Skip to main content

Master of Philosophy (Communication Design)


The MPhil. Communication Design (Master of Philosophy in Communication Design) programme was launched in 2013 to further intensify research and scholarship into design pedagogy, professional practice and contemporary communication culture. It focuses on research and scholarship in Visual Communication Design. The department is currently running and a four-semester, MPhil Design programme. Design is the forefront of world’s solution and therefore, an effective design programme will not only require ingenuity of educators and their products, but will act as a catalyst for both primary and secondary industrialization.


The programme come on the heels of emerging challenges and the need for design research and design-based research.  As the only degree-awarding institution for Communication Design, current trends and future projections require that designers (both locally and internationally trained) advance and strengthened their training and be equipped with relevant research capabilities. Currently, design is seen as a generic force in almost all endeavours, apart being seen in its traditional role of providing graphic images or visual forms that categorically transform popular perceptions, people’s behaviour and the economy. It is also common nowadays for all sectors of both industrial and commercial players to recruit graphic/communication designers, who can work with the latest digital technology and know the most cost-effective production process. They are also expected to understand management principles and able to provide required solutions when the situation demands. The programme will therefore be opened to applicants with knowledge in inclusive design, universal design, industrial design, architectural design, environmental design and graphic design. 

Goals and Objectives

The programme provides the opportunity for degree holders in traditional Graphic Design, and other design-related courses to upgrade their knowledge and skills, to acquire the appropriate professional skills and research knowledge that will lead to further advanced knowledge. At the end of the programme, MPhil graduates would be equipped with research-driven knowledge and skills, and to undertake research into design and design-related issues.


Graduates from the programme are expected to possess:

  1. The ability to conduct in-depth research and evaluation that enriches their visual imagination, understanding and concept development, and fosters their academic enlightenment;

  2. Heightened awareness about design-driven solutions and issues of questions such as the environment, sustainability, disability, gender influences;
  3. Skills in manipulating a variety of tools, materials and equipment to complete complex or difficult design-related tasks;
  4. Technical competence and organisational skills that produce successful graphic communication within their budget and on schedule;
  5. The capacity for research and teaching or instructing others in their specific specialities; and
  6. The ability to integrate their ideas within broader international perspectives and standards.



Prospective students should have a good first degree (First Class or Second Class; Upper Division) in one of the pathway areas in Communication Design or Design-related Programme. MPhil. Communication Design applicants must have a minimum of two years professional working experience, and further demonstrate the appropriate intellectual, creative and personal qualities to pursue the programme. Candidates must be able to demonstrate, through the submission and review of a portfolio and through an interview, a level of knowledge and competence appropriate to the demands of the programme, and to demonstrate the potential to benefit form that study.

MPhil. Candidates are required to submit a 2-page summary of proposal that he/she intends to work on and for which a competent supervisor is readily available.

Candidates would be selected on the basis of a body of work/proposal that will demonstrate an advanced understanding of subject/area, sufficient knowledge and technical skill to realize intentions; evidence of commitment to the subject; research and intellectual curiosity, critical design-thinking; open mindedness; the ability to collaborate, to engage in research and debate, and respond communicatively to criticism.