About the course
Brunel’s Design degrees are some of the most renowned and respected in Europe and our students and graduates have won many national and international design awards.
This BSc degree course in Product Design shares all its first and second year modules with BSc Product Design Engineering, and both contain a balanced blend of creative and technical subjects where mechanics and electronics are taught at a theoretical level.
The Product Design programme is focused on developing your commercial awareness, technical skills and ability to innovate. The course has a technical emphasis, meaning students can develop products that both look good and work well.
The degree also emphasises aesthetic awareness and understanding of market trends. All modules on the course have creative and project based working including graphic design, human factors and environmentally sensitive design.
The course suits pragmatic problem solvers who combine their numeracy with the creative motivation to underpin exciting, commercially viable projects with a deep functional and manufacturing understanding.
To view the Made in Brunel – Design showcase video please click here.
Design at Brunel University has evolved to meet the needs of industry worldwide, by teaching highly motivated students, through in-depth professional studies, to become imaginative yet practical professional designers.
The Product Design programme aims to develop versatile designers with a sound knowledge and broad understanding of the technological, manufacturing and creative aspects of design, principally focused on industrially-manufactured products.
Graduates will have significant engineering understanding and will be able to take on key roles encompassing all aspects of the design process, as well as being prepared for further research-based studies.
We believe that good design is the combination of commercial awareness with creative and inspirational thought validated by sound technological reasoning, defined through the design process. We produce communicators who are at ease working with members of engineering, design and marketing teams and appreciating their individual needs, and capable of contributing to the total design process.
The first year of compulsory modules ensures a sound understanding of the technological, creative and practical skills necessary. At Level 3, there is a distinctive change in emphasis towards ergonomics and design for manufacture. Final year projects often pursue consumer durable themes complemented by subjects of a more semantic nature.
- Design Process 1
- Graphic Communication 1
- Materials with Manufacturing
- Mechanics for Design
- Electronics and Mathematics.
- Design Process 2
- Design for Manufacture
- Design Communication
- Electronics, Programming and Interfacing
- Dynamics, Mechanisms and Stress Analysis
Level 3 compulsory modules
- Major Project
- Innovation Management
- Human Factors.
Level 3 optional modules (choose two)
- Environmentally Sensitive Design
- Graphic Communication
- Lighting Design
- Contextual Design
- Embedded Systems for Design.
Read more about the structure of undergraduate degrees at Brunel
and what you will learn on the course.
Brunel’s Design degrees are some of the most renowned and respected in Europe and our students have won many prestigious awards and gained widespread media attention for their innovative work.
Highly rated in league tables
Brunel Design is historically amongst the highest rated for product and industrial design in all the major UK league tables:
- 3rd in 'Art and Design' - The Complete University Guide 2017
- 5th in ‘Art and Design’ - The Times University Guide 2016
- 5th in ‘Art and Design’ - The Complete University Guide 2014
- 2nd in ‘Art and Design’ - The Guardian University Guide 2013
- 3rd in 'Art & Design' - The Sunday Times University Guide 2013
- 6th in 'Art & Design' - The Times Good University Guide 2013.
Excellent student satisfaction
Design students are the second most satisfied students in the UK in 'Design Studies', according to the Unistats' student survey.
Design graduates enjoy excellent career prospects, with over 85% from this course finding employment in professional or managerial jobs within the first six months of leaving Brunel – see Unistats.
Links with leading employers
We have very close links with industry. This has many advantages for our students in terms of learning opportunities and contacts for your future career. Over 75% of our students have a placement year in industry with leading companies and consultancies. Students frequently work on collaborative projects with industrial partners, including British Airways, Bentley Motors, Marks & Spencer and Samsung. Many students take advantage of exchange programmes that can take them to Europe, the USA and Australia.
All our Honours and Master’s programmes build on a broad base of knowledge, skills and industrial experience. We view the realisation of every aspect of a concept as vital to successful design.
We have an extensive cross-disciplinary lecturing team, including mechanical and electrical engineers, computer and materials scientists, mathematicians, psychologists, and practising designers and graphic communication experts. It is this cross-disciplinary nature that gives our students the knowledge and expertise they require, and distinguishes us from virtually every other design and engineering department amongst UK universities.
All our lecturing staff are research or professionally active – sometimes both – which ensures that the content of our programmes is constantly up-to-date and evolving with the commercial worlds of both design and engineering.
All our design courses are accredited by the Institution of Engineering Designers (IED) to ensure that the courses maintain their academic and commercial relevance. Student membership of the IED is free and encourages continuous professional development through journals and conferences. On graduation, students are eligible for full membership, with further career and training options which can lead to Chartered Engineer status.
Teaching and Assessment
You will be taught by experts in their fields. Many of your lecturers will be internationally and nationally recognised for their innovative work. Your learning experience will be created on a broad base of knowledge, skills and industrial experience, distinguishing you from other design graduates.
To enable this, we will provide you with tuition from an extensive cross disciplinary lecturing team including mechanical and electrical engineers, computer and materials scientists, mathematicians, psychologists, practising designers, and graphic artists. Along with the knowledge and expertise accumulated throughout the courses, you could participate in our exchange programmes or undertake work placements with some of the best companies in the world.
How will I be taught?
Practical design projects
We emphasise the application of technology throughout the course, with integrated project work all levels. In the earlier part of the course, design focuses on closely defined and monitored tasks which lead to more open-ended projects in the final year. As the course progresses, students have more opportunity to develop their own individual strengths and portfolios towards the design career of their choice.
Students are guided through a comprehensive workshop practice course as an integral part of their Level 1 studies. This gives you a grounding in production processes and a feel for materials and their potential. Most importantly, you learn the craft skills needed to construct models and prototypes later in your course. Our workshops are a pride to us and our technicians are second to none.
These provide a broad overview of key concepts and ideas relating to your course and give you a framework from which to carry out in-depth study.
You will have tutorials for all project work, typically in small groups in the early part of the course, through to one-to-one tutorials in the final year. If you go on a placement you will also be allocated an industrial tutor who will help you to set objectives, monitor your progress, and provide further support if you need it. You will also have a personal tutor who is available to discuss both academic and personal problems.
Level 1 does not count towards your final degree mark. Level 2 is worth a third, and Level 3 is worth the rest. The final year project is worth a third of Level 3 marks.
Knowledge and understanding are tested by means of a range of assessment tasks, including:
- written and multiple-choice examinations
- laboratory reports
- written coursework
- individual and group design projects
- problem-solving exercises
- oral presentation
- visual media projects
- computer programming exercises
The range of assessment methods listed above will form the basis for assessment throughout the programme. You will be expected to discuss or demonstrate the approaches and methods you used to solve design problems as well as their final solutions. In written-based activities you will be expected to have researched and critically analysed the material gathered, appropriate to the level.
Where practical skills are taught on the programme these will be assessed by coursework requiring the application of the skill in question, eg workshop skills are tested by the production of various artefacts in wood, metal and plastic, and computing skills are assessed by the generation of suitable programs or models depending on the software used.
Reports and oral presentations in various modules assess written and oral communication skills. Self-organised learning is encouraged at all levels of the programme and increases as you progress, but is mainly demonstrated through the undertaking and completion of the final year Major Project.
Group projects are used in various modules, which will show the ability of students to work in teams. Managing time and resources is demonstrated by professional standards for submitting work by specified deadlines, and late work is penalised in the mark awarded.
We have an established reputation for producing high quality graduates. Our graduates enjoy superb employment prospects and enter careers in a wide spectrum of environments, including the manufacturing, service and engineering industries, design management and consultancy companies. Many go on to set up their own businesses.
Our graduates are highly sought-after in a wide range of business sectors. As well as the prestigious companies who offer work placements to our students, employers of our graduates include:
- Apple Computers
- British Telecom
- Land Rover
- Morgan Stanley
- The Technology Partnership
- Virgin Atlantic.
Along with the knowledge and skills built during the courses, work placements offer students direct industrial experience of working on ‘live’ design projects with some of the best companies in the world.
A high percentage of students choose to take advantage of this year long work placement and this contributes to the excellent graduate employment record of our students.
Our exchange programme allows students to study in an equivalent course abroad in locations such as the USA, Milan, Hanover and Antwerp.
At Brunel we provide many opportunities and experiences within your degree programme and beyond – work-based learning, professional support services, volunteering, mentoring, sports, arts, clubs, societies, and much, much more – and we encourage you to make the most of them, so that you can make the most of yourself.
» More about Employability
Fees for 2016/17 entry
£9,000 full-time; £1,000 placement year
See our fees and funding page for full details of scholarships available to Brunel applicants
The Government has proposed changes to allow tuition fees for UK and EU students to rise by inflation. These changes are currently subject to approval, but if approved, would result in tuition fees of £9,250 per year from 2017/18.
Entry Criteria 2016/17
- GCE A-level ABB, including at least Grade B in Design and Technology, Product Design, Art or Art and Design and at least Grade B Maths or Physics (General Studies not accepted).
- Advanced Diploma Progression Diploma Grade A in Creative and Media, Engineering or Manufacturing and Product Design, plus Maths or Physics A-level at Grade C for Additional and Specialist Learning.
- BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma D*DD in a related subject including Distinctions in Further Mathematics for Technicians, and Further Mechanical Principles.
- BTEC Level 3 Diploma DD in a related subject with an A-Level at grade A in Maths or Physics.
- BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma D in a related subject with A-Levels grade AB in Design and Technology, Product Design, Art or Art and Design and Maths or Physics.
- International Baccalaureate Diploma 31 points, including 5 in Higher level Design and Technology, Product Design, Art or Art and Design and 5 in Higher Level Maths or 5 in Higher Level Physics.
- Access to Higher Education Diploma Complete and pass Access to Engineering course with 45 credits at Level 3, of which 30 credits must be at Distinction and 15 credits at Merit or higher. All Maths units must be Distinctions at level 3.
5 GCSEs to include Maths at Grade C and English Language at Grade C are also required.
Please check our Admissions pages for more information on other factors we use to assess applicants as well as our full GCSE requirements and accepted equivalencies in place of GCSEs.
All applicants are required to attend an interview including a portfolio review as part of the selection process before a formal offer is made.
Entry criteria are subject to review and change each academic year.
International and EU Entry Requirements
If your country or institution is not listed or if you are not sure whether your institution is eligible, please contact Admissions
This information is for guidance only by Brunel University London and by meeting the academic requirements does not guarantee entry for our courses as applications are assessed on case-by-case basis.
English Language Requirements
- IELTS: 6 (min 5.5 in all areas)
- Pearson: 51 (51 in all subscores)
- BrunELT: 60% (min 55% in all areas)
Brunel University London strongly recommends that if you will require a Tier 4 visa, you sit your IELTS test at a test centre that has been approved by UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) as being a provider of a Secure English Language Test (SELT). Not all test centres have this status. The University can accept IELTS (with the required scores) taken at any official test centre or other English Language qualifications we accept as meeting our main award entry requirements.
However, if you wish to undertake a Pre-sessional English course to further improve your English prior to the start of your degree course, you must sit the test at an approved SELT provider. This is because you will only be able to apply for a Tier 4 student visa to undertake a Pre-sessional English course if you hold a SELT from a UKVI approved test centre. Find out more information about it.
Brunel also offers our own BrunELT English Test and accepts a range of other language courses. We also have Pre-sessional English language courses for students who do not meet these requirements, or who wish to improve their English.
Our International Pathways and Language Centre offers a number of foundation and pre-masters courses to provide you with the academic skills required for your chosen course.