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Interactive Media
BSc (Hons)

2020/21 Full-time Undergraduate course

Award:

Bachelor of Science with Honours

Faculty:

Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences

School:

School of Communication and Media

Campus:

Coleraine campus

UCAS code:

P310
The UCAS code for Ulster University is U20

Graduates from this course have gained employment with a wide range of organisations:


  • Allstate
  • BNL Productions
  • Media Club
  • Lynas Foodservice ltd
  • Redback Creations
  • Syndeo
  • Urban Design & Print

Graduates from this course are employed in many different roles:


  • Brand Manager
  • Channel Operator
  • Designer
  • Digital marketing assistant
  • Digital Media Assistant
  • Freelance Digital Media Producer
  • Graphic Designer

Overview

Creating Media for the Future

Summary

A ground-breaking course giving you the production, creative and intellectual skills to pursue your career in the fast growing digital and creative industry. If you are looking for variety and to develop a range of practical skills then this is the course for you.

Ranked 8th in the UK for Art and Design in The Times Good University Guide 2019 Ulster University is one of the top places to study this dynamic course.

Interactive media can be found in almost all aspects of life. Mobile apps, websites, games, social media and virtual reality have transformed how we work and interact with each other with huge potential for more change. An exciting time to enter the industry, a degree in Interactive Media will open up many options with potential graduate roles in web design, analytics, advertising, content development, e-commerce, game design, digital marketing, multimedia planning or film production working as a successful free lancer or in an agency or production company.

Centred on creative approaches and responses to new media technologies with a focus on emerging media forms and creative and artistic media practices you will receive training in the latest industry standard software. Through a mix of theory and practice you will be encouraged to channel your own creativity and style to produce a range of digital media from motion graphics, animation and film to games, websites and interactive user experiences. Practical skills developed will include coding, drone operation, digital-image-making, web authoring, digital video production and video game production.


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Coleraine campus

Our coastal and riverside campus with a primary academic focus on science and health

About this course

About

The Interactive Media programme has a focus on academic, media theory informed practice, providing you with technical as well as critical and analytic skills to create new forms of media.

The course content is forward thinking ensuring you are taught futureproofed skills relevant for several industry-based roles and providing you with the knowledge and expertise to help drive the industry forward.

Content covered is varied (see modules for more detailed info) and will include contemporary coding platforms for producing interactive experiences, the use of Adobe After Effects to create motion graphics, the fundamentals of digital design using Adobe Photoshop and InDesign to conceptualise, draft and complete digital designs, the role of narrative in new media and how new platforms and technologies have effected video narratives, how audience responses to narratives can be evaluated and analysed and designing with data. You will construct your own interactive website as part of an Interactive Media Portfolio and work on a major project in your final year planning, researching and executing a significant piece of production work. This will develop your understanding of defined job roles and build a range of resources to help you interface with the media industry more professionally.

After successful completion of Year Two you can opt to undertake a placement year or study abroad (see Careers and Opportunities for more information) gaining a Diploma in Professional Practice (DPP) or Diploma in International Academic Studies (DIAS).

Helping to make your teaching as relevant as possible and get you industry ready, creative, live briefs from industry partners are used in modules, giving you a flavour of real-life working scenarios and what it is like to work for a client.

Taught by award winning staff (international MEDEA award (2018) for excellence in the production and design of media-rich learning resources / Best Use of Educational Technology / ICT Initiative of the Year (2018) / Excellence in Employability /Placement Support (2017) at the Ulster University Students Union Teaching Excellence Awards) we aim to give you the best academic and university experience possible.

Throughout the course a series of visiting professionals from industry will run master classes on specific subject knowledge ensuring you are learning from the experts and gaining a real world insight into what it is like to work in industry and how your skills can be applied. You will also get the opportunity to participate in the Global Game Jam (participants of all skill levels have 48 hours to work concurrently around the globe to create a game), have organised speed production events and inter-disciplinary Hack Days to help support the local creative industries.

Associate awards

Diploma in Professional Practice DPP

Find out more about placement awards

Attendance

A full time 3-year course (4 years with optional work placement or study abroad year), students are expected to be in attendance during the normal working week. In line with the University’s attendance policy, attendance at all taught sessions is compulsory. In addition, students working on projects and in independent work may be required occasionally to attend for group meetings/seminars in the evenings and at weekends.

Start dates

  • September 2020

Teaching, Learning and Assessment

Learning and teaching methods include seminars, practical workshops, IT laboratory classes, studio work, project portfolio-based learning, group work and independent study. Assessment methods include interactive media projects, portfolio development, oral presentations, class tests a, self and peer-assessment.

Academic profile

The University employs over 1,000 suitably qualified and experienced academic staff - 59% have PhDs in their subject field and many have professional body recognition.

Courses are taught by staff who are Professors (25%), Readers, Senior Lecturers (18%) or Lecturers (57%).

We require most academic staff to be qualified to teach in higher education: 82% hold either Postgraduate Certificates in Higher Education Practice or higher. Most academic staff (81%) are accredited fellows of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) - the university sector professional body for teaching and learning. Many academic and technical staff hold other professional body designations related to their subject or scholarly practice.

  • Read more

    The profiles of many academic staff can be found on the University’s departmental websites and give a detailed insight into the range of staffing and expertise. The precise staffing for a course will depend on the department(s) involved and the availability and management of staff. This is subject to change annually and is confirmed in the timetable issued at the start of the course.

    Occasionally, teaching may be supplemented by suitably qualified part-time staff (usually qualified researchers) and specialist guest lecturers. In these cases, all staff are inducted, mostly through our staff development programme ‘First Steps to Teaching’. In some cases, usually for provision in one of our out-centres, Recognised University Teachers are involved, supported by the University in suitable professional development for teaching.

    Figures correct for academic year 2019-2020.

Modules

Here is a guide to the subjects studied on this course.

Courses are continually reviewed to take advantage of new teaching approaches and developments in research, industry and the professions. Please be aware that modules may change for your year of entry. The exact modules available and their order may vary depending on course updates, staff availability, timetabling and student demand. Please contact the course team for the most up to date module list.

Year one

Media, Culture, Politics

Year: 1

Media, Culture, Politics is an introduction to media studies that aims to demonstrate the importance and seriousness of the discipline, and to show how it can speak to the most pressing political issues of our time, namely disparities of wealth and power, as well as the question of environmental sustainability. To do this the module draws attention to the role of media and popular culture in reproducing social inequality, and it considers the ecological consequences of a contemporary culture that is dependent upon fossil fuels and driven by capital accumulation.

The objective of the module then is to encourage students to think critically about media production and consumption, and to other ways and forms of making and exchanging culture. To achieve this Media, Culture, Politics introduces students to a selection of thinkers who have contributed to the field. It then invites them to consider the ideas and concepts encountered on the module, and apply or adapt them to their own media practice, cultural experience and democratic participation.

Motion Graphics

Year: 1

This module will introduce students to concepts and techniques surrounding the production of type-based motion graphics used in computer animation, special effects and web video etc. During the workshops students will explore the aesthetic and narrative forms of these types of moving images, and students will become familiar with Adobe After Effects software through the production of their own motion graphics.

Interactive Development Environments

Year: 1

This module will help the student to understand the contemporary coding platforms for producing Interactive Experiences. The module will also introduce the student to 'live' Interactive Development Environments (IDE's) and their potential for rapid prototyping and building interactive experiences. As part of the student experience with IDE's they will also engage in contemporary online learning and development practices.

Fundamentals of Digital Design

Year: 1

This module introduces students to the fundamentals of digital design and aims to develop their creative and technical skills through the production of their own design work. The workshop series will cover visual language, principles and techniques involved in digital design while during workshop sessions, students will be undertake digital design challenges using Adobe Photoshop and Adobe InDesign software to conceptualise, draft and complete their digital designs.

Cinematic Practice for Emerging Platforms

Year: 1

This module investigates how new platforms and technologies effect the ways we produce and consume video narratives. Students will produce research driven practical projects which explore the possibilities and challenge the limitations of emerging media platforms to produce engaging and experimental narratives.

Visual Cultures

Year: 1

This module will introduce you to the history of visual culture in order to equip you with a foundational knowledge of why and how the visual is understood in different ways at specific cultural locations. It will build on this base by introducing you to key theories of visual culture and ways of analysing the visual so that you can begin to develop your appreciation of the significance of visuality across a range of media formats, ranging from photography to film, as well as considering how convergence effects how we can define the visual.

The skills you will acquire on this module will enable you to transfer your learning to future modules on media theory and practice as well as aiding you to integrate theory into your own creative practice.

Year two

Interactive Design Practice

Year: 2

This module will help the student to understand the creative design processes inherent in the design, planning and production of interactive media formats and their subsequent media debates, by examining how technology has facilitated a new exhibition space for the promotion and distribution of creative art and media texts.

Narrative and Interactive Media

Year: 2

This module will analyse the key role of narrative in new media through the investigation of various approaches and techniques from media and literacy studies, using in-depth, close reading of TV, film, games and websites.

Transmedia Narratives and Experience Design

Year: 2

This module draws on a range of disciplines and media forms to deliver a participatory narrative which is delivered through a number of platforms. Students are asked to consider new approaches to story and how audience responses to narratives can be evaluated and analysed. The module engages with new forms of story and new shapes of narrative delivery where audiences become active and help to shape the story as it unfolds.

Placement and Professional Contexts

Year: 2

This module engages students in a 2 week (or 70 hour) work placement in the Media and Creative Industries The module uses work-based learning and reflective practitioner models to help student develop their professional skills and understanding or the media industry.

Designing with Data

Year: 2

Students will be introduced to key thinkers who address the nature of interactivity, this will inform the development of a practice based project which is a live interactive interface with a data stream. Students will be introduced to systems, interface and new media theory to underpin the development of an interactive visualisation of data, either using open government data or data drawn from interactions with objects, technologies and media.

Preparation for Placement and Work Based Learning

Year: 2

This module introduces students to a range of job roles from across the media and creative industries to help them plan and apply for a short placement. The module helps students develop their understanding of defined job roles and build a range of resources to help them interface with the media industry more professionally.

Media: Study Internationally (2nd yr)

Year: 2

This module is optional

This module provides an opportunity to undertake an extended period of study outside the Erasmus Plus area such as the Americas, Australia or China. Students will develop an enhanced understanding of the academic discipline of Media whilst generating educational and cultural networks.

Year three

Industrial Placement: Media

Year: 3

This module is optional

This module provides students the opportunity to experience life as a professional media practitioner. They will be expected to conduct themselves professionally being an employee of a company and an ambassador for the University during this period. They will be supported by an academic coordinator.

Media: Study Abroad (DIAS)

Year: 3

This module is optional

This module provides an opportunity to undertake an additional academic year of study which is spent outside the UK. Those who successfully complete it get an extra qualification - the Diploma in Academic Studies (DIAS). Students will develop an enhanced understanding of the media and engage with it first-hand in international contexts. The opportunity to generate educational and cultural networks will be available to the student.

Year four

Interactive Media Inquiry

Year: 4

This module will explore in depth a range of innovative forms of creative research inquiry that can be pursued in multimedia formats. Students will construct their own interactive websites as part of an Interactive Media Arts Portfolio (iMAP) to contain examples of pilot projects, ideas for projects and small-scale demonstrations that use 'multimedia as research'.

Interactivity, Research and Development (Major Project)

Year: 4

This module enables the student to plan, research and execute a significant piece of production work, demonstrating both technical and conceptual excellence in the area of Interactive Media and a capacity to innovatewithin an agreed intellectual framework.

Interactivity for Social Enterprise

Year: 4

Located at the end point of the Interactive Media programme this module will integrate to an advanced level the knowledge and skills acquired to that point around a group project of some complexity for a 'live' Social Enterprise client. The module will have a supporting series of tutorials designed to support the students develop their interactive project to a complex and innovative level. This is an opportunity for the learner to evaluate their own work in a reflective manner, with reference to the academic and/or professional issues and debates explored in the degree programme as a whole.

Creativity, Innovation and Enterprise

Year: 4

The model provides students with the opportunity to investigate and experience the processes involved in creativity, alongside the generation, evaluation and pitching of entrepreneurial ideas for the Creative Media sector.

Entry conditions

We recognise a range of qualifications for admission to our courses. In addition to the specific entry conditions for this course you must also meet the University’s General Entrance Requirements.

A level

Grades BCC

Applicants may satisfy the requirement for an A level C grade by substituting a combination of alternative qualifications to the same standard as defined by the University.

Applied General Qualifications

*** To note that only qualifications defined as “Applied General” will be accepted for entry onto anyundergraduate course at Ulster University.***

BTEC Awards

QCF Pearson BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma/ OCR Cambridge Technical Level 3 Extended Diploma (2012 Suite)

Award profile of Distinction Distinction Merit

RQF Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma/ OCR Cambridge Technical Level 3 Extended Diploma (2016 Suite)

Award profile of Distinction Merit Merit

QCF Pearson BTEC Level 3 Diploma/ OCR Cambridge Technical Level 3 Diploma(2012 Suite)

Award profile of Distinction Merit plus A Level Grade B or award profile of Distinction Merit plus A Level Grade C

RQF Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Diploma/ OCR Cambridge Technical Level 3 Diploma (2016 Suite)

Award profile of Distinction Merit plus A Level Grade C

QCF Pearson BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma / OCR Cambridge Technical Level 3 Introductory Diploma (2012 Suite)

Award profile of Merit plus A Level Grades BC

RQF Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate/ OCR Cambridge Technical Level 3 Extended Certificate (2016 Suite)

Award profile of Merit plus A Level Grades BC

Diploma, National Diploma and Subsidiary Diploma applicants may satisfy the requirement for an element of the offer grade profiles (equating to the final A-level grade stated in the standard 3A level offer profile - grade C) by substituting a combination of alternative qualifications to the same standard as defined by the University.

Irish Leaving Certificate

The Irish Leaving Certificate requirement for this course is grades

H3,H3,H3,H4,H4 at higher level.

Applicants are also required to have Higher Level English Grade H6 or above OR Ordinary Level at grade 04 or above.

Scottish Highers

The Scottish Highers requirement for this course is grades

BCCCC

Applicants may satisfy the requirement for an element of the offer grade profiles (equating to the final A-level grade stated in the standard 3A level offer profile - Grade C) by substituting a combination of alternative qualifications to the same standard as defined by the University.

Scottish Advanced Highers

The Scottish Advanced Highers requirement for this course is grades

CDD

Applicants may satisfy the requirement for an element of the offer grade profiles (equating to the final A-level grade stated in the standard 3A level offer profile - Grade C) by substituting a combination of alternative qualifications to the same standard as defined by the University.

International Baccalaureate

Overall International Baccalaureate profile minimum of

24 points to include 12 at higher level.

Access to Higher Education (HE)

Overall profile of 60% (120 credit Access Course) (NI Access course)

Overall profile of 12 credits at distinction, 30 credits at merit and 3 credits at pass (60 credit Access course) (GB Access course)

GCSE

For full-time study, you must satisfy the General Entrance Requirements for admission to a first degree course and hold a GCSE pass at Grade C/4 or above English Language.

Level 2 Certificate in Essential Skills - Communication will be accepted as equivalent to GCSE English.

English Language Requirements

English language requirements for international applicants
The minimum requirement for this course is Academic IELTS 6.0 with no band score less than 5.5. Trinity ISE: Pass at level III also meets this requirement for Tier 4 visa purposes.

Ulster recognises a number of other English language tests and comparable IELTS equivalent scores.

Additional Entry Requirements

HND - Overall Merit with distinctions in 30 Level 5 credits (2 units) for Year 1 entry. Those applicants holding a subject-related HND with an overall merit may be considered for entry to Year 2.

HNC – Overall Merit with distinctions in 60 Level 4 credits (4 units) for Year 1 entry.

You may also meet the course entry requirements with combinations of different qualifications to the same standard as recognised by the University (provided subject requirements as noted above are met).

Foundation Degree - An overall mark of 45% in Level 5 modules for Year 1 entry. Those applicants holding a subject-related Foundation Degree may be considered for entry to Year 2.

APEL (Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning)

The University will consider applications on the basis of experiential learning for those who do not hold the normal entry qualifications.

Transfer from degree level study at other institutions

Those applicants seeking entry with advanced standing, (eg. Transfer from another institution or year 2 entry) will be considered on an individual basis.

Exemptions and transferability

Those who wish to transfer from other institutions should apply via UCAS and will be assessed on an individual basis.

Careers & opportunities

Graduate employers

Graduates from this course have gained employment with a wide range of organisations. Here are some examples:

  • Allstate
  • BNL Productions
  • Media Club
  • Lynas Foodservice ltd
  • Redback Creations
  • Syndeo
  • Urban Design & Print

Job roles

Graduates from this course are employed in many different roles. Here are some examples:

  • Brand Manager
  • Channel Operator
  • Designer
  • Digital marketing assistant
  • Digital Media Assistant
  • Freelance Digital Media Producer
  • Graphic Designer

Career options

Graduates are meeting the increasing global demand for professionals who create content for interactive media products and services in roles such as:

Web Design

Web Development / Technical Production

Web Analytics

Advertising

Product Management

Product Development

Content Development

Content Marketing

Community Management

Social Media & Social Networking

E-commerce

Digital Editorial / Blogging

Games Design

Digital Marketing

Media Sales

Business Development

Work placement / study abroad

Work Placement:

All students are required to complete no less than two weeks work placement throughout the degree programme. Threre are opportunities for longer placement and full year placements. The year long placment generates the extra award of Diploma in Professional Practice (DPP).

Study Abroad:

StudyUSA, Erasmus scheme, International Student Exchange Programme. Students from the programme can study a year in a number of different countries including China, America and across Europe. It is advised that students undertake this between years 2 and 3 of the programme. Studying abroad for a year generates the extra award of Diploma in International Academic Studies (DIAS)

Apply

Applications to full-time undergraduate degrees at Ulster are made through UCAS.

Start dates

  • September 2020

Fees and funding

Fees (per year)

Important notice - fees information Fees illustrated are based on 19/20 entry and are subject to an annual increase. Correct at the time of publishing. Terms and conditions apply. Additional mandatory costs are highlighted where they are known in advance. There are other costs associated with university study.
Visit our Fees pages for full details of fees

Northern Ireland & EU: £4,275.00

England, Scotland, Wales and the Islands: £9,250.00  Discounts available

International: £14,060.00 Scholarships available

Additional mandatory costs

Students will be required to purchase the following items for the studies:

A 1TB (or bigger) USB Hard Drive: £45

A pair of over ear headphones: £20

A domain name: £15 per year

There are also printing costs associated with the course at about £60 per year

Tuition fees and costs associated with accommodation, travel (including car parking charges), and normal living are a part of university life.

Where a course has additional mandatory expenses we make every effort to highlight them. These may include residential visits, field trips, materials (e.g. art, design, engineering) inoculations, security checks, computer equipment, uniforms, professional memberships etc.

We aim to provide students with the learning materials needed to support their studies. Our libraries are a valuable resource with an extensive collection of books and journals as well as first-class facilities and IT equipment. Computer suites and free wifi is also available on each of the campuses.

There will be some additional costs to being a student which cannot be itemised and these will be different for each student. You may choose to purchase your own textbooks and course materials or prefer your own computer and software. Printing and binding may also be required. There are additional fees for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines. Additional costs vary from course to course.

Students choosing a period of paid work placement or study abroad as part of their course should be aware that there may be additional travel and living costs as well as tuition fees.

Please contact the course team for more information.

Contact

Course Director :Dr Helen Jackson

E: h.jackson@ulster.ac.uk

T: +44 (0)28 7012 4184

Admissions Office:

Ms Wenli Xu

T: +44 (0)28 7012 3373

E: w.xu@ulster.ac.uk

International Admissions Office

E: internationaladmissions@ulster.ac.uk

For more information visit

Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences

School of Communication and Media

Disclaimer

  1. The University endeavours to deliver courses and programmes of study in accordance with the description set out in this prospectus. The University’s prospectus is produced at the earliest possible date in order to provide maximum assistance to individuals considering applying for a course of study offered by the University. The University makes every effort to ensure that the information contained in the prospectus is accurate but it is possible that some changes will occur between the date of printing and the start of the academic year to which it relates. Please note that the University’s website is the most up-to-date source of information regarding courses and facilities and we strongly recommend that you always visit the website before making any commitments.
  2. Although reasonable steps are taken to provide the programmes and services described, the University cannot guarantee the provision of any course or facility and the University may make variations to the contents or methods of delivery of courses, discontinue, merge or combine courses and introduce new courses if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Such circumstances include (but are not limited to) industrial action, lack of demand, departure of key staff, changes in legislation or government policy including changes, if any, resulting from the UK departing the European Union, withdrawal or reduction of funding or other circumstances beyond the University’s reasonable control.
  3. If the University discontinues any courses, it will use its best endeavours to provide a suitable alternative course. In addition, courses may change during the course of study and in such circumstances the University will normally undertake a consultation process prior to any such changes being introduced and seek to ensure that no student is unreasonably prejudiced as a consequence of any such change.
  4. The University does not accept responsibility (other than through the negligence of the University, its staff or agents), for the consequences of any modification or cancellation of any course, or part of a course, offered by the University but will take into consideration the effects on individual students and seek to minimise the impact of such effects where reasonably practicable.
  5. The University cannot accept any liability for disruption to its provision of educational or other services caused by circumstances beyond its control, but the University will take all reasonable steps to minimise the resultant disruption to such services.

Testimonials

Alaistair Ashe

Alaistair graduated with a Second-class honours upper division in 2017 with a major project that used VR technologies to explore concepts of isolation and homelessness. He is currently working as a Digital Marketing Executive at XsellTeam.

“Interactive Media is an enjoyable course with a plateau of knowledgeable lecturers showing from their many hours of practice & research that you will be well equipped with leading industry skills for future employability. Spending three years at Ulster University is a pleasure, you will find your strength/weaknesses, collaborate with other members, form new friendships and have some great memories to look back upon.”

www.alaistairashe.co.uk

https://www.instagram.com/alli.ashe/

Claudia Greene

Claudia graduated with a Second-class honours upper division in 2017 with a major project that explored immersive technologies in film and exhibited her own immersive short film titled ‘Beyond The Screen’. Since graduating, Claudia has worked with a local start-up company and has utilised her skills that she learned during her time at Ulster University and applied it to the workplace to help get the start-up off the ground. She is now working at Allen & Overy while working as a freelance designer in her free time.

“Choosing Interactive Media to study at University was one of the best decisions I ever made. Leaving school, I wasn’t too sure what I wanted to do as a career, but Interactive Media taught me various skills from graphic design to video editing to web development that I was able to learn and understand where I was most skilled. The creative industry is a vast and rapidly changing industry, but this course was able to give me the skills needed to dive head first into it all.”

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