • Client account handlers
  • Project managers
  • Creative directors
  • Senior designers
  • Design team leaders
  • Art directors
  • Advertising managers
  • Account planners
  • Strategic thinkers
  • Communication consultants
  • Content creators and managers
  • Client account executives.

There is no shortage of employers in the UK willing to engage with students in the fields of Communication, Advertising and Branding. The course will therefore introduce innovative mentored 'live' projects which will enable employers to set briefs, and you will have the opportunity to feed back your findings to the companies. The course will also get you to problem solve and pitch in competition through postgraduate student design teams.

Study progression

From an MA course you can progress to study for a PhD or an MBA.

Expert UWL staff is able to supervise a wide range of relevant topics. Previous and current areas of doctoral studies include:

  • Design
  • Creative Management
  • Film
  • Advertising
  • Literary Adaptation
  • Photography.