MSc Product Design Innovation

Enhances knowledge and understanding of the principles underlying professional product design.

MSc Product Design Innovation is ‘design’ led course.We also offer MSc Product Design Enterprise course which is ‘strategic’ management led. These two courses are intended to have strong similarities to enable students from different backgrounds to engage in either of two principle activities: Innovation (creative product design) and Enterprise (entrepreneurial business/ marketing, based on product or service). Both courses focus on developing effective visual communication, development of ideas and thinking and presentation skills.
  • Developed to interest graduates from a business or design background
  • Helps you to develop the innovation and entrepreneurial design skills to enable viable start-up manufacturing, marketing or business enterprises
  • Fully accredited by the Institution of Engineering Designers leading to Chartered Engineering status (CEng)

Duration of programme: One year full-time: six months of taught modules on campus and a six month individual project.
Start date:
Intake: Up to 25 per year

Essential and/or desirable academic qualifications:
  • A minimum of a first or good second class UKn Honours Degree in product design, engineering, or a business related subject.  Graduates with at least two years relevant design work experience are particularly encouraged to apply. Students without such experience may be admitted based on individual merit. 
  • English Language Requirements (for candidates whose first language is not English):
    • Standard TOEFL requirement is IBT 93 overall (minimum of 23 in writing, 19 in listening and speaking and 18 in reading) accept SCM – 93 overall (minimum 26 in writing, 22 speaking, 19 listening, 18 reading.
    • An IELTS score of 6.5 overall with no less than 6.0 in each band.
  • References are required

UK/EU: £5,500 (2015/16 fee)
International: £16,500 (2015/16 fee)

A limited number of scholarships may be available for this programme, subject to the fulfilment of academic and other eligibility criteria.  For up-to-date information please visit EAS Fees & Scholarships page

Through the Aston Annual Fund Scholarships, the International Office has two £5,000 scholarships available for successful international applicants. Find out more about the Aston University Postgraduate Taught Masters International Scholarships

Application details:
Apply for this course online

Contact us:
MSc Programmes Admissions Officer
Tel: +44 (0)121 204 3668
Fax: +44 (0)121 204 3676
Email: seaspgtaught@aston.ac.uk

Information on visas for international students

This MSc Product Design programme is for students with a background in design, engineering or related areas. The course and modules aim to develop and enhance your innovation skills and knowledge required to achieve successful product design development and innovation.

You will develop a high level of creativity and design ideas as a part of your response to possible market opportunities. This is a key element to your learning on this programme.

The course will also enable you to develop a critical understanding of sustainable factors and its relevance and importance to all our futures.

The course creates opportunities for students to originate new ideas and model or prototype design solutions that will meet perceived manufacturing, marketing and consumer needs.

The range of modules reflects the nature of innovative design solutions plus the additional knowledge and skills required to put it into practice professionally.

Elective module selection is detailed in the Programme Specifications
The Major Project module is completed between April and September.
The modules in this programme are delivered with lectures, seminars and lab-based tutorials giving a good balance between scientific methodologies and hands-on practice.

Creativity will underpin much of the interactive work during this course. Developed ideas can be manufactured using a variety of techniques including the use of our range of Rapid – Prototyping equipment.

Modules are assessed mainly through coursework, although some modules may also have exams.  The major project is assessed by dissertation and supporting design work.

Examples of past major projects range from the development of innovative Rigging for Stunt Kite Boarding, Race Car Suspension using composite technologies with Innovative Designs to the use of Solar Energy to help cool domestic conservatories.

Personal development

This is an interactive course aimed to develop your knowledge and understanding of the changes, developments and potential opportunities that face us all in a Global economy.

You will create and deliver a major project and develop effective research and specification skills.  

Semester 1 modules will enable you to develop the knowledge, skills and expertise required for this level of work, as well as the opportunity to initiate the research for the major project idea.

Semester 2 modules will enable you to extend your professional understanding and expertise through module coursework, individual projects and teamwork.

You will also make several individual presentations and get chance to hone your interview techniques.

Programme Director

Programme Director: Chris Evans 

Chris Evans
BA Industrial Design
Lecturer in Product Design
Chris Evans is a Design Educationalist with an underpinning 20 years of professional work designing and managing within leading manufacturing organisations. These include Mettoy Ltd (Corgi: die-cast toys); Ogle Design Consultancy (toys, consumer electronics, transport systems); Prestige plc (kitchen cookware); Crown House Tableware (glass, ceramics) and Hasbro Europe (toys). Although Arts School trained, Chris believes that design students must combine their creativity skills and innovative flair with appropriate engineering and technological knowledge plus have an effective understanding of markets and the real user requirements. He has successfully created and directed innovative design courses in different UK universities before joining Aston University in 2001. His many research interests include Assistive Technologies, Transport Design and Future Living. He has recently co-edited Design and Designing (a critical introduction) from Berg Publishers.

Teaching Staff

Dr Philip Davies
Senior Lecturer in Mechanical Engineering
Philip Davies is a member of the Sustainable Environment Research Group.  His main research activities are in developing renewable and efficient energy systems and in the treatment of water for drinking and sanitation.  Philip has held appointments at the University of Oxford, the Universidad Politécnica in Madrid, the University of Warwick, and in manufacturing and consulting companies. He holds a BSc in Mechanical Engineering from Imperial College, London, and DPhil from the University of Oxford.

Christian McLening
Lecturer in Product Design
Christian is a designer and academic based at Aston University since 2009 with a research interest in sustainable design and creativity. His main area of industrial experience has been within the automotive and architectural product design industries, working  on concept vehicles, electric vehicles and the design and manufacture of automotive interiors for a range of large car companies. 
In recent years he has been involved with the Product Design group within ARUP associate London, involved in design development of a number of architectural product and environmentally sensitive projects, such as Pocket Habitat a green roofing system.

Mr John Owen 
Lecturer in Product Design
My main area of industrial experience has been associated with ‘styling’ in the automotive industries, representing designs in three-dimensional form using high level computing and automotive clay modeling techniques. I have collaborated in producing concept vehicles, hybrid vehicles and devising training programmes for designers for a range of large and niche car companies.

Professor Richard Booth

Dr Brian Price

Dr. Mark Prince
Lecturer in Mechanical Engineering
Mark is a former Aston graduate with experience in mechanical design and analysis.  His research interests are in ophthalmic and medical device development and he has experience in designing microsystems for biological structure interfacing, and exploiting vision technologies. Mark has expertise in 3D computer solid modelling, rapid prototyping and rapid manufacture

iED logo
This programme is fully accredited by the Institution of Engineering Designers leading to Chartered Engineering status (CEng).
Much of the teaching and learning in the Programme take place in the Design Suite or CAE facility which have the latest commercial Computer Aided Design tools (e.g. Solid works, Fluent, Ansys).

Lecture rooms are equipped with modern AV/IT facilities which aid CAE teaching.

Modelmaking and Engineering Workshops are available to develop physical models and prototypes. This includes a range of specialist rapid prototyping equipment as well as dynamic testing equipment.  This equipment can help in the testing of prototype ideas.

Our excellent learning resources have up-to-date texts and publications with a large selection available in the library electronically.
Career prospects for graduates are excellent On completion of this one year course the student should be able to confidently develop their own product ideas and innovations ‘ready for manufacture and marketing’, start their own design business enterprise, or enter new product development organisations and other creative businesses at a higher level of responsibility.

MSc Programmes Admissions Officer
Tel: +44 (0)121 204 3668
Fax: +44 (0)121 204 3676
Email: seaspgtaught@aston.ac.uk


Graduate Profile

Shaun Stone

"My time spent on the Shell Eco project is my biggest memory of my time at Aston. The hours spent applying what I had been taught in prior years; support from staff throughout the university and team spirit forged between team-members was a great experience."


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