Carlos Villarreal is studying with IDI on the online MA Illustration (Visual Communication) course as part of the Postgraduate Programme in Art and Design from the University of Hertfordshire. We spoke to him to find out more about his experience as an IDI master's student and what he hopes to gain from his qualification:
"I chose to study at MA level with IDI because it was the only program that was flexible for my needs: it's online/distance, which means I can be anywhere in the world and study; it's part time, which allows me to continue working; and it's affordable for me. I think that IDI is great value for money.
"I became convinced when I saw the instructors listed on the IDI's website. I was able to see who they are and what they do. I am extremely happy that my tutors are working professionals and I can see their work on their websites. This really convinced me to study with IDI.
"It has been a long dream for me to pursue an MA and now I'm finally doing it.
"Illustration is the oldest of my passions and I always wanted to become a professional in this field. Now, I am finally pursuing my oldest primal dream.
"The online system is great. Communication with tutors and classmates is fantastic and study modules are smooth. I don't feel disconnected; I feel that I'm really studying with everybody in the same class. I believe that I have made the right choice by studying with IDI.
"A postgraduate level degree demands the student to be more self-driven and self-disciplined. I personally prefer this because it allows me to organize my own time to my own needs. I also believe that each student has to present a stronger argument about his or her work and that requires more research. Essentially, I think that postgraduate level means more freedom.
"Through my experience working in the games industry, I learned that having a title was never a requirement, but having a good portfolio and skills was essential. Pursuing an MA at IDI will lead me to create a coherent portfolio that will help me grow professionally and allow me to expand into other areas.
"To anybody finishing an undergraduate degree, I would advise you to wait until pursuing a postgraduate title and recommend you gain work experience and come back in a couple of years. This will prepare you more for the challenges of an MA.
"I personally feel that I am taking better advantage of this program after working in my industry for a few years. I can relate closer to many concepts and I can go further with my work."
Carlos' website: www.carlosvk.info