IB: 33 points overall with Three HL subjects at 655
3 years full-time
In Digital Arts Computing you will develop artistic work in conversation with critical studies. Through a series of projects for public exhibition you will explore the materialities of creative computing. This degree will prepare you to transform and lead the field of digital art.
Why study BSc Digital Arts Computing at Goldsmiths?
- This degree places you in the middle of a fast-evolving industry - digital arts computing is where some of the most exciting developments in technology and culture are currently found.
- You’ll learn the fundamentals of programming and the theory behind art and technology, but you’ll also have the chance to develop your creative practice. You’ll be making a variety of art works, building your portfolio and developing a series of projects that will be exhibited publicly.
- You’ll produce works across a diverse range of media – not just on a screen. Supported by studio technicians in state-of-the-art facilities, you will have access to motion capture, virtual reality, 360 immersive cinema and audio visual, 3D printers, laser cutters, robotics, wearable technologies, woodworking, digital sculpture and embroidery.
- We regularly invite world-class artists and curators to explain their work and engage in critical dialogue with our students. This allows you to develop a wider understanding of the contemporary art scene and how your work sits within the professional art world.
Contact the department
If you have specific questions about the degree, contact Jesse Wolpert.
What you'll study
For 2020–21, we have made some changes to how the teaching and assessment of certain programmes are delivered. To check what changes affect this programme, please visit the Programme Changes page
The programme is made up of three components:
- Computational arts practice. This will combine technical and creative skills and will be taught by practising computational artists in the Department of Computing
- Critical studies of contemporary art. This will be taught in the Department of Art
- Core technical computing, with a particular focus on audio-visual technology. This will be taught in the Department of Computing
|Year 1 compulsory modules||Module title||Credits|
|Introduction to Programming||15 credits|
|Numerical Mathematics||15 credits|
|Critical Studies in Computational Arts I||30 credits|
|Graphics 1||15 credits|
|Generative Drawing||15 credits|
|Introduction to Digital Media||15 credits|
|Digital Arts Project 1||15 credits|
|Year 2 compulsory modules||Module title||Credits|
|C++ for Creative Practice||15 credits|
|Perception and Multimedia Computing||15 credits|
|Critical Studies in Computational Arts II||30 credits|
|Digital Arts Project 2||30 credits|
|Year 2 option modules||Module title||Credits|
|Physical Computing||15 credits|
|Graphics 2||15 credits|
|Extended C++||15 credits|
Your final year consists of:
- 30 credits of option modules from a list made available annually by the department, and a critical studies dissertation in term one
- a major project in term two
|Year 3 compulsory modules||Module title||Credits|
|Final Project in Computational Arts||60 credits|
|Dissertation in Critical Studies in Computational Arts||30 credits|
This programme is taught through a mixture of lectures, tutorials, workshops and laboratory sessions. You’ll also be expected to undertake a significant amount of independent study. This includes carrying out required and additional reading, preparing topics for discussion, and producing essays or project work.
The following information gives an indication of the typical proportions of learning and teaching for each year of this programme*:
- Year 1 - 21% scheduled learning, 79% independent learning
- Year 2 - 18% scheduled learning, 82% independent learning
- Year 3 - 11% scheduled learning, 89% independent learning
How you’ll be assessed
You’ll be assessed by a variety of methods, depending on your module choices. These include coursework, examinations, group work and projects.
The following information gives an indication of how you can typically expect to be assessed on each year of this programme*:
- Year 1 - 90% coursework, 10% written exam
- Year 2 - 100% coursework
- Year 3 - 88% coursework, 13% written exam
*Please note that these are averages are based on enrolments for the traditional pathway in 2019/20. Each student’s time in teaching, learning and assessment activities will differ based on individual module choices. Find out more about how this information is calculated.
Credits and levels of learning
An undergraduate honours degree is made up of 360 credits – 120 at Level 4, 120 at Level 5 and 120 at Level 6. If you are a full-time student, you will usually take Level 4 modules in the first year, Level 5 in the second, and Level 6 modules in your final year. A standard module is worth 30 credits. Some programmes also contain 15-credit half modules or can be made up of higher-value parts, such as a dissertation or a Major Project.
Please note that due to staff research commitments not all of these modules may be available every year.
What our students say
We accept the following qualifications:
International Baccalaureate: 33 points overall with Three HL subjects at 655
Access: Pass with 45 Level 3 credits including 30 Distinctions and a number of merits/passes in subject-specific modules
Scottish qualifications: BBBBC (Higher) or BBC (Advanced Higher)
European Baccalaureate: 75%
Irish Leaving Certificate: H2 H2 H2 H2
We request up to 12 items of work for portfolio, these can be images or video of sculpture, painting, drawings, digital or any other work that gives us an understanding of your practice. We will request to see a portfolio when invited for an in person interview.
You should ideally have Grade B/Grade 6 or above in GCSE Maths. If your portfolio is particularly strong we may accept a slightly lower GCSE Maths grade.
We also accept a wide range of international qualifications. Find out more about the qualifications we accept from around the world.
If English isn’t your first language, you will need an IELTS score (or equivalent English language qualification) of 6.0 no element lower than 5.5 to study this programme. If you need assistance with your English language, we offer a range of courses that can help prepare you for degree-level study.
Fees & funding
Annual tuition fees
These are the fees for students starting their programme in the 2021/2022 academic year.
From August 2021 EU/EEA/Swiss nationals will no longer be eligible for 'Home' fee status. EU/EEA/Swiss nationals will be classified as 'International' for fee purposes, more information can be found on our fees page.
- Home - full-time: £9250
- International - full-time: £17370
It’s not currently possible for international students to study part-time if you require a Student Visa, however this is currently being reviewed and will be confirmed in the new year. Please read our visa guidance in the interim for more information. If you think you might be eligible to study part-time while being on another visa type, please contact our Admissions Team for more information.
If you are looking to pay your fees please see our guide to making a payment.
In addition to your tuition fees, you'll be responsible for any additional costs associated with your course, such as buying stationery and paying for photocopying. You can find out more about what you need to budget for on our study costs page.
There may also be specific additional costs associated with your programme. This can include things like paying for field trips or specialist materials for your assignments. Please check the programme specification for more information.
Helen Pritchard (co-head of programme)
Helen is joint head of BSc Digital Arts Computing and a lecturer in Computational and Digital Arts. As an artist and geographer Helen’s interdisciplinary work brings together the fields of Computational Aesthetics, Geography, Design and Feminist TechnoScience. Her practice is both one of writing and making and these two modes mutually inform each other in order to consider the impact of computational practices on our engagement with environments. Central to Helen’s work is the consideration of co-research, participation and environmental practices. Helen’s practice often emerges as workshops, collaborative events and computational art. She is the co-editor of Data Browser 06: Executing Practices, published by Autonomedia. NY (2017).
Audrey Samson (co-head of programme)
Audrey is joint head of the BSc Digital Arts Computing and a lecturer in Fine Arts (Critical Studies) in the Art Department. Resident at the Somerset House Studios, she is a critical technical practitioner in the métis duo FRAUD which develop forms of art-led inquiry into the multiple scales of power and necropolitics that flow through physical and cultural spaces.
Simon is a digital artist with a background in music and a strong preoccupation with games and play. His work incorporates hidden mechanisms, emergent behaviour, paradox, self-reference, inconsistency, abstract humour, absurdity and wonder. He makes software which creates musical odysseys through exploring animated worlds and design games in which the players unwittingly become performers of bizarre and occasionally daft rites.
Rebecca is a faculty member at Goldsmiths, and a member of the Embodied AudioVisual Interaction (EAVI) group. She also supervises research in the Soundlab at Princeton University. Her research work encompasses a variety of projects developing new technologies to enable new forms of human expression and creativity. Much of this combines techniques from human-computer interaction, machine learning and signal processing to allow people to apply machine learning more effectively to new problems such as the design of new digital musical instruments and gestural interfaces for gaming and health.
Atau bridges the fields of media art, experimental music, and research. Active in the Tokyo noise music and media arts scenes, he moved to Paris with a residency at the Cité des Arts to work at IRCAM, was Artistic Ambassador for Apple France, and was researcher at Sony Computer Science Laboratory Paris. Atau creates sensor-based musical instruments for performance and exhibition, and is known for his work with biosignal interfaces. His recent work seeks to harness collective musical creativity in mobile environments, seeking out the continued place of the artist in democratised digital forms.
Theodoros is a senior lecturer in computational arts and the course leader of the MA/MFA in Computational Arts. He completed his PhD in face recognition at Imperial College after which he returned to Greece where he started the premiere computational media course at the Athens School of Fine Arts. He is the co-founder and director of Random Quark, a creative technology studio where they develop experiences for artists and brands that delight and impress.
Edgar is senior lecturer in Fine Art (Critical Studies) at Goldsmiths. He is an artist and co-director of A Conversation in Many Parts, the international discursive platform for contemporary art and concepts. Recent exhibitions include British Art Show 7, Hayward Gallery, ICA London. His book on ambient attitudes is under negotiation with Sternberg Press, Berlin/ NY.
Michael is an academic in the Department of Computing. He teaches perception & multimedia computing. He has been a software developer at Avid, SoundHound, Cycling ’74, and Keith McMillen Instruments. He has also taught live electroacoustic music, real-time interaction and socialist realism.
Sylvia is a Lecturer in Virtual Reality. Working in VR for more than 10 years she developed a unique interdisciplinary research profile with journal and conference publications in both VR technology and social neuroscience. Her work in training and education in VR has been featured multiple times in the media, including BBC Horizon and the New Scientist magazine. More info can be found on Xueni Pan's website.
Richard's main area of scholarly interest is in visual art that engages in one way or another with the political; he is interested in the political impact of visual art and also the boundaries between aesthetics and politics. His interests are primarily philosophical, but over the course of the last four years he has written about a fairly wide range of artists as well as the theoretical problems associated with art and politics.
Catherine is currently researching the re-enactment of histories of feminism in contemporary art. Her work explores re-enactment as a way of learning from history, as well as a place of fantasy and possibility for the future. Drawing on thinking about temporalities and history-making from queer and feminist theorists, as well as the construction of ‘the contemporary’ and ‘contemporary art’ in philosophy and art history, she has written a number of essays that explore strategies of re-enactment, re-writing and community-building across temporal divides. The beginning of this research has been published as “Fans of Feminism: re-writing histories of second-wave feminism in contemporary art” and “A Time of One’s Own" in the Oxford Art Journal.
Ros is Senior Lecturer in Fine Art, Critical Studies in the Art Department at Goldsmiths. Her research explores the trajectories of militant filmmaking, particularly in relation to liberation struggles and revolutionary movements in Mozambique, Angola, Portugal, Guinea-Bissau and Burkina Faso, and more recently with the intersections between artistic practices and decolonial environmentalism.
Stephen has worked in collaboration with Graham Ellard since 1993. Their work is concerned with the relationship between pre-cinematic spectacle and immersive space and abstract film and cinematic spectacle. This body of work exists at the intersection of architecture and film and draws on and emphasises the architectural qualities of the projected video image to create an immersive and dynamic space that the spectator experiences as a kind of performer. Most recently, their work has engaged with the conventions of representing architectural space in film.
Susan is a writer, artist, organiser and educator. She researches the relationships between art and micropolitics: where the production of subjectivity becomes a crucial site for analysing and intervening in the reproduction of capitalism, imperialism, art and culture. She has worked in performance, video, installation, drawing, and public / site-based intervention. More recently, she has been focused on writing and co-producing workshops and research processes using various forms of participatory militant investigation.
This degree is designed to prepare you for a career as a technology-led creative in the media industries. The programme will develop you not just as a technical expert, but also as a creative thinker, allowing you to learn and explore through a combination of technology and imagination. Technical skills include:
- a strong understanding of how to design, develop and apply software in all areas of commerce and industry
- an awareness of the fundamentals of computing (hardware, software, architecture and operating systems)
- an understanding of programming languages
- a clear sense of the issues involved in building and maintaining reliable software for the sophisticated demands of today's market and for the software industry as it develops throughout the 21st century
- an understanding of the social context and visual design aspects of software development together with the technical skills of programming
Our degrees have a large proportion of practical work in which you must deliver software projects, both individually and in groups. This mirrors as closely as possible a real-world work environment. These projects develop your technical skills but also require you to tackle the broader aspects of the software development process, such as understanding users' needs and requirements and the design of interfaces on a number of platforms – from web pages to touchscreen phones.
You'll also gain skills in teamwork, creative thinking, report writing, time management and organisation, presenting reasoned arguments to a range of audiences, and retrieval of information – all of which are sought by graduate employers.
The explosive and ever-growing use of technology in business and commerce means that there's a whole range of different career possibilities for computing graduates. In terms of job opportunities and salaries, the IT sector is well ahead of most other industrial and commercial sectors.
Where do Goldsmiths computing graduates work?
Some of the recent graduate level careers for computing graduates have included:
- Professional artist
- Curating and exhibition design
- Film/TV special effects and post-production
- Visual interface designer
- Computer graphics designer
- Video game developer
- Music production
- Multimedia systems analyst
- Media and entertainment industries
- Mobile App developer
- Web developer
- Computer music/sound engineer
- Interface designer
- Database manager
- New media and advertising companies
- Cultural industries
- IT consultancies
- Architecture firms
- Film Industry
- Computer games developers
- Software development firms
- Design studios
- Financial institutions
- Engineering companies
- Retail and service industries
- Tourism and leisure industries
- Entertainment industries