Study options

Master's Programme in Visual Communication Design

The Master’s Programme in Visual Communication Design (VCD) is an international learning community committed to investigating new modes of action within visual communication. As a critical response to the contemporary conditions, the studies enable you to reconsider the established notions of graphic design. The programme supports you in rethinking and redefining your own design practice, in order to situate it in wider societal and environmental frameworks. By providing the competence areas of information design, visual narratives, and type & written language, the curriculum encourages you to turn your design practice towards the public and the sustainable, and towards multiple and diverse knowledge domains. The VCD programme provides you time and space to redefine your individual design approach, with continuous backup from community, collaboration, and peer learning. The studies support you in this with a combination of theory and practice.
Visual Communication Design


Master of Arts (Art and Design)

Application period:

1.12.2020 – 4.1.2021

Language of instruction:



2 years, full-time


Relevant Bachelor's degree

Field of study:

Art and Design


120 ECTS

Organising school:

School of Arts, Design and Architecture

Tuition fees:

For non-EU/EEA citizens, €15000/y (Master’s studies)

The application period will open 1.12.2020 09:00 (UTC+2)

Scholarships and Tuition Fees

Learning Outcomes

As learning outcomes from the programme, you will be able to:

  • Create and manage design projects with a renewed sensibility to both tangible and digital materiality, and experiment with data and computational elements in design projects where needed
  • Solve complex issues of different media, aesthetic, context, expression, and convention, when communicating in modes like data, narratives, and/or written language
  • Articulate and critically evaluate the traditions, references, and motivations behind your design choices and processes
  • Consider issues of representation, diversity, and sustainability in visual communication
  • Distinguish your professional role from your consumer role in digital and online environments
  • Recognize good policies and your rights as a creative professional, and consider your responsibilities of care towards yourself, your colleagues, the public, and the environment
  • Consider and imagine alternative modes of design practice and work
  • Keep discussing, evaluating, and redefining the societal role and the shifting parameters of the contemporary Visual Communication Design profession

Language of instruction

In Master’s Programme in Visual Communication Design the language of instruction is English.

    Career opportunities

    As a graduate of the VCD programme you will have the skills and knowledge to work as a design professional in visual communication design, either by developing your own practice, or with an established design agency or organisation. You will be also be prepared to work as an art director, design lead, or in another managerial role. 

    Postgraduate study options

    A finished degree with a successful master’s thesis enables you to apply for doctoral studies in art and design, with the possibility of an academic career in the emerging field of practice as research.

    Content of the studies

    Engaging with diverse literature, writing, and discussion encourages you to evaluate the role of visual communication in the society and the environment, and the discursive and material properties that converge in your design practice. Critical perspectives shed light on urgent political issues, such as representation, diversity, and social and environmental justice. Intensive courses introduce you to necessary tools and skills to accomplish contemporary design projects, whether you are into data, visual storytelling, or typographic expression.

    In the form of extensive studio courses, the programme particularly supports three competence areas crucial for a visual communication designer: information design, visual narratives, and type & written language. Specified in your personal study plan, selections within these competence areas enable you to either deepen or broaden your skills and knowledge. Special attention is also given to the notion of publishing, which plays a central role in pursuing a self-organised practice, and in keeping communication design close to the public.

    The core of your studies consists of the overarching practice seminars, where you stop to think and share your learning with others. In the first-year Design Practice Seminar, you reflect on your own design practice and build a framework of references by assembling your individual Designer’s Archive. In the second-year Research Practice Seminar, you work on the development of your own research project that leads to your master’s thesis. The studies enable you to update your skills and knowledge whether you aim for a professional design practice in an applied or self-organized context, or to continue to doctoral studies.

    For more information about studies see study guide 2020-2022.


    The Master’s thesis is a significant part of your studies and the second year of the two-year degree is mainly dedicated to thesis work. You will develop your thesis with the help and guidance of the MA Thesis Seminar, the supervising professor, and your thesis advisor(s). The thesis can either be a design project based on practice, or alternatively apply further research methods and theory, but it always includes a written part with references to literature. Your thesis project will be an opportunity to both strengthen and demonstrate your design skills and/or theoretical knowledge in a specialised area, and to position yourpractice within a specific domain or framework.


    You will take part in an international and diverse learning community with students and staff from all over the world. The programme regularly invites international guests to give lectures or courses, or to conduct workshops. As a part of your individual study plan, you will have the possibility to spend a semester abroad as an exchange student in one of the university’s numerous partner universities, or to include an internship abroad.

    Programme-specific Admission Procedure and Evaluation Criteria

    Will be updated during autumn 2020.

    Applying to master’s programmes

    The application period will open 1.12.2020 09:00 (UTC+2)

    • Published:
    • Updated:
    URL copied!