Mini robot designed by student

BSc(Hons)

Product Design Technology (with Foundation Year)

This course is open for applications.

About this course

Entry year:
2018/19
Course code:
W24F
Applications:
UCAS
Level:
Undergraduate
Tariff points:
88
Department:
Architecture and the Built Environment
Campus:
Frenchay
Duration:
Four years full-time; five years sandwich
Delivery:
Full-time; sandwich
Programme leader:
Sally Daniels
Key fact:
Learn how to design great products on a friendly and creative course with tutors who are highly experienced professional designers.

Page last updated 22 September 2017

Introduction

Why study product design technology?

Product design technology combines creativity and practicality to bridge the gap between product design and design engineering.

The industry needs graduates with the ability to create innovative concepts and transform them into real working products.

Why UWE Bristol?

BSc (Hons) Product Design Technology will give you the creativity, skills and confidence to take exciting concepts and transform them into real, working products.

Learn from friendly tutors with extensive industry expertise and work on a series of projects in our well-equipped Design Studio.

Examine real problems, grow your understanding of people and their needs, and develop innovative solutions. Gain advanced skills in concept sketching, making working prototypes, engineering analysis, computer-aided design (CAD), design for manufacture and beyond.

Work on design briefs for a range of industry clients. Past organisations have included Jaguar Land Rover, Dremel Bosch, Omlet and Virgin Marussia Formula 1. Take part in exhibitions and grow your network at industry presentations.

Graduate with the skill and confidence to create innovative products and build a successful career in the creative industries.

Where can it take me?

As a graduate, your in-depth understanding of technology, sustainability and materials will equip you for a range of careers.

Most of our graduates go into product development roles for design consultancies, or join in-house design teams for manufacturers and major brands.

Many are inspired to launch their own products or establish themselves as freelance design consultants.

Accreditations and partnerships:

Structure

Content

The optional modules listed are those that are most likely to be available, but they may be subject to change.

Year zero (foundation year)

You will study:

  • Foundation Mathematics: Algebra and Calculus
  • Foundation Design Studio
  • Foundation Design Communication
  • Foundation Design History

You normally need to pass your foundation year before going into year one.

Year one

You will study:

  • Product Design Studio 1
  • Mechanisms and Structures
  • Design Communication
  • Graphic Design
  • Design in Context.   

Year two

You will study:

  • Product Design Technology Studio 2
  • Product Design Engineering
  • Product CAD
  • Materials and Processes
  • Physical Computing.

Placement year (if applicable)

If you study on the five year (sandwich) course, you'll spend a year away from the University on a work placement after year two.

You'll complete a placement learning module during this time.

See the Placements and Fees sections for more information.

Final year

You will study:

  • Individual Project Product Design
  • Design Research Methods
  • Product Design Studio 3
  • Mechanical Design.

Plus one optional module from:

  • Design in Practice
  • Industrial Placement.

The University continually enhances our offer by responding to feedback from our students and other stakeholders, ensuring the curriculum is kept up to date and our graduates are equipped with the knowledge and skills they need for the real world. This may result in changes to the course. If changes to your course are approved, we will inform you.

Learning and Teaching

Our lecturers all have years of professional practice within the design industry. Along with an emphasis on hands-on learning, this gives the course professional practice focus that will prepare you for your career in design.

The course is project-led and taught mainly in studios. Apply your new knowledge to diverse projects that solve human-centred problems through design practice.

Focus on learning technical skills such as using computational stress analysis to design the structure of products.

Get intensive one-to-one mentoring with tutors for practical guidance on your work. Attend guest lectures with professional designers and receive help with your CV and interview skills from our partner organisations.

Lay a foundation in professional design skills including 3D design, sketching, concept generation, presentations, computer-aided design (CAD) and practical workshops. Gain an understanding of people and their complex emotional relationships with products.

Learn about human-centred design, co-design and innovative design processes, materials and manufacturing and form and aesthetics development.

Work on a range of studio projects with real companies (Brabantia, Dremel, Bloodhound and Piper Moto). Research, develop and create a product that will demonstrate your skills in the design area you'd like to grow in.

See our full glossary of learning and teaching terms.

Showcase your work

Showcase your final year projects to family and friends, as well as regional employers at the annual degree show.

Take a look at some of our students' exhibits on Tumblr and in our online showcase and the Graduate Yearbook 2016-17.

Graduates also exhibit at the New Designers exhibition in London, where awards and media interest are a springboard for careers. 

Percentage of time spend in different learning activities, per year.

YearScheduled learning and teaching studyIndependent studyPlacement study% check
031%69%0%100%
135%66%0%100%
229%71%0%100%
326%74%0%100%

Assessment

In your foundation year, you'll be assessed using coursework and exams. Exams are held in either January or May/June. Coursework will be a mix of essays, reports, surveys, design projects, teamwork and progress tests.

From year one, you'll be assessed mostly on your project work and the presentation of a portfolio of design and development studies. Four modules include conventional exams as a form of assessment.

See our full glossary of assessment terms.

Percentage of time spend in different assessment methods, per year.

YearWritten exam assessmentCoursework assessmentPractical exam assessment% check
03%91%6%100%
19%91%0%100%
213%81%6%100%
30%72%28%100%

Features

Professional accreditation

This degree allows you to become a member of the Institution of Engineering Designers (IED), giving you professional recognition, access to events and opportunities on their website.

Placements

Students who get work experience tend to graduate with better degrees. Experience also hones your skills, industry knowledge and professional network, making you highly employable on graduation.

If you choose the five year (sandwich) course, you'll spend a year away from the University on a work placement after year two.

We have placement opportunities in the UK and Europe, US and China. Past students have worked for in-house design teams, consultancies and manufacturers such as Opel cars, Disney, Omlet, Kinneir Dufort, Trunki, Mathmos and Mira Kohler.

You'll get help to find your placement and support throughout from department staff and our award-winning careers service.

Fieldwork

We arrange annual field trips to destinations such as Barcelona or the Milan Design Festival to inspire you to learn more about contemporary design.

Study facilities

Learn in modern, well-equipped department facilities that simulate industry.

Study and collaborate on group assignments in our dedicated Project Room. Brainstorm concepts in our dedicated design studios.

Develop CAD, model-making, design and drawing skills in integrated studios.

Make models and prototypes and use 3D printers, laser cutters and computer numerical control (CNC) routers in our product design workshop.

This mix of traditional and highly creative learning environments enables you to learn essential knowledge and real-world skills, standing you in good stead for your professional career.

Get a tour of where you'll study with our current design students.

Learn more about UWE Bristol's facilities and resources.

Careers

Careers / Further study

After graduating, you'll find career opportunities all over the world.

Potential creative roles include product design, industrial design, design engineering, user experience, graphic or web design, teaching, and exhibition and packaging design.

Many graduates have launched their own products or established themselves as freelance design consultants.

We have strong links with local companies who provide graduate jobs. Most of our graduates go straight into product development roles for design consultancies or join in-house design teams for manufacturers and major brands.

Read how graduate Will was shortlisted for a James Dyson Award for his therapeutic hand massager design.

Find out how graduates Matt, Doug and Neil designed fairground rides for Gravitron.

Get inspired

Our award-winning careers service will develop your employment potential through career coaching and find you graduate jobs, placements and global opportunities.

We can also help find local volunteering and community opportunities, provide support for entrepreneurial activity and get you access to employer events.

Visit our employability pages to learn more about careers, employers and what our students are doing six months after graduating.

Fees

Indicative Additional Costs

FeesAmount (£)
Additional Course Costs - Full Time - Home/EU - Indicative Maximum Cost Per year300

Full time course

FeesAmount (£)
International-Full Time-Annual (Per Year) Fee12750
International-Full Time-Module Fee (15 Credit)1594

Full time course with placement year

FeesAmount (£)
International-Sandwich-Annual (Per Year) Fee12750
International-Sandwich-Full Annual Fee Following Placement Year12750
International-Sandwich-Module Fee (15 Credit)1594
International-Sandwich-Placement Year Fee1594
International-Sandwich-Reduced Annual Fee Following Placement Year11156

Supplementary fee information

Your overall entitlement to funding is based on how long the course is that you're registered on. Standard funding is allocated based on the standard number of years that your course lasts, plus one additional year.

You'll apply for funding each year that you study and Student Finance will take into account how long the course is in each year that you apply. So if you register for the four year course and then transfer to the three year course, the number of years you can apply for funding will change. Student Finance will reassess your funding based on how many years you have been in study, not just those years for which you received student finance.

Always seek advice before taking any action that may have implications for your funding.

Learn more about funding.

Additional costs

This refers to items you could need during your studies that aren't covered by the standard tuition fee. These could be materials, textbooks, travel, clothing, software or printing.

Learn more about costs.

Entry

Typical offers

  • Tariff points: 88
  • GCSE: For all applicants, Grade C/4 or above in English Language and Mathematics, or equivalent. Please note the University does not accept Level 2 Key Skills, Functional Skills or Certificates in Adult Numeracy and Literacy as suitable alternatives to GCSEs.
  • A-level subjects: No specific subjects required. You can include points from A-Level General Studies and AS-Level subjects (not taken onto full A-Level) towards overall tariff. You must have at least one A-Level.
  • EDEXCEL (BTEC) Diploma: No specific subjects required.
  • Access: Achievement of the Access to HE Diploma; no specific subjects required.
  • Baccalaureate IB: No specific subjects required.

Entry requirements

The typical offers information is for full-time students starting in the foundation year.

If you don't meet the entrance requirements but have substantial relevant work experience, you should still apply. Especially if you feel your motivation and skills would enable you to succeed on this course.

You should also apply if you have a mix of A-levels and BTEC qualifications.

If you think you'll achieve a higher tariff score, you may be interested in our BSc(Hons) Product Design Technology course.

Read more about undergraduate entry requirements.

UWE Bristol's International College

International students who do not meet the academic or English language requirements to study this course can qualify by completing preparatory study at our International College.

Please read the general information about entry requirements.

How to apply

Read more about undergraduate applications.

For further information

Unistats

UWE Main Campus

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