Undergraduate BSc (Hons)

Interior Architecture with Foundation Year




Four year

Next enrolment

September 2024


In a nutshell

Finding imaginative and sustainable uses for buildings in our space-constrained cities, is a key challenge for interior architects and designers. Become part of the solution to this vital urban challenge with our unique Interior Architecture degree.This foundation year pathway is designed to help you build a strong foundation of knowledge in key design and built environment principles so you're ready to progress and succeed on the full BSc (Hons) Interior Architecture degree.

This pathway is an excellent route if you want to study the full honours degree, but don't meet the direct entry requirements. On successful completion of the foundation year, you will progress on to the full honours degree where you'll join a vibrant multidisciplinary community, learning alongside architects, architectural design technologists, building surveyors, construction managers and quantity surveyors.

Throughout the course, you'll develop your professional skills to ensure that you are working to the standards recognised by interior architecture/design professional bodies. With our industry-focused learning approach, you’ll visit local projects and receive live industry briefs that enhance your real-world knowledge and understanding.

Start your study journey

Register for our next Open Day to learn more about studying Interior Architecture with Foundation Year, explore our facilities and meet the course team

You will:

  • Develop competence in essential areas of built environment professional practice
  • Build technical, analytical and problem-solving skills, ready to progress on to the BSc (Hons) Interior Architecture degree
  • Gain hands-on experience using built environment-focused IT equipment and software
  • Build your confidence by strengthening team working, communication and study skills

This is for you if...


You’re passionate about buildings and architecture and want to develop and shape the built environment


You want to study interior architecture but don't meet the honours degree entry requirements


You're returning to education or seeking to develop your career in a new direction

Course details

All about the course

Architecture Studios Lecture Space

Foundation year

The introductory foundation year will build your understanding of situations and solving problems in the built environment. With a focus on progression, the foundation year introduces the core practical and communication skills you will need to succeed at an advanced study level.

Once you successfully complete and pass the foundation year, you will progress on to our full BSc (Hons) Interior Architecture degree.

BSc honours degree

For a further three years of study, you will explore a range of technical and architecture-focused modules that look at design principles, heritage, preservation and the management of building regeneration. 

You’ll focus on architectural spatiality and studio-based activities in your first year, then you will explore how to design according to performance criteria and conceptual frameworks in year two with an optional overseas study visit. Bring it all together by applying all your knowledge in a final interior architecture project to present at our annual degree show.

Learn more about the course modules in the section below.

Two students working on a laptop in architecture studios

Learning experience

With our enviable location at the heart of buzzing central Manchester, our expert academic team draws on close industry partnerships with architecture, engineering and construction sectors, to bring you guest lectures, networking opportunities and local architectural projects that will support your knowledge and skill progression. Through live briefs and guest lectures, you’ll graduate excited and inspired, ready to help change our environment for the better.

Based at our green Peel Park campus, we use fascinating action and studio-based learning experiences to ensure you study in an inspiring engaging way. You’ll have the opportunity to tackle live briefs, sketch ideas and make models as you fill your Instagram feed with impressive local architecture. Receive an immersive, rewarding experience at Salford where you can showcase your design skills at our degree show.

Foundation year

Introduction to Built Environment Professional Practice

This module will introduce you to the range of sectors and professions involved in the built environment sector. You will also gain an understanding of the role of the different professions, and begin to explore the concept of health and safety in industry.

Introduction to Design Practice

The aim of this module is to provide you with an appreciation and understanding of architectural design and the factors that influence it. You will gain an understanding of architectural design in the context of the overall building procurement process, and be introduced to the role of ICT as an essential tool in built environment professional practice. Through this module you will begin to develop your expertise in commonly used built environment design representation software applications.


Introduction to Building Science

This module will introduce you to many of the reasons why we need buildings. It introduces and examines how we design buildings to both passively and actively modify the internally created built environment. The concept of whole building Indoor Environmental Quality (IEQ) is introduced in relation to thermal comfort, visual comfort, acoustic comfort and Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) with the goal of instilling an understanding in the learner as to how aspects of good building design promote occupant comfort and wellbeing. Via an understanding of the physical properties of construction materials, basic scientific principles and building engineering services, you will gain an understanding of buildings in use, not just buildings under design or in construction.


Introduction to Digital Built Environment

The module is to introduce the concept of digitalisation in the built environment industry and allow you to apply different digital technologies. It will also introduce you to building materials and structure.

IT and Study Skills

This module is designed to equip you with a set of skills, knowledge and personal attributes that ensure the student is likely to be successful in their chosen route of academic study on a course within the School of the Built Environment. You will develop the ability to understand what and how they are learning, and to review, plan and take responsibility for your own learning.

Professional Practice Project

This module introduces the process of client/architect/engineer design briefs, and particular specifications in relation to a building’s internal environment, with particular attention paid to the specification of thermal, visual, acoustic and Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) design variables. Building on the theory learned in the Introduction to Building Science module, this module moves on to the design and practical application of environmental design criteria based on the previously developed understanding of environmental comfort.

You will research into, and select, various design variables during the creation of project Room Data Sheets (RDS), used by engineering consultants to design passive and active approaches to the creation of an optimum internal environment for occupant comfort and wellbeing. The module then moves on to the determination of actual environmental conditions in numerous rooms and spaces in a variety of building types via the physical use of measuring equipment. By comparing theoretical and actual design values, you will then undertake observations and Post Occupancy Evaluation (POE) surveys to determine real occupant opinions and perceptions as to their working environment, with the goal of assessing those areas of design with poor feedback and the proposal of corrective measures.

Year one

Design Studio 1A

This module will introduce you to architectural thinking and the implications of the inter-relationships between people, the environment and place making through the development of a series of exercises of low design complexity.


Construction Technology in Architecture 1

This module will introduce you to construction technology and building fabric design by focussing on principles of architectural structures using natural processes as exemplar. It explores what structures and systems mean in architecture and the environment, and introduces principles, including structural equilibrium, and the techniques of assessment of stress and deformation in simple elements. Common materials, assemblies and construction techniques used to achieve safe, environmentally sound tectonic strategies will be explained and exemplified with particular emphasis on the principles, elements and techniques of domestic architecture.

Design Technology 1

This module introduces you to construction technology, systems and services by focusing on principles of structures, construction assemblies, techniques and sustainable design of domestic architecture. Within the context of the climate emergency you will explore the fundamental approaches to construction used to achieve safe, environmentally sound tectonic strategies. The module will discuss building physics and the building’s fabric, and how its environmental services and systems need to be combined to provide physiological, thermal, visual and acoustic comfort. 

History and Theory 1

You will be introduced to the canon of western architectural history and its underlying ideological assumptions. The module locates the major practices and sites of western architecture in a wide visual, cultural and ideological context and critically examines its relevance to the practicing architect today. 

Interior Architecture Design Studio 1B

This module is delivered within a studio setting in which creativity and innovation are encouraged, developed and challenged through a series of increasingly complex design exercises. The design exercises which you will encounter through the module are designed to progressively develop your appreciation of interior architecture as both experience and process. They will provide you the opportunity to explore the actions of interior architecture as the scaffolding to your future learning. The ideas and approaches which are explored and developed in this module provide an integrated and expansive context within which to develop your appreciation of interior architectural practice. 

Practice 1

This module introduces you to the foundational principles and integrated knowledge required for successful architectural practice, aligning with the RIBA Plan of Works. You will develop skills in design integration, environmental consciousness, construction knowledge, and professional practice, in preparation for the challenges of the architectural profession and the changing landscape of the construction industry. 

Year two

Interior Architecture Design Studio 2A

The focus for the module is to foster an appreciation of the social impact of interior architecture as activist space. You will develop an appreciation of the inter-relationships between people, the environment and society through the development of an interior design intervention of a medium level of complexity.

Principles of Sustainable Built Environments

You will develop a comprehensive recognition and understanding of global and local principles of sustainability in the built environment. You will also develop knowledge and understanding of the relationship between sustainable design and construction processes and their social, environmental and economic impact. This module will also provide you with the necessary knowledge, understanding and skills to engage in the design, procurement, and construction of sustainable built environment.

History and Theory 2

The module aims to develop the broad understanding of the history and theory of architecture focused on the examination of the histories of modern architecture. The field of enquiry will also be broadened by a consideration of urbanism and critical theory relevant to the histories being considered and demand a greater appreciation of the role of the architect in society.

Interior Architecture Design Studio 2B

This module enhances your prior learning and develops the opportunity to enter a national or international design competition alongside the development of a personal interior architecture design brief. Exploring interior typologies, the module aims to develop your creative potential within a future built environment context. You will extend the design brief(s) to propose innovative new approaches to interior space and extend the ideas and approaches you have explored and developed throughout the programme to date. 

Design Technology 2

The module further develops your understanding of technological innovation in architecture integrating the parallel strands of Structure and Services introduced to you in year 1 through two core themes central to Building Fabric Design: Design for Climate and Sustainability and Design for Human and Life Safety. Through these themes you will develop competencies in more advanced construction techniques, systems and assemblies for non-domestic buildings and through this you will extend and develop your technical vocabulary and grasp of building physics and building fabric design for more complex building forms.  

Practice 2: Multidisciplinary Project

The multidisciplinary module allows you to engage in a multidisciplinary practice-based environment and gain an insight into industrial practice. Utilising a real-world scenario student’s work collectively and collaboratively to communicate a project solution to a panel of assessors through varying forms of media. This module is supported with a series of industrial guest speakers to offer real life practices, procedures, technologies, and communication techniques.

Year three

Interior Architecture Design Studio 3

This module is a self-initiated design project which asks you to select an existing architectural site, to prepare an innovative brief and to develop a creative interior proposal. You will synthesise a range of theoretical, technical, cultural, spatial and professional issues, developing an integrated design scheme through a rigorous and personal design process. With a creative design proposal in place, you will present the final scheme through a package of technical and visual drawings to communicate your scheme to a range of audiences.  

Re-creating the City - Re-use and Regeneration

You will explore the theme of regeneration and application of architecture practice in the regeneration of cities and urban environments.

Practice 3

This module aims to prepare you for your first year in industry by equipping you with a comprehensive understanding of the profession of architecture. You will develop an understanding of the role of the architect in society. You will learn about the management of the construction industry, the role of the architectural practice and responsibilities of each within the regulatory legal context within which architecture operates. 


Interior Architecture Design Studio 3B

You will apply and test your interior architecture design skills in the context of a complex design project. You will develop the skills, competencies and understanding of a selected range of theoretical, technical, cultural, historical and professional issues, and the ability to integrate them into their designs.

Ideas and Issues in Interior Architecture

This module aims to prepare you for your first year in industry by equipping you with a comprehensive understanding of the profession of architecture. You will develop an understanding of the role of the architect in society. You will learn about the management of the construction industry, the role of the architectural practice and responsibilities of each within the regulatory legal context within which architecture operates. 

Design Technology 3

This module comprises the development of tectonic rationale and detail design at a variety of scales and levels of detail and the continued formation of an iterative design methodology. It builds on the formation of technical assemblies, structural and environmental rationales and communication of detailed design solutions developed in parallel with a design task of some complexity and asks that you both build upon and challenge accepted performance and evidence-based modes of integrated design whilst seeking compliance with technical standards and regulatory frameworks for sustainability, health and life safety, and delivering a plausible and buildable project. 

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.

What will I be doing?


As an Interior Architecture student, you will be based in our Architecture studios, where you will develop your knowledge and skills through a blend of theoretical, collaborative and practical methods, including:

  • Studio projects, both individual and in groups
  • Lectures and tutorials
  • Directed study
  • One-to-one tutorials (by appointment)


You will be assessed using a range of suitable methods, including:

  • Design projects
  • Essays
  • Case study analysis
  • Precedent studies
  • Examinations
What you want to know

Frequently asked questions

What is a foundation year?

A foundation year offers a year of studying to gain an understanding of the programme before progressing to the full three-year studies. You'll get the chance to understand the way higher education studying works and gain the relevant skills and knowledge needed to undertake the full degree. 

What's the difference between architecture and interior architecture? 

Architecture is all about the construction of structures, especially buildings. Architects deal with the overall structure, having a comprehensive understanding of building codes and regulations. Interior architects, however, design the building from the inside out. Interior architecture deals with areas such as accessibility requirements, lighting design, and ergonomics. 

Is it hard to study architecture?

Studying interior architecture can be challenging since it involves many practical aspects and tasks, however, our students find our programmes incredibly rewarding when gaining a wide range of skills during their studies. 

There are methods to ensure you’re getting the best of your degree, including practicing good time management and making time for yourself to recharge. If you find your studies overwhelming, there will be support available from your lecturers and university support staff. 

What GCSEs and A Levels do you need for architecture?

Most of our architecture programmes require GCSE English Language and Mathematics at grade C/Level 4 or above and a certain number of UCAS points. The specific entry requirements for this programme can be found in the entry requirements section. 

How long does it take to become an interior architect?

Our architecture programmes are delivered on a full-time basis over 3 years (or 4 if a placement year is chosen). Most of our programmes also offer an added foundation year, taking your studies up to 4 years but requiring more relaxed entry requirements.

School of Science, Engineering and Environment

Rising to the challenge of a changing world, our degree courses are designed to shape the next generation of urbanists, scientists, engineers and industry leaders.

Driven by industry, and delivered by supportive programme teams, you can develop the knowledge and skills to become unstoppable in your career.


As an Interior Architecture student you will learn in our carefully designed architecture studios provide an inspiring environment to develop ideas, work collaboratively and share best practice.

We also have workshops which house high specification equipment, including laser cutters and 3-D printers, to help you bring your ideas and concepts to life.


Industry collaboration and research

When you start this degree with Salford, you are also joining a community making a difference in industry, our local region and in our wider society.

Many of our academics and technicians who support your course also deliver collaborative, interdisciplinary, high-impact work in a range of local and global built environment issues and challenges.

Discover how you are part of something bigger.

Employment and stats

What about after uni?


This course is designed to help you to develop a range of personal and professional skills which will make you highly-employable. As well as gaining an introduction to architecture and the built environment, you will also build key IT, study and presentation skills and develop your team work and project management skills during your studies.

Once you progress to complete the full BSc (Hons) Interior Architecture degree, a wide range of exciting career opportunities will be open to you. Interior Architects are highly valued in many sectors and work widely throughout the creative industries. You may be working within an architectural practice (i.e. Foster and Partners, Benoy, Gensler, MHA Architects, Mason Gillibrand Architects etc.), a retail and experience design agency (i.e. Household, Brinkworth) or within the hospitality, workplace and exhibition design arenas. You may also specialise in lighting design and consultancy (i.e. Arup, Buro Happold).

Further study

You might find you want to learn more about the built environment, so we offer a range of specialism postgraduate study options to help you take your career and interests even further. Salford graduates and alumni also receive a significant fees discount. 

A taste of what you could become

An interior architect

An experiential designer

A retail designer

A workplace consultant

A lighting designer

and more...


What you need to know

Applicant profile 

In addition to our academic entry requirements, we also look for certain characteristics in each applicant. Having these characteristics will not only help you to fulfil your academic potential, but they are also essential if you want a successful built environment career.

International students

This course isn’t suitable for international students. If you are an international student and interested in studying a foundation year, please visit our International Foundation Year course page.

English language requirements

All of our courses are taught and assessed in English. If English is not your first language, you must meet our minimum English language entry requirements. An IELTS score of 6.0 (no element below 5.5) is proof of this, and we also accept a range of equivalent qualifications.  

Read more about our English language requirements, including information about pathways that can help you gain entry on to our degree courses. 

Standard entry requirements


English Language and Mathematics at grade C/4 or above (or equivalent). You must fulfil our GCSE entry requirements as well as one of the requirements listed below.

UCAS tariff points

64 UCAS points

A level

64 UCAS points, typically two grade Cs

BTEC National Diploma

MPP (BTEC Extended Diploma), MM (BTEC Diploma).

BTEC Higher National Diploma

Please contact Admissions for further information.

Foundation Degree

Please contact Admissions for further information.

Access to HE

Pass in Access to HE Diploma - minimum of 64 UCAS Tariff points

Scottish Highers

64 points from Higher Level

Irish Leaving Certificate

64 points from Higher Level

European Baccalaureate

Please contact Admissions for further information.

International Baccalaureate

Please contact Admissions for further information.

Other Qualifications

Please contact Admissions for further information.

Alternative entry requirements

Salford Alternative Entry Scheme (SAES)

We positively 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 receive your application, we'll 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.

Please contact Admissions for further information.

How much?

Type of study Year Fees
Full-time home 2024/25 £8,250.00 for Foundation Year and £9,250.00 for subsequent years.
Full-time home 2025/26 £8,250.00 for Foundation Year and £9,250.00 for subsequent years.

Additional costs

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

Apply now

All set? Let's apply

Enrolment dates

September 2024

September 2025

UCAS information

Course ID K121

Institution S03