Available in clearing

 - Call +44 (0)1332 592019

Course details

Study options

Full-time: 3 years

UK/EU fee

£9,250 per year (2019/20)

International fee

£13,250 per year (2019/20)

UCAS points

112 (September 2019 entry)

UCAS code


Course level



BA (Hons)

Start date



Britannia Mill, Derby Campus

Course description

The course is for anyone who is inspired and moved by interiors as well as inquisitive enough to find out how to realise these technically. Studying Interior Design at Derby will help you develop your design skills to create functional and unique spaces with strong spatial identities. 

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 design bespoke artefacts and furniture to compliment your interiors and generate the appropriate multi-modal visual documentation required for each stage of the design. Furthermore, you'll learn to design spaces that are functional and in accordance to building regulations and health and safety legislation. 

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. 

Networking and collaboration opportunites

We offer you unique collaboration opportunities with other disciplines and national/international partners. This may include working with other programmes in the university such as Textile Design through the design and manufacturing of interior artefacts or Product Design in the creation of bespoke interior products. International collaboration will be through international vertical studio projects (joint projects between Level 4 to Level 6 cohorts). We are also affiliated with Interior Educators and BIID (British Institute of Interior Design) to ensure we stay up to date on current events taking place in the country. 

"My experience studying Interior Design has both been challenging and rewarding. The course has enabled me to gain a deeper understanding of various elements involving design. It focuses on how space can be used within an environment whilst remaining functional. The course gives you the freedom to be creative and pull in inspirations - whether it be from the experience / emotion you want to evoke or the colour / style you pictured. The support the course offers really helps with trying to get your vision across. Overall, It has been a positive experience and the advice I've been getting from my tutors only gives me more confidence as I progress through the course." - Prince Rosales 

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Our Clearing hotline is now open

Worried your exams haven't gone to plan or changed your mind about where you want to study? Call our Clearing hotline on +44 (0)1332 592019 to secure your place for 2019.

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What you will study

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 will come to represent the forum for exploring and communicating interiors and spatial narrativesYou will learn what constitutes spatial narratives in interior design and how to go about creating these using form, colours, light, texture and movement. You'll gain an insight into various materials and drawing techniques by which to communicate your design proposals using 2D and 3D communication techniques. This level encourages a culture of risk-taking and experimentation.

You'll study modules such as:

  • Critical Context: Exploring Global Context and Spatial Typologies
  • Visual and Professional Practice: Imagination to Visualisation
  • Designing Spatial Narratives: Introduction and Exploration
  • Toolkit: Structural Layers and Materials

This stage continues to develop experimentation and deals with spatial narratives in public or commercial environments. Various spatial typologies are investigated and explored to offer you wider exposure to the field of interior design. The modules hone in to 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/or furniture design, as well as the repurposing of existing spaces to new functions.

You'll study modules such as:

  • Critical Context: Context Specific Investigations
  • Visual and Professional Practice: BIM for Promotion (Promotional Skills)
  • Designing Spatial Narratives: Contextualised Interventions
  • Toolkit: Technical Services and Drawing Systems

This level further develops your personal voice. You may engage in collaborative and competition projects along with international partnering institutions. The design module comprises of two projects, one focused towards sustainable design and the other your own self-negotiated brief. For your final project you will have the opportunity to select an historically significant building in a setting of your choice. 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 and develop a justifiable argument regarding the need for readaptation as well as to conceptualise the function needed to ensure financial viability. As a result, the level of performance at this level requires conceptual and technical relevance. 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:

  • Critical Context: Probing and Interrogating Multi-Contexts
  • Visual and Professional Practice: Networking Strategies
  • Designing Spatial Narratives: Reimagining Existing Space
  • Toolkit: Sustainable Strategies and Innovation

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. 

Interior design student work from Barn Project
Interior design student work from Barn Project

Please note that our modules are subject to change - we review the content of our courses regularly, making changes where necessary to improve your experience and graduate prospects.

Students welcoming guests to a Buxton Open Day

Find out more about Interior Design

The best way to find out if studying at Derby is right for you is to experience an Open Day. Get a feel for the city and campus, tour our first-class facilities and see where you could be living.

Book your Open DayBook your Open Day

How you will learn

You’ll learn in well-resourced, professional design studios. Resources include ISKN tables, Macbook Pros, large format scanners, drawing boards, as well as the arts and design library. 

You will also 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.  

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.

Degree Show

Every year students from the School of Arts celebrate their time at University by showcasing their work at an end of year Degree Show at Markeaton Street and across the City of Derby. The Show usually runs throughout June and is a fantastic opportunity for potential employers, friends, family, industry and members of the public to see exciting creations by the next generation of artists, designers, creators and makers from Derby. The Show takes the form of:

Take a look at highlights from the 2019 Degree Show.

Entry requirements

September 2019 typical entry requirements

UCAS points112 (up to 16 from AS-levels)
Specific requirements at A-level

No specific subject requirements

Specific requirements at GCSEGCSE Maths and English Grade C/Grade 4 (or above) or equivalent qualification
IELTS6.0 (with 5.5 in each skills area)
Interview / AuditionYes - see interview details

Alternative entry qualifications:

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.

Fees and funding

2019/20 Fees


£9,250 per year



£13,250 per year


Further information about our fees and support you may be entitled to.

Additional costs and optional extras

How to apply

UK/EU students

Full-time students applying to start in September should apply for this course through UCAS or you can apply directly to the University for an undergraduate course if you’re not applying to any other UK university in the same year.

Apply through UCASApply directly to the University

Guidance for EU students post-Brexit

International students

Full-time students applying to start in September should apply for this course through UCAS or you can apply directly to the University for an undergraduate course if you’re not applying to any other UK university in the same year.

Apply through UCASApply directly to the University

Guidance for international applicants applying for an undergraduate degree


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 other design-related disciplines.

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 with endless opportunities to choose from such as:

Contact us

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.

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† Additional information about your studies

Download programme specification

Teaching hours

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

Mandatory costs not included in your fees

Optional costs not included in your fees

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.