Taught course

Product Design

University of Edinburgh · Product Design

Entry requirements

Normally a UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent, in a subject relevant to designing products with an emphasis on people, such as: product design, 3d design interior design and/or architecture.

You must submit a portfolio as part of your application. Your portfolio should demonstrate evidence of:

  • excellent ability to think critically through drawing and making
  • strong ability to critically analyse current situations involving the interactions between people and products​
  • strong ability to communicate preferred design-​led future situations through the development and resolution of drawings, models, prototypes, and mock-ups in various physical and material media formats
  • strong understanding of contemporary design challenges and themes relevant to designed products and the people for whom they are designed
  • ability to engage people centred research activities relevant to product design
  • a high level of individuality, originality and creativity

Your portfolio should also include a personal video, no more than 3 minutes long​, in which you give insights into three artefacts. After introducing yourself to the camera you should describe:

  • the qualities of an old artefact and why it interests you
  • a contemporary artefact and why you consider it relevant
  • an artefact from your portfolio (from the future) and why it embodies your interests​

We would like to see these artefacts in your hands and will listen carefully to how you express ideas about each artefact.

If you do not meet the academic entry requirements, we may still consider your application on the basis of your portfolio and/or relevant professional experience.

All applicants must also meet our English language requirements.

Months of entry


Course content

Product Design at Edinburgh College of Art (ECA) centres on the exploration of problem spaces, understanding that much of what designers do is re-define and re-interpret products and their contexts enabling people to lead engaged, productive and meaningful lives.

Product design is a broad discipline, and at the University of Edinburgh we understand our discipline through a ethnomethodological lens. At the heart of our research programme is people; particularly those who currently struggle with existing objects in identified circumstances. We embrace a variety of approaches to people-centred design practice including participatory action research; affective design; design for disruption and inclusive design. The core to our approach is to speculate and build preferred futures, based on design-led evidence constructed through observation and engagement with others. Our aim is to understand the agency of objects and configure intended impacts on communities of people moving through and across various services and systems.

As a student on programme, you will join a vibrant, international community of creative practitioners and researchers. Members of the academic team are involved in a variety of research interests relevant to design production, maintaining strong partnerships with academics from across the University in allied disciplines such as engineering, informatics, anthropology, sociology, health and business.

Information for international students

To find out about the support offered to international students at Edinburgh from arrival to graduation visit: http://www.ed.ac.uk/studying/international

Fees and funding

Visit Scholarships and Student Funding Services at: http://www.ed.ac.uk/student-funding

Qualification and course duration


full time
12 months

Course contact details

Edinburgh College of Art Postgraduate Admissions
+44 (0)131 650 4086