Inside

Programme Welcome

MRes: Healthcare & Design

The new MRes (Masters of Research) in Healthcare & Design is an interdisciplinary programme that draws on the complementary knowledge and expertise of Imperial College London and the Royal College of Art.

The programme aims to equip candidates from a wide range of academic and professional practice backgrounds with the tools and techniques to instigate and lead design innovations in a broad range of healthcare environments. Teaching takes place in the RCA and St Mary’s Hospital with a course that is particularly well tailored to those who aim to study alongside employment with eight intensive modules delivered in ‘burst mode’ (four per year in two 2-week blocks) and a supervised major personal design research project. The teaching is delivered in a mix of lectures and practical workshops in group and individual projects where designers, healthcare professionals and clinicians work together often in group based activities to enhance knowledge exchange.

Contexts for healthcare innovation are broad ranging from the physical and psychological to surgery, recuperation and recovery, therapy, transport, services and software. We expect outputs from this course to be implementable in the healthcare industry ranging from product and technology innovations through to software solutions, spatial and architectural to new experience and service designs.

The course builds on the longstanding partnerships between the RCA and Imperial College in developing joint courses since the 1980s. The Helen Hamlyn Centre for design has delivered over 150 healthcare and user centred projects while the Helix Centre at St Mary’s Hospital is the first design studio in a clinical setting and brings designers and clinicians together for the first time to solve healthcare challenges using lean innovation strategy. A key objective of the Helix Centre is to catalyse more innovative approaches to healthcare service delivery with better design and planning, more efficient use of resources and greater focus on patient need. The programme runs in parallel with the MSc in Healthcare Innovation at Imperial sharing aspects of course content in a way that is deliberately designed to bridge the gap between design-driven innovation and the healthcare context. This unique body of expertise feeds back into the MRes programme though teaching, supervision and mentoring.

The programme offers:

  • The opportunity to develop an awareness of the role and value of design in solving healthcare challenges
  • A multi-professional perspective on problem-solving and the importance of clinical/design team collaboration
  • An awareness of the UK health system and the systemic challenges it faces to remain sustainable
  • An environment in which to develop the design led innovation skills to rapidly research, synthesise and prototype a solution to a healthcare challenge
  • The opportunity to work alongside a world-class faculty, who can provide knowledge-based learning and encourage critical awareness of current issues
  • A range of research techniques, tools and frameworks for use in the fields of design and innovation

PLEASE NOTE: Due to UK Visas and Immigration Service visa restrictions on part-time courses, we are only able to offer places for UK Home/EU applicants. International applicants are currently not eligible.

Applications are now open. 

For further information or to arrange a conversation about the MRes degree, email healthcare-design@rca.ac.uk