About your course
The Liverpool School of Art and Design, supported by experts in this academic field, offers you a development opportunity to creatively engage in a truly interdisciplinary and project-orientated architectural study.
- Course offered full time (2 years) and part time (4 years)
- A long standing and nationally respected programme that has been fully validated and externally accredited for over 30 years
- Develop your work in state-of-the-art workspaces and facilities within the RIBA award-winning John Lennon Art and Design Building in the heart of Liverpool’s Knowledge Quarter on Mount Pleasant
- Internationally excellent research informs the curriculum and underpins teaching
- Postgraduates are highly sought after by employers and over 95% are in work or further study six months after graduation
This degree is taught in the RIBA-award-winning John Lennon Art and Design Building.
Introduction to the School
The Liverpool School of Art and Design (LSAD) is situated in the John Lennon Art and Design Building, an award-winning purpose-built building in the heart of Liverpool’s creative quarter.
As well as being home to the School, the building is a knowledge hub for the region’s creative industries. The School has established links with many of Liverpool’s ignificant arts organisations, including TATE Liverpool, Biennial, FACT and design agencies Uniform, Smiling Wolf and Non-Conform.
The Building's gallery is a creative partnership between students and staff at the School and acts as an interface to collaboration with local, national and international artists, designers, creative industry commercial partners and public audiences. The Building helps achieve these objectives through the creative production of on-site, off-site and online projects and activities supported by its flexible gallery, exhibition and public spaces.
Why study this course at LJMU?
This programme's project, work-based curriculum enables you to gain valuable transferable skills in research, analysis and interpretation, the generation and testing of ideas, visual and verbal presentation techniques, teamwork and initiative which are of lifelong value.
You will have access to a range of learning environments including design studios, lecture theatres, seminar rooms, the learning resource centre (library), general IT suites, dedicated computer aided design IT suites, rapid prototyping labs, various workshops for the manipulation of resistant materials including wood, metals, plastics and ceramics plus dedicated exhibition spaces.
Programme outline and structure
Architecture offers a uniquely holistic programme of education spanning various fields of study from the worlds of art and the humanities, science and technology, management, practice and law.
The course’s project work-based curriculum enables you to gain valuable transferable skills in research, analysis and interpretation, the generation and testing of ideas, visual and verbal presentation techniques, teamwork and initiative which are of lifelong value.
You will have access to a range of learning environments, including design studios, lecture theatres, seminar rooms, the learning resource centre (library), general IT suites, dedicated Computer Aided Design IT suites, rapid prototyping labs, various workshops for the manipulation of resistant materials, including wood, metals, plastics and ceramics plus dedicated exhibition spaces.
Studying at the Liverpool School of Art and Design will give you the opportunity to develop your work in state-of-the-art workspaces and facilities within a stimulating and critically demanding environment. We will also enable you to establish significant links with the relevant professional fields in which your future career will develop.
All staff in the School of Art and Design are engaged in research which in turn develops the curriculum and ensures that our programmes maintain their relevance within the contemporary context of art and design practice and theory. Increasingly this research achieves national and international recognition through exhibitions and publications. Our researchers write books and academic papers, stage, curate and participate in exhibitions, engage in consultancy, produce artefacts and publish in a broad range of other media.
The following is a summary of subjects studied during the course (In part time mode one semester equates to one year):
- Semester One - Theory, Design Studies, CAD Workshops and Management, Practice and Law
- Semester Two – Specialist Study, Design Studies, CAD Workshops, Management, Practice and Law, Building and Case Studies
- Semester Three - Urban Design Project and CDP Brief development, Theory, Best Practice Studies and Management, Practice and Law
- Semester Four - Comprehensive Design Project, Technical Workshops and Management, Practice and Law
Teaching is intensive and you learn by one-to-one and group discussions and regular presentations of work, so that continuous group and self assessment is built in.
The course is project oriented where you develop design ideas in the studio, guided by semester tutors, and at regular intervals by joint review panels of design tutors and external critics, who make comments on your progress.
Technical workshops explore, environmental, structural and constructional aspects of your design projects based upon one-to-one tutorials with external engineers from ARUP and other internationally renowned engineering practices with whom LJMU have formed working relationships. The studio is also where peer group reviews and exhibitions take place, so it forms a truly interactive learning environment.
Modules, core and optional
The modules listed below are examples from the last academic year. There may be some changes before you start your course.
- Technical and environmental design studies (1)
- Architectural design studies
- Key historical studies and contemporary theories in architecture
- Management practice and law (1)
- Specialist study
- Urban design project
- Technical and environmental design studies (2)
- Management practice and law (2)
- Comprehensive design project (2)
How will I be assessed?
Design and Technology module components form the core of the programme and are assessed via the completion of project work which may at various stages entail the production of drawings, artistic rendering, physical models, computer generated models, written reports and verbal presentations.
History and theory module components are assessed via formal presentations to peer groups and review panels. Management, Practice and Law module components are assessed via the submission of written reports, and through project work integrated with the design modules.
Staff research interests
The Liverpool School of Art and Design has a research culture that is rooted in collaboration with national and international partners in the fields of art, design and architecture. Our work is concerned with understanding and augmenting the role and significance of art and design within the broader concerns of the regional and global economy, and to strengthen the visibility and impact of art and design in Liverpool.
Research takes place in relation to the areas of art, design, architecture and related pedagogy. Researchers in the School write books and academic papers, stage, curate and participate in exhibitions, engage in consultancy, produce artefacts and publish in a broad range of other media.
All staff in the School engage in research to develop the curriculum and ensure that our programmes maintain their relevance within the contemporary context of art and design practice and theory. Increasingly this research achieves national and international recognition through exhibition and publication.
We have a number of students undertaking Doctoral studies, some of whom are working on collaborative research projects with organisations such as Tate Liverpool, Bluecoat, Liverpool Biennial and FACT. Senior staff from all these and other organisations, including Arts Council England and the RIBA contribute towards the strategic development of our research through membership of an advisory board.
Entry requirements (Home)
Applicants should have completed a first degree (minimum award 2:2) in Architecture.
Students with first degrees without RIBA/ARB Part 1 exemption should be aware that the MArch awards exemption from RIBA / ARB Part 2 only. If you wish to register as an Architect in this country or become an RIBA Chartered architect you will have to acquire RIBA / ARB Part 1 separately.
Assessment of suitability to the course may also be undertaken by review of a portfolio of work and an interview.
We are committed to the University's policy on equal opportunities and welcome applications from minority and disadvantaged groups.
We welcome overseas applicants and normally require overseas applicants to show evidence of academic achievement equivalent to UK entry qualifications.
Overseas applicants whose first language is not English are required to have attained a recognised English Language qualification equivalent to IELTS 6.5 (minimun of 5.5 in each component).
Application and selection
We are looking for students with an enthusiasm for design, who wish to engage in the debate on the future of the built environment.
You should have a willingness to read around the subject widely.
You should be willing to gain first hand experience of buildings, towns and cities and possess the following essential qualities:
- Information retrieval techniques, as you will be expected to read around the subject and draw upon your findings for essays and projects.
- Analytical skills, so that you can critically assess your own work and the work of others.
- IT skills, as you will be expected to develop and submit project work using a wide range of specialist software applications.
- Communication skills, as you will be expected to contribute to tutorials and host presentations.
- Time management skills, as you will have to work to deadlines on a regular basis.
- Team-working skills, as you will have to work closely with others.
Tips and advice on writing your personal statement
Take your time with your personal statement. It is an important part of your application form. This is the part of the form that will make you stand out as an individual. Organise your main achievements and interests into bullet points before you start completing it.
Summarise why you have chosen the course(s) for which you are applying and link between your present and proposed course(s).
Keep the statement brief and to the point. Don’t fall into the trap of including common interests such a socialising and reading. You should strive to make your statement personal. Think about things that you have done that are unique.
Make sure that you include any work experience that you have had (this includes part-time and holiday work) particularly if this relates to your chosen field of study. We are looking for evidence of commitment and team-working skills, so give us details of these.
Remember: we will consider your application not only on your exam grades but also on the strength of your personal statement and references. We may invite you in for an interview or ask you to complete a piece of work if we believe your exam grades do not accurately reflect your ability and potential. Remember that a good application form could even make up a shortfall in your exam grades and help secure your place at LJMU.
What happens next?
If you are from the UK or EC and meet the application criteria, you will receive a letter requesting that you attend an interview to which you should bring your full academic portfolio. This will also include an opportunity to meet academic staff and current students, as well as a tour of LJMU facilities. International students will receive confirmation of their offer from the International Office, along with details on accommodation, fees and other important information.
Applications will be considered together in March and short-listed applicants will be invited to interview in April. Applications received prior to this date will be held on file until shortlisting takes place.
Overseas applicants who are unable to attend interview due to geographical reasons will be contacted to arrange an alternative, e.g. Skype or telephone interview.
LJMU welcomes applications from international students. In addition to normal entry requirements, you will be expected to demonstrate a very good level of English language competence, for example an IELTS score of 6.0-6.5 or equivalent. Please note: specific courses may require higher levels of English language competence.
If you have applied to study a full-time taught Masters, Masters by Research, MPhil/PhD at LJMU, you should check if you require an Academic Technology Approval Scheme or ATAS certificate. It can take four to six weeks to receive an ATAS certificate, so please make sure you apply as early as possible. You can find out more on the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) website. Alternatively, contact LJMU’s International Admissions Team for guidance.
Please note: international students entering on a Tier 4 visa cannot study part time. Students entering the UK on alternate types of visa may be in a position to study part time. Please contact LJMU’s International Admissions Team for further details before making your application.
In order to obtain a visa you will also need to show evidence that the money required to cover your tuition fees and living expenses has been in your bank account for at least 28 days prior to submitting your visa application. So please make sure that your finances are in place before applying. For more details, go to our international website.
For advice on any aspect of the application process, please contact LJMU’s International Admissions Team.
6.5 (Minimum of 5.5 in each component)
58-64 (Min. 51 in each component for UKVI Purposes)
All full and part-time students enrolled on postgraduate taught programmes at LJMU are liable to pay an annual tuition fee. You can opt to pay your tuition fees in full at the start of each academic year or pay by instalments. If you need advice about how you will pay your tuition fees, please email to LJMU’s Student Funding Team as soon as possible.
Full-time Home and EU students who started Part 1 before September 2012 will be treated as continuing students and will be charged £3,465, part-time students will be charged £21.40 per credit in the academic year 2014-2015. This is dependant on:
- you continuing to study in the UK
- the gap between Part 1 and Part 2 being no more than three years
- you not changing your mode of study (from full-time to part-time for instance)
It is important to remember that you don't have to pay your tuition fees upfront when you enrol. Instead you can take out a tuition fee loan, which doesn't have to be repaid until after you leave LJMU and start earning a certain amount. Both full and part-time students are eligible for tuition fee loans.
Sources of funding
Liverpool School of Art and Design Bursaries and study awards
The Liverpool School of Art and Design offers students across all taught postgraduate programmes opportunities to apply for scholarships aimed at broadening student knowledge and experience.
The School’s main travel bursary, the Susan Cotton Travel Awards, consist of three European Awards of £1,400 and two International Awards of £2,200. The awards are intended to help students undertake significant domestic or international travel in support of their work and personal development. The awards aren’t necessarily about academic study, instead focus on the spirit of travel and adventure. Previous winners of the bursary have travelled to a tropical island to experience life at its most basic, cycled round the Danube, spent a month in Morocco and inter-railed through Europe.
The School benefits from being able to offer financial scholarship awards, thanks to a number of benefactors who support the School’s aims in developing cutting-edge, thoughtful art and design practice.
The Michael Pugh Thomas and Julia Carter Preston Legacy awards are open to full-time and part-time home and international students who wish to study for a postgraduate qualification in art and design with LJMU.
The awards consist a number of £1,000 scholarships, and must be applied for as part of the application process to study on an MA programme at the School of Art and Design.
Applicants are required to write a 500 word letter alongside their application to study stating why they should be awarded the scholarship, the benefits it will bring to their studies and any exceptional circumstances they face in studying for a postgraduate qualification.
Scholarships for taught masters students
LJMU will be awarding over 100 scholarships worth £10,000 each to students starting a taught Masters degree in September 2015 and January 2016. The funding is part of the government match-funded Postgraduate Support Scheme and is a fantastic opportunity to secure a Masters qualification in any discipline without added financial worry. You will have to pass certain eligibility criteria in order to be considered for one of these generous scholarships. For example, you must:
- be a UK or EU resident
- have been paying the higher undergraduate tuition fee since 2012
- want to start a full-time Masters degree (MA, MSc, MREs) in September 2015 or January 2016
LJMU Alumni Award
Final year undergraduates and alumni of the University are eligible to apply for a 15% reduction in their postgraduate tuition fees if they choose to progress onto a higher degree programme at LJMU. Both Home and international LJMU students and alumni can apply for this award (subject to eligibility criteria*).
Postgraduate International Scholarships
LJMU offers scholarships for international applicants accepted onto taught masters programmes (excluding distance learning programmes) and research degrees. Current LJMU international students and alumni interested in pursuing postgraduate study and research at the University are eligible to apply for these scholarships along with new applicants.
English for Postgraduate Studies Bursary
A Bursary is also available for international students who need to improve their IELTS score prior to enrolling on their postgraduate course or research programme at the University. This course is run by LJMU’s International Study Centre.
Earn While You Learn
Working while you study means you may be able to pay for your course without taking out any further loans or at least reducing the amount you need to borrow. Working while you study also gives you the skills valued by employers, such as managing your workload and prioritising your time.
LJMU’s Vacancy website can help you find graduate vacancies, sandwich/industrial placements, internships / summer work, part-time jobs, volunteering opportunities and work-based learning placements. Over 1,000 local and regional employers regularly list opportunities on the website.
Professional and Career Development Loans (PCDL)
Many students fund their postgraduate studies via Professional and Career Development Loans. This is a bank loan which you will have to pay back once you’ve completed the course. However, while you are studying any interest on the loan will be paid for you by the Skills Funding Agency. PCDLs worth between £300 and £10,000 are available for eligible postgraduates to fund up to two years of study (three if the course includes work experience). The loan is split into course fees and living costs.
Some organisations and companies fund the cost of postgraduate studies for their employees as they recognise the value of having well qualified staff. Check out our courses and see if there are any on offer that could enhance your current career. Remember, employer support doesn’t always have to be financial; it can take other forms too, such as flexible working arrangements, day release and time in lieu of study.
Support for disabled students
Disabled Students’ Allowances or DSAs are designed to help meet the extra course costs students can face as a direct result of a disability, on-going health condition, mental health condition or specific learning difficulty. DSAs don’t have to be paid back and the type of support you receive will be determined by your specific needs not your household income. Please contact LJMU’s Disability team for further advice: 0151 231 3164/3165.
Council tax exemption
All full-time postgraduate students studying courses lasting one year or more are eligible for a council tax exemption certificate.
This qualification is essential if you want to become a registered architect. Once you have passed the RIBA Part 3 exams, you can practice in any EU or commonwealth country and many other countries outside the EU.
Many of our graduates have successfully secured employment at world-class practices throughout the UK and further afield, while others have remained in the city of Liverpool contributing to its evolution, taking key roles in leading practices that have reshaped the city over the last decade.
If after graduating you choose not to go down the route of becoming a registered architect, a range of other careers are open to you. Past graduates have pursued successful careers as project managers, property developers, building contractors, furniture designers, lighting designers, architectural visualisation artists and journalists.
International applicants are required to demonstrate equivalent qualifications to the standard requirements for entry when applying for courses at LJMU.
Students must also demonstrate a proficiency in communicating through English, for example via an IELTS tests or equivalent.
Please note: UK visa restrictions mean that international students are only permitted to study on a full-time basis.
Please contact LJMU’s International Team by visiting www.ljmu.ac.uk/international for more information and advice.
LJMU has launched a range of generous international scholarships for students enrolling at the University.
These prestigious scholarships take the form of tuition fee waivers and are available for outstanding international students applying for taught postgraduate programmes and research degrees.
You will need to complete an additional application form in order to be considered for these scholarships. Full eligibility criteria and the online application form are available here: www.ljmu.ac.uk/international
Applications for these scholarships are welcomed from:
- new international applicants
- current LJMU international students hoping to progress onto postgraduate study at the University
- LJMU international alumni
English for Postgraduate courses bursary
A bursary will be available for students who must complete the six week English for Postgraduate Studies course to improve their IELTS score by 0.5 prior to enrolling on their postgraduate taught or research degree at LJMU.
This bursary take the form of a tuition fee waiver, which will be deducted from your tuition fee when you enrol on your degree programme. You do not need to complete the online scholarship form in order to receive this bursary. Please note: If you are awarded this bursary you are not eligible to apply for an international scholarship.
Please Note: The University reserves the right to cancel, suspend or modify this information at any time.