Product Design Technology (Extended Degree Programme) BSc (Hons)
COURSE INFORMATION (2013 ENTRY)
Full-time foundation year followed by a further 3 years full-time or 4 years sandwichEngineering and Environment
Pandon Building, Newcastle City Campus
The Computing, Engineering and Information Sciences Extended Degree programme provides a foundation year which acts as an introduction to a wide range of courses, including Product Design Technology.
You will be introduced to the basic principles of Product Design Technology during this foundation year; no prior knowledge will be assumed. As your fellow students will be from a range of backgrounds, everyone will be starting at the same level. You will study six modules, which will include a range of practical workshops and lectures. This will enable you to develop the skills and knowledge that you need to enter the three-year full-time degree programme, outlined below.
Traditionally, product designers need to understand the form, shape and aesthetics of the articles with which they are working. Modern enterprises now demand that they are also fully conversant with the technology that is involved with the manufacture of these products. This technology includes medium and high volume production methods, the understanding of the uses and limits of materials, the ability to ensure that the product is fit for the use it was designed for, and that it is produced ‘right first time’.
During the programme you will develop knowledge of applied engineering design, production, and materials technology, together with experience of applying creative and management skills in addressing product design problems. This will be delivered through a balanced programme of lectures, design workshops, seminars and laboratory practicals. You will have the opportunity to work on collaborative projects with industry as you progress through the programme and enter design competitions, including Design Innovation in Plastics, Power of Aluminium, and D&AD Student Awards.
You will be encouraged to make use of the extensive facilities in the School for the computer design, rapid prototyping, testing and manufacture of your designs using cutting-edge technologies and equipment. The University boasts a number of dedicated laboratories for electrical and mechanical engineering and product design, as well as excellent computing facilities with specialist software. You will also benefit from several design spaces, available for group and individual design work.
LEARNING AND TEACHING METHODS
Independent learning skills are a critical aspect of the degree, enabling graduates to pick up new skills throughout their careers. The programme is delivered through a range of lectures, seminars and practical workshops as well as guided independent study. Throughout the programme the student's ownership for their own learning increases, this culminates in identifying an area to study for a final year project which is the capstone of the degree and allows the development of a key area of interest which develops practical and academic skills which significantly enhance employment prospects.
This final year project is supervised on a one to one basis with support from other staff where appropriate.
The assessment strategy is carefully designed to support learning and to meet the diverse needs of students.
Assessment is generally by coursework with some exams in the early years. The nature of the programme means that much of the coursework is practically based.
Graduates will be employed as specialists who will link product design in major product manufacturing companies, specialist small manufacturing enterprises (SMEs) and design consultancies. They will be expected to rise to positions as senior designers, making use of their knowledge and skills at the highest levels of management.
Recent examples of employers include: Nissan, Esterline, AESSEAL plc, Thorn Lighting, Sealed Air ltd.
Some students choose to continue their studies at postgraduate level following this course.
An annual Employer's Fair takes place in the autumn term for students from all Engineering and Environment disciplines, providing the opportunity to meet a wide range of employers and explore placement and graduate employment opportunities. This is an invaluable networking opportunity and consistently receives excellent feedback from both students and employers who are impressed with the students they meet.
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Northumbria University has taken reasonable care to ensure that the information published is accurate at the time of publication. However, the University gives no warranty or representation as to the quality, accuracy or completeness of the information.