M.A. Product Design

University for the Creative Arts | Canterbury , United Kingdom
The MA Design course specialising in Product Design considers both the current and future position of the product and the product designer within the global economy. It allows for the development of live and speculative projects concerned with design ethics, trend prediction, brand development and promotion. Working alongside the other specialisms of MA Design - Architectural & Interior Design, Design Crafts, and Digital Design, the course is underpinned by a core taught programme that helps you to develop a wide range of skills and strategies, including research into new technologies, future forecasting and design methodologies.



On this specialism you work to understand and develop product design as part of a wider context of systems, organisations and experiences.

You are encouraged to consider product design through issues of materiality, experience and representation, reviewing organisational and promotional contexts and in relation to contemporary research, practice and publication. Recent projects have included the conceptual integration of packaging and products; sustainable design for and using recycled materials; customisation; and interactive products and furniture.

This course promotes joined-up thinking as an approach to design, so that the relationship between artefacts, environments and the systems and organisations in which they operate can be re-examined. It acknowledges that in order to realise potential and to participate in the challenge of designing in the future, the designer needs to continually review and rethink the boundaries and systems of design itself.

How this course is taught

You receive specialist tuition through a combination of lectures, seminars, workshops and tutorials. You are expected to present your work in progress regularly at formal reviews. Above all, the emphasis is placed on personal development through the production of your design project.

How this course is assessed

Assessment includes evidence of experimentation and research in the form of design proposals, reviews, presentations, exhibitions of work, reflective journals and written papers.

Key study topics include:
  • Development of a specialist or interdisciplinary personal project
  • Explore methods, techniques, ideas and themes
  • Work with practising professionals to identify future audiences
  • Prepare for the next stage of your career.

Detailed Course Facts

Application deadline You can apply throughout the year
Tuition fee
  • GBP 11760 Year (International)

Start date
Duration full-time 12 months
Delivery mode On Campus
Educational variant Part-time, Full-time
Intensity Flexible
Duration part-time 24 months

Course Content

Syllabus (11/12*)

Stage 1

  • Research Methods for Creative Practice (Rochester MA programme common unit) - introduces you to a range of research and communication methods and tools appropriate to an advanced level of study in creative disciplines.
  • Contemporary Issues in Visual & Material Culture (Rochester MA programme common unit)- this unit presents and reviews key themes that have influenced thinking and practice in contemporary photography, design, fashion and craft practice and continue to do so.
  • Creative Practice (Design) - develop your creative practice in order to inform the detailed development of your project proposal for stages 2 and 3 of the course.

Stage 2

  • Project Development (Design) - your MA project as research practice truly begins, your project takes shape and you develop as an independent researcher and practitioner.

Stage 3

  • Project Realisation and Reflection- you apply the knowledge gained on the course to a final body of work as appropriate to your discipline. You will demonstrate the potential of your MA project, its subject and its method, to generate original and creative work that embodies knowledge.
  • Project Publication and Dissemination (Rochester MA programme common unit) - you prepare the results of your design/visual practice in fully realised form. Applying gained knowledge directly to the production of your work in a form suitable for 'publication' as well as making professional contacts and taking part in actual negotiations to identify an appropriate context for your work and make its appearance in this form a reality.

For further information please view the full programme specification

* Please note the syllabus content is for the academic year indicated and is provided as a guide. The content of the course may be subject to change.

English Language Requirements


IMPORTANT NOTE: The UK government confirmed new requirements for secure English language testing for visa and immigration purposes. Learn more


Entry requirements

  • A good Honours degree (normally 2:1 or above) or equivalent qualification in your chosen subject or a related discipline, and/or;
  • Relevant work experience, demonstrating your ability to study at postgraduate level.

English language requirements

If your first language is not English a certificate is required.


Your portfolio should include a selection of images of recent work, evidence of written work and a CV. Enthusiasm for your subject and the desire to succeed is essential.

Work Experience

No work experience is required.

More Information

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