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Contemporary Furniture Design / Product Design MA

Contemporary Furniture Design / Product Design MA

Different course options

Study mode

Full time


15 months

Start date


Key information

Qualification type

MA - Master of Arts

Subject areas

Furniture Design Product Design

Course type


Course Summary

Product design, project methodology and the added value of ‘Italianness’. This 15-month course (including placement) is for individuals looking for advanced design skills, and an in-depth knowledge of the furniture and contemporary product design industry, becoming experts in managing and developing professional design projects. Participants learn how to integrate creativity with an extensive knowledge of materials, studying their properties and technical features alongside the application of new technologies. Visual representation in the form of renderings, and the creation of small prototypes further assist their ability to design and visualise products in connection with space or location, and accurately evaluate their functional and aesthetic properties.

With a focus on Italian craftsmanship, and design language the course explores how Italian manufacturing is exemplary in its identification and use of materials and techniques to build strong aesthetic identities. Cult products of the ‘Made in Italy’ tradition are analysed in order to fully understand ‘aesthetic sensibility’ - one of the main features of the world-renowned Italian style, and showcased at the most important annual event in the international furniture design calendar, the Salone del Mobile Exhibition in Milano, Italy.

Looking at the realities that define tomorrow’s furniture and product designs, participants take a look at key trends, contemporary lifestyles, user needs and emotional perceptions, understanding the relationship and ‘identity’ of the project to be developed. They look at new influences in the industry including sustainability, renewable resources, and innovative materials, as well as high profile designer case studies; researching the key steps in project development to obtain a full ‘360°’ vision of product design.

Participants build their skills and potential as creative practitioners collaborating with companies on industry projects, taking an idea from concept through to final presentation. Throughout the projects they receive professional feedback and guidance from the company and are supported in the negotiation and presentation of ideas to companies and new clients. At postgraduate level participants will already have prior undergraduate level study, or relevant industry experience in order to successfully follow the course components in creative research, product design, and professional project development.

Students will also achieve PGCert and PGDip awards.


  • Furniture designer
  • Product designer
  • Product development manager
  • Concept designer.


Industry Placement (20 Credits) - Core
Research Methods (20 Credits) - Core
Contextual and Cultural Studies (20 Credits) - Core
Design Process (30 Credits) - Core
New Design Approaches (20 Credits) - Core
Dissertation (40 Credits) - Core
Design Culture (30 Credits) - Core

Tuition fees

UK fees
Course fees for UK / EU students

For this course (overall cost)


Average for all Postgrad courses (per year)


International fees
Course fees for non-UK / EU students

For this course (overall cost)


Average for all Postgrad courses (per year)


Entry requirements

Students need to have a Undergraduate qualification of normally 2.1 or above.