3 March 2024

The Jobs of the Future Will Need Creative Thinkers, and UAL Is Feeding That Demand

Right now, anyone weighing up whether to go to university might well be in two minds. In a world wracked with political and economic turmoil, many creative students may feel they face an uncertain future. And if they're pessimistic about their chances of getting their dream career at the end of a three-year degree, they may wonder whether it's wise to pursue it.


Well, if that applies to you, then we have some very good news. Because as far as the experts are concerned, people with creative thinking skills will be in high demand from employers over the coming decades.

Need for creative thinking

According to UUK's recent Jobs of the future report, "analytical thinking and creative thinking are the most important skills needed by employers globally" as AI, automation and digitalisation become more and more important to business.


That might seem like a paradox, especially if you've heard reports that these new technologies are making many creatives redundant. But actually, it makes perfect sense.


Because the areas of creative work that this new tech is replacing are primarily the mundane, boring stuff. For instance, we no longer need designers to spend hours painstakingly removing an object from an image in Photoshop because Photoshop can now do all that automatically at the touch of a button.


However, it's truly creative thinking that even the most advanced AI still doesn't come close to; only humans can provide that. So, it's the ever-expanding AI industry and the larger tech world that will require a massive influx of fresh creative minds over the coming years. And these will largely be drawn from universities like UAL (University of the Arts London).

Graduate advantage

As the UUK report states, "Due to AI, there will be around a 10% net increase in roles that require a degree over the next 20 years. This will include almost 500,000 more professional and scientific jobs. While some graduate jobs [...] may see significant negative impacts, the only groups that will see an estimated rise in net employment will be those educated in higher education or to a degree level."

Want to take advantage of this emerging trend? Then UAL's Creative Computing Institute is perfectly placed to help you launch your career in this exciting field.


The Creative Computing Institute specialises in teaching exactly the skills employers are increasingly queuing up for. Here are five skills you will develop and refine as part of your study.

1. Creativity and machine learning

Machine learning is the engine of artificial intelligence, underpinning all the new AI software that is now being used across the creative and scientific industries. By developing a deep understanding of machine learning at UAL, students will be well-placed to understand new AI tools, trends and breakthroughs and use them in creative and imaginative ways.

2. Human-computer interaction

The possibilities of computing have never been greater, but there's an old saying: "Garbage in, garbage out". UAL's courses focus on designing technology for and around real people's needs, capabilities and behaviours. This ensures new technological solutions serve purposes meaningful to people's lives.

3. Big data, social platforms and digital citizenship

Big data is powering our world, and future technologists need the skills to store, process, analyse and visualise complex and large data sets in order to uncover insights. But these are not just technical skills. In a society where social platforms are integral to our lives, and responsible and ethical participation is key, you'll also learn skills of critical thinking and ethical accountability.

4. Computational environments, visualisation and sensing

Modern computers offer immense processing capabilities for modelling complex systems, running simulations, big data analytics, and more. To leverage this potential, UAL students learn to represent data meaningfully and apply quantitative reasoning at scale.

5. Creative coding and software development for the digital creative industries

Between streaming, apps, video games, digital art and more, there is a huge and rising demand for technical talent in creative digital realms. UAL's approach to building both technical and creative skills will leave you ideally placed to secure the best positions in this growing jobs market.

The importance of ethics

UAL is not, however, just about getting its students into the best jobs. It's also committed to ensuring this brave new, AI-driven future takes humanity in the right direction. In that light, ethics are fundamental and integrated throughout its curricula.


As they see it, these evolving technologies have tremendous power to connect people, spark meaningful discourse, and even social change. However, this potential can only be harnessed through intentional ethical frameworks.


Addressing core ethical dilemmas around issues such as bias, transparency, privacy, accessibility, misinformation, and automation helps to ensure that compassion and inclusivity will guide the hands and minds in developing the next generation of creative digital tools.


Here are details of four BSc courses offered by UAL that promise to help give creatives a front-row seat in the future world of work.

1. Creative Computing

UAL's Creative Computing course is an exciting mix of computing and creative practice. You'll build apps, craft digital experiences, explore machine intelligence and more. And in the process you'll acquire a contemporary set of applied computing skills covering the dominant coding languages and workflows that support innovation in the digital technology sector and creative practice.


In short, you learn skills hugely coveted by the industry today. And you'll have the chance to put them into practice, too! That's because, between years two and three of study, you'll have the opportunity to pursue an industry placement.

2. Creative Robotics

Robotics will be key to the future world of work, and this course will position you to be fully involved in this global revolution. Creative roboticists are highly sought-after due to their ability to translate creative direction into robotic design. On this course, you'll learn how to use mechanics, electronics and computing intelligence to build a variety of robots, such as soft robotics, non-humanoid, humanoid and evolutionary robots.


Engagement with creative robotics practice and critical theory will build your ability to self-reflect and think critically about your role in shaping the world. And you'll be exposed to different modes of learning and develop a solid understanding of robotics technologies through a creative lens.

3. Computer Science

Computer science underpins much of modern life and supports economic opportunity at all scales, from web platforms, computer graphics and communication technology to machine learning, AI and computer vision. On this course, you'll learn practical coding skills in core modern programming languages, enabling you to work in a wide range of contexts.


The BSc Computer Science programme offers a deep engagement with core computer science skills, including algorithms, data structures, secure systems, software engineering, architectures and networking. Importantly, you'll collaborate with your classmates on projects to creatively solve problems together, as the ability to work creatively as a team is a core attribute highly prized by today's top employers.

4. Data Science and AI

Data science is the foundation of the tech that underpins modern approaches to AI. And so this course is at the heart of a rapidly expanding applied discipline that's shaping the world around us and stimulating a growing area of employment.


You'll develop a deep engagement with data science and AI, including statistical theory, mathematics, data structures, computational approaches, machine learning and software engineering. This innovative curriculum is fully industry-ready because it's crafted by diverse experts with a unique blend of perspectives, increasing employment and research opportunities for graduates.

Grow your career at UAL's Creative Computing Institute

As AI takes over the world, the majority of new roles over the next five years will be at the intersection of creativity and computational technology. And that means demand for creative people will grow immeasurably.


If you want to be a part of shaping the future, from game design to data visualisation, UAL's Creative Computing Institute can give you the education and skills you need to take full advantage of these exciting new career opportunities.


View the full list of courses to find the perfect study option.