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Product Design BSc (Hons)

Key Facts

  • UCAS Code:

    W240

  • Level:

    Undergraduate

  • Duration:

    3 years full time
    4 years full time (with Foundation)
    4-6 years part time

  • Starting:

    September

  • Fees UK:

    Full Time: £9,250
    Part Time: £1,465 per 20 credit module Integrated Foundation Year: £6,780

  • Fees International:

    Full Time: £13,000 Integrated Foundation Year: £13,000

  • Location:

    Waterside

Get in touch


For questions regarding study and admissions please contact us:

UK/EU Students enquiries

study@northampton.ac.uk
0300 303 2772

International Students enquiries

international@northampton.ac.uk
+44 (0)1604 894503

TEF Gold. Teaching Excellence Framework.

Overview


We believe in teaching you to challenge ideas of functionality, aesthetics, materials, sustainability, social contexts and ethics so that you can design products that work and make a difference to society. This mindset will be put into practice with industry projects and contemporary technologies.

We will support you to achieve your career and study ambitions, which is why if you complete our Employability Plus Gold programme or Changemaker Gold certificate alongside your studies and if you haven’t secured full-time employment 12 months after graduating* we will secure a three – six month paid internship for you, or support you into postgraduate study.

*with a 2:2 degree classification or higher

Updated 26/11/2020

Highlights


  • Degree show to showcase your work.
  • Live-client projects – working with local businesses and international companies.
  • International competition briefs, for example, Royal Society of Arts (RSA) and Design and Art Direction (D&AD).
  • Guaranteed paid internship with the Northampton Employment Promise.
  • HP Laptop and software included with this course. Terms and Conditions apply

Course Content


  • Creative and innovative design is built on the fusion of visual, technical and emotional considerations. We will teach you these skills throughout your course, developing and nurturing them through studio-based, practical problem-solving activities.

    Our course team are dedicated to working with you on an individual basis so that your learning experience is personalised and tailored to you – supporting you to flourish as a capable, confident and entrepreneurial Product Designer.

    In the first year, you will be introduced to computer-aided-design (CAD), modelmaking, design drawing, graphic communication, contextual theories and professional studies. Your learning will be consolidated by short projects that are relevant to technical, commercial or social issues.

    Your second year will include professional development, through commercial projects and/or competitions briefed by local, national or international companies. These projects will develop your creativity, design knowledge and communication skills – providing the confidence to present your design concepts effectively and professionally.

    During your final year, you will work on a self-focused design project – identifying, researching and solving a problem, as a culmination of your studies. You will also participate in briefs from international competitions, such as the Royal Society of Arts (RSA) and Design and Art Direction (D&AD). In recent years our students have won these prestigious accolades.

    Student work

    Students are encouraged to create products which solve problems, inspire change and look to make a difference in every day life. Product Design student, Oliver Beard, who was knocked unconscious in a rugby match, designed a high-tech skull cap that can detect concussion in people playing full-contact sports. You can read Oliver’s story here.

    roduct Design - Oliver BeardStudents have also invented products that have gone on to receive media recognition. Danny O’Beirne, devised a simple solution to help the visually impaired navigate railway stations. Danny’s research found that many people with visual impairments are put off travelling by train in the UK due to the potential for confusion when they arrive at a station. Danny’s solution – the Tellway Sound Shower – harnesses ultrasound technology which can project a beam of sound via an overhead speaker. You can read Danny’s story here.

    Joshua Taylor, a Product Design undergraduate, had a flash of inspiration which has led to him designing a phone case that alerts users when their posture needs correcting, which in turn, prevents the risk of text neck. You can read Joshua’s story here.

      • Module code: 3DD1005
        Status: Compulsory
        This module enables students to research and apply established working practises concepts and principles through a variety of design tasks. Projects include all aspects of the design process including 3D experimentation visual language and technical considerations initiated through a briefing process and culminating in appropriate peer group presentations and assessment.
      • Module code: 3DD1007
        Status: Compulsory
        This module introduces students to 2D and 3D visual communication. It is concerned with stimulating visual perception and idea generation. Students will be encouraged to be experimental in their approach and apply suitable media and techniques to communicate technical and aesthetic subjects appropriate to a creative programme.
      • Module code: 3DD1009
        Status: Compulsory
        The practise of design requires knowledge in various related subjects. Part of this is the understanding and articulation of the social historic and economic factors in the design process. The purpose of this module is to provide students with an overview of design history and introduce research resources.
      • Module code: 3DD1022
        Status: Compulsory
        The practice of design requires knowledge in various related subjects. Part of this is the understanding and articulation of the economic and commercial factors in the design process. This module provides an insight into the nature and rationale of organisations and businesses as an integral component of the design process.
      • Module code: 3DD1044
        Status: Compulsory
        Good product design is based on a sound knowledge of the properties and applications of materials. This module reviews a selection of materials and associated manufacturing processes using case study and existing products. It is taught in conjunction with other modules to provide students with project specific technical knowledge.
      • Module code: 3DD1054
        Status: Compulsory
        This module is concerned with stimulating visual perception idea generation and design development. Students will be lead through a series of technique building experiences which utilise a broad range of two and three-dimensional materials and media. This will link visualisation model making and the use of colour.
      • Module code: 3DD2009
        Status: Compulsory
        This module enables second year students to research integrate apply and develop established working practise concepts and principles through a variety of design based projects. Project work reflects professional design practice and involves research analysis application and presentation of realistic design proposals through practically orientated projects.
      • Module code: 3DD2015
        Status: Compulsory
        Today's designers need to have an understanding of the social economic and cultural context of their work have the ability and confidence to contribute ideas and challenge traditional thinking. The purpose of this module is to encourage designers to develop ethical and critical skills in their design and research work.
      • Module code: 3DD2017
        Status: Compulsory
        3D design requires general and specific knowledge in various related subjects. Part of this is the recognition understanding and articulation of commercial factors in the design process. This may include a general understanding of business and industry organisations through to the creative development and marketing of a design outcomes.
      • Module code: 3DD2046
        Status: Compulsory
        This module builds on the Level 4 module and develops and increases the knowledge of materials and processes. In addition it develops an understanding of communication between design and manufacture. It's purpose is to increase understanding and develop the intellectual application skills necessary for the world of work.
      • Module code: 3DD2056
        Status: Compulsory
        This module enables the student to develop knowledge and skills using 3D CAD. The work undertaken will encourage students to create and evaluate virtual models of design projects in relation to technical aesthetic and detailed design considerations. Students will then document their design proposals using 2D and 3D methods.
      • Module code: 3DD2065
        Status: Compulsory
        This module builds on Form and Colour 1 and provides the student with a further understanding of colour anthropometric research and its use in ergonomic design. User interaction will be investigated to develop a crucial awareness and understanding of the relationship between the human factors colour and good design.
      • Module code: 3DD3018
        Status: Compulsory
        This module utilizes and documents the research undertaken in the development of the final major project and underpins the formal analysis of the proposed design solution. The work is realized through the development and submission of research documents that summarise inform and support design decisions taken by the student.
      • Module code: 3DD3019
        Status: Compulsory
        The final major project will integrate the skills gained from all modules studied on the programme. These will be demonstrated through a project initiated by the student utilising research carried out in Final Major Project 1. The final design proposal will be presented in a critique and exhibition.
      • Module code: 3DD4003
        Status: Compulsory
        The purpose of this module is to enable the consolidation development and application of knowledge and understanding gained in levels 4 and 5. The module project will encourage students to define and solve user-centred technical and aesthetic problems to fully realise a product design solution in two and three dimensions.
  • What specialist equipment will I need?

    To study on the Product Design course a high-specification laptop capable of running Adobe Creative Cloud and professional CAD software is essential. You will require a laptop, with the following specification:

    PC Laptop specification – preferred option:

    • Processor: 3 GHz or higher clock speed (preferably closer to 4 GHz)
    • Operating System: Windows 10 64-bit
      Memory: 32GB (16GB minimum)
    • Hard Drive: Solid State Drive (SSD), maintaining at least 20GB free space
    • Graphics Card: NVIDIA Quadro P2000 or AMD Radeon Pro WX 7100
    • Internet Connection: High speed broadband connection

    MacBook specification with additional required software*:

    • Processor: 2.8 GHz or higher clock speed (preferably closer to 4 GHz)
    • Operating System: MacOS
      Software*:  Windows 10 64-bit, Bootcamp and/or Parallels
      Memory: 32GB (16GB minimum)
    • Hard Drive: Solid State Drive (SSD), maintaining at least 20GB free space
    • Graphics Card: AMD Radeon Pro 5300M with 4GB of GDDR6
    • Internet Connection: High speed broadband connection

    You will need to budget approximately £200 per academic year for extra materials to cover the costs of sketch books, marker pens, modelmaking materials, 3D printing, and 2D printing of presentation graphics. This amount is a guide based on what successful current students and recent graduates have spent and will depend upon the projects you choose to undertake.

    You will need to purchase, drawing and modelmaking equipment such as digital Vernier callipers, cutting tools, basic hand tools, plus a toolbox to contain them. A comprehensive list will be provided prior to starting the course.

    How will I be assessed?

    You will be continually assessed during the course through studio-based design projects and written assignments. In the final year, you will have a minor design project and a final major project which will both be exhibition-based.

    Are there any specialist facilities on campus?

    The course is based in the Creative Hub and utilises the following facilities.

    Specialist facilities include:

    • MakerSpace – 3D polyjet printing & XYZ deposition modelling
    • CAD Suite – SolidWorks, Vectorworks & Cinema4D
    • Mac Suite – Adobe Creative Cloud software
    • Photo Studio – infinity curves & controlled light facility
    • Electronics Lab – PCB soldering & Arduino Uno Micro Controller
    • Engineering Test Lab – tensile, bending, deflection & hardness testing
    • Workshops – wood, metal & plastics machining and & laser-cutting.
    • Special features and events include:

    Students will be able to showcase their final year design projects at the University’s Art Degree Show. The private view is attended by local dignitaries, design alumni and potential employers.
    Product Design BSc (Hons) has participated in the New Designers exhibition, in London, for over twenty years – you may get the opportunity to display your final year design project.

  • Standard entry requirements apply. A typical offer would be BCC at A-Level or DMM at BTEC. In addition, applicants are expected to have studied an Art, Design, Design Technology, Product Design or related subject in an A-level or BTEC level 3 Diploma, or equivalent qualification. We will also accept a Foundation Diploma in Art and Design.

    Applicants are interviewed and are requested to provide a portfolio of their own work. International students may submit their portfolio electronically. Students with a relevant HND or Foundation Degree with a suitable profile of achievement may be admitted onto Stage Two or Three of the BSc Product Design programme.

    If you would like to make an application as a Home or EU student, please visit our How to Apply page.

    If you are an International student and would like more information on how to make an application, please visit our How to Apply page.

    Integrated Foundation Year Entry Requirements

    Admission to this foundation programme is normally DEE at A-Level or MPP at BTEC. However, we would also like to hear from you if you have professional or industry experience instead, a range of other qualifications or self-developed subject knowledge that relates to the programme you wish to study.

    English Language Requirements

    All International and EU students applying for a course with us must meet the following minimum English language requirements:

    • IELTS 6.0 (or equivalent) with a minimum of 5.5 in all bands
      for study at undergraduate level.

    For information regarding English language requirements at the University, please see our IELTS page.

  • The Integrated Foundation Year (IFY) offers a new and exciting route into studying for a degree, attracting ambitious and driven students who are willing to learn and advance.

    If you have non-standard qualifications or do not quite meet the admissions requirements we can offer you a fantastic opportunity to study a four year programme which includes an Integrated Foundation Year. The Integrated Foundation Year will help you develop the theoretical/practical and academic skills you need, in order to successfully progress to the full award.

    Featuring a reduced tuition fee in the first year, our four-year courses will enable you to successfully follow the degree pathway of your choice while gaining essential study skills. The foundation year of your chosen degree will be studied on a full-time basis and is aimed at supporting the transition to higher education. Years two, three and four are then studied as a standard degree programme.

  • 21/22 Tuition Fees

    Fees quoted relate to study in the Academic Year 21/22 only and may be subject to inflationary increases in future years.

    • UK – Full Time: £9,250
    • UK – Part Time: £1,465 per 20 credit module
    • UK – Integrated Foundation Year: £6,780 as part of a four year programme (subsequent years will be charged at standard BSc rate)
    • International – Full Time: £13,000
    • International – Integrated Foundation Year: £13,000 as part of a four year programme (subsequent years will be charged at standard BSc rate)
    Additional costs

    Equipment and trips: (approx pricing)

    • Year 1 – £250 toolbox, modelling tools, drawing equipment
      Year 1 – £50-100 materials & printing
    • Year 2 – £75-150 materials and printing
      Year 2 – £350 design trip (optional)
    • Year 3 – £150-300 materials & printing
      Year 3 – £75-150 degree show & New Designers exhibition
    2020/21 Tuition Fees

    Fees quoted relate to study in the Academic Year 20/21 only and may be subject to inflationary increases in future years.

    • UK and EU – Full Time: £9,250
    • UK and EU – Part Time: £1,450 per 20 credit module
    • UK and EU – Integrated Foundation Year: £6,750 as part of a four year programme (subsequent years will be charged at standard BSc rate)
    • International – Full Time: £12,900
    • International – Integrated Foundation Year: £12,900 as part of a four year programme (subsequent years will be charged at standard BSc rate)
    Additional costs

    Equipment and trips: (approx pricing)

    • Year 1 – £250 toolbox, modelling tools, drawing equipment
      Year 1 – £50-100 materials & printing
    • Year 2 – £75-150 materials and printing
      Year 2 – £350 design trip (optional)
    • Year 3 – £150-300 materials & printing
      Year 3 – £75-150 degree show & New Designers exhibition

    For information on the scholarships available to you, please see our scholarships page.

  • Final year students display their work at the Art Degree Show. Our students have delivered some stunning designs – below you will see an example of this work and the students who made it possible. [new content and video links to follow July 2020.

    Take a look at some recent press releases featuring our BSc and HND Product Design students and graduates:

    Haddonstone Project.
    Concussion Guardian.
    Tellway Sound Shower.
    Chin-Up.

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