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Interior Design

BA (Hons)

School - School of Arts & Media

Subject area - Art and Design

UCAS Code: 8G22

Start Date(s): September


Three years full-time


UK - £9,250 per year

International - £14,820 per year

In Brief:

  • This is a broad based course that allows you to specialise in the areas of interior design that particularly interest you
  • Learn from industry trained tutors who have led successful careers in the discipline
  • Enhance your employability with opportunities to engage in real world projects, live briefs and industry placements
  • Overseas study available
  • Work/industrial placement opportunity
  • International students can apply

Course Summary

Interior design requires both creativity and technical know-how. These are two very distinct skill sets that you will develop throughout this course.

The New Adelphi Building offers state of the art facilites in the 3D workshops, digital suites and studios. Specialist subject tutors and dedicated resources ensure that you gain a sound understanding of interior design while also developing interdisciplinary attitudes toward design. We’ll teach you how to develop your creativity, understand technical requirements of design and become a responsible designer for the 21st century. A combination of studio-based modules and seminar lectures allow you to shape your studies around areas of interior design that particularly interest you.

With well-established links to the architectural and interior design industry, this course has a strong record of inviting specialist design professionals to deliver guest lectures and contribute to the teaching and learning experience. You will also benefit from a range of industry placement and live brief opportunities, which will enable you to work on real world projects and experience the cutting edge of design practice.

In addition to delivering quality teaching and a wealth of opportunities, the course has an enviable reputation for producing graduates who have gone on to work for a variety of architectural and interior design practices including large retail organisations and construction departments.

Course Details

This is a broad based course which covers many aspects of interior architecture (commercial building interiors) and designs for temporary structures such as exhibitions, museums, and film and TV sets.  A combination of both studio-based modules and seminar lectures will enable you to shape your studies around areas of interior design that particularly interest you.

The course has extensive links with the architectural and interior design industry and is taught by tutors who have led well-established careers in the field. This course also has a strong record of inviting key figures and specialist design professionals to deliver guest lectures and contribute to the teaching and learning experience.  Visits to developments, buildings, practices and showrooms are embedded within the course in order to ensure practice-based learning, as are overseas exchanges.

Work placements and industry sponsored projects form part of the course allowing you to experience the cutting edge of design practice. International competition success underpins rigorous teaching and learning practice. Graduates have gone on to work in all areas of design in architectural and interior design practices including large retail organisations, construction departments, film and TV companies.

The professional practice module will equip you for a period of work placement to be undertaken in the second year of study. The programme has forged many links with design practices in the region and around Greater Manchester to aid this process. This work experience will be of great value to you when looking for a graduate position in the design industry and will help you understand and contextualise what you are learning at university.

Year 1

Year one opens with a challenging set of projects to stimulate your creativity and develop your design thinking, including spatial awareness, form, materials and structures, alongside the core skills required for design. While the majority of your time is spent working on design projects, you will have the opportunity to acquire digital skills to extend your awareness of visual communication and workshop practice. You will also develop an understanding of cultural and theoretical studies in relation to design.

This module introduces you to the fundamental principles of 3D design and builds your awareness of the vocabulary used within the design industry. The analysis and demonstration of established design communication techniques will provide a basis for exploration, and the subsequent development of your own 2D and 3D design communication skills.
Design is a creative tool that is employed widely by a number of industries.  This module aims to provide you with an understanding of design procedures and ways of working which will help you generate, develop and realize your design solutions.
The purpose of this module is to provide you with an understanding of materials and associated processes within the context of specific design situations. You will appreciate the choice of materials available to you and how your decisions will affect your design proposals.
This module introduces you to the variety of individuals or ‘customers’ you will need to please as a designer.  Whilst full consideration is given to the ‘end user’, an understanding of the client, supplier and those involved with construction/manufacturing is critical.
Developing your understanding of professional practice is a core theme which runs throughout the course. This module encourages you to start aligning your skills with the identified requirements of industry and includes an emphasis on design communication skills.
This module encourages you to explore, consider and reflect on a range of perspectives in the wider field of creative practice, particularly in the context of your own practice.  By introducing key debates in visual culture, this module aims to increase your visual and critical awareness and demonstrate ways in which varied frameworks can inform contemporary practice in interior design.

Year 2

Year two focuses on technical know-how, employability and sustainable design principles. You will explore professional practice and what it means to be a designer. Project work is underpinned with the technology and statutory regulations particular to the design practitioner, and will include marketing, business and management issues. Sustainable design practice will be investigated and applied to design projects. Year two involves examination of the global context of design in the early 21st century and may include the opportunity to undertake a study visit abroad (Erasmus). As with Year one there is a wide range of supporting studies including further specialization in technological media (CAD), international cultural studies, visual communication and visual language.

The particular characteristics of a specific situation can influence the redesign of an existing space.  This module will explore the manner in which these defining qualities can be examined and exploited by encouraging you to investigate methods of interpretation and evaluation of the urban form.  You will be introduced to appropriate forms of technology, construction and materials and study how these elements are utilised in the production of interior design project work.
Interior Design practice is constantly influenced by regulatory issues as well as new and existing technologies.  This module will provide you with a strong insight into challenging and exciting ways of utilising these developments in your own practice. You will also build an awareness of architectural technologies in current practice as well as an understanding of the processes involved in design development and production.
Interior Architecture can include user-specific commercial interiors such as offices, banks, retail, education, health or cultural facilities as well as interiors for hospitality or entertainment.  You will gain a strong foundation in one of the above forms of interior architectural design by undertaking an appropriate design project which will expose you to the challenges and creative opportunities of interior architecture.
Building upon the professional practice skills introduced in Year One, this module looks at business, employability and enterprise issues and encourages you to reflect upon your own work and ongoing development. This module is also used to identify and pursue placement opportunities for the final module of the year.
Further developing your visual and critical awareness of the varied contexts of interior design, this module will enhance your understanding of how cultural, commercial and/or historical frameworks can influence contemporary practice.  In addition, you will develop an informed view of the programme’s disciplines, the relationships between these disciplines and the wider relationships that can be made to other forms of visual, creative and cultural expression.
You will have the opportunity to undertake a work placement at the end of Semester 2.  This will enable you to demonstrate and develop your skills while gaining a thorough understanding of the relevant working procedures within industry and the professional activities of design.

Year 3

In year three, you have the ability to shape your course to inform your own personal direction by choosing an specialist area of interest. You will have the opportunity to pursue a detailed study of a relevant creative, cultural & contextual issue that is of particular interest to you through a self-directed research and design project. There is plenty of scope for experiment, to explore boundaries and to investigate new areas, further increasing your portfolio of skills

This module will further extend and strengthen the student's knowledge and skills in producing design solutions within the area of specific building interiors, with an emphasis on the creation of appropriate and suitable ambience through the use of materials and lighting. Commercial client and user needs will be studied in relation to particular aims and requirements and conditions developed within a brief appropriate to Interior Architecture. The creative reuse of existing buildings for a variety of commercial uses will involve the student in research and analysis to understand the specific natures of such spaces. Such considerations will lead to the production of more fully developed design solutions which will be implemented up to full client presentation standards.
Building upon the research methods introduced in Year Two, your work in this module will provide an evidence base with which to inform and evaluate design directions within the negotiated Major Project.
The final self-directed project acts as a conclusion to the course and as such it enables you to continue in the development of a more personalised programme of study, supporting personal careers aspirations and directions. The module also provides an opportunity for you to initiate engagement with industry over an extended period, providing valuable experience of a potential career direction.
This module supports you in your final year whilst also encouraging you to consider your career options and define your personal objectives. You will take the first critical steps in pursuing your career aspirations by producing a self-directed portfolio of work, which demonstrates your skills, knowledge and understanding via the use of appropriate professional techniques.

The emphasis of this module is on independent research, exploration and investigation.  This module provides you with the opportunity to pursue a detailed study of relevant creative, cultural & contextual issues in a subject area that is of particular interest to you.  You can choose from one of the four following project options:

  • Dissertation
  • Original visual work with critical text
  • Presentation with extended essay
  • Business report

Please note that it may not be possible to deliver the full list of options every year as this will depend on factors such as how many students choose a particular option. Exact modules may also vary in order to keep content current. When accepting your offer of a place to study on this programme, you should be aware that not all optional modules will be running each year. Your tutor will be able to advise you as to the available options on or before the start of the programme. Whilst the University tries to ensure that you are able to undertake your preferred options, it cannot guarantee this.

Entry Requirements

Qualification Entry requirements
You must fulfil our GCSE entry requirements as well as one of the requirements listed below.
English and Maths GCSE grade C
UCAS tariff points 96-112 points
GCE A level 96-112 points including an A2 in an art and design or a design and technology subject at grade C or above
BTEC National Diploma MMM - DMM
BTEC Higher National Diploma applicants may be considered for entry into year 2
Foundation Degree overall pass
Scottish Highers 96-112 points including an appropriate subject
Irish Leaving Certificate 96-112 points including an appropriate subject
International Baccalaureate 29 points including an appropriate subject
Access to HE 96-112 points, overall pass including an appropriate subject

Salford Alternative Entry Scheme (SAES)

We welcome applications from students who may not meet the stated entry criteria but who can demonstrate their ability to pursue the course successfully. Once we have received your application we will assess it and recommend it for SAES if you are an eligible candidate.

There are two different routes through the Salford Alternative Entry Scheme and applicants will be directed to the one appropriate for their course. Assessment will either be through a review of prior learning or through a formal test.

English Language Requirements

International applicants will be required to show a proficiency in English. An IELTS score of 6.0 (no element below 5.5) is proof of this.

Applicant profile

The UCAS application should indicate, as well as the required academic qualifications, an awareness of Interior Design through the applicant’s statement. This may be evidenced by some knowledge and understanding of the chosen subject area through visits to exhibitions, buildings, knowledge of  practitioners,  appropriate technical journals. You should be verbally articulate and be able to demonstrate reasoned judgment in written formats relevant to their chosen subject of study.  

As with all design courses, good visual communication skills are required. This can include drawing in its broadest sense, from observational drawing through sketch development, to presentation drawings and scale technical drawing.

The ability to understand 3D form and scale needs to be shown within a portfolio of work if invited for interview. The portfolio should contain evidence of both observed and experimental media application.  

All suitable applicants to the course are interviewed.

Fees and Funding


Fees 2019-20

Type of Study Fee
Full-time £9,250 per year
Full-time International £14,820 per year

Fees 2018-19

Type of Study Fee
Full-time £9,250 per year
Part-time Your annual fee will be calculated pro rata to the full-time fee according to the number of credits you are studying.
Full-time International £14,400 per year

Additional costs

Additional costs from £200 (show in final year), £50 (UK optional trip), international optional trips individually costed. Costs are approximated based on the current academic year.

You should also consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.


The course is taught by a variety of teaching and learning methods, however the design project forms the basis for the majority of activities on the course. Most modules include lectures, practical workshops or skills sessions, one-to-one tutorials, group seminars and design studio practice.

You will work on a variety of design projects in a way that reflects contemporary design issues, culture and professional design practice. In addition to studio projects, digital skills are developed throughout the course to develop skills in 2D, 3D and multimedia computer applications. Theory modules are delivered through a series of formal lectures and seminar discussion groups that again reflect contemporary design issues and, where possible, align to studio practice modules.

Independent learning

When not attending lectures, studio or other timetabled sessions you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. We advise you should take around 15 hours of independent study per week. Typically, this will involve reading journal articles and books, working on individual and group projects, undertaking research in the library, preparing coursework assignments and presentations. Your independent learning is supported by a range of excellent facilities, including the library, the learning zone, digital suites, 3D workshops and the self-directed study area in New Adelphi.


Assessment methods include and a range of coursework assessments such as project work, model making, essays, reports, portfolios, presentations and your final year major project. The grades from formal assessments count towards your module mark.

Percentage of the course assessed by coursework

  • Coursework (70%-90%)
  • Presentations (5%-15%)
  • Dissertation (5%-15%)


You will receive feedback on all practice assessments and on formal assessments undertaken by coursework. Feedback is intended to help you learn and you are encouraged to discuss it with your module tutor.

We aim to provide you with feedback within 15 working days of hand-in (formal coursework assessment).

*You must achieve a pass mark of 40 and above in all Year 1 modules as a prerequisite, before progression to Year 2 modules.


Our graduates have enjoyed employment across a range of the diverse jobs within the Interior Design sphere, from retail and workspace planning, to museum, event and exhibition design, production design for television, retail branding and store design, lighting as a specialism within the Interior Design discipline, bespoke house design, hotel interiors, interior specialists within multi-disciplinary teams – virtual environment for computer games, marine interiors.

Career Prospects

When you graduate you will be equipped for a range of careers in the interior design industry. Graduates have gone on to work in all areas of design in architectural and interior design practices, large retail organization and construction departments.

The course has an outstanding graduate employment record, both in the local design community and further afield in both Architecture and Interior Design practices in Hong Kong, New York and Dubai.

Through the strong industry links and vibrant visiting lecturer programme the course can provide a stepping stone for those students wishing to work within the commercial  design industry. Our alumni are now working in high profile design practices such as TSK, David Chipperfield Architects, Leach Rhodes Walker, Space Zero, Space Invader, Sheppard Robson and The Co-Op.

Some students also follow more typically general graduate routes into teacher training with others undertaking further studies at Masters in Interior Design.

Alumni Profile

Since graduating, Melanie Zarins has worked on interior design projects around the world and experienced working in a range of sectors such as Hotel, Leisure, Hospitality, Restaurant & Bar, Commercial Office and Education. Her passion is creative and imaginative use of materials and finishes in her design work.

Melanie has worked for many high profile design practices such as Fairhursts Design Group. No Chintz, Fox Linton, Spacezero and TP Bennett. Having worked with BIM in recent years she is keen to learn new ways of working to move forward with technology. Some of the different aspects Melanie is involved with are; refurbishment, new build, design and delivery, costing, conceptual design, detail design, space planning, FF&E, project management, onsite delivery and snagging.    

Having also worked in the UAE for a number of years, Melanie has experience in a variety of sectors and budgets, offering cutting edge solutions with commercial appeal ranging from contemporary new builds to sensitive refurbishments.

Links with Industry

You will have the opportunity to meet and collaborate with a wide range of industry professionals and all have practical experience across the field of interior design, ranging from architects, commercial interior designers and shopfitters.

We have a programme of visiting speakers and the valuable knowledge and experience that they bring ensure that you are kept informed of the current changes and demands within the interior design industry. Guest speakers have included Jon Heallis from Stride Treglown (the architects for New Adelphi Building) Andrew Thurman, Pete Brown from Bedrock Tiles, Trevor Stratford, and Ric Frankland founder of Wudl housing.

Many students who completed their studies at Salford have continued to maintain a strong link with the university and the course, and are regularly invited to deliver talks at networking events, advise students and offer work placements. These include alumni who are currently working as interior designers in sectors such as retail, leisure, education, sport, event and museum designers.

You will be regularly informed by professional practitioners who teach on the course, from varying and appropriate sections of the industry, in-line with your needs and learning outcomes. This professional perspective complements your knowledge and development while providing an acute awareness of the current interior design industry.

Placement Opportunities

During the second year students are encouraged to find their own industry placements for the final module of the year.  Recent graduates have travelled as far as New York and to Australia to complete their placements.

Further Study


The course is delivered in the New Adelphi Building on Peel Park Campus. The building has extensive dedicated facilities including a light and airy studio space and Wi-Fi access. Close to the studio are well resourced digital suites (Mac and PC) with industry standard software. A main feature of the course is the 3D Workshop which boasts industry standard wood working, metal and plastic facilities, spray room, hot metal, laser cutting and rapid prototyping resources including CNC and 3D printing. The 3D workshop operates on a drop-in basis and is serviced by a team of technical demonstrators who are on hand to help you.

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