BDes (Hons) Interior & Spatial Design

Undergraduate, Full-Time

Engage with inspiring projects, exploring the design of interior and exterior spaces. Develop your creative design skills while gaining vital industry experience.

  • Napier code:

    54117BH

  • UCAS code:

    W251

  • Course type:

    Full-Time

  • Duration:

    4 years

  • Award:

    BDes (Hons)

  • Location:

    Merchiston campus

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Course introduction

Interior and spatial design is about place-making, a process which requires the (re)designing and (re)defining of spatial environments.

We are the leading programme for engagement with Edinburgh’s vibrant exhibition, lighting and interior design industry and we offer excellent rates of student placement and design employment. In addition to traditional skills such as drawing and model making you’ll learn to use specific design software. You’ll gain the skills to develop unique design ideas, establish rigorous design processes, deal with complex design issues, make informed judgements and communicate conclusions clearly to a professional audience


interior and spatial design

Through a carefully choreographed series of projects, you’ll explore the large and the small, the public and the private, the old and the new, the solid and the void. Specialist tutors in computer-aided design, technological studies and theoretical perspectives inform and support the core design projects.

You’ll design interior and exterior spaces relating to a wide range of themes including social (e.g. schools, hospitals, libraries), commercial (e.g. retail, leisure, offices) and the arts (e.g. theatres, museums, galleries).

The primary focus is to allow you to develop a sophisticated design language and an understanding of the relationship between space, form, structure and materials within the context of building purpose, the end-user and the wider environment.

In addition to traditional skills such as drawing and model making you’ll learn to use specific design software (AutoCAD, 3D Studio Max) to articulate design ideas and design processes and to investigate the associated technical issues of design proposals.

You’ll gain the skills to develop unique design ideas, establish rigorous design processes, deal with complex design issues, make informed judgements and communicate conclusions clearly to a professional audience.

Design development is supported by research and experimentation and is augmented by conceptual, technical and regulatory studies as the course advances.

In Year 3 you'll have the opportunity to study with one of our overseas partners in Europe, China, Australia or North America, or undertake a work placement.

In the final year you’ll devise your major project, articulating an individual design philosophy and further enhancing your subject specific skills and knowledge.

There is a strong studio culture supported by a multidisciplinary staff team of academics and industry-based practitioners. This course will provide you with the increasingly trans-disciplinary skills of the design profession and a thorough understanding of contemporary creative practice.

You’ll also gain transferable skills in problem solving, planning, leadership, teamwork, communication and time management.

Graduates are equipped with the collaborative, professional and computer-aided design skills required to operate in design practice and work in fields as diverse as exhibition and museum design, retail design, lighting design, design for responsive environments, exterior spaces and both commercial and residential interiors.

This is a full-time course studied over four years. You’ll learn by a variety of teaching methods including lectures, tutorials, studio projects and independent study.

What you'll study

Year 1

  • Foundation Interior and Spatial Design
  • Visual Research Methods
  • Foundation Digital Media
  • Debates in Design

Year 2

  • Interiors Studio
  • Debates in Design
  • Design & Business
  • CAD (Construction & Detailing)
  • CAD (Visualisation)

Year 3

  • Interior Studio
  • Design & Urbanism
  • Lighting & Colour in the Built Environment
  • Prototyping Interactive Experiences
  • Design Research Methods
  • Optional work experience or overseas study

Year 4

  • You will undertake a major project and a dissertation. You will also study one module in professional practice and enter work into competitions.

Work placement

Optional supervised work placement or overseas study module in Year 3.

Study modules mentioned above are indicative only. Some changes may occur between now and the time that you study.

Full information on this is available in our disclaimer.

As a graduate of interior & spatial design, you’ll find your skills in high demand. The skills you gain will prepare you for work in a number of design and creative disciplines including.

Career opportunities

  • interior design
  • exhibition and museum design
  • lighting design
  • property development
  • retail design
  • urban design
  • sustainable design
  • design for interactive spaces

You can also apply for postgraduate study on one of our MA/MDes Design programmes.


Minimum year 1

SQA Higher

BBBC including English or other literary subject* and preferably one of: Art, Product Design, Design, Technology.

A Level

BCC including English or other literary subject* and preferably one of: Art, Product Design, Design, Technology.

Irish Leaving Certificate

Pre 2017: B1, B3, B3, B3 at HL including English or other literary subject* and preferably one of: Art, Product Design, Design, Technology.

2017 onwards: H2, H3, H3, H3 at HL including English or other literary subject* and preferably one of: Art, Product Design, Design, Technology.

BTEC (QCF) Extended Diploma Level 3

Minimum grades MMM (Merit, Merit, Merit) in a related subject.

BTEC (QCF) Diploma

Minimum grades D*D (Distinction*, Distinction) in a related subject.

International Baccalaureate Diploma

Award of Diploma with 27 points overall with three HL subjects with grades 6,5,4 including English or other literary subject* with grade 5 and preferably one of: Art, Product Design, Design, Technology.

Minimum year 2

SQA Advanced Higher

BBC including English or other literary subject* and preferably one of: Art, Product Design, Design, Technology.

A Level

AAB including English or other literary subject* and preferably one of: Art, Product Design, Design, Technology.

HNC

Pass HNC in a relevant subject with Grade B in the graded unit.

Minimum year 3

HND

Pass in a relevant subject with Grade B at SCQF Level 8 in all graded units.

*Literary subjects accepted are: Modern Studies, History, Psychology, Sociology, RMPS, Theology, Media Studies, Philosophy, Politics, Sociology, Geography, Latin and Classics.

As part of the selection process suitably qualified applicants will normally be required to submit a portfolio/attend an interview.

English language requirements

If your first language isn't English, you'll normally need to undertake an approved English language test and our minimum English language requirements will apply.

This may not apply if you have completed all your school qualifications in English. Check our country pages to find out if this applies to you.

Our entry requirements indicate the minimum qualifications with which we normally accept students.Competition for places varies from year to year and you aren't guaranteed a place if you meet the minimum qualifications.

International students

If your qualifications aren't listed above, visit our country pages to get entry requirements for your country.

Please note that non-EU international students are unable to enrol onto the following courses:

BN Nursing/MN Nursing (Adult, Child, Mental Health or Learning Disability)

BM Midwifery/MM Midwifery

Admissions policies

We're committed to being as accessible as possible to anyone who wants to achieve higher education.

Our admissions policies will help you understand our admissions procedures and how decisions are made.


Tuition fees
Students from 2016/17 2017/18
Scotland/EU £1,820 £1,820
England Wales and Northern Ireland £9,000 £9,000
Overseas £13,740 £13,900

Frequently Asked Questions about Fees
Information of Bursaries and Scholarships

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