Our graduates have shown that there is a wealth of career opportunities available to product designers. Sam Johnson landed a dream job at Lego, and is now an established designer. Every year we select graduates to showcase their work at the New Designers exhibition which is a great opportunity to network and make vital industry contacts.
Product Design at Derby is aimed at creative people who may have studied Art and Design or Design Technology at school or developed a passion for the subject since leaving formal education. We will help you to build on your creativity and develop an understanding of the reality of design for manufacture, because we teach in small groups we can help you to develop your potential as an individual and support your personal enthusiasm for design.
This course has its emphasis on industrial design and the relationship between people and products. This is an exciting subject area - it's where art meets science in the quest to make better, more attractive products that people want.
You'll focus developing your creativity and practical skills that employers tell us they want from graduates:
- Industry sponsored assignments
- Group projects
- Knowledge of the latest technologies in CAD, visualisation and rapid prototyping
Students graduating from either our BA (Hons) Product Design or BSc Product Design will be recognised as a Registered Product Designer (RProdDes) by the IED. Product Designers having achieved an RProdDes accredited first degree, now have a pathway to Chartership.
By taking optional modules at stages 2 and 3 you can specialise in furniture design or eco-design and other modules to develop your design skills with emphasis on your own personal journey towards a career in design. Our students and graduates are now regularly winning national prizes.
You'll study at Markeaton Street and you'll work in studios and workshops, running alongside advanced computer based systems, to develop the traditional design skills and creative processes that employers say are relevant in a modern design environment.
Employable Graduates – we’re ranked 15th highest amongst all UK universities and 12th for English institutions with 96% of graduates in work or further study within six months of completing their degree.
The programme leader for BA (Hons) Product Design, Terry Watson, contributed to an article in The Independent exploring the benefits of a degree in product design. You can read the article, including his advice for applicants, here.
All art and design courses are based at our Markeaton Street site where modern, purpose built studios and labs provide a modern creative space for our arts students. Markeaton Street encompasses Chandos Pole Street (home to our Fashion and Textiles courses) and Britannia Mill (home to Fine Arts). Students on any of our theatre related courses also get to study at Derby Theatre, and Dance students study at Deda.
Markeaton Street is a 15 minute walk from Kedleston Road, and is serviced by regular free site shuttle buses.
Explore our facilities through 360 views:
Art and Design creative spaces
You will study modules such as:
- Making it: Materials and Manufacturing Processes
- Product Design Studies
- Computer Aided Product Design
- Design Evaluation
- Context: Being a Product Designer
- Design Project Concept
- Innovation Applications and Personal Development Planning
- Design Project Development
- Design Context
- Industrial Design
- Eco Design
- Furniture Design
- Major Project Research
- Major Project (double module)
- Advanced Industrial Design
- Design Management and Personal Development Planning
- Advanced Eco Design
- Advanced Furniture Design
We are currently working on minor modifications that will result in changes to stage 2 modules but they are yet to be approved.
Your lecturers have real world experience as designers working for manufacturing companies and as consultants, so you'll benefit from their expertise. You'll learn through practical studio-based project work with formal lectures, seminars and debates to give you a good theoretical knowledge. You'll put your learning into context through iindustry learning opportunities, live project work, competitions, teamwork, cultural field study visits and visiting speakers.
How you are assessed
Assessment is 100% coursework, using a range of mainly project-based outcomes.
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:
For a glimpse of last year’s Degree Show take a look at our flickr photo album.
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||N/A|
Yes - Digital portfolio
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.
You can go on an optional work placement between stages two and three, which is a fantastic opportunity to gain some real experience of working in the industry. You'll also gain an additional qualification - the Diploma in Professional Practice. Find out more about placements
Our graduates have shown that there is a wealth of career opportunities available to product designers, in the UK and abroad. This course will give you the skills and knowledge you need to start your career, both in the product design profession and in related areas.
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, fieldtrips, participation in Degree Show and New Designers London exhibition, participation in competitions and live projects
- 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
- Materials kit: paper, card, basic modelling materials are provided
- Basic materials such as MDF, plastics, glue, and card paper provided for set coursework tasks
- Compulsory Study Visits, Participation in University Degree Show and a London Graduate Show
- Participation in design competitions and live projects
- Here at Derby, we provide excellent learning resources, libraries and specialist laboratories and studios
Mandatory costs not included in your fees
- Drawing equipment general 'toolbox' (marker pens, pencils, scalpels, layout pads etc.) approx. £50-£75 in each year
- Additional materials (printing, stationary, portfolio sleeves, folders, USBs/hard drives etc.) approx. costs - Year 1= £150, Year 2 = £200, Year 3 = £300)
- Foam for modelling, markers, materials for making, show printing of student work, production of prototype and final models, production of RP models. Approx. costs - Year 1= £50 , Year 2 = £50 , Year 3 = £50 (Costs determined by student)
Optional costs not included in your fees
- 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.
* This course is subject to validation.