Cinematic and Videogame Architecture MArch

London, Stratford (UCL East)

This programme offers students a unique opportunity to design innovative projects at the convergence of architecture, film and videogames.

UK students International students
Study mode
UK tuition fees (2023/24)
£16,100
£8,050
Programme also available on a modular (flexible) basis.
Overseas tuition fees (2023/24)
£35,000
£17,500
Programme also available on a modular (flexible) basis.
Duration
1 calendar year
2 calendar years
Up To 5 Years
Programme starts
September 2023
Applications accepted
All applicants: 17 Oct 2022 – 30 Jun 2023

Applications open

Entry requirements

Typically a minimum of a second-class UK degree in an appropriate subject or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard or significant relevant industry experience (7+ years of employment). Applicants will be asked to provide a link to a portfolio of their design work once their completed application has been received, and should not send or upload work until it has been requested. Offers will be subject to an interview.

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.

The English language level for this programme is: Level 2

UCL Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English courses are for international students who are aiming to study for a postgraduate degree at UCL. The courses will develop your academic English and academic skills required to succeed at postgraduate level. International Preparation Courses

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

Equivalent qualifications

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.

International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below. Please note that the equivalency will correspond to the broad UK degree classification stated on this page (e.g. upper second-class). Where a specific overall percentage is required in the UK qualification, the international equivalency will be higher than that stated below. Please contact Graduate Admissions should you require further advice.

About this degree

Rapid advancements in digital technologies have brought the previously discrete fields of architecture, film and videogames closer than ever before. By employing innovative architectural design methods, students on the first programme of this kind in the UK will critically situate their work in relation to new developments in time-based digital technologies and the way these are shaping our culture, identity and politics.

Architecture has a long history of acting as an underlying structuring device for both film and videogames. From the construction of film sets to developments in film compositing techniques and innovations in computer graphics, the depiction of space has been a key challenge in arriving at our contemporary media landscape of film and videogames. In turn, the narrative and storytelling power of time-based and interactive media are reshaping not only how architecture is constructed and represented, but also how it is conceived and experienced.

The programme prepares students for the emerging futures of architectural design, developing skills also applicable to the film and game industries, and VR/AR environments.

Supported by a world-leading team of tutors and visiting industry figures, students will learn innovative design techniques using film, animation and game engine software, becoming architectural storytellers and worldbuilders who engage with the key issues facing our world. Students will develop their own creative practice through design projects and theoretical writing, culminating in the production of a final project that demonstrates their unique research methods through a film, game or interactive environment.

Hosted by the Bartlett School of Architecture the programme will draw upon the school’s established and internationally recognised expertise in teaching and its unique pedagogic and design research methods.

The programme is located at UCL East, UCL’s new campus at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in east London, the biggest expansion in the university’s history creating a new hub for teaching, learning and research to help find solutions to the biggest challenges facing people and the planet.  

Along with the BBC, Sadler's Wells, the V&A and UAL: London College of Fashion, UCL East is a founding partner of East Bank, a brand-new destination for London with world-class culture and education at its heart.

Who this course is for

We are looking for applications from graduates and professionals from architecture, but also from other backgrounds – including design, filmmaking, film studies, anthropology, geography, fine art, videogame design, graphic design, animation and computer-generated imagery design – who are interested in studying the relationship between architecture, cinema and videogames, and show evidence of a strong record both academically and/or in practice.

What this course will give you

The programme brings together internationally renowned experts in time-based and interactive technologies and equips students with specialist technical but also analytical and critical skills. Students are introduced to theoretical concepts through lectures and introductory design exercises, supported by digital skills modules. Using cutting-edge software and technologies students will build on these foundations to create unique future-facing research projects.

Students will be part of the internationally recognised research-led educational environment at the Bartlett Faculty of the Built Environment. As one of the oldest but most radical faculties of its kind, The Bartlett has built a reputation for education and research that draws students and academics from across the world.

The programme provides an excellent foundation for further doctorate research in related subjects, especially practice-led architectural design doctorates.

The programme will be located at Marshgate at the new UCL East campus, which features eight floors of hi-tech, cross-disciplinary research labs, teaching areas, fabrication workshops, collaboration spaces, a library, a refectory, prayer space and a UCL Institute of Making. The programme will provide access to advanced software and equipment, the use of a dedicated studio as well as access to specialist media spaces and the UCL East cinema.

The foundation of your career

Employability

Students will gain technical skills and develop research agendas for careers primarily in architecture, but also applicable in the film industry, videogame design, the design of VR/AR environments and Metaverse technologies. 

The Bartlett School of Architecture is recognised as one of the world's leading schools of architecture and graduates from our Master's programmes are highly sought after. Students will develop skills and research agendas for future careers primarily in architecture, but also applicable in the film industry, videogame design and emerging fields such as the design of VR/AR environments and Metaverse technologies. The Bartlett School of Architecture is recognised as one of the world's leading schools of architecture and graduates from our Master's programmes are highly sought after.

Teaching and learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of group seminars, master classes and workshops by experts, one-to-one and group tutorials with a design tutor, one-to-one and group tutorials with a dissertation tutor and the organization of an end of study festival.

For project work the programme uses a design studio pedagogical model where students will develop work of increasing levels of complexity and ambition, supported by individual and group tutorials, group seminars, and more formal presentations and screenings to tutors, peers, and invited internal and external guests from academia and industry.  

Assessment is through project portfolio presentation, screenings of films, playtesting of videogame applications, group and individual presentations, illustrated reflective documents, a short essay and a longer written dissertation.

Throughout the year, full-time students can typically expect between 8 and 15 contact hours per teaching week through lectures, workshops and tutorials. Students are expected to continue to work on their final thesis project throughout the summer, supported by regular tutorials with their tutors. Outside of lectures and tutorials, full-time students typically study the equivalent of a full-time job, using their remaining time for self-directed study and completing coursework assignments.

Modules

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

This is a one year, 180-credit Master's degree.

This programme has seven modules, all of which are compulsory.

Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded a MArch Cinematic and Videogame Architecture.

Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.

Compulsory modules

Introduction to Cinematic and Videogame Architecture

Advanced Cinematic and Videogame Architecture I

Advanced Cinematic and Videogame Architecture II

Critical Media Architecture

History, Theory and Practice of Cinematic and Videogame Architecture

Cinematic and Videogame Skills I

Cinematic and Videogame Skills II


Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change. Modules that are in use for the current academic year are linked for further information. Where no link is present, further information is not yet available.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded a in Cinematic and Videogame Architecture.

Fieldwork

Students have the opportunity to join an optional field trip, subsidised by the school.

Accessibility

Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble accessable.co.uk. Further information can also be obtained from the UCL Student Support & Wellbeing team.

Fees and funding

Fees for this course

UK students International students
Fee description Full-time Part-time
Tuition fees (2023/24) £16,100 £8,050
Tuition fees (2023/24) £35,000 £17,500

Programme also available on a modular (flexible) basis.

Additional costs

All students are required to pay a fee deposit of £2,000 for this programme.

Typically £1000 over the academic year, £500 on a field-trip (which is optional) and typically in the region of £500 on books, materials and presentation media (at your discretion, exact expenditure is based on each student’s choices). Due to the digital nature of the work, the £500 material cost is considered a maximum. There is no academic disadvantage to students who do not take part in the field trip. Students will be required to provide their own laptop capable of running film editing and game engine software. This should ideally be Windows-based ‘gaming’ or ‘productivity’ model with a discrete graphics card (Nvidia/AMD) and at least 16gb of RAM. 

For more information on additional costs for prospective students please go to our estimated cost of essential expenditure at Accommodation and living costs.

Funding your studies

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.

Brown Family Bursary

Deadline: 8 June 2023
Value: £15,000 (1 year)
Criteria Based on both academic merit and financial need
Eligibility: UK

Next steps

Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

There is an application processing fee for this programme of £90 for online applications and £115 for paper applications. Further information can be found at Application fees.

When we assess your application we would like to learn:

  • why you want to study Cinematic and Videogame Architecture at graduate level
  • why you want to study Cinematic and Videogame Architecture at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to this programme
  • how your personal, academic and professional background meets the requirements for entry to the programme
  • where you would like to go professionally with your degree.
  • Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.

    After we have received your application, we will email you to request a design portfolio and provide instructions. Please do not send your design work until requested.

    Offers will be subject to an interview. A design/creative portfolio is also required to assess applicants’ aptitude for visual and creative thinking and design, and to gauge previous, relevant experience and skills.

    We recommend that you apply for a maximum of two programmes.

    Tier 4 Student Visa holders are advised to meet the English language proficiency of their offer no later than the end of June, in order to allow sufficient time to obtain a CAS number and visa.

    To accept your offer, you must pay the non-refundable fee deposit within 6 weeks and decline any other offers for programmes at the Bartlett School of Architecture. If you do not respond within 6 weeks, your offer will be withdrawn.

    Please note that the School of Architecture does not allow deferred entry to any of its postgraduate programmes. If you have an offer of admission but cannot take it up, you will not be able to defer and will have to apply again the following year.

    Please note that you may submit applications for a maximum of two graduate programmes (or one application for the Law LLM) in any application cycle.

    Choose your programme

    Please read the Application Guidance before proceeding with your application.

    Year of entry: 2023-2024

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