In the first year, you'll be introduced to the University and the technical workshops and facilities available to you. On the course you’ll learn the technical and conceptual skills that will give you a solid foundation from which to explore your areas of specialist activity.
Craft, Design and Culture
This unit is based on a series of illustrated lectures that introduce a number of key historical and contemporary contextual frameworks for craft and design practices, encouraging you to begin to identify changing relationships between creativity and wider social and cultural concerns.
Narrative and Rational
You'll examine the process of design development, from initial exploratory brief to final proposal. You'll explore design concepts such as spatial articulation (proportion, scale and placement), user requirements and experimental spatial design concepts. In-depth research will be required at each stage, either individually, in pairs or teams (as required throughout to facilitate and share learning). However, design proposals will be on an individual basis.
This unit introduces you to the study of the technology of small buildings, forms and materials by experimenting with structural types and methods of construction. Technical drawing skills will focus towards differentiating the smaller scale drawing (used to 'sell in' the concept to the client) from the larger scale drawing (used to communicate with the manufacturer (also known as detailing).
The technology aspect of this unit looks at a) structural principles and their application to building construction, b) primary elements of buildings such as floors, walls, doors, stairs and windows, and c) wood, metal and glass. These areas of focus will provide you with the necessary vocabulary to understand technical texts and underpin the structural and materials focus of practical project work.
The second year focus is on finding your own specialist way of working and you’ll be encouraged and supported to start working more independently. During this year you may also have the opportunity to complete an industry work placement or even study abroad.
Contextual and Theoretical Perspectives
We'll encourage you to position your own practice by recourse to a variety of theories, contextual frameworks and critical evaluations. We'll introduce you to a variety of research methods to facilitate independent study towards coherent, self-reflective argument in written form.
This unit focuses on the often conflicting creative and functional requirements of a complex brief. It builds on Year 1 studies in design development, communication and implementation processes.
This unit further develops communication processes in relation to more complex and diverse scenarios that explore ideas relating to branding and identity. Visual communication techniques, ranging from semantic differentials and matrices to model making and computer animated walk-throughs, will be explored as a means of effectively communicating the issues involved and solutions proposed.
Study Abroad (optional)
This optional unit is designed to broaden your educational experience and deepen your understanding of cultural diversity. It will enable you to study within a different cultural context and gain fresh perspectives.
The third year will see you achieve a greater level of independence with self-managed research, study and practice, resulting in a final major project and a written dissertation.
Final Major Project
This represents a synthesis of previous technical and theoretical study, and demonstrates a body of work completed to a professional standard. Design outcomes should express your individual approach to interior architecture and design, both in selection of topic and site or subject, in the vocabulary of design used, and in terms of a high level of personal innovation.
Professional Practice - Portfolio and Practice Experience
Lectures and tutorials will provide methodologies for the preparation of a portfolio of work, a CV, letter of application and interview techniques. Lectures also introduce you to the professional responsibilities of the designer as a member of the building team and provide the necessary support for you to liaise with industry or gain a work placement.
Combined Dissertation / Critical Reflection
You'll undertake a dissertation, by engaging with research appropriate to you chosen subject area. You'll be expected to reflect on and articulate a clear argument that conforms to academic conventions and demonstrates an understanding of the subject through selected and managed analysis and evaluation. You'll also undertake an individually negotiated project of critical research and reflection that provides a contextual framework for, and analysis of, your own practice and/or visual interests.
This course offers the opportunity to study abroad for part of your second year. To find out more about studying abroad as part of your course please see the Study Abroad section:
We’ve established a range of strong industry connections, and companies that often employ our students work for household name clients, including:
- Aston Martin
- The V&A
- Science Museum
- Imperial War Museum
- Karen Millen
- All Saints
- Harvey Nichols
- Hotel Chocolat
- Four Seasons
- JW Marriot.