Undergraduate BA (Hons)

Interior Design With Foundation Year

Salford School of Arts, Media and Creative Technology




Four year

Next enrolment

September 2022


In a nutshell

Designing for interiors requires both artistic flair and technical know-how. These are two very distinct skill sets that you will develop throughout this course.

Specialist subject tutors and dedicated resources ensure that you gain a sound understanding of interior architecture while also developing interdisciplinary attitudes toward design. 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, construction departments, and film and TV companies.

The foundation year of this four-year programme aims to provide you with an understanding of the subject to allow you to progress on to the BA (Hons) Interior Design course.

You will: 
  • Be able 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 

  • Engage in real world projects, live briefs and industry placements 

Find out more by signing up to our upcoming Open Day, or if you have any general questions please contact course enquiries.   

You can also find helpful FAQs, learn more about student life at Salford or explore all our Art and Design courses. Continue reading to understand more about this BA (Hons) Interior Design with Foundation Year course.  


options available

This is for you if...


You have good visual communication skills


You have the ability to understand 3D form and scale


You are keen to develop artistic flair and technical know-how

Course details

All about the course

The Foundation Year of this course is the perfect opportunity for people who want more time to explore all of the key principles of art and design before deciding exactly what course they choose to progress onto here at the University of Salford.

It gives you a chance to build a larger portfolio dedicated to your chosen area of Art and Design and provides a good transition period to familiarise yourself with the School of Art and Media and life as a student at Salford.

The Foundation year will provide you with a dynamic, exciting and collaborative environment in which you will become confident self-learners, with the underpinning skills and knowledge to apply in your studies. You will be introduced to the key concepts which underpin the programme, and the ethos that drives all of the teaching and learning you will experience on your course.  

You will be taught alongside students from other Art, Design and Media disciplines and study modules that will help you increase your knowledge and understanding of basic art and design as well as other aspects of creative thinking.

Modules will help you to develop your study skills such as note-taking and structuring reports. In the second semester, you will further develop your creative practice and be introduced to the creative industries.

You will be supported and guided through the extensive range of practice-based, theoretical and skills-based modules that the first year of this course offers. The assignments are flexible enough to allow you to interpret and tailor their submissions to your chosen discipline area. Tutors will support you to build a dedicated portfolio to progress onto the BA course you choose here at the University of Salford.

This programme prepares you to study on one of the following three-year University undergraduate programmes, meaning the duration of your degree is four years in total. The foundation year is not a standalone qualification.

Interior Design 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.

Foundation year

Digital Media Applications

This module helps you to become more familiar and confident with technology. As well as learning the creative software and photography skills, it will allow you to explore a creative subject of your choice and give you essential time management and research skills.

Creative Methods

This module will enable you to examine the creative and professional practice of others as a way of reflecting on your own practice. You’ll create a range of outcomes to help you build a dedicated portfolio as well as learning about major influences in art and design.

Creative Risk Taking

This module is all about challenging your creative thought and highlighting the importance of creative risk taking. The briefs allow you to produce a range of outcomes that underpin all of the main art and design disciplines as well as giving you the flexibility to interpret the brief to your area of interest.

Creative Practice Major Project

This module is designed to allow you to bring together all your prior learning from the previous modules. It gives you the opportunity to propose and create your own brief based on a theme, topic, or issue that you are passionate about. Within this module you’ll be supported by tutors who will guide you in creating in a meaningful body of work that demonstrates confidence in your chosen area. Your work will be exhibited in school of Arts and Media end of year show.

Introduction to the Creative Industries

This module enables you explore the creative industries and its career opportunities, You’ll learn about a range of subjects including responsible design and future trends within your chosen area of art and design. It will allow you to build on the technical skills that you have gained in the first semester to produce a creative publication.

Year one

Design Principles and Interventions

This module introduces you to the fundamental principles of 3D design, and builds the awareness of a design vocabulary through a series of exciting short projects to develop skills. Application of established design communication techniques will provide a basis for exploration, and the subsequent development of your own 2D and 3D design outcomes. You will gain an understanding of materials and associated processes within the context of specific design problems, and you will appreciate the choice of materials available to you alongside understanding how your decisions will affect your design proposals. The module culminates with a bespoke design project such as a student social hub.


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, communicate and realise design solutions. This module focuses on exhibition design.

Creating Spaces

This module introduces you to the variety of individuals or customers who as a designer you need to please. Whilst full consideration is given to the end user, an understanding of the client, supplier and those involved with construction/manufacturing is critical. The module focuses on hospitality where you will be undertaking an innovative project such as the design of a hotel suite.

Exploring Design Contexts

In this module, you are encouraged to consider a range of perspectives on creative practice - including critical, ethical, cultural, political and commercial viewpoints. Alongside this you will develop an understanding of professional practice as 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 critical thinking and communication skills. This module consists of a series of small tasks which address the wider context of design.

Year two

Architectural Technology and Sustainable Design

During this module students are introduced to appropriate forms of technology, construction, materials and regulatory issues and study how these are utilised in the production of interior design project work. You will acquire the skills required to develop ideas and explore detail design. The fundamental principles related to architecture are taught to a basic level to raise awareness of how structures are constructed and how designers respond to sustainability issues. The way that these influences contribute to creative and imaginative design outcomes and production realities is explored through associated design project work. The module also aims to encourage the investigation of 2D and 3D communication methods to creatively and effectively analyse the nature of existing buildings and design interventions. The module culminates with a bespoke design project within an existing commercial building which is developed to include technical design such as a bar, welcome desk, or staircase.

Specialist Design Project

Interior design practice covers many different commercial sectors such as offices, retail, education, health or cultural facilities as well as interiors for hospitality, entertainment and the television industry. This module will explore an area of specialism within interior design. Recent projects have included the design of a co-working space in an interesting existing building with a canal facing frontage in central Manchester.

Industry Practice

This module allows you to undertake a period of work placement; positioned at the end of Trimester 2 this module enables many students to take the opportunity of an extended placement period over the summer. This module allows you to apply and develop your knowledge and skills gained on the course while gaining an understanding of the relevant working procedures of industry and the professional activities of design.

Developing Design Contexts

Building on the critical and professional practice skills introduced in year 1, this module allows you to investigate and test your position in relation to creative and cultural communities and to make connections to wider cultural contexts in order to develop your approach to inter-disciplinary collaborations. You will also explore business, employability and enterprise issues and 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.

Year three

Advanced Studies in Interior Design

This module will further extend and strengthen your 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 you 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.

Negotiated Major Project

The Negotiated Major Project module is designed to allow you to bring together and synthesise your prior learning and experiences on the course through the definition, negotiation and implementation of a self-determined programme of study. You are encouraged to identify a theme, topic, issue or set of issues around which to focus your exploration leading to the development and presentation of a significant body of work.

Advanced Research Strategies

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.

Applied Professional Practice for 3D Design

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 methods and techniques.

Independent Research Project

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 and contextual issues in a subject area that is of particular interest to you. You can choose from one of the four following project options: 1. Dissertation, 2. Original visual work with critical text, 3. Presentation with extended essay, or 4. 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.

What Will I be Doing?








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
  • Skills sessions
  • One-to-one tutorials
  • Group seminars
  • 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, computing 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.


You will be assessed through a variety of methods, including:

  • Coursework
  • Presentations
  • Essays
  • Dissertation


All our Art and Design courses are delivered by the Salford School of Arts, Media and Creative Technology.    

Our School and University have strong and long-lasting relationships with local and national industry.    

Once you graduate with us, you’ll join a thriving alumni community in Greater Manchester and beyond. 


The course has extensive dedicated facilities including a large studio with a permanent work space in our £55 million New Adelphi building. Close to the studio are well resourced computer suites (Mac and PC) with up to date software.

A main feature of the course is the 3D workshop which boasts up to date wood, metal and plastic facilities, spray shops, hot metal, laser cutting and rapid prototyping resources, including CNC and 3D printing.

Employment and stats

What about after uni?

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

The course has an outstanding graduate employment record, both in the local design community and recently further afield in both architecture and interior design practices in Hong Kong, New York and San Francisco.

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 design community – our alumni are now working in premier design organisations – BDP, Judge Gill, Stephenson Bell, Leach Rhodes Walker, Sheppard Robson, the Co-Op, MBLC, as well as further a field in Hong Kong and Australia.

Some students also follow more typically general graduate routes into teacher training, office design and retail, with others undertaking further studies at postgraduate level in interior design or CAD.

A taste of what you could become

An Interior designer

A Product designer

A Film/TV set designer

A Teacher

And more...

Career Links

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 building renewal, commercial interior design, and television and film design.

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 Maurice Shapero, George Mills, Anthony Chadwick, Andrew Thurman, Trevor Stratford, and Graham English.

Many students who completed their studies here have continued to maintain a strong link with the university and the course, and are regularly invited to deliver talks, advise students and offer work placements. These include ex-graduates, who are currently working as interior designers, event and museum designers, and interior architects on projects such as retail, leisure, education, sport.

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 interior design world.


What You Need To Know

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.


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.

Standard entry requirements


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

A levels

64 points including Art & Design

UCAS tariff points

64 tariff points from A-levels (or equivalent) to include an Art and Design qualification

BTEC National Diploma


Access to HE

Pass Level 3 Access to HE Diploma with 64 points (relevant subject)

Scottish Highers

64 points including Art & Design

Irish Leaving Certificate

64 points including Art & Design

International Baccalaureate

24 points including Art & Design 

European Baccalaureate

Pass Diploma with 60% overall (relevant subject)

Alternative entry requirements

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.

How much?

Type of study Year Fees
Full-time home 2021/22 £8,250 for Foundation Year and £9,250 for subsequent years.
Full-time home 2022/23 £8,250 for Foundation Year and £9,250 for subsequent years.
Additional costs

You should also 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 2022

UCAS information

Course ID 8G23

Institution S03