Study Light and Lighting MSc at UCL

  • London, All EnglandLondon, All England


Light and Lighting MSc

UCL offers one of the world’s most comprehensive master’s degrees in Light and Lighting. We bring together the technical and creative sides of lighting design, to offer an extensive package of knowledge and skills that are employed across the lighting industry and built environment. You will learn to design lighting as an integrated component of architecture, utilising exciting advances in science and technology whilst taking into consideration human responses to the lit environment.

From gas lamps to LEDs, as technology has progressed the lighting industry has become increasingly specialist. UCL’s Light and Lighting MSc is designed to give you a comprehensive package of knowledge and skills for a career in the lighting profession. As a student on the programme you’ll gain in-depth expertise on the science of light, lamp and luminaire technologies, alongside the impact of light on architectural form and the human response. This will give you the vision to design beautiful lit environments that promotes the wellbeing of their users, and the skills to ensure that they are successfully engineered.

You will learn:

  • The fundamentals of lighting, including natural day light, lighting technologies, design calculations, and the human response
  • Mathematical models and physical concepts for illumination, applied to the reality of the lit environment
  • Computational design tools used in the lighting and architectural industry such as Rhino 3D, Grasshopper, Ladybug/Radiance and DIALux
  • Advanced design techniques to produce conceptual and detailed lighting designs and luminaire product designs
  • How to design a lighting control system that meets people’s needs in different environments
  • The evolution of lighting design and innovation over time, giving the historical context for lighting design practice in the present day
  • Essential lighting practice, regulations and standards required for lighting designers
  • About current research in the area of lighting, sustainability, health and wellbeing

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Who this course is for

This programme is suited both for recent graduates and early or mid-career professionals looking to expand their knowledge in the field. People passionate about lighting are welcome to apply. Applicants tend to come from backgrounds in architecture, interior design, industrial design, engineering, science, arts and theatre subjects. However, we encourage all prospective students with an interest in lighting to apply.

The foundation of your career

We have a rich network of alumni who have progressed or made a career in the lighting industry. Our graduates now work in global engineering consultancies, such as Arup, Buro Happold, Hoare Lea and Mott MacDonald. Others work in lighting design practices, architecture offices and luminaire manufacturers. A number of students have also used the MSc as a foundation for MPhil/PhD research. You can read about their experiences in our alumni profiles.

Several alumni have gone on to win international awards in the field of lighting, including the Light Play prize at the Total Lighting Show, the RHS Silver Gilt Medal and Lighting Designer of the Year. A number of graduates have also received the Society of Light and Lighting’s Young Lighters of the Year award.


This degree gives you a comprehensive package of lighting knowledge widely employed across industry. During the Master’s we welcome design practitioners, manufacturers and researchers to give presentations. This puts you in touch with the lighting innovators, sharing the latest from industry and giving added depth to your studies through their practice.

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