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Media and storytelling in the digital era

Key details

Programme details

  • 240 credits
  • 15 month programme
  • Full-time study

Next open day

Application deadline

  • 13 Nov 2019

Career opportunities

  • Transmedia content creators
  • Digital designers
  • Activists
  • Experience designers
  • Speculative storytellers
  • VR developers
  • Educators
  • Sound artists

Develop a deep understanding of critical and experimental media production, creation and design practice.

Digital Direction addresses emerging issues in contemporary digital communication and the creative economy. Centring on broadcasting, film and experience, the programme develops your skills across four key areas of practice: production, direction, content development and digital media design. We offer grounding in traditional skill sets – including script writing, production design, direction, filming and sound recording – alongside training in coding and programming, VR and AR, 360 video editing, interactive design and AI.

The programme gives you the skills and context to evolve your practice and join the new wave of creative leaders engendering new approaches to media and storytelling.


  • Digital Direction Tongzhou.Yu_QhrxinC.original.jpg

    Murder on the YokAI Line

    Tongzhou Yu

  • Digital Direction Untitled_Artwork_21.original.jpg

    Untitled, 2019

    Milda Samsonaite

  • Digital Dirtection Prototype AR App for the Grenfell Silent March

    Prototype AR App for the Grenfell Silent March

    Lena Dobrowolska, Olivia Chou and Michele Coralli



Dr Eleanor Dare

Acting Head of Programme

With extensive experience teaching computer programming and digitally themed subjects, Eleanor’s current writing and programming research are concerned with the limits of symbolic logic, representation and creative non-fiction as well as the implications of virtual reality.

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The School of Communication is located in White City, London’s newest research and creative quarter.

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Our mixed-discipline studios encourage cross-disciplinary thought, awareness and action. Studio workspace is provided for each student. In addition, you have access to craft and technical workshop areas and excellent technical support in the College. These include well-equipped computer studios for print and digital moving-image production, sound editing, a letterpress and book-binding workshop.

  • sound studio facilities

    Sound studio

  • School of Communication studio.jpg

    School of Communication studio

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    Computer room, White City


More details on what you'll study.

Find out what you'll cover in this programme.

What you'll cover

The first two terms are delivered through cross-School electives, in parallel with Programme-specific workshops and projects. In addition, you’ll enrol on the College-wide delivery of Critical & Historical Studies. The third term will continue Programme-specific work alongside College-wide elective.

The Independent Research Project has the potential to foster partnerships with creative economy businesses and cultural organisations.

In the fourth term, you’ll focus on the final Independent Research Project. This project has a part-time option, meaning the fourth term can be spread over two terms.

  • Unit 1 Media Architectures (40 Credits)
  • Unit 2 School-Wide Elective (20 Credits)
  • CHS College-Wide Critical Historical Studies (40 Credits)
  • Unit 3 Assembly and Amplification (40 Credits)
  • Unit 4 Immersive Adventures (40 Credits)
  • Unit 5 Independent Research Project (60 Credits)

All studio-based MA students follow a weekly schedule of Critical & Historical Studies (CHS), a College-wide initiative that provides you with the intellectual framework to build a coherent relationship between theory and practice.

CHS delivers exciting, thought-provoking and inspiring lectures by experts within the programme and high-profile visiting lecturers. You’ll have the opportunity to explore the theoretical background and aspects of your chosen discipline through a tutored dissertation process, as well as receiving individual tutorial support from our team of expert tutors.

View more CHS information


What you need to know before you apply

Candidates are selected entirely on merit and applications are welcomed from all over the world. The selection process will consider creativity, imagination and innovation as demonstrated in your portfolio, as well as your potential to benefit from the programme and to achieve high MA standards overall.

For Digital Direction, you will normally have an undergraduate degree or an equivalent qualification in a related subject. We also welcome applications from applicants able to demonstrate equivalent professional experience in fields such as filmmaking, broadcasting, media and communication, graphic design, illustration, HCI and digital production.

What's needed from you

Your portfolio is a showcase of your work as an artist or designer and can be made up of images, videos or writing examples. Your portfolio helps us to better understand your application and allows you to show evidence of your ability and motivation to undertake a given programme.

Generally, we’re looking for you to demonstrate your:

  • Creativity, imagination and innovation
  • Ability to articulate the intentions of the work
  • Intellectual engagement in areas relevant to the work
  • Technical skills appropriate to the work
  • Potential to benefit from the programme

Each programme is looking for different things in a portfolio. Each Head of Programme provides specific advice on portfolio requirements in the online application system. We advise you to consider these requirements carefully before submitting your application.

If you are not a national of a majority English-speaking country you will need the equivalent of an IELTS Academic score of 6.5 with a 6.0 in the Test of Written English (TWE). Students achieving a grade of at least 6.0, with a grade of 5.5 in the Test of Written English, may be eligible to take the College’s English for Academic Purposes course to enable them to reach the required standard.

You are exempt from this requirement if you have received a 2.1 degree or above from a university in a majority English-speaking nation within the last two years.

If you need a Tier 4 visa to study at the RCA, you will also need to meet the Home Office’s minimum requirements for entry clearance.

Find out more about English-language requirements

Fees & funding

For this programme

Fees for new students

You'll find tuition fees for 2019/20 entry below. These are likely to go up roughly in line with inflation for 2020/21 entry. Fees will be confirmed by 1 December 2019.

Home and EU
£14,500 total cost*
£34,000 total cost*


New entrants to the College for MA, MRes, MPhil and PhD degrees will be required to pay a non-refundable deposit in order to secure their place. This will be offset against the tuition fees for the first year of study.

Home and EU

* Total cost is based on the assumption that the programme is completed in the timeframe stated in the programme details. Additional study time may incur additional charges.



Scholarships are awarded for a specific programme and entry point and cannot be deferred without consent from the academic Programme and scholarships panel.

More information

External funding

There are many funding sources, with some students securing scholarships and others saving money from working. It is impossible to list all the potential funding sources; however, the following information could be useful.


Tuition fees are due on the first day of the academic year and students are sent an invoice prior to beginning their studies. Payments can be made in advance, on registration or in two instalments.

Ask a question

Get in touch if you’d like to find out more or have any questions.

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