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ITU

Master of Science in
Digital Design and Communication

The programme

The 2-year MSc programme in Digital Design and Communication provides you with technical and sociological knowledge about how digital communication affects our lives. You will get to work the significance of new media in communication and cooperation, and you will learn how to incorporate technical possibilities with user needs.

The MSc programme in Digital Design and Communication provides you with an insight into the processes of digital solution development. The different subjects provide you with tools that each contribute to helping you develop a finished digital concept, and you will gain the tools to work theoretically, creatively and practically with digital media and communication.

The job market is looking for employees with the competencies to design digital communication solutions for different target groups and platforms. The Digital Design and Communication MSc programme will teach you methods to maximise the impact of your communication and you will among other things design innovative solutions within areas such as web communication, mobile platforms and social media.

The MSc programme is primarely taught in Danish.

Programme structure

The MSc in Digital Design and Communication has a flexible structure. It provides you with solid competencies within the subjects of the programme while allowing you to specialise in an area that you have great freedom in defining. This allows you to create your own unique profile during the programme.

Course of study for MSc in Digital Design and Communication
1st semester

Videnskabelige metoder og it-forståelse
5 ECTS

Design til digitale kommunikationsplatforme
10 ECTS

Interaction Design
7,5 ECTS
Digitale medier og kommunikation
7,5 ECTS
2nd semester

Digital Innovation
7,5 ECTS
Digital retorik
7,5 ECTS
Elective 
7,5 ECTS
Specialisation Course, part 1
7,5 ECTS
3rd semester*

Global IT 
(7,5 ECTS)
Elective 
(7,5 ECTS)
Specialisation Course, part 2
(12,5 ECTS)
4th semester

Thesis
(30 ECTS)
*on the 3rd semester theres is a mandatory Thesis Preparation Activity (2,5 ECTS)
  • Interaction Design (7,5) includes the use of central theories about interaction design, methods of data collection and idea development for the design of interactive products as well as planning and executing explorative design projects. NB.: This course is not mandatory for students with a BSc in Digital Media and Design or similar.
  • Digital Media and Communication (7,5) includes communication and media theory, theories about communication through digital media as well as identification and analysis of current phenomena and problems from a digital perspective NB.: This course is not mandatory for students with a BSc in Digital Media and Design or similar.
  • Scientific Methods and Understanding IT  parts 1 + 2 (5 ECTS). The focus of the courses is a basic theoretical understanding and practical application of scientific methods and tools to work with digital solutions.
  • Design for Digital Communication Platforms (10 ECTS). The theoretical focus of the course is the theories about communication through digital media as well as historic and contemporary ideas about digital units’ and platforms’ communicative potential. The practical focus of this module is the design of communication and programming for digital communication platforms.
  • Digital Innovation (7,5 ECTS). The course focus is on the innovation- and concept development process from idea to actualisation on an advanced level in theory and practice.
  • Digital rhetoric (7,5 ECTS). The course focus is on theoretical understanding of the particular properties and terms of the digital media as well as communication strategies on an advanced level.
  • Global IT (7,5 ECTS). The course focuses on interaction, culture and social change processes in a global digital perspective in theory and practice.
  • Specialisations and electives

    You choose the field that you want to specialise in already in the second semester. A specialisation includes two courses.

    You also have an excellent opportunity to shape your own profile through electives. See all courses here. You can choose between all the courses offered at the IT University at a Master’s level, as well as take electives at a different university.

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    Specialisations

    During your MSc in Digital Design and Communication you must choose and complete a specialisation (20 ECTS). The specialisations are supposed to lead you to writing your thesis. You attend the courses in their specific order as they have an academic progression – the last courses build on knowledge acquired in the first.

    A specialisation is a combination of two courses  - one course of 7,5 ECTS points and one course of 12, ECTS points. The 12, ECTS course will usually contain a project.

    Specialisation: Social Media Culture

    This specialisation provides fundamental insight into social media as they develop in modern society. Leaning on research traditions from both social science and the humanities, the focus of the specialisation is on communication and interaction, which will contribute to an understanding of the relations between media technology, developments in society and digital culture. 

    The overall term for both technological linkage and social cohesion is networks, and the emphasis is on both the historical basis as well as future strategies for handling social media. 

    The purpose of the specialisation is to support theoretical and practical analytical perspectives of social media and their use.

    The specialisation consists of the following two courses:

    • Part I: Social media: Cultures and networks (7,5 ECTS)
    • Part II: Social media: Users and strategies (12,5 ECTS)

    Expand the paragraph and read more.

    Part I: Social media: Cultures and networks (7.5 ECTS)

    This course introduces basic principles and perspectives and lays the foundation for a common understanding of social and digital networks. The history of the last 20-25 years’ online communities provides the perspective for current social network platforms, and the specific technological framework is put in relation to the development of the users’ digital practice. As social media are increasingly integrated into everyday life, their application is similarly expanded, and the course thus includes a strategic sender perspective.

    Part II: Social media: Users and strategies (12.5 ECTS)

    The second course takes the specialisation further and goes deeper into both theoretical perspectives and specific methods of social media management. You will work with user analyses and typologies, and with examples of both constructive and destructive social activity. The course looks at the strategic use of social media, at specific analytical tools and at communication planning. Relevant guests from the business community will also participate in lectures and exercises.

    You can read course descriptions in the course base

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    Specialisation: Digital Aesthetics

    This specialisation investigates the specific properties of digital media (interactivity, multimediality, virtuality, etc.), and exploits their creative potential in the fields of digital art, experiences and entertainment. 

    It is our ambition that the students attain an in-depth knowledge of the field, getting to know the main theories and historical tendencies, and learn to apply their knowledge creatively by producing works within the field of digital art and entertainment.


    The specialisation grows naturally from DDKs backbone in basic digital communication and design. Theoretically, it will build an inter-disciplinary context of analytic positions, and closely correlate critical analysis and creative practice.

    The specialisation consists of the following two courses: 

    • Part I: Digital Media Aesthetics (7,5 ECTS)
    • Part II: Creative Digital Practice (12,5 ECTS)

    Expand the paragraph to see more.

    Part I: Digital Media Aesthetics (7,5 ECTS)

    This is a mainly theoretical course aimed at defining and re-defining the essential properties of the medium (interactivity, virtuality, multimediality, simulation, etc.). The students will learn to identify and reflect on key aesthetic strategies and design methods involving digital media and technologies. They will analyse digital art and experiences using aesthetic theory, and identify and explore aesthetic processes and phenomena infused by digital media in historical and media specific contexts.

    Part II: Creative Digital Practice (12,5 ECTS)

    The teachers of this course will integrate the students in a real project within their current research on digital arts and aesthetics. Even though the topics will change according to the speciality of the changing teachers, the idea will always be to attain a high level of focus and to get to use the methods and theories from the field. Work is organized in seminar form (high level of participation from students, discussions, collaboration, reading of complex texts) and around the middle of the semester the students have to define their own research question and carry on as a project.

    In the final project, students are required to engage in creative production in groups and analyse and reflect upon their praxis by writing an individual essay. There is a compulsory exhibition of the creative works before the end of the course.

    You can read the description in the course base

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    Specialisation: Designing Interactive Artifacts

    This specialisation builds upon a foundational interaction design course. It offers a structured way for students to study an important and exiting field that encompasses element of computer science and design, and which is highly relevant for industry, such as to become a user experience designer.

    Interactive artifacts, be they software, hardware or some combination thereof, are increasing prevalent in the modern world. Major technical hurdles have been overcome, and there is now near-ubiquitous wireless data access and widespread affordable computing platforms in a variety of form-factors.

    Interaction design plays an important role in designing suitable applications for the technological “building blocks” as well as providing value-add and differentiation for interactive product. For interaction designers, understanding and exploring contexts of use is a key foundation from which design activity is based.

    The specialisation consists of the following two courses: 

    • Part I: Designing Interactive Artifacts (7,5 ECTS)
    • Part II: Research Topics in Interaction design (12,5 ECTS)

    Expand the paragraph to see more.


    Part I: Designing Interactive Artifacts (7,5 ECTS)

    This course dives deeper into the interaction core of interaction design. In particular, this means engaging with different qualities of interaction, new modalities and forms. The emphasis is on a designerly engagement, of tinkering with technology as interaction design themes are engaged with.

    There is less emphasis on field work and holistic solutions, and more emphasis on designing and prototyping novel interaction techniques and interactive artifacts.

    Part II: Research Topics in Interaction design (12,5 ECTS)

    Here, there is a return to the situation of use, as well as going deeper into the theory and practice of interaction design. In this sense, it is a research-oriented course that prepares you for doing an excellent masters thesis in the area of interaction design.

    The course will focus on developing conceptually challenging projects that initiate reflection on both design methods and techniques and research traditions.

    You can read the description in the course base

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    Specialisation: Service Design

    The specialisation brings a service design perspective to the DDK. Its student pool consists of those who seek to be employed in service design, design management, user experience or similar positions in service intensive industries.

    Being an interdisciplinary field, service design refers to designing systems and processes for a holistic user experience with services, specifically defining each touchpoint or point of interaction between user and service provider, and creating overall service strategy of an organization. Unlike products, services come to existence at the moment they are used. This makes it difficult for the designer to fully identify the interaction between user and service provider in advance. Services are systems that involve many different influential factors and stakeholders.

    Service designers may be employed in healthcare, retail, finance, entertainment, education, and transportation, etc. For example, micro-payment in music purchase, news consumption and other areas require service design based on an understanding of mobile technology, e-business as well as customer behaviour. Similarly, the urban transportation system, including the newly introduced Rejsekortet is a highly complex service design project intended to make it easier for commuters to use public transport across the city and for transport providers do traffic planning. The service design specialization takes a macro level and holistic approach to design, bringing business needs, users, and technology together in creating innovative services.

    The specialisation consists of the following two courses:

    • Part I: Introduction to Service Design (7,5 ECTS)
    • Part II: Service Design (12,5 ECTS)

    expand the paragraph and see the course description.

    Part I: Introduction to Service Design (7,5 ECTS)

    The goal of this course is to introduce the conceptual and operational tools for designing and managing service innovations, such as user experience assessment and improvement, design of service organizational procedures, service interface design, as well as envisioning the feasibility and implementation of new service ideas.

    Part II: Service Design (12,5 ECTS)

    In this course, students will develop service innovations, focusing on social, strategic management, and operational aspects of service design. Students will work in collaboration with a real public or private sector partner. Course topics will include development of service strategy, business analysis, stakeholder analysis, service innovation planning, change management, social context of service design in practice, service entrepreneurship, technological infrastructure, application of systems thinking, service co-creation in practice, user journey analysis, development of service blueprints, and design of service touch points.

    You can read the description in the course base

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    Specialisation: Communication Design

    This specialisation is for students who wish to work with the challenges of creating innovative new media products, either in the media industries or in communication roles in other types of organisations. The two courses explore how knowledge from the fields of communication and rhetoric can be combined with design thinking, multimodal composition and media innovation to drive the development of new media. Students are expected to apply knowledge and skills from other courses in the programme, such as “Digital Rhetorics” and “Interaction Design”, to further explore the combination of communication and design thinking in interdisciplinary design processes. 

    The media industries are in a process of major upheaval, which entails not just a crisis of traditional media, but also an intensive hunt for new media innovations to capture tomorrow's audiences. Journalists use crowdsourcing and data mining to find stories and tell them online using a mixture of multimedia, dynamic interfaces and social media. Similar tendencies with user involvement, games and dynamic presentations can be found in advertising and other parts of the communication industries.

    A communication designer is an expert at applying theoretically founded knowledge about media and communication to practical design of new media. This entails developing novel forms of communicating with new media, combining different media forms as well as novel technologies and interactions to communicate a message. The key competence is a set of design methods and holistic approaches which give primacy to the needs of real users and audiences, and values communicative needs above the capabilities of specific technological platforms.

    The specialisation consists of the following two courses: 

    • Part I: Communication Design: Applied Methods and Techniques (7,5 ECTS) 
    • Part II: Communication Design for Mobile, Wearable and Emergent Devices (12,5 ECTS)
    Expand the paragraph and see the course descriptions.

    Part I: Communication Design: Applied Methods and Techniques (7,5 ECTS) 

    The goal of this course is to introduce the practical methods and approaches which will be used in the course. The course will focus on the communication aspects of design, to run in tandem with the digital rhetoric course which focuses on strategic communication and rhetoric.

    Part II: Communication Design for Mobile, Wearable and Emergent Devices (12,5 ECTS)

    The goal of this course is to apply the communication design approach to emerging media platforms, such as mobile and wearable devices, the Internet of Things, ubiquitous/pervasive media etc. The course will be organized around two practical exam projects, one group project and one individual. Each of the projects will include a report and an oral presentation.

    You can read the description in the course base

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    Specialisation: Digital Democratic Citizenship

    This specialization is directed towards students who want to critically investigate and understand the larger sociotechnical consequences of their work in communication and design. The two courses are designed to give students tools and competences to analyze the profound and ongoing changes of democracy and citizenship in digital society.

    Students will learn to critically evaluate the potential of technology design and architecture for democracy and citizenship as well as its limitations due to surveillance and privacy issues. In interaction with researchers and practitioners, this specialization provides theoretical, methodological and practical insights into the challenges and potential of technology for democracy.

    Many would argue that new media technologies reshape how we vote, protest, resist, deliberate, participate, organize, and manage our everyday lives as citizens in a democratic society. By taking a macroperspective on the performance of digital democratic citizenship, this specialization aims at providing the students with a critical and self-reflective perspective to understand and contribute to social change through technology.

    This specialisation consists of the following two courses:

    • Part 1: Digital Democratic Citizenship (7.5 ECTS)
    • Part 2: Digital Democratic Citizenship in Research and Practice (12.5 ECTS)
    Part 1: Digital Democratic Citizenship (7.5 ECTS)

    The goal of this course is to introduce methods and theoretical concepts, which will be used in the specialization. During the course the students develop a conceptual and practical understanding of digital democratic citizenship and equip themselves with methodological tools.

    Part 2: Digital Democratic Citizenship in Research and Practice (12.5 ECTS)

    In this course the students use the theoretical and methodological tools introduced in the first part of the specialization. They will work on small research projects together with

    You can read the description in the course base

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    Student exchange and studies abroad

    It can be an academic boost and an advantage on your CV to do part of your studies at a foreign university. We have designed the course structure to enable you to study abroad for a semester, especially during the third semester. The IT University has exchange agreements with universities around the world, and for students enrolled in Digital Innovation & Management, we recommend:

    Career prospects

    With a combination of theoretical insight and practical skills, you will build skills that enable you to work strategically with digital communication. As a graduate from the MSc programme, you will have gained skills within such areas as concept development, project management, graphic design, digital communication, user friendliness, design and construction of web and multimedia productions as well as digital interaction.

     

    If you are interested in applying for a PhD at the IT University, please see here.

    A Working MSc

    a working MSc

    Teaching

    The teaching consists of a variety of lectures, group work and workshops.  The students in the Digital Design and Communication programme come from different academic backgrounds; from degrees within music, art and design to the natural sciences and social sciences such as sociology and political science.  This diversity creates a creative academic environment, where projects are tackled from many different perspectives.

    Digital Design and Communication is designed for you to collaborate with public and private companies and organisations.  This ensures, that the programme is anchored within the business community and in the real challenges faced by companies. It also enables you to network with the business community before you even graduate.

    Studievejledning

    Are you interested in studying at the IT University of Copenhagen, please contact The Study and Career Guidance.

    Room 3D05 and 3D07
    Rued Langgaards Vej 7
    DK-2300 København S

    Phone: +45 7218 5240

    Email: studievejledningen@itu.dk