MA Design for Exhibition and Museums

The Course

This programme is designed to help you to develop as an interdisciplinary, creative designer in a direction that aligns with your interests and career aspirations.

A practice-led approach involves undertaking projects in areas of exhibition design that interest you. These could include trade shows, museums, international expositions, cultural events, retail and leisure environments, theatre, television and film stage sets, heritage sites and visitor centres.

In preparation for a career in this sector, you will have the opportunity to explore the social and cultural context of exhibitions and the chance to develop a critical understanding of current theory in design and museology, as well as advancing your marketing, communication and project management skills. You will be able to negotiate a programme of projects tailored to meet your individual interests, and have the opportunity to broaden your network of industry contacts and compile your own individual portfolio.

The programme proceeds in three levels. Each stage attracts 60 points of level M credit under the national Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS):

Postgraduate Certificate (60 credit points)
Research Methods and Cultural Theory – 15 points
Professional Studies – 15 points
Certificate Project – 30 points

Postgraduate Diploma (120 credit points)
Research Preparation – 15 points
Diploma Project – 45 points

Masters (180 credit points)
Thesis Project – 60 credit points

Students may study full-time, part-time or work-based and may change mode of study at the end of any stage. All students enrol on the Masters programme. Students may then elect to take a stage qualification or to pursue the full programme.

The composition and delivery for the course breaks down differently for each module and may include lectures, seminars, workshops, independent study, practicals, work placements, research and one-to-one learning.

Weekly contact hours on this programme may vary depending on the individual module options chosen and the stage of study. Postgraduate level study involves a significant proportion of independent study, exploring the material covered in lectures and seminars. As a general guide, for every hour in class students are expected to spend at least two - three hours in independent study. For more detailed information please contact the programme leader.

MA DEM Diploma Project (Core)
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MA DEM Diploma Project (Core)

This module aims to develop professional practice in design and design-related research. It provides an opportunity to undertake negotiated project work in pursuit of individual or group interests. Normally the project will be seen as a vehicle for exploring an innovative professional approach to a range of design concerns, i.e. contextual analysis, briefing process (programming), professional practice, project management, concept development, documentation, evaluation and presentation.

MA DEM Thesis Project (Core)
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MA DEM Thesis Project (Core)

This module provides an opportunity to integrate all of the elements of the course in a design research project that aims to significantly extends their knowledge, skills and professional abilities.

It may be either:

  • a comprehensive design project focused on critical investigation of a specific question, issue or range of related issues.
  • an in-depth study of one area of the preceding project work.
  • an investigation of the wider implications of the preceding project work.

The module provides an opportunity to explore the boundaries of one or more areas of design knowledge and to select, evaluate and apply of a range of advanced techniques and methods. It also aims to foster the student’s ability to work autonomously, exercise critical judgement, and communicate complex and abstract ideas to peers and a professional audience.

The Thesis project may be extended to include a short placement where this is relevant to the student’s development of the project.

Preparatory Work (Core)
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Preparatory Work (Core)

This module aims to introduce students from different cultural and specialist backgrounds to the basic principles of practice based research and to more advanced theoretical and practical issues pertinent to Interior Architecture and Design. It is designed to enable the student to begin to map out an area of interest in order to establish specific objectives for their individual programme of study.

The module provides an induction programme, team building exercises, and an opportunity for the student to test ideas and approaches through a combination of practical and written exercises. The subject and nature of the work will arise out of negotiations/ discussions between the tutor and individual student. Students are expected to demonstrate a wide range of skills and knowledge in planning, implementing, documenting and presenting their practical/written work.

Students are also expected to produce a project file. This acts as a sketchbook, ideas book and developmental record. In addition, the file should include self evaluation and a reflective working diary.

Research Methods and Cultural Theory (Core)
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Research Methods and Cultural Theory (Core)

This module is designed to give students the opportunity to investigate the social and cultural context of architecture and design, view their own design and design-related research in a theoretical context, and explore and question the relationship between social and cultural theories and research in exhibition and museum design.

A series of lectures and seminars aims to provide a framework for research in a design context, exploring the function and use of theory in architectural and design investigations, and introducing the practical aspects of designing and conducting a research project. Through selected readings, lectures and seminar discussions, a variety of social and cultural perspectives will be considered.

Students are expected to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of competing theories through exploring of a body of knowledge, to identify a potential research topic and to articulate a research question.

Research Preparation (Core)
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Research Preparation (Core)

This module follows on from Research Methods and Cultural Theory. It gives the student the opportunity to deepen their reading in pursuit of a research topic and develop a full research proposal. Seminars introduce research design and evaluation, and guide the student through the process of articulating a coherent research methodology and selecting and testing methods of enquiry, analysis and evaluation. Normally this will involve a small case study or a pilot study conducted in preparation for the thesis project.

† Some courses may offer optional modules. The availability of optional modules may vary from year to year and will be subject to minimum student numbers being achieved. This means that the availability of specific optional modules cannot be guaranteed. Optional module selection may also be affected by staff availability.

Assessment is by project work and written assignment. There are no time-limited examinations.

Assessment Feedback

The University of Lincoln's policy on assessment feedback aims to ensure that academics will return in-course assessments to you promptly – usually within 15 working days after the submission date.

 2018/19 Entry*2019/20 Entry*
Home/EU £7,300 £7,400

(including Alumni Scholarship*** reduction )**

£5,475 £5,920
International £15,700 £16,000
(Including International Alumni / Global Postgraduate Scholarship £2,000 reduction)**
£13,700 £14,000
 Part-time Home/EU £41 per credit point £41 per credit point
 Part-time International £87 per credit point £89 per credit point

* Academic year September- July
** Subject to eligibility
*** 20% reduction for 2019/20 entry/25% reduction for 2018/19 entry.


A new system of postgraduate loans  for Master's courses has been introduced in the UK. Under the new scheme individuals** will be able to borrow up to £10,609 for the purpose of completing an eligible postgraduate Master's qualification.


As a postgraduate student you may be eligible for scholarships in addition to those shown above.

Guidance for Part-time Postgraduate Fees

To complete a standard Master's Taught programme, you must complete 180 credit points.

Full time students will be invoiced for the programme in full upon initial enrolment.

For part-time students, tuition fees are payable each credit point enrolled. To calculate your part-time fees, multiply the part-time fee per credit point by the number of credits you intend to complete within that academic year. This is usually between 60 and 90 credit points per year.

For example, if the fee per credit point for your programme is £38, and you enrol on 60 credits, the tuition fee payable for that academic year will be £2280.

Fees for enrolment on additional modules

Tuition fees for additional activity are payable by the student/sponsor and charged at the equivalent £ per credit point rate for each module. Additional activity includes:

- Enrolment on modules that are in addition to the validated programme curriculum

- Enrolment on modules that are over and above the full credit diet for the relevant academic year

- Retakes of modules as permitted by the Board of Examiners

Exceptionally tuition fees may not be payable where a student has been granted a retake with approved extenuating circumstances.

For further information and for details about funding your study, scholarships and bursaries, please see our Postgraduate Fees & Funding pages [].

Other Costs

For each course you may find that there are additional costs. These may be with regard to the specific clothing, materials or equipment required. Some courses provide opportunities for you to undertake field work or field trips. Where these are compulsory, the cost for travel and accommodation will be covered by the University and so is included in your fee. Where these are optional, you will normally be required to pay your own transport, accommodation and general living costs.

With regards to text books, the University provides students who enrol with a comprehensive reading list and you will find that our extensive library holds either material or virtual versions of the core texts that you are required to read. However, you may prefer to purchase some of these for yourself and you will be responsible for this cost.

First or second class honours degree or equivalent professional experience.

All applicants should submit a digital portfolio with their application.

International Students will require English Language at IELTS 6.0 with no less than 5.5 in each element, or equivalent.

Learn from Experts

Throughout this degree, students may receive tuition from professors, senior lecturers, lecturers, researchers, practitioners, visiting experts or technicians, and they may also be supported in their learning by other students.

Tonia Warsap

Programme Leader

From her time in industry Tonia has gained a wealth of experience and first-hand knowledge of the fundamentals of interior architecture. At the University of Lincoln, she is Programme Leader of MA Design for Exhibition and Museums and a Senior Lecturer.

Your Future Career

Career and Personal Development

Our graduates have gone to work in leading design consultancies, national museums and heritage organisations. You will have the opportunity to broaden your network of professional contacts and put a portfolio together to present yourself as a knowledgeable, skilful practitioner able to collaborate at the highest level of critical and creative engagement.

Careers Services

The University Careers and Employability Team offer qualified advisors who can work with you to provide tailored, individual support and careers advice during your time at the University. As a member of our alumni we also offer one-to-one support in the first year after completing your course, including access to events, vacancy information and website resources; with access to online vacancies and virtual and website resources for the following two years.

This service can include one-to-one coaching, CV advice and interview preparation to help you maximise your future opportunities.
The service works closely with local, national and international employers, acting as a gateway to the business world.

Visit our Careers Service pages here


At Lincoln, we constantly invest in our campus as we aim to provide the best learning environment for our students. Whatever the area of study, the University strives to ensure students have access to specialist equipment and resources, to develop the skills, which they may need in their future career.

Our purpose-built Art, Architecture and Design Building includes dedicated design studios, workshops and technology suites.

Students can study and research in the University's Great Central Warehouse Library, which provides more than 250,000 printed books and approximately 400,000 electronic books and journals, as well as databases and specialist collections. The Library has a range of different spaces for shared and individual learning.

The University intends to provide its courses as outlined in these pages, although the University may make changes in accordance with the Student Admissions Terms and Conditions.