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MA Creative Media Arts: Data and Innovation

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  • Delivery:
    Full time according to Funding Council definitions

The MA Creative Media Arts: Data and Innovation is designed to respond directly to your needs as someone with the ambition to build a career in one of the growth sectors in the UK: the creative and cultural industries. The course delivers a unique combination of media art and design methodologies alongside basic management and business analytics, to help you build a successful career or venture within this dynamic sector. The curriculum has been developed in response to important research findings, demonstrating that growth in the wider economy is being driven by a creative sector founded on a fusion between digital technologies, creative practice and the wider arts and humanities. It's what we call the “fusion hypothesis”. Drawing extensively on this concept we have developed a programme that brings the cultures of art, technology and enterprise into new and generative combinations. 

With its emphasis on focused innovation and rapid prototyping the course is unusual in combining a critical media arts perspective with a deep understanding and engagement with the business-led dynamics of the creative industries.

The course is delivered in the context of Bournemouth University’s world renowned Faculty of Media & Communication, known for its contacts at the heart of the media industry. The programme has been developed and lead by leading practitioners from media art contributing business-led research and development insights from the design sector aimed at developing advanced enterprise and creative projects. The image at the top of this page was taken at the Museo Jumex in Mexico City and features work entitled Squidsoup by Liam Birtles, one of the senior lecturers on this course, just one example of the international reach our team has in this field.

Studying this Master’s degree is an ideal next step for applicants from both creative media and the arts and humanities, including areas such as graphic design, visual communications, fine art, performance, audio and sound, and theatre and media production, as well as those from interdisciplinary non-creative backgrounds, such as computer science, geography and engineering, who can demonstrate interest through a creative portfolio or other work experience.

You may have an undergraduate qualification in a related subject or may be able to show your suitability for this programme of study through associated work-experience or evidence of and outputs from other related activities.

Key information

Next start date:

September 2018, September 2019


Bournemouth University, Talbot Campus


1 year full-time

Entry requirements:

A Bachelors Honours degree with 2:2 in any subject, or equivalent. For more information check out our full entry requirements.

International entry requirements:

If English is not your first language you'll need IELTS 6.5 (Academic) or above. For more information check out our full entry requirements.

Course details

On this course you will usually be taught by a range of staff with relevant expertise and knowledge appropriate to the content of the unit. This will include senior academic staff, qualified professional practitioners, demonstrators, technicians and research students. You will also benefit from regular guest lectures from industry.

You will work across a varied range of contemporary media fields during this course.

Core units

  • Collaborative Media and Innovation Labs: Drawing together practice-led creative workshops and collaborative media and innovation labs, you will develop and interrogate the technical and creative skills needed to produce professional prototypes and proposals for creative markets and the wider cultural context.
  • Media Theory and Creative Media Arts; a History: The unit will provide you with an understanding of the origins, boundaries and influence of the Creative Media Arts drawing on a range of theoretical perspectives to highlight key concerns of practitioners, theorists, art directors, editors and curators.
  • Advanced Creative Media and Data Lab: This unit is designed to integrate the two distinctive approaches to innovation that lie at the heart of the MA. This process is based on establishing a dialectical relationship between the domains of ‘critical media arts’ and the discourse around the creative and cultural industries based on the fusion model.
  • Research in Practice: You will be provided with grounding in the concept and methods of practice-led research that will support you in developing an understanding of and skills needed to rigorously design, conduct, report and evaluate such research.

Option units (choose one)*

  • Master's by Project: This unit aims to enable you to synthesise the critical, conceptual, technical and professional skills and understandings required for the production and contextual evaluation of significant and innovative industry-standard projects, exhibitions, events or professional artefact/s.
  • Master's by Academic Paper: You will undertake a bespoke Research Project, which has at its focus a peer-reviewed output, either as an individual or collaborative endeavour. This output should take the form of a paper, or book chapter, of publishable standard and designed for publication your choice.

*Please note that option units require minimum numbers in order to run and may only be available on a semester by semester basis. They may also change from year to year.

Programme specification

Programme specifications provide definitive records of the University's taught degrees in line with Quality Assurance Agency requirements. Every taught course leading to a BU Award has a programme specification which describes its aims, structure, content and learning outcomes, plus the teaching, learning and assessment methods used.

Download the programme specification for MA Creative Media Arts: Data and Innovation.

Whilst every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of the programme specification, the information is liable to change to take advantage of exciting new approaches to teaching and learning as well as developments in industry. If you have been unable to locate the programme specification for the course you are interested in, it will be available as soon as the latest version is ready. Alternatively please contact us for assistance.

Full entry requirements

The normal requirements for embarking upon this course are:

  • A Bachelors Honours degree with 2:2 in any subject, or equivalent 

If you lack the formal academic qualifications needed to enter a postgraduate or post-experience degree, there are several alternative routes to follow - some based on experience. Contact the Future Students Enquiry Team for more information.

International entry requiremtents

If English is not your first language, you will need to provide evidence that you can understand English to a satisfactory level. English language requirements for this course are normally:

  • IELTS (academic) 6.5 overall, or equivalent, with a minimum of 6.5 in writing and 6.0 in all other components.

View further information about our English language requirements.

A number of pre-sessional English and preparatory programmes are offered through our partner institution, Bournemouth University International College, and will get you ready for study at BU at the appropriate level.

You can also find further details of the international qualifications we accept, and what level of study they apply to, on our international entry requirements page.


The knowledge and skills you will gain from this degree are advanced at this level and are in high demand from a variety of creative and cultural industries. These include digital arts, digital media design, digital product development, digital media and print, advanced web and mobile media, exhibition design, sonic and audio arts, and independent film production.

Further study

If you want to continue your studies after achieving your Master's, you can look into our range of doctoral programmes.

No hidden extras

Production Costs

The cost of making media arts projects on the course can vary according to what the student wishes to do. For some, the costs can be very little while others may wish to spend more: how much you spend doesn't affect the assessment of your work and some good productions are often produced for very little money. The focus and attention on the course is developing your learning, and your projects are the vehicles for that to flourish. It is preferable to have a good laptop, but of course the university provides all the kit and facilities you will need to undertake your work.

As a student at BU we will provide many things to support you and there will also be additional costs you may encounter whilst studying at BU. The information below will help you understand our provision and what you need to budget for.

What you can expect from us

All of your teaching and assessments are included in your tuition fees, including, lectures/guest lectures and tutorials, seminars, laboratory sessions and specialist teaching facilities. You will also have access to a wide range of support and services, many of these are included on the Next Steps insert enclosed with your offer letter.

  • One set of study-related consumables such as a memory stick/ DVD
  • Materials for laboratory and field-based teaching activity
  • Support for placements (UK or abroad) and fieldwork, and non-financial support whilst on placement
  • A range of student services – advisors, help desks, counsellors, placement support and careers service
  • The Library – access to a wide range of electronic resources (databases, e-journals and e-books), print and multimedia collections, subject librarians and study spaces
  • IT labs (some open 24/7), wireless network, AV equipment to borrow
  • Peer Assisted Learning (PAL) scheme
  • Disability and additional learning support
  • The BU Language Centre to help you develop/improve foreign or English language skills
  • 24 hours a day, 365 days a year security team.

Costs of living and other expenses you need to consider

  • Accommodation and living costs: view our price guide.
  • Text books: remember that our award-winning library is stocked with a large range of text books for all courses, as well as online resources such as industry journals, free of charge
  • General stationery and other supplies such as print and presentation materials: the Students’ Union shops stock a wide range of stationery supplies on both campuses
  • Travel to, from and between BU campuses: our bus service operates in the local areas offering a subsidised travel rate; we also have a large number of secure bike storage compounds
  • SportBU membership: check out our student membership packages, sports events, varsity teams, information about our new facilities and more on the SportBU webpages
  • Optional fieldwork travel, outdoor wear and footwear (where applicable)
  • Telephone and travel costs incurred when undertaking interviews for coursework/securing placements.
  • A fee will be payable towards the cost of an Educational Psychology Assessment if this is required in connection with additional learning support. BU pays for approximately two-thirds of the cost of this assessment for UK students. For more details and current pricing please visit the Students section of the website.

Repeat units

If you need to repeat one or more units during the course of your studies (with or without attendace), you may be required to pay additional fees equivalent to one ninth of the tuition fee per 20 credit unit.

Financial help available from BU

We offer a range of scholarships and bursaries to students who are beginning their studies at BU. Our website also provides details on living costs, budgeting and paying your tuition fees.

Additional information

Simon Phelps

Career development

Read about career and development opportunities and discover how gaining industry experience could help you.

Purbeck House common room

International students

We have a strong international student community. Find all the practical advice and information you need here.