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University of the Arts London: Service Design

Institution University of the Arts London View institution profile
Department London College of Communication, University of the Arts London
Telephone 020 7514 6569
Study type Taught


The course is structured to guide you through your understanding and practice of service design, starting from current challenges at the local and user scale and progressing through to futures and systems levels. From the very beginning of the course, you’ll work collaboratively on projects using research and co-design strategies. The course evolves from a focus on team work in the first terms to more individual work towards the end of the course. MA Service Design is taught at London College of Communication, at Elephant and Castle, part of University of the Arts London (UAL).

What can you expect?

You will undertake projects that will tackle many of the social, corporate and environmental challenges facing the 21st century. Through working on course projects, you will gain the confidence to engage with stakeholders and learn how to analyse and apply the results of this engagement through meaningful interventions. Course projects can be as diverse as working on homelessness and the barriers to accessing services in a London borough, to improving the employee experience of a major retailer, through to proposing future scenarios of government and policy development. Students’ Major Projects have ranged widely in terms of subject and geographical location. Recent examples include redesigning educational systems in India, creating games to facilitate conversations between relatives of transgendered people, designing post-acceleration support programmes for start-ups in the tech sector, and designing digital services for refugee camp volunteers in Greece. MA Service Design is aimed at applicants from a design discipline who wish to broaden their understanding of innovation and design as a collaborative interdisciplinary process. The course is also open to students with backgrounds in social sciences, business and innovation and other related fields. The teaching staff are active researchers and practitioners in different areas of design and innovation, and engaged with cutting edge research projects within UAL, and this feeds directly into the curriculum and the projects you will work on. Practice and theory are both embedded into everything that you’ll do, so each practice-based project will have underpinning theory, and each theory-based assignment will have an element of practice or research-through-design.

About London College of Communication

London College of Communication is for the curious, the brave and the committed: those who want to transform themselves and the world around them. Through a diverse, world-leading community of teaching, research and partnerships with industry, we enable our students to succeed as future-facing creatives in the always-evolving design, media and screen industries. The London College of Communication experience is all about learning by doing. Our students get their hands dirty and develop their skills through the exploration of our facilities and technical spaces. Students work on live briefs and commissions, with everything from independent start-ups and charities in Southwark, through to major global companies, including Penguin, the National Trust and Royal Mail, to name a few.


University of the Arts London


About University of the Arts London
University of the Arts London has ranked second in the world in Art and Design for the fifth year in a row in the 2023 QS World University Rankings.

We have a track record for launching and furthering careers. Our graduates can be found in every part and at every level of the creative and cultural sectors, from heads of global businesses …

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