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Postgraduate Course

Product Design MSc

Develop a unique perspective and personal design voice, investigating a range of design strategies and approaches to inform your own Product Design practice.

A student uses an ipad for design work

Designers and engineers are pushing the boundaries of what is possible through a combination of 3D printing and generative design. On this course you will create complex products that are impossible to make with traditional methods, and learn how to use advanced equipment and software to bring your ideas to life.

York campus

  • Duration – 1 year full time
  • Start date – September 2023, September 2024
  • School – School of the Arts

Minimum entry requirements

    2:2 honours degree in a related subject

    Interview including portfolio

Tuition fees

    UK 2023-24 £7,000 full time

    International 2023-24 £13,000 full time

Discover why York St John University is The One

Course overview

Smart technologies are changing how we use space and interact with our surroundings. On this course you will study these technologies, and consider how they are changing the design industry, working with professional designers to create innovative digital experiences. 

You will also:

  • Learn to design and create using a variety of processes
  • Explore mediums such as digital craft and 3D modelling
  • Design for real and virtual spaces
  • Develop transferable skills so that you can apply your talents across a range of design sectors

Working with York Business School will give you the knowledge and confidence to start your career. You will learn how to set up your own business, turning your creative talent into a fulfilling and successful career.

This degree is part of a suite of courses. Not sure which one to choose? Take a look at the other masters degrees we offer:

Virtual and Augmented Reality MA

Graphic Design MA

Interior Design MA

Course structure

How you will study

This course will take 1 year to complete and must be studied full time. You will study:

  • 5 compulsory modules
  • A Major Project

You can find out which modules are available in each semester on the Course Specifications.


Credits: 30

Compulsory module

World leading brands such as Apple, Google, SONY and many others have adopted design thinking as part of their own culture for creating original solutions. It is an approach that helps you to question problems, assumptions and outcomes, developing empathy for any user group. On this module you will use a variety of research processes to examine, teach, learn and apply human-centred techniques to tackle design problems in innovative ways.

Credits: 15

Compulsory module

When working in creative industries, it is important to understand the significance of design processes within a business. By investigating a selection of design companies, you will gain an understanding of design strategies and how they relate to brand, product and service. To do this you will conduct primary and secondary research, and explore themes including:

  • Brand identity
  • Marketing communications
  • Target audiences
  • Unique selling points
  • Procedures for setting up a start-up company

You will also hear from industry professionals who will share their own experiences of how design has benefited their businesses. 

Credits: 15

Compulsory module

Gain a greater understanding of how design is reshaping the future. On this module we will consider how technology is shaping the world of business, and how designers are challenging established businesses to think differently. You will explore the concept of a circular economy, and learn how employing this way of thinking can benefit businesses. You will also look at disruptive technologies and the challenges they present. Some of the technologies you will learn about include: 

  • Augmented and virtual reality
  • Renewable and clean energies
  • Smart products and wearable technologies
  • Artificial intelligence and automation
  • Intelligent apps


Credits: 30

Compulsory module

Technology is moving at an exponential rate, and design must evolve alongside it. On this module you will consider how technology is shaping how designers address problems and create innovative solutions. Building upon previous modules, you will explore various technological advances within the interdisciplinary field of design. In doing so you will develop a greater appreciation of how advances in technology act as a catalyst for developing new artefacts that impact on today’s society. We will focus on areas such as:

  • Artificial intelligence
  • Automation
  • 3D printing
  • Advanced materials
  • Digital modelling

Credits: 30

Compulsory module

On this module we will challenge you to combine creativity with technical skill to develop something innovative. You will be encouraged to experiment and take risks in the development of your own personal voice. You will be making a real or virtual prototype in your chosen area, which will be tested and evaluated. This is an opportunity for you to develop a prototype that acts as a catalyst and foundation for your final major design project.

Credits: 60

Compulsory module

During your final module you will complete a major design project, in which you will demonstrate your skills as an autonomous design practitioner and researcher. You will pursue your own direction, and either create a personal imprint characterised by practical outcomes, or document a comprehensive body of research.

Teaching and assessment

Teaching and learning

Teaching will consist of a mixture of group seminars and individual tutorials. This includes sessions with staff from across the university.

As a graduate student independent learning will be central to your study. We place a significant emphasis on independent learning, encouraging you to take responsibility for managing your own learning and its outcomes. Our Academic Support team can help with written English, study, research, and technology skills if needed.

We keep our group sizes small so we can get to know your creative personality and support your aspirations. We deliver your modules through:

  • Workshops
  • Visiting speakers
  • Field visits
  • Work related learning
  • Seminar discussions
  • Supervised projects

Our teaching draws on both our research and professional experience. This means your learning is informed by the most current thinking in the subject area. You can find out more about our research and backgrounds by visiting our staff pages.


There are no formal examinations on this course. You will be assessed through live events and coursework, which will include:

  • Portfolio work
  • Creating artefacts
  • Presentation of visual works
  • Research reports
  • Case studies

You will receive continuous informal feedback on works in progress through a combination of showings, discussions and written proposals.

Entry requirements


Minimum entry requirements

    2:2 honours degree in a related subject

    Interview including portfolio

International students

If you are an international student you will need to show that your qualifications match our entry requirements.

Information about international qualifications and entry requirements can be found on our International pages.

If English is not your first language you will need to show that you have English Language competence at IELTS level 6.0 (with no skill below 5.5) or equivalent.

International entry requirements

Interview and portfolio

Entry onto this postgraduate course is subject to attending an interview.

At interview you will need to demonstrate examples of your own practice.

You will also be asked to complete a portfolio. This portfolio should show examples of previous and current media production practice.

We are happy to arrange interviews via Microsoft Teams for international students.

Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL)

If you do not have traditional qualifications, you might be able to provide evidence of professional experience in the subject as an alternative way to meet the entry requirements. This is called Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL). Appropriate references and records of employment would need to be presented to support your case for admission. 

Terms and conditions

Our terms and conditions, policies and procedures contain important information about studying at York St John University. You can read them on our Admissions page.

Fees and funding

UK 2023 - 2024 entry

The tuition fee for 2023 entry to this postgraduate course is:

  • £7,000 for full time study

These costs apply to all UK, Jersey, Guernsey and Isle of Man students.

Postgraduate loans are available to help you pay for your master’s course. Find out more about funding your postgraduate studies.

Funding opportunities

International 2023 - 2024 entry

The tuition fee for 2023 entry to this postgraduate course is:

  • £13,000 for full time study

These costs apply to all students living outside the UK.

Due to immigration laws, if you are an international student on a student visa, you must study full time. For more information about visa requirements and short-term study visas, please visit the International Visa and Immigration pages.

Find out more about funding your postgraduate studies.

International Fees and Funding

Tuition fees

    UK 2023-24 £7,000 full time

    International 2023-24 £13,000 full time

Alumni Scholarships

If you are alumni of York St John University we have scholarships available to help you continue your studies.

Scholarships for alumni

Additional costs and financial support

Course-related costs

While studying for your degree, there may be additional costs related to your course. This may include purchasing personal equipment and stationery, books and optional field trips.

Accommodation and living costs

View our accommodation pages for detailed information on accommodation and living costs.

Career outcomes

Where could Product Design take you?

 The course is designed to give you significant industry exposure to increase your opportunities for employment once you graduate. Specialist modules will require you to undertake work-based learning and work with industry professionals.

This will give you an advantage in careers such as:

  • Video game designer
  • 3D printing technician
  • 3D designer or animator
  • Graphic designer
  • Architectural designer
  • Marketing

Stand out from the crowd with postgraduate study.

Far fewer people have postgraduate degrees than undergraduate qualifications. This gives you something extra to set yourself apart in a competitive graduate job market. Those with a postgraduate qualification will earn an average of £8,000 a year more than those with only an undergraduate degree. (Department For Education Graduate Labour Market Report 2019)

Our careers service, LaunchPad, provides career support tailored to your ambitions. Through this service you can access:

  • Employer events
  • LinkedIn, CV and cover letter sessions
  • Workshops on application writing and interview skills
  • Work experience and volunteering opportunities
  • Personalised career advice

This support does not end when you graduate. You can access our expert career advice for the rest of your life. We will help you gain the experience and confidence you need to succeed.

Apply for this course

For postgraduate degrees you must apply directly to York St John University using the links below. This will take you to the application form you need to fill out for this specific course.
To complete the online application form you will need to create login details.
Please contact 2 referees before submitting your application. An automated request for a reference will be emailed to them as soon as you submit. Your application will not be reviewed until both references are in place.

Apply now: Full time

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