You’ll explore how people relate to the architectural space around them, encouraging you to explore space through a critical engagement and understanding of human need, user experience, material form or texture, colour, site context and culture; and the role these aspects play in good design. You’ll also examine the different sectors within commercial and residential interior design with a focus on the employment opportunities open to an interior design graduate.
You’ll learn in well resourced, professional design studios and will be able to make full use of the traditional 3D workshop facilities (wood and metal) at Markeaton Street, as well as the latest 3D computer software. You’ll also have access to specialist textiles equipment and machinery such as the laser cutter and digital fabric print facilities in the textiles department.
The modules have been designed to underpin and compliment each other, and are taught using mixed mediums that may include workshops, outings, formal and informal lectures, guest lectures, etc. Lecture content comprises of the history of interior design, theories and philosophies applicable to this discourse as well as technical and theoretical knowledge required to become a successful interior designer.
This marks the beginning of your journey into the world of Interior Design. Part of your induction is acquiring the language and codes consistent with the interior designer’s way of being. The studio shall come to represent the forum for exploring and communicating interiors. You shall gain an insight into various materials and drawing techniques by which to communicate your design proposals.
Stage one is focused on teaching you the skills in order to communicate and present your basic design ideas using 2D and 3D communication techniques. Stage two is more in-depth with specific focus on mixed used spaces, i.e. residential environment mixed with a corporate component.
You'll study modules such as:
- Visual Studies for Interior Design
- Contextual Studies 1
- Space: Exploration and Representation
- Toolkit: Technology and Materials
This stage deals with theories and philosophies that underpin design and design decisions. The modules hone into the practical solutions of interior spaces from initial conceptualisation to planning and zoning; 3D design development and the integrated technical and construction knowledge of all proposals. You are required to demonstrate an understanding of branding / corporate identity and develop functional, aesthetic and hazard-free interior spaces. In this year your projects may include retail, hospitality, exhibition stands and furniture design, as well as the repurposing of existing spaces to new functions.
You'll study modules such as:
- Ethics, Ideas and Context
- Transforming Space: Connections
- Communication: Form, Function, Feeling
- Interrogating Space; Inside Out/Outside In
All the modules in this year will contribute towards your project with each supplementing the other. You'll get offered the opportunity to select the building that requires development, conceptualise the function(s) it is required to fulfil and to configure the interior space accordingly. The level of performance at this level requires conceptual and technical relevance. An emphasis on Research Methodology requires you to submit a research document framing your selected building in terms of the macro and micro environmental contexts. You are encouraged to demonstrate social, sustainable and economical relevance by demonstrating the design implications in terms of the feasibility of the proposed design concept and its functioning.
You'll study modules such as:
- Your Voice: Your Context
- Vision: Impact and Scope
- Design: Investigation and Identity
- The Project: The Solution
Real world learning
In addition to your lectures and seminars, you will take part in live projects which build upon your real world learning. Last year our students worked with local artist, Victoria Brown, on the "Barn Project". Students had to visit the barn, measure it up, and compile drawings for it. Students were then tasked to reconfigure this into a contemporary wedding venue. Below you can see the final design for this project.
You’ll learn in well-resourced, professional design studios and will be able to make full use of the traditional 3D workshop facilities (wood and metal) at our Markeaton Street site, as well as the latest 3D computer software. You’ll have access to specialist textiles equipment and machinery such as the laser cutter and digital fabric print facilities in the textiles department.
How you will be assessed
Assessment is 100% coursework based including practical production and oral presentation work, along with written assignments. In your final year, you’ll have the opportunity to write a dissertation on a subject of your choice and work on self-negotiated and independent creative projects.
Learning and Teaching delivery at Stage 1
Stage 1 is designed to support the delivery and attainment of the more traditional design skills and knowledge and as such focuses on 2d sketching and 2d drafting and connections into digital outputs at a basic level.
You will study a set of design focused modules and seek to establish the fundamental practical skills that you will require to undertake design work. These modules aim to establish a confidence in the use of the core design skills so that you feel able to experiment and challenge within your design work.
Learning and Teaching delivery at Stage 2
Stage 2 is designed to support the delivery and attainment of the more advanced digital design skills and this sees the introduction and development of 3D CAD modelling as an effective tool used to communicate complex design proposals.
You will build on the foundations of Stage 1, consolidating your learning and the knowledge so that you are ready to respond to the more conceptually challenging briefs that will demand a greater level of engagement in your work through the use of experimentation in ideas and techniques.
Learning and Teaching delivery at Stage 3
Stage 3 draws together and further refines your practice and engagement in interior design in readiness for future study or employment. Increasingly you are expected to negotiate your studies and articulate your ideas and aims through project briefs; so that you start to confirm your own personal practice and areas of interest across the broad spectrum of professional interior design.
These modules aim to provide you with opportunities for you to identify and refine aspects of interior important to you. The year culminates in the design and development of a student negotiated sustained design project
September 2019 typical entry requirements
|UCAS points||112 (up to 16 from AS-levels)|
|Specific requirements at A-level|
No specific subject requirements
|Specific requirements at GCSE||GCSE Maths and English Grade C/Grade 4 (or above) or equivalent qualification|
|Interview / Audition||Yes - see interview details|
Alternative entry qualifications:
- BTEC - DMM
- Access to HE Diploma 60 credits: 45 at level 3 with a minimum of Dist: 15 Merit: 24 Pass: 6
We usually consider an A-level in General Studies as a supplementary qualification. A good application/performance will be taken into account if you do not meet the criteria/offer conditions.
Our entry requirements for this course should be read together with the University's general entry requirements, which details subjects we accept, alternative qualifications and what we're looking for at Derby.
A key aim of this programme is to prepare you as a graduate for the professional world of interior designers and we would anticipate that a number of you will seek to pursue your career through either freelance or consultancy practice drawing on the opportunities presented through the curriculum to collaborate with interior textiles or furniture product.
This course will provide you with an opportunity to examine different sectors within the commercial and residential interior design, enabling you to gain an understanding and appreciation of the many facets and opportunities that are open to an interior design graduate.
After graduation you’ll be prepared for a career in interior design, styling and retail display/promotion, film, TV and stage set design or freelance design business.
If you need any more information from us, eg on courses, accommodation, applying, car parking, fees or funding, please contact us and we will do everything we can to help you.Contact us
† Additional information about your studies
Download programme specification
Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will usually be available on the website 24 hours after enrolment on to your course.
Additional costs and optional extras
We’re committed to providing you with an outstanding learning experience. Our expert teaching, state-of-the-art facilities and great employability prepare you for your future career. As part of our commitment to you we aim to keep any additional study costs to a minimum. However, there are occasions where students may incur some additional costs.
Included in your fees
- Use of workshop resources, 3D imaging software and site visits. Materials kit, paper, card, basic modelling materials are provided
- Additional access to wider University Arts’ facilities including equipment loan store and other facilities, such as digital print workshops traditional 3d making workshop, laser cutter, CNC and basic RP facilities
- Compulsory study visits to local and Regional Construction/ conversion opportunity buildings
- Participation in design competitions and live projects
- Participation in University Degree Show and the London Graduate Show
Mandatory costs not included in your fees
- Interior design materials for making (card, vinyl, acrylic), presentation materials (marker pens, inks, etc.), show printing of student work, production of prototype and final models, production of RP models. Approx. costs - Year 1= £150, Year 2 = £200, Year 3 = £300 (Costs determined by student)
- Additional materials (printing, stationary, portfolio sleeves, folders, USBs/hard drives etc.) approx. costs - Year 1= £150, Year 2 = £200, Year 3 = £300
- Printing of design work Year 1= £100, Year 2 = £200, Year 3 = £300
- Production of a A2 Portfolio £125
- Drawing equipment general 'toolbox' (marker pens, pencils, scalpels, layout pads etc.) £50-£75 in each year
- Student promotion materials, approx. £75
Optional costs not included in your fees
- Additional course related publications approx. £100
- Specialist software/hardware approx. £1500
- Travel for work placement opportunities (costs will vary dependant on location)
Please note: Our courses are refreshed and updated on a regular basis. If you are thinking about transferring onto this course (into the second year for example), you should contact the programme leader for the relevant course information as modules may vary from those shown on this page.