Skip navigation

If you’d like to receive the latest updates from Northumbria about our courses, events, finance & funding then enter your details below.

* At Northumbria we are strongly committed to protecting the privacy of personal data. To view the University’s Privacy Notice please click here

CLOSE

4th in the UK for research power

 

Please note: Last year of entry for this course is September 2023. For 2024 Entry, please see BA (Hons) Furniture & Product Design.

3D Design BA (Hons) engenders a creative, analytical and skilful approach to the designing and making of products and furniture. 

You will join a community of staff and students eager to explore the potential for beauty, usefulness and meaning in contemporary material culture. You will develop both the technical skills required of a designer, and the critical thinking skills necessary to understand design’s role in the social, economic and environmental context of today.

Your Learning Experience

Our creative approach puts three-dimensional prototyping at the heart of the design process. You will be taught how to use the tools and techniques of workshops, computer labs and studio spaces to develop and evaluate designs in three-dimensions. You will gain a sophisticated understanding of how to work with materials, by sensitively incorporating their properties into your work. And you will be challenged to think carefully about the valuable role your furniture and products should play in people’s lives.

The Three Dimensional Design, Furniture and Product course vision is to create the most able graduates—people who understand both how and why to make things, and are ready to make meaningful contributions to professional design practice.

Why choose Northumbria to study Three Dimensional Design?

Top Department: Northumbria is ranked 6th in the UK for Product Design studies (Guardian University League Table, 2024).

Super Satisfaction: 100% of students studying Three Dimensional Design at Northumbria found it easy to contact teaching staff and believed their course was intellectually stimulating (NSS, 2023).

Excellent Careers Prospects: Product Design at Northumbria is ranked 6th in the UK for Graduate Prospects (Guardian University Guide, 2024). This is because 87% of our graduates are in highly skilled employment or further study 15 months after graduation.

Research PowerArt and Design at Northumbria is ranked 4th in the UK for research power (REF, 2021). This is a rise of 6 places compared to 2014.

See other similar courses you may be interested in: BA (Hons) Design for Industry

Course Information

UCAS Code
W260

Level of Study
Undergraduate

Mode of Study
3 years full-time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Department
Northumbria School of Design

Location
City Campus, Northumbria University

City
Newcastle

Fee Information

Module Information

Mac Collins / Objects influence our actions

Two years after graduating from Northumbria University – Collins launched his first consumer collection. Now, a year later, he has been awarded a medal in recognition of the impact he has made on the design industry.

a man sitting in a chair

Mac Collins

Emerging British designer has launched collection with Benchmark.

Photo of Mac Collins standing in a row with the other award winners.

Mac Collins gains national recognition.

The 3D design graduate has been awarded the Emerging Design Medal by the London Design Festival.

Department / Northumbria School of Design

Our School of Design covers Industrial, Fashion, Communication and Innovation Design. Our design community examines design in the context of use, beauty and social and cultural contexts.

a woman sitting on a table

Northumbria School of Design

Discover more

a group of people posing for the camera

Research

Reveal / Graduate Showcase

The end of year showcase for our Creative Programmes

white animated text on black background advertising the reveal degree show

Watch as Northumbria students showcase there work in 2022 Reveal show

Discover NU World / A virtual journey through everything Northumbria has to offer.

Explore our immersive 360 tours, informative subject videos, inspirational student profiles, ground-breaking research, and a range of life at university videos and articles.

Student Life / #IAmNorthumbria

Discover more about life in Newcastle and studying at Northumbria.

a desk with a green plant

Accommodation

Discover our residences

There are many different reasons to choose to study at Northumbria but we got Alice, Reza and Jasmine to narrow it down to just three reasons each on why they wanted to come study here.

a large long train on Sage Gateshead over a body of water

Newcastle

City Life

a person posing for the camera

Student Life at Northumbria

Discover More

a group of people standing in front of a crowd

The Hub

Student Blog

a man wearing glasses

Social Wall

#IAmNorthumbria

Book an Open Day / Experience 3D Design

Visit an Open Day to really get an inside view of what its like to study Three Dimensional Design at Northumbria. Speak to staff and students from the course and get a tour of the workshop facilities.

Entry Requirements 2024/25

Standard Entry

A portfolio of creative design work available for consideration at interview.
This portfolio containing examples of your work is to help us understand your creative experience and potential ability to undertake a degree in Design. It should evidence your interests in your creative specialism to date. It may include past and current school or college work, personal projects, work in progress and other work that you feel demonstrates your creative potential.

GCSE Requirements:
A good GCSE profile is expected including Maths and English Language at minimum grade C or equivalent.  If you have studied for a new GCSE for which you will be awarded a numerical grade then you will need to achieve a minimum grade 4.

UCAS Tariff Points:
120-128 UCAS Tariff points including one or more of the following:

GCE and VCE Advanced Level:
From at least 2 GCE/VCE A Levels

Edexcel/BTEC National Extended Diploma:
Distinction, Distinction, Merit

Diploma in Foundation Studies Art and Design/Art Design and Media
The Diploma in Foundation Studies Art and Design/Art Design and Media is also accepted in combination with other qualifications

Scottish Highers:
BBBCC - BBBBC at Higher level, CCC - BCC at Advanced Higher

Irish Highers:
BBBBB  - ABBBB

IB Diploma:
120-128 UCAS Tariff points including minimum score of 4 in at least three subjects at Higher level

Access to HE Diploma:
Award of full Access to HE Diploma including 18 credits at Distinction and 27 at Merit

Qualification combinations:
The University welcomes applications from students studying qualifications from different qualification types - for example A level and a BTEC qualification in combination, and if you are made an offer you will be asked to achieve UCAS Tariff points from all of the qualifications you are studying at level 3.  Should the course you wish to study have a subject specific requirement then you must also meet this requirement, usually from GCE A level.

Compulsory Requirements

 

 </p</p</p</p</p

Plus one of the following:

  • International/English Language Requirements:

    Applicants from the EU:
    Applicants from the EU are welcome to apply and if the qualification you are studying is not listed here then please contact the Admissions Team for advice or see our EU Applicants pages here https://www.northumbria.ac.uk/international/european-union/eu-applications/

    International Qualifications:
    If you have studied a non UK qualification, you can see how your qualifications compare to the standard entry criteria, by selecting the country that you received the qualification in, from our country pages. Visit www.northumbria.ac.uk/yourcountry

    English Language Requirements:
    International applicants are required to have a minimum overall IELTS (Academic) score of 6.0 with 5.5 in each component (or approved equivalent*).

    *The university accepts a large number of UK and International Qualifications in place of IELTS. You can find details of acceptable tests and the required grades you will need in our English Language section. Visit www.northumbria.ac.uk/englishqualifications

Fees and Funding 2024/25 Entry

UK Fee in Year 1: TBC

* The maximum tuition fee that we are permitted to charge for UK students is set by government. Tuition fees may increase in each subsequent academic year of your course, these are subject to government regulations and in line with inflation.


EU Fee in Year 1: TBC

International Fee in Year 1: TBC


Please see the main Funding Pages for 24/25 scholarship information.

 


ADDITIONAL COSTS

There are no Additional Costs

If you’d like to receive the latest updates from Northumbria about our courses, events, finance & funding then enter your details below.

* At Northumbria we are strongly committed to protecting the privacy of personal data. To view the University’s Privacy Notice please click here

Modules

Module information is indicative and is reviewed annually therefore may be subject to change. Applicants will be informed if there are any changes.

DE4004 -

Design Theory: The Designer, The User and their Technologies (Core,20 Credits)

This module is made up of 3 components that introduce students to the theories and principles that underpin the conception, manufacture and use of man-made objects. By studying the role of the designer, understanding the role of the end-user and the technologies that contribute to the making and use of artefacts the intention is to increase your awareness and sensitivity to the qualities of the world around you.

The Designer introduces you to the complex nature of design processes and the designer’s place within them. This component encourages you from the outset of your studies to develop critical judgement of your own work and the work of others. The component encourages you to understand your role and responsibilities in professional design practice. You will be urged to reflect upon and manage your own learning and development as a design practitioner.

The User introduces the study of ergonomics and human factors and theories of material culture. Lectures and seminars place the use and consumption of designed products in the wider context of contemporary life. You are encouraged to consider things not as objects which are ‘finished’ once they have been manufactured, but as artefacts which go on to form the backdrop and props for everyday life.

Their Technologies is a component that uses lecture and seminar teaching to build your knowledge of a range of manufacturing processes and explores how technology can drive innovative practice. Factory visits; guest speakers and case studies introduce you to the social, environmental and economic complexities of material use.

More information

DE4005 -

Design Methods: The Lab, the Studio and the Workshop (Core,40 Credits)

This module introduces you to the practical and professional skills required of the designer to conceive, develop and realise 3 dimensional products. The content of this module reflects the range of skills a 3d designer requires to effectively work out ideas for themselves, as well as communicating this design process to others. The 4 components of this module: Collaborative practice, Visual Communication, Model Making and Computer Aided Design (C.A.D), combine to furnish you with the experience to use studio culture, workshop discipline and a thoughtful use of technology throughout your design practice. This module embraces the notion that skilled making and good workmanship are not just qualities evident in ‘highly finished’ traditional craft based products, but should be introduced as important employable tools in the iterative process of design development.

In Collaborative practice you will experience the potential of co-operation via group projects and discover the benefits of the studio culture which is synonymous with professional design practice.

Visual Communication is delivered via taught sessions and the setting of projects. It develops the practical skills of drawing and sketching as well as introducing industry-standard graphics software packages essential to the contemporary designer.

Model Making is a studio and workshop based component that introduces a range of materials, processes and techniques and encourages you to make reasoned decisions in the selection of appropriate materials and processes to support any given stage in the design process.

C.A.D. (Computer Aided Design) introduces you to the conventions of technical drawing and teaches students to use the appropriate computer software packages in the preparation of the drawings that are the link between concept and realisation.

More information

DE4006 -

Design Projects (Core,40 Credits)

This module is designed to develop your ability to creatively answer a brief both as an individual and in team situations within the supporting framework of the year group.

The module is constructed from a series of furniture and product design projects that act as the vehicles for you to learn, select and apply design skills and techniques. The projects encourage you to put the theoretical and practical skills taught on the 3d programme in to practice and provide opportunities to place your learning in a wider professional context. The project briefs explore user centred, technology driven, market led and /or issue based motivations for design practice. You will learn to experiment with a variety techniques for the purposes of research, concept development and communication. You will learn how diverse projects require various blends of practical skills (sketch work, model making and CAD work) as part of a thoughtful design development process. By presenting your work at both interim stages and upon completion you will gain experience of how to effectively communicate both project direction and resolution.

You will be introduced to the use and value of reflective practice so you can begin to take responsibility for your own learning and the evidencing of the module learning outcomes across multiple projects.

More information

DE4016 -

Design Culture (Core,20 Credits)

Design Cultures provides the tools to help you situate your studio practice in its social, cultural and economic context. It will develop your knowledge of design history in order to expand your visual vocabulary and help you understand how design developed into the global phenomenon it is today. The lecture programme will examine the history of design through a chronological survey of key styles and movements from c.1800 to the present. This will include subjects such as the Arts and Crafts movement, art deco, Egyptomania, modernism, Scandinavian design and postmodernism. Crucially, the module will also encourage you to reflect on the wider social, cultural and economic significance of design. Underpinning the historical survey, sessions will examine critical issues in contemporary life such as consumerism, globalisation, sustainability and gender relations. What, for example, do historical figures such as William Morris contribute to debates about designers’ social and environmental responsibilities in the 21st century? Additionally, the module will help you develop your skills in research, visual and textual analysis, critical thinking, and written and verbal communication, all of which are crucial for academic and professional success.

More information

YB5001 -

Academic Language Skills for Design (Core – for International and EU students only,0 Credits)

Academic skills when studying away from your home country can differ due to cultural and language differences in teaching and assessment practices. This module is designed to support your transition in the use and practice of technical language and subject specific skills around assessments and teaching provision in your chosen subject. The overall aim of this module is to develop your abilities to read and study effectively for academic purposes; to develop your skills in analysing and using source material in seminars and academic writing and to develop your use and application of language and communications skills to a higher level.

The topics you will cover on the module include:

• Understanding assignment briefs and exam questions.
• Developing academic writing skills, including citation, paraphrasing, and summarising.
• Practising ‘critical reading’ and ‘critical writing’
• Planning and structuring academic assignments (e.g. essays, reports and presentations).
• Avoiding academic misconduct and gaining credit by using academic sources and referencing effectively.
• Listening skills for lectures.
• Speaking in seminar presentations.
• Presenting your ideas
• Giving discipline-related academic presentations, experiencing peer observation, and receiving formative feedback.
• Speed reading techniques.
• Developing self-reflection skills.

More information

DE5004 -

Design: Atelier (Core,80 Credits)

The module embraces the design writer Stephen Bayley’s assertion that ”…If you know how to make something, you understand everything about it. You appreciate its logic, its beauty and its meaning. And its value.”

This module is made up of design projects that extend your experience of designing and making products and furniture. It consists of a series of design briefs that present the creative opportunities and constraints necessary for you to develop both practical and theoretical design skills. The nature of the project briefs challenge you to extend your ability to sensitively address the requirements of defined markets and end users, whilst beginning to articulate your own design philosophies and preoccupations. As the module progresses you are encouraged to take more ownership of project direction and become more confident in justifying your actions.

Extended studio and workshop-based teaching develops your ability to manage the complexities of conceiving, proposing and then producing working prototypes to a professional standard. In doing so, notions of workmanship and the importance of materials and processes knowledge to the designer of ‘things’ will be explored.

There is a bespoke workshop induction programme within the module that underpins the practical outcomes required of the projects. These sessions introduce you to materials, processes and safe working practices and crucially provide you with the opportunity to build competency in the workshop environment.

The module includes the introduction of 3d computer software applications to further furnish you with the skills required of the professional designer of products.

More information

DE5005 -

Design: Context (Core,40 Credits)

This module encourages you to understand the complex issues raised by the proposing and manufacturing of products. The act of design is explored in The Subject component of the module where you investigate the challenges faced by society and the opportunities created by culture. In the designer you begin the lifelong challenge of placing your own practices in the context of wider world.

The subject. This module component is issue driven and is designed to expand your knowledge of the influences on contemporary design. The meanings, values and ethics of design are explored in relation to case studies of current practice, legislation, institutions and major global trends. In doing so it enhances your understanding of theoretical questions introduced at level 4. The craft of writing, debating and presenting informed opinions is central to the teaching of this component.

The designer. This studio and seminar based component requires you to place your own developing practice in the contexts explored in The Subject. You will carefully consider how the skills developed in the ‘Design: Atelier’ module can be used to make a positive contribution to the world of things. Studio based projects provide the opportunity for you to articulate your understanding of a variety of motivations for the creation of things via both design practice and writing. By engaging with user centred and technology driven approaches to design and considering how social comment can be made through or by design practice you will further develop your appreciation of the designer’s role in both cultural and commercial terms. This component develops both the academic and creative skills to formulate the research themes that underpin the self-written Major Design Study in Level 6

More information

YB5001 -

Academic Language Skills for Design (Core – for International and EU students only,0 Credits)

Academic skills when studying away from your home country can differ due to cultural and language differences in teaching and assessment practices. This module is designed to support your transition in the use and practice of technical language and subject specific skills around assessments and teaching provision in your chosen subject. The overall aim of this module is to develop your abilities to read and study effectively for academic purposes; to develop your skills in analysing and using source material in seminars and academic writing and to develop your use and application of language and communications skills to a higher level.

The topics you will cover on the module include:

• Understanding assignment briefs and exam questions.
• Developing academic writing skills, including citation, paraphrasing, and summarising.
• Practising ‘critical reading’ and ‘critical writing’
• Planning and structuring academic assignments (e.g. essays, reports and presentations).
• Avoiding academic misconduct and gaining credit by using academic sources and referencing effectively.
• Listening skills for lectures.
• Speaking in seminar presentations.
• Presenting your ideas
• Giving discipline-related academic presentations, experiencing peer observation, and receiving formative feedback.
• Speed reading techniques.
• Developing self-reflection skills.

More information

AD5005 -

Design Work Placement Year (Optional,120 Credits)

The Work Placement Year module is a 120 credit year-long module available on degree courses which include a work placement year, taken as an additional year of study at level 5 and before level 6 (the length of the placement(s) will be determined by your programme but it can be no less than 30 weeks. You will undertake a guided work placement at a host organisation. This is a Pass/Fail module and so does not contribute to classification. When taken and passed, however, the Placement Year is recognised in your transcript as a 120 credit Work Placement Module and on your degree certificate in the format – “Degree title (with Work Placement Year)”. The learning and teaching on your placement will be recorded in the work placement agreement signed by the placement provider, the student, and the University.

Note: Subject to placement clearance; this is a competitive process and a place on the module cannot be guaranteed.

More information

AD5006 -

Design Study Abroad Year (Optional,120 Credits)

The Study Abroad Year module is a full year 120 credit module which is available on degree courses which include a study abroad year which is taken as an additional year of study at level 5 and before level 6. You will undertake a year abroad at a partner university equivalent to 120 UK credits This gives you access to modules from your discipline taught in a different learning culture and so broadens your overall experience of learning. The course of study abroad will be dependent on the partner and will be recorded for an individual student on the learning agreement signed by the host University, the student, and the home University (Northumbria). Your study abroad year will be assessed on a pass/fail basis. It will not count towards your final degree classification but, if you pass, it is recognised in your transcript as a 120 credit Study Abroad Module and on your degree certificate in the format – “Degree title (with Study Abroad Year)”.

Note: Subject to placement clearance; this is a competitive process and a place on the module cannot be guaranteed.

More information

DE6004 -

Professional Design Practice (Core,40 Credits)

This semester 1 module is composed of an advanced project brief selected from appropriate national/international design competition(s) or suitable live briefs. The studio-based module engages you with the criteria and requirements of an external body/client and by doing so necessitates the honing of professional standard communication and presentation skills.

The ‘live’ nature of the module provides the background to the studio teaching and places an emphasis on the effective organisation of an autonomously managed project.

By seeking creative solutions to complex problems and/or opportunities from beyond the studio/atelier walls, the module requires the thoughtful analysis of independently managed research. Ongoing group critiques and interim presentations provide opportunities for reflective practice to be embedded in the module.

The module compliments the self-determined nature of DE6005 Major Design Study providing you with an experience in the first semester to critically apply your own approaches, skills and design philosophies to an externally set project brief.

More information

DE6005 -

Major Design Study (Core,60 Credits)

The aim of this module is to engage you in a holistic design process from the identification of a problem/opportunity through to the realisation of a designed solution/product.

The module offers you the opportunity to combine your design and making skills in the development and presentation of a Major Design Study that should demonstrate an ambitious and insightful response to an identified opportunity in the contemporary world.

Whilst the nature of the project’s content is ultimately defined by you, this studio and workshop based module will require the negotiated content of the major study to contain an engagement with the complex issues that surround designing, developing and manufacturing economically, culturally, technologically, socially and aesthetically relevant 3d products. Whether you tackle a project driven by technology or respond to an identified commercial opportunity, undertake the designing and making of user centred products or look to make social/political/ cultural comment through or by design practice you will draw upon both theoretical and practical skill sets.

The module requires of you to thoughtfully and effectively manage project research, analysis and design development as well as the skills of making what you have designed.

You will evidence the creative, analytical, practical and ultimately transferable skills required of the professional designer by firstly presenting a Contextual Review and briefing document for formal formative assessment. Using this proposal as a working document/ hypothesis you will collate a project portfolio documenting your design process. Ultimately the project will result in a realised product or piece of furniture that is a manifestation of a Major Study that is the culmination of your undergraduate experience.

More information

DE6006 -

Critical Design Evaluation (Core,20 Credits)

This module is designed to prepare and enable you to produce a Critical Design Evaluation document for the Major Design Study (DE6005). It represents the culmination and consolidation of your work within the theoretical studies area. The intention is to exemplify your comprehension of the application of design theory in practice. The content and the exact nature of the practices used in the formulation of the document will be determined by the subject matter tackled in the self-initiated Major Design Study.

The module includes a series of professional practice lectures and seminars delivered by both academic staff and specialist external speakers providing a ‘real world’ backdrop to the activities in this module and encouraging an engagement with outside agencies in both the creation and evaluation of the Major Design Study. Taught sessions help place your skills and abilities in a broader context of employment and/or further study. You will learn to explore and reflect upon your own values and be encouraged to act with boldness and professional confidence.

More information

YB5001 -

Academic Language Skills for Design (Core – for International and EU students only,0 Credits)

Academic skills when studying away from your home country can differ due to cultural and language differences in teaching and assessment practices. This module is designed to support your transition in the use and practice of technical language and subject specific skills around assessments and teaching provision in your chosen subject. The overall aim of this module is to develop your abilities to read and study effectively for academic purposes; to develop your skills in analysing and using source material in seminars and academic writing and to develop your use and application of language and communications skills to a higher level.

The topics you will cover on the module include:

• Understanding assignment briefs and exam questions.
• Developing academic writing skills, including citation, paraphrasing, and summarising.
• Practising ‘critical reading’ and ‘critical writing’
• Planning and structuring academic assignments (e.g. essays, reports and presentations).
• Avoiding academic misconduct and gaining credit by using academic sources and referencing effectively.
• Listening skills for lectures.
• Speaking in seminar presentations.
• Presenting your ideas
• Giving discipline-related academic presentations, experiencing peer observation, and receiving formative feedback.
• Speed reading techniques.
• Developing self-reflection skills.

More information

Modules

Module information is indicative and is reviewed annually therefore may be subject to change. Applicants will be informed if there are any changes.

DE4004 -

Design Theory: The Designer, The User and their Technologies (Core,20 Credits)

This module is made up of 3 components that introduce students to the theories and principles that underpin the conception, manufacture and use of man-made objects. By studying the role of the designer, understanding the role of the end-user and the technologies that contribute to the making and use of artefacts the intention is to increase your awareness and sensitivity to the qualities of the world around you.

The Designer introduces you to the complex nature of design processes and the designer’s place within them. This component encourages you from the outset of your studies to develop critical judgement of your own work and the work of others. The component encourages you to understand your role and responsibilities in professional design practice. You will be urged to reflect upon and manage your own learning and development as a design practitioner.

The User introduces the study of ergonomics and human factors and theories of material culture. Lectures and seminars place the use and consumption of designed products in the wider context of contemporary life. You are encouraged to consider things not as objects which are ‘finished’ once they have been manufactured, but as artefacts which go on to form the backdrop and props for everyday life.

Their Technologies is a component that uses lecture and seminar teaching to build your knowledge of a range of manufacturing processes and explores how technology can drive innovative practice. Factory visits; guest speakers and case studies introduce you to the social, environmental and economic complexities of material use.

More information

DE4005 -

Design Methods: The Lab, the Studio and the Workshop (Core,40 Credits)

This module introduces you to the practical and professional skills required of the designer to conceive, develop and realise 3 dimensional products. The content of this module reflects the range of skills a 3d designer requires to effectively work out ideas for themselves, as well as communicating this design process to others. The 4 components of this module: Collaborative practice, Visual Communication, Model Making and Computer Aided Design (C.A.D), combine to furnish you with the experience to use studio culture, workshop discipline and a thoughtful use of technology throughout your design practice. This module embraces the notion that skilled making and good workmanship are not just qualities evident in ‘highly finished’ traditional craft based products, but should be introduced as important employable tools in the iterative process of design development.

In Collaborative practice you will experience the potential of co-operation via group projects and discover the benefits of the studio culture which is synonymous with professional design practice.

Visual Communication is delivered via taught sessions and the setting of projects. It develops the practical skills of drawing and sketching as well as introducing industry-standard graphics software packages essential to the contemporary designer.

Model Making is a studio and workshop based component that introduces a range of materials, processes and techniques and encourages you to make reasoned decisions in the selection of appropriate materials and processes to support any given stage in the design process.

C.A.D. (Computer Aided Design) introduces you to the conventions of technical drawing and teaches students to use the appropriate computer software packages in the preparation of the drawings that are the link between concept and realisation.

More information

DE4006 -

Design Projects (Core,40 Credits)

This module is designed to develop your ability to creatively answer a brief both as an individual and in team situations within the supporting framework of the year group.

The module is constructed from a series of furniture and product design projects that act as the vehicles for you to learn, select and apply design skills and techniques. The projects encourage you to put the theoretical and practical skills taught on the 3d programme in to practice and provide opportunities to place your learning in a wider professional context. The project briefs explore user centred, technology driven, market led and /or issue based motivations for design practice. You will learn to experiment with a variety techniques for the purposes of research, concept development and communication. You will learn how diverse projects require various blends of practical skills (sketch work, model making and CAD work) as part of a thoughtful design development process. By presenting your work at both interim stages and upon completion you will gain experience of how to effectively communicate both project direction and resolution.

You will be introduced to the use and value of reflective practice so you can begin to take responsibility for your own learning and the evidencing of the module learning outcomes across multiple projects.

More information

DE4016 -

Design Culture (Core,20 Credits)

Design Cultures provides the tools to help you situate your studio practice in its social, cultural and economic context. It will develop your knowledge of design history in order to expand your visual vocabulary and help you understand how design developed into the global phenomenon it is today. The lecture programme will examine the history of design through a chronological survey of key styles and movements from c.1800 to the present. This will include subjects such as the Arts and Crafts movement, art deco, Egyptomania, modernism, Scandinavian design and postmodernism. Crucially, the module will also encourage you to reflect on the wider social, cultural and economic significance of design. Underpinning the historical survey, sessions will examine critical issues in contemporary life such as consumerism, globalisation, sustainability and gender relations. What, for example, do historical figures such as William Morris contribute to debates about designers’ social and environmental responsibilities in the 21st century? Additionally, the module will help you develop your skills in research, visual and textual analysis, critical thinking, and written and verbal communication, all of which are crucial for academic and professional success.

More information

YB5001 -

Academic Language Skills for Design (Core – for International and EU students only,0 Credits)

Academic skills when studying away from your home country can differ due to cultural and language differences in teaching and assessment practices. This module is designed to support your transition in the use and practice of technical language and subject specific skills around assessments and teaching provision in your chosen subject. The overall aim of this module is to develop your abilities to read and study effectively for academic purposes; to develop your skills in analysing and using source material in seminars and academic writing and to develop your use and application of language and communications skills to a higher level.

The topics you will cover on the module include:

• Understanding assignment briefs and exam questions.
• Developing academic writing skills, including citation, paraphrasing, and summarising.
• Practising ‘critical reading’ and ‘critical writing’
• Planning and structuring academic assignments (e.g. essays, reports and presentations).
• Avoiding academic misconduct and gaining credit by using academic sources and referencing effectively.
• Listening skills for lectures.
• Speaking in seminar presentations.
• Presenting your ideas
• Giving discipline-related academic presentations, experiencing peer observation, and receiving formative feedback.
• Speed reading techniques.
• Developing self-reflection skills.

More information

DE5004 -

Design: Atelier (Core,80 Credits)

The module embraces the design writer Stephen Bayley’s assertion that ”…If you know how to make something, you understand everything about it. You appreciate its logic, its beauty and its meaning. And its value.”

This module is made up of design projects that extend your experience of designing and making products and furniture. It consists of a series of design briefs that present the creative opportunities and constraints necessary for you to develop both practical and theoretical design skills. The nature of the project briefs challenge you to extend your ability to sensitively address the requirements of defined markets and end users, whilst beginning to articulate your own design philosophies and preoccupations. As the module progresses you are encouraged to take more ownership of project direction and become more confident in justifying your actions.

Extended studio and workshop-based teaching develops your ability to manage the complexities of conceiving, proposing and then producing working prototypes to a professional standard. In doing so, notions of workmanship and the importance of materials and processes knowledge to the designer of ‘things’ will be explored.

There is a bespoke workshop induction programme within the module that underpins the practical outcomes required of the projects. These sessions introduce you to materials, processes and safe working practices and crucially provide you with the opportunity to build competency in the workshop environment.

The module includes the introduction of 3d computer software applications to further furnish you with the skills required of the professional designer of products.

More information

DE5005 -

Design: Context (Core,40 Credits)

This module encourages you to understand the complex issues raised by the proposing and manufacturing of products. The act of design is explored in The Subject component of the module where you investigate the challenges faced by society and the opportunities created by culture. In the designer you begin the lifelong challenge of placing your own practices in the context of wider world.

The subject. This module component is issue driven and is designed to expand your knowledge of the influences on contemporary design. The meanings, values and ethics of design are explored in relation to case studies of current practice, legislation, institutions and major global trends. In doing so it enhances your understanding of theoretical questions introduced at level 4. The craft of writing, debating and presenting informed opinions is central to the teaching of this component.

The designer. This studio and seminar based component requires you to place your own developing practice in the contexts explored in The Subject. You will carefully consider how the skills developed in the ‘Design: Atelier’ module can be used to make a positive contribution to the world of things. Studio based projects provide the opportunity for you to articulate your understanding of a variety of motivations for the creation of things via both design practice and writing. By engaging with user centred and technology driven approaches to design and considering how social comment can be made through or by design practice you will further develop your appreciation of the designer’s role in both cultural and commercial terms. This component develops both the academic and creative skills to formulate the research themes that underpin the self-written Major Design Study in Level 6

More information

YB5001 -

Academic Language Skills for Design (Core – for International and EU students only,0 Credits)

Academic skills when studying away from your home country can differ due to cultural and language differences in teaching and assessment practices. This module is designed to support your transition in the use and practice of technical language and subject specific skills around assessments and teaching provision in your chosen subject. The overall aim of this module is to develop your abilities to read and study effectively for academic purposes; to develop your skills in analysing and using source material in seminars and academic writing and to develop your use and application of language and communications skills to a higher level.

The topics you will cover on the module include:

• Understanding assignment briefs and exam questions.
• Developing academic writing skills, including citation, paraphrasing, and summarising.
• Practising ‘critical reading’ and ‘critical writing’
• Planning and structuring academic assignments (e.g. essays, reports and presentations).
• Avoiding academic misconduct and gaining credit by using academic sources and referencing effectively.
• Listening skills for lectures.
• Speaking in seminar presentations.
• Presenting your ideas
• Giving discipline-related academic presentations, experiencing peer observation, and receiving formative feedback.
• Speed reading techniques.
• Developing self-reflection skills.

More information

AD5005 -

Design Work Placement Year (Optional,120 Credits)

The Work Placement Year module is a 120 credit year-long module available on degree courses which include a work placement year, taken as an additional year of study at level 5 and before level 6 (the length of the placement(s) will be determined by your programme but it can be no less than 30 weeks. You will undertake a guided work placement at a host organisation. This is a Pass/Fail module and so does not contribute to classification. When taken and passed, however, the Placement Year is recognised in your transcript as a 120 credit Work Placement Module and on your degree certificate in the format – “Degree title (with Work Placement Year)”. The learning and teaching on your placement will be recorded in the work placement agreement signed by the placement provider, the student, and the University.

Note: Subject to placement clearance; this is a competitive process and a place on the module cannot be guaranteed.

More information

AD5006 -

Design Study Abroad Year (Optional,120 Credits)

The Study Abroad Year module is a full year 120 credit module which is available on degree courses which include a study abroad year which is taken as an additional year of study at level 5 and before level 6. You will undertake a year abroad at a partner university equivalent to 120 UK credits This gives you access to modules from your discipline taught in a different learning culture and so broadens your overall experience of learning. The course of study abroad will be dependent on the partner and will be recorded for an individual student on the learning agreement signed by the host University, the student, and the home University (Northumbria). Your study abroad year will be assessed on a pass/fail basis. It will not count towards your final degree classification but, if you pass, it is recognised in your transcript as a 120 credit Study Abroad Module and on your degree certificate in the format – “Degree title (with Study Abroad Year)”.

Note: Subject to placement clearance; this is a competitive process and a place on the module cannot be guaranteed.

More information

DE6004 -

Professional Design Practice (Core,40 Credits)

This semester 1 module is composed of an advanced project brief selected from appropriate national/international design competition(s) or suitable live briefs. The studio-based module engages you with the criteria and requirements of an external body/client and by doing so necessitates the honing of professional standard communication and presentation skills.

The ‘live’ nature of the module provides the background to the studio teaching and places an emphasis on the effective organisation of an autonomously managed project.

By seeking creative solutions to complex problems and/or opportunities from beyond the studio/atelier walls, the module requires the thoughtful analysis of independently managed research. Ongoing group critiques and interim presentations provide opportunities for reflective practice to be embedded in the module.

The module compliments the self-determined nature of DE6005 Major Design Study providing you with an experience in the first semester to critically apply your own approaches, skills and design philosophies to an externally set project brief.

More information

DE6005 -

Major Design Study (Core,60 Credits)

The aim of this module is to engage you in a holistic design process from the identification of a problem/opportunity through to the realisation of a designed solution/product.

The module offers you the opportunity to combine your design and making skills in the development and presentation of a Major Design Study that should demonstrate an ambitious and insightful response to an identified opportunity in the contemporary world.

Whilst the nature of the project’s content is ultimately defined by you, this studio and workshop based module will require the negotiated content of the major study to contain an engagement with the complex issues that surround designing, developing and manufacturing economically, culturally, technologically, socially and aesthetically relevant 3d products. Whether you tackle a project driven by technology or respond to an identified commercial opportunity, undertake the designing and making of user centred products or look to make social/political/ cultural comment through or by design practice you will draw upon both theoretical and practical skill sets.

The module requires of you to thoughtfully and effectively manage project research, analysis and design development as well as the skills of making what you have designed.

You will evidence the creative, analytical, practical and ultimately transferable skills required of the professional designer by firstly presenting a Contextual Review and briefing document for formal formative assessment. Using this proposal as a working document/ hypothesis you will collate a project portfolio documenting your design process. Ultimately the project will result in a realised product or piece of furniture that is a manifestation of a Major Study that is the culmination of your undergraduate experience.

More information

DE6006 -

Critical Design Evaluation (Core,20 Credits)

This module is designed to prepare and enable you to produce a Critical Design Evaluation document for the Major Design Study (DE6005). It represents the culmination and consolidation of your work within the theoretical studies area. The intention is to exemplify your comprehension of the application of design theory in practice. The content and the exact nature of the practices used in the formulation of the document will be determined by the subject matter tackled in the self-initiated Major Design Study.

The module includes a series of professional practice lectures and seminars delivered by both academic staff and specialist external speakers providing a ‘real world’ backdrop to the activities in this module and encouraging an engagement with outside agencies in both the creation and evaluation of the Major Design Study. Taught sessions help place your skills and abilities in a broader context of employment and/or further study. You will learn to explore and reflect upon your own values and be encouraged to act with boldness and professional confidence.

More information

YB5001 -

Academic Language Skills for Design (Core – for International and EU students only,0 Credits)

Academic skills when studying away from your home country can differ due to cultural and language differences in teaching and assessment practices. This module is designed to support your transition in the use and practice of technical language and subject specific skills around assessments and teaching provision in your chosen subject. The overall aim of this module is to develop your abilities to read and study effectively for academic purposes; to develop your skills in analysing and using source material in seminars and academic writing and to develop your use and application of language and communications skills to a higher level.

The topics you will cover on the module include:

• Understanding assignment briefs and exam questions.
• Developing academic writing skills, including citation, paraphrasing, and summarising.
• Practising ‘critical reading’ and ‘critical writing’
• Planning and structuring academic assignments (e.g. essays, reports and presentations).
• Avoiding academic misconduct and gaining credit by using academic sources and referencing effectively.
• Listening skills for lectures.
• Speaking in seminar presentations.
• Presenting your ideas
• Giving discipline-related academic presentations, experiencing peer observation, and receiving formative feedback.
• Speed reading techniques.
• Developing self-reflection skills.

More information

UniStats

Any Questions?

Our Applicant Services team will be happy to help.  They can be contacted on 0191 406 0901 or by using our Contact Form.



Northumbria University is committed to developing an inclusive, diverse and accessible campus and wider University community and are determined to ensure that opportunities we provide are open to all.

We are proud to work in partnership with AccessAble to provide Detailed Access Guides to our buildings and facilities across our City, Coach Lane and London Campuses. A Detailed Access Guide lets you know what access will be like when you visit somewhere. It looks at the route you will use getting in and what is available inside. All guides have Accessibility Symbols that give you a quick overview of what is available, and photographs to show you what to expect. The guides are produced by trained surveyors who visit our campuses annually to ensure you have trusted and accurate information.

You can use Northumbria’s AccessAble Guides anytime to check the accessibility of a building or facility and to plan your routes and journeys. Search by location, building or accessibility feature to find the information you need. 

We are dedicated to helping students who may require additional support during their student journey and offer 1-1 advice and guidance appropriate to individual requirements. If you feel you may need additional support you can find out more about what we offer here where you can also contact us with any questions you may have:

Accessibility support

Student Inclusion support



All information is accurate at the time of sharing.

Full time Courses starting in 2023 are primarily delivered via on-campus face to face learning but may include elements of online learning. We continue to monitor government and local authority guidance in relation to Covid-19 and we are ready and able to flex accordingly to ensure the health and safety of our students and staff.

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with additional restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors, potentially to a full online offer, should further restrictions be deemed necessary in future. Our online activity will be delivered through Blackboard Ultra, enabling collaboration, connection and engagement with materials and people.

 

Current, Relevant and Inspiring

We continuously review and improve course content in consultation with our students and employers. To make sure we can inform you of any changes to your course register for updates on the course page.


Your Learning Experience

Find out about our distinctive approach at 
www.northumbria.ac.uk/exp

Admissions Terms and Conditions
northumbria.ac.uk/terms

Fees and Funding
northumbria.ac.uk/fees

Admissions Policy
northumbria.ac.uk/adpolicy

Admissions Complaints Policy
northumbria.ac.uk/complaints

You might also be interested in...

If you’d like to receive the latest updates from Northumbria about our courses, events, finance & funding then enter your details below.

* At Northumbria we are strongly committed to protecting the privacy of personal data. To view the University’s Privacy Notice please click here

Masters _girl
+

Masters Study

Masters study will take you and your skills to the next level. Whether you want to get the real world experience you need to progress in your career or the research skills you need to drive the direction of your discipline...

a person sitting at a table using a laptop
+
NU World Virtual Tours
+

Virtual Tour

Get an insight into life at Northumbria at the click of a button! Come and explore our videos and 360 panoramas to immerse yourself in our campuses and get a feel for what it is like studying here using our interactive virtual tour.

Back to top