• For Entry: September
  • Duration: 4 years
  • School: Art & Design
  • Study Abroad: No
  • Study Mode: Full Time

Digital Interaction Design is all about being creative about how digital technology will affect our everyday lives. This doesn't just mean computers. Digital technology is almost everywhere - from mobile devices to intelligent clothing. You will study at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design (DJCAD), part of the University of Dundee.

Digital Interaction Design at Dundee

Interaction design is an exciting blend of product design, graphic design, computing and user research, but is a rapidly growing discipline in its own right.

 

Work by Calum Potter

Interaction design is an exciting blend of product design, graphic design, computing and user research, but is a rapidly growing discipline in its own right. Digital companies from Apple to Orange employ interaction designers in this dynamic and rapidly evolving discipline.

Interaction Design could be for you if you want to combine your creative and technical sides. This opens up careers in interaction design in the creative industries, but also gives you skills that could take you in other directions as well, such as user research or the digital economy.

Here at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design, Dundee Digital Interaction Design is closely allied to Product Design. As part of a joint programme called ‘Social Digital’ , we have a shared design process. You can read about this below:

People

We will help you to develop the essential skills to identify and respond to people’s needs, using a number of people-centred research methods. We teach our students to find out what people want and how to design the right interfaces and interactions for them. We often work closely with stakeholders in the community to find meaningful outcomes.

See an example of our students working with people (and design and technology) here and here.

Technology

We develop designers who can explore existing and emerging technologies in a playful way. Our students have access to hardware, software and the support of expert lecturers and technicians, for different purposes including: prototyping apps on mobile platforms (e.g. Xcode), producing screen-based content and print-based artwork (e.g. Adobe Creative Cloud), building interactive objects and exhibits (e.g. Arduino) and exploring data visualisation (e.g. Processing).

See an example of our students working with technology (and people and design) here and here.

Design

Digital Interaction Design at Dundee is a pioneering course at undergraduate level, and is highly respected internationally for its combination of people-centred design methods and good prototyping skills, all within a supportive design studio environment. This focus is quite distinct from many other courses with names like Interactive Media or Multimedia Design.

See an example of our students’ design (including people and technology) here and here.

Social awareness

We take our role as designers seriously, promoting social awareness in our students and an understanding of the impact their designs may have on society. We encourage our students to read, talk and write about current issues.

Did You Know?

Our graduates have gone on to work with companies such as IDEO, Adidas, Barclays, The Scottish Government, Technology Will Save Us, CyberDuck and Sopra.

Our graduates have gone on to study at Master and PhD level or work as researchers at the Royal College of Art, Goldsmiths and Microsoft Research (as well as here in DJCAD and elsewhere).

Our graduates have won the prize for Best Interaction Designer at New Designers in London 5 out of 6 years.

Recent students' projects have included:

  • An online tool to connect journalists to citizen news sources as a story develops (Alistair Norris 2014)
  • A kitchen object for digitally recording recipes in speech and handwriting, to be shared with the next generation (Amy McCrae 2015)
  • A phone app for restaurant reviews by and for people with food allergies (David Todd 2015)
  • A tablet app that helps primary school children learn about science (Katrina Gorkovenko 2014)

Top reasons for studying this course

  • We encourage you to become a confident designer practicing at the forefront of your discipline.
  • You will have dedicated studios to work in and make your home throughout the week.
  • You will have access to workshops and labs with specialist staff and the latest technology, software and equipment.
  • You will be taught by lecturers and staff with backgrounds including interaction design, product design, participatory design, consultancy, user research, academic research, computing and design studies.
  • You will have contact with our partners in industry and research (for example IDEO, Tesco Banking, Microsoft Research)
  • You will have opportunities to arrange summer placements and internships.
  • You will showcase your work at the Art, Design & Architecture degree show as well as New Designers in London.
  • You will have great prospects in your chosen career path.

Learn more about Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design

For further examples of student work, staff profiles and news visit the Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design website.

The following are the minimum, up-to-date entry requirements.

Courses starting 2017
Qualification Level 1 Entry Advanced Entry to Level 2
SQA Higher/Advanced Higher BBCC (minimum) - BBBB (typical) at Higher including one or more from art and design, product design or another creative subject, a science or appropriate technical subject (e.g. mathematics, physics, computing or information systems) plus an appropriate literate subject BB at Advanced Higher, including one or more from art and design, product design or other creative subject, a science or appropriate technical subject (e.g. mathematics, physics, computing, information systems) and an appropriate literate subject, plus BB at Higher in different subjects
GCE A-Level CCC (minimum) - BCC (typical) including one or more from art and design, product design or another creative subject, a science or appropriate technical subject (e.g. mathematics, physics, computing or information systems) plus an appropriate literate subject ABB including one or more from art and design, product design or other creative subject, a science or appropriate technical subject (e.g. mathematics, physics, computing, information systems) and an appropriate literate subject
Irish Leaving Certificate (ILC) BBBB at Higher Level including one or more from art and design, product design or another creative subject, a science or appropriate technical subject (e.g. mathematics, physics, computing or information systems) plus an appropriate literate subject Level 2 entry is not possible with this qualification
International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma 30 points at Higher Level including one or more from art and design, product design or another creative subject, a science or appropriate technical subject (e.g. mathematics, physics, computing or information systems) plus an appropriate literate subject.
A combination of IB Certificate plus other qualifications, such as A-Levels, Advanced Placement Tests or the International Baccalaureate Career-related Programme (IBCP), will also be considered.
34 points including 6, 6, 5 at Higher Level, to include one or more from art and design, product design or other creative subject, a science or appropriate technical subject (e.g. mathematics, physics, computing, information systems) and an appropriate literate subject
Graduate Entry
BTEC A relevant BTEC Extended Diploma with DMM A recognised Foundation Course or a relevant BTEC Extended Diploma with DDM
SQA Higher National (HNC/HND) A relevant HNC with B in the Graded Unit A recognised Foundation Course or a relevant HND with BB in the Graded Units
Scottish Baccalaureate Pass with CC at Advanced Higher Pass with BB at Advanced Higher
SWAP Access
Advanced Diploma Grade C with ASL A-levels in appropriate subjects at BC Grade B with ASL A-levels in appropriate subjects at AB
Welsh Baccalaureate Pass with A-levels in appropriate subjects at BC Pass with A-levels in appropriate subjects at AB
European Baccalaureate 70% overall with 7 in an Art & Design subject and 7 in a literate subject 75% overall with 7.5 in an Art & Design subject and 7.5 in a literate subject
Other Qualifications Foundation course in Art & Design. HND in an Art & Design subject
Notes All applicants must also submit a comprehensive portfolio of art/design/creative work and will be invited to attend a portfolio submission event. In some cases an interview may also be required. All qualifications should include a relevant art & design subject & a literate subject, and will be considered on an individual basis.

 EU and International qualifications



English Language Requirement

For non EU students

IELTS Overall 6.0
Listening 5.5
Reading 5.5
Writing 6.0
Speaking 5.5

 Equivalent grades from other test providers

 

English Language Programmes

We offer Pre-Sessional and Foundation Programme(s) throughout the year. These are designed to prepare you for university study in the UK when you have not yet met the language requirements for direct entry onto a degree programme.

 Discover our English Language Programmes

How you will be taught

Key to the philosophy of BSc (Hons) Digital Interaction Design is an interdisciplinary approach to teaching and learning. This means that students are taught modules in both design and technology subjects. You will have technology lectures and labs alongside design lectures and interaction design studio classes. Staff on the course work closely with you to help you use a range of acquired skills through a carefully planned programme of interaction design projects. In Level 3 and 4 you can tailor your individual learning programme through a suite of elective modules. The course aims to give you the space to be trained, and importantly to build the kind of strong interaction design portfolio that employers are looking for.

Another unique feature of Digital Interaction Design is the close relationship that we share with the Product Design course as part of our ‘Social Digital’ programme. Facilitated by shared modules you will have the opportunity to design great new experiences through physical objects and explore how digital interactions may be embedded within products.

How you will be assessed

Typically, assessment in the design modules is through designed interactions, services or products, which are presented to the class. You will generally be asked to demonstrate final outcomes alongside development work (your design process). You are trained and encouraged to present in a range of formats in such a way that you are given a good grounding in graphics, media (webpages, blogs, short films), prototyping and verbal skills. In technology modules, assessment is through a mixture of coursework (technical reports), exams and team practical projects. Through this variety of ways of assessing we build your confidence in the life-long skill of presenting your ideas to an audience.

What you will study

Level 1

A foundation that introduces you to core design skills, people-centred research methods and design briefs across interaction design and product design.

Ways of Seeing (20 credits: Level 1, Semester 1)

On this module you will investigate the principles of visual language for communication problem solving, expression and capturing the process of creative and critical thinking. Some of the key skills you will acquire include drawing, sketching, collage, storyboarding, reading, blog writing and presentation skills.

Picture, Symbol, Icon (20 credits: Level 1, Semester 1)

On this module you will be introduced to visual communication in both print and web environments, with particular focus on the collection, identification, categorisation and re-interpretation of media. Some of the key skills you will acquire include print design, interface design, web design and design writing.

Ways of Making (20 credits: Level 1, Semester 1)

This module will introduce you to how we communicate our ideas in 3-dimensions. It will introduce tools and methods to understand how to make with meaning in the Social Digital domain and share these insights with others. You will be taught various physical prototyping techniques, with the aim of learning 3-dimensional sketching skills to develop both experiences and products.

Some of the key skills you will acquire include modelling in a range of materials including paper, card, modelling clay and blue foam. As well as an introduction to a 3-dimensional design orientated CAD package (e.g. Rhino) and an understanding of how prototyping is used in relation to the design process.

Design Methods for Insight Gathering (20 credits: Level 1, Semester 2)

In this module you will be introduced to a number of observational methods that will help you begin to understand people and how they use physical and digital technologies. Some of the skills you will acquire include

  • Ways of recording and evidencing practice through observation.
  • Understanding and using some key design research methods.
  • Ethical practice in user research.
  • Developing self-confidence in creative thinking and idea generation.
  • Verbally presenting ideas and arguments to others.

Introduction to Social Digital (40 credits: Level 1, Semester 2)

This module will introduce you to practice-based design projects in both Digital Interaction Design and Product Design. You will have the opportunity to design both a screen-based piece of work and a physical object. This learning experience will give you the opportunity to decide which of the two areas you would like to study upon entering Level 2. This module will cover

  • The theory and practice of basic design techniques used in and shared across Digital Interaction Design and Product Design.
  • A simple design process.
  • Key historic and contemporary agendas in Digital Interaction Design and Product Design.

 

Level 2

Designing Social Networks (40 credits: Level 2, Semester 1)

This module will introduce you to the role of design and digital technology in the development of social media. The module will give you the opportunity to become more aware of the effects that these new technologies can have on individual and group identity, interpersonal relationships and shared business and cultural activity. It will help you to develop a deeper understanding of how interactions around shared digital content can be designed to help build groups and communities. As part of this module you will work with design, web and database technologies (e.g. HTML, CSS, JavaScript) to craft an interface design for a web app.

Data Visualisation (20 credits: Level 2, Semester 1)

Hosted by the School of Computing, this module will introduce you to coding and Human Computer Interaction (HCI). It covers both theory and practical project experience. Topics include procession, programming, animation, programming interaction, rich media, getting data from the web and engaging people.

Prototyping Digital Futures (40 credits: Level 2, Semester 2)

This module covers conceiving, designing, prototyping and testing interactive artefacts and systems. You will

  • Explore new ways that technology might support human interaction and communication.
  • Learn methods and techniques for understanding users’ needs and desires.
  • Develop techniques and methods for concept generation.
  • Build paper prototypes.
  • Explore methods and test techniques.

Physical Computing (20 credits: Level 2, Semester 2)

Delivered by the School of Computing this module will introduce you to ‘physical computing’ and interaction with digital objects beyond the conventions of touchscreen devices and desktop computers. This includes programming of microcontrollers and interfacing with various sensors and actuators. Prototyping, testing and experimental design is considered in the context of building tangible interfaces and the development of required software. You will also be made aware of the importance of well-designed human computer interfaces.

 

Level 3

Interaction Design- Physical Digital Products (30 credits: Level 3, Semester 1)

Building on a number of skills acquired at Level 2 you will gain direct experience of conceiving, designing, prototyping and crafting interactive physical digital objects. You will work in teams with Product Design students to

  • Reflect on the cultural and social roles of physical digital objects.
  • Explore emerging opportunities between interaction design and product design.
  • Build, explore and refine the interactive behaviour of electronics and software.
  • Build appropriate interactive physical models incorporating electronic components.
  • Develop a hypothesis through the written word.

Expansive Learning Modules (30 credits: Level 3, Semester 1)

You have the option to tailor your learning experience in Semester 1 of Level 3 by choosing an optional module from a wide range of subjects across Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design.

Social Mobile Apps (30 credits: Level 3, Semester 2)

In this module you will learn how to design an app for mobile devices. In this module you will

  • Develop an understanding of the inter-relationships between user-research, sketching, visualisation and prototyping.
  • Gain knowledge and advanced technical skills relating to mobile technologies.
  • Develop an awareness and understanding of industry practice and skills requirements.
  • Develop critical awareness of the role of mobile technologies in social communication.

Alternative Futures 1 (30 credits: Level 3, Semester 2)

Alternative Futures modules aim to develop your critical thinking, reading and writing skills. You can select one of the following modules, which you will then develop further at Level 4

  • Research & Creative Practice 1
  • Design Enterprise 1
  • Communication Futures 1

 

Level 4

Personal Honours Project (90 credits: Level 4, Semesters 1 & 2)

This module will provide you with a platform to bring together chosen elements that you have learnt so far in the form of a personal project. You will produce design outcomes to your own project brief, drawing on the knowledge and skills you have developed throughout the programme. At the end of this module you will have a refined online portfolio in preparation for graduation and will be in an informed personal position as a designer. You will exhibit your work at the Art, Design & Architecture Degree Show as well as having the opportunity to exhibit at New Designers in London.

Alternative Futures 2 (30 credits: Level 4, Semester 1)

Building on the skills developed in Alternative Futures 1, you will complete an extensive piece of writing in one of the three following modules

  • Research & Creative Practice 2
  • Design Enterprise 2
  • Communication Futures 2

Interaction designers design phone apps, social networks and product user interfaces and are also helping to pioneer online services, new e-businesses and even communication devices for people without speech.

Bill Moggridge’s book ‘Designing Interactions’ is an excellent introduction to forty professionals working in this area across the world (available online at www.designinginteractions.com).

The skills you will gain as part of this degree are in high demand in today’s expanding digital world. At the end of the course you will be able to

  • Prototype new interactions with digital technology.
  • Understand how to involve users and clients in the design process.
  • Use digital media to communicate your work.
  • Present your work and the thinking behind it professionally.
  • Work well in a team with people of different specialisms.
  • Be ready to help change digital culture and the digital economy.

Graduates from BSc (Hons) Digital Interaction Design have gone on to have successful careers/further study in areas including

  • Interaction design
  • User interface development
  • Web design and development
  • Usability consulting
  • Design ethnography
  • Games development
  • Video and media production

Our graduates have worked for companies such as

  • Atalanta
  • Global Energy Group
  • Nonsense London
  • Rockstar North
  • iON Digital Strategy and Online Marketing
  • Copenhagen Institute of Interaction Design
  • Insights

Kayti Smith, Junior UX Designer at TUI Travel in London

"Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design's Digital Interaction Design course offered such a range of different projects to do that I felt prepared for anything when I graduated. It really made me realise what I did and didn't enjoy doing and essentially made me decide what I actually wanted to do when leaving university. As a result of the help I received from tutors and classmates, I grew so much as a designer. I am currently employed as a Junior UX Designer at TUI Travel in London, one of the world’s leading leisure travel groups, with more than 220 brands in 180 countries and over 30 million customers."

The fees you pay will depend on your fee status. Your fee status is determined by us using the information you provide on your application.

 Find out more about fee status

Fees for students starting 2017/18

Fee categoryFees for students starting 2017/18
Scottish and EU students £1,820 per year of study (for Sept 2016 entry). Fees for September 2017 will be confirmed by the Scottish Government in early 2017.
Rest of UK students £9,250 per year, for a maximum of 3 years, even if you are studying a four year degree. See our scholarships for rest of UK applicants.
Overseas students (non-EU) £14,950 per year of study. See our scholarships for international applicants.

Scottish and EU students can apply to the Students Award Agency for Scotland (SAAS) to have tuition fees paid by the Scottish Government.

Rest of the UK students can apply for financial assistance, including a loan to cover the full cost of the tuition fees, from the Student Loans Company.

Tuition fees for Overseas (non-EU) students are guaranteed for the length of your course. This means that the tuition fee you pay in your first year (shown above) is the same fee you will pay for each year of your course. We guarantee that this will not increase while you are studying with us. The only exceptions to this are our MBChB Medicine, BSc Medical Sciences and BDS Dentistry degrees which charge a different tuition for the clinical years.

Digital Interaction Design, Product Design and Interior & Environmental Design share core values: People, Place, Design and Technology.  We want to hear how applicants to the courses are interested in our values. The following recommendations will help in the preparation of your creative work portfolio for discussing with staff at interview.

Application Process

Based on the information contained in the UCAS application, selected applicants will be invited to attend an interview to present their creative portfolio and talk about their interests in our core values: People, Place, Design and Technology. We encourage all applicants to prepare their personal statements with their specialist discipline in mind.  Please note that it is also very important to select a Referee who will fully support your application.

Portfolio Guidelines

We recommend you prepare a creative work portfolio that demonstrates quality rather than quantity of work. Be selective of your project work, showing ideas as well as finished artefacts or presentations.

We understand that by its very nature, creative work can be diverse. We consider all creative portfolio work including: websites, videos, blogs, computer graphics, sound recordings, things you have engineered, photographs, sketchbooks, posters, paintings, drawings, models, 2D & 3D prototypes you have made by hand or digitally drawn.

Creative work may also include inspiration or creation of music, dance, drama and poetry.

Digital Portfolio Guidelines

In order to prepare a portfolio for application through the Social Digital Pathway, we would like you to read the Social Digital Admission Guidelines which will be provided within the request to submit digital portfolio email.

Within your portfolio submission, we would ask that you evidence work that connects with our core values: People, Place, Technology and Design.   

Please select no less than 15 images based on the information provided below.

You can also provide us with the URL of your blog, website and any on-line folio of creative work. We can look at this as well as review your images.

Digital Portfolio Content

The main content of your portfolio will demonstrate aspects of your design process, a variation of the Design Council’s double diamond Discover, Define, Develop, Deliver. 

You will select how you structure your portfolio, either by projects or themes.  We would like to see your comments on our core values, either in the narrative of you annotations or project analysis.

Top tips

  • We suggest that your digital submission does not exceed 5MB
  • Create a contents page to structure your projects and demonstrate your skills
  • Make sure your images are clear, bright and a scale suitable to view online
  • Use a typographic font that is legible for online viewing

Digital Folio Submission Format

jpg, jpeg, gif, tiff, tif, doc, docx, ppt, pptx, pdf, png and bmp file types are allowed and each file size limit of 5Mb.

Movie files can be submitted providing links to YouTube/Vimeo or QuickTime movies.

Digital Portfolio Submission

You will be prompted by our Admissions Team to submit your digital portfolio (and answer a few questions in respect of your interest in studying art & design at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design), via the University of Dundee Applicant Portal, thereafter, if required, we may contact you to arrange an interview in person or via Skype.

If you require further information on any aspect of the application consideration process or the undergraduate programme in general, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Interview

Selected applicants will be invited to attend an interview. You will be given notice to allow you to prepare your creative work portfolio and make any necessary travel arrangements.

Approximately 10 candidates invited to attend each interview session. You will be given a tour of the Social Digital studios/facilities as well as meet with current students across the three disciplines, individual interviews will take place thereafter. 

Some additional things to think about before Interview -Learning how to visualize your creative ideas is part of the course content, so if you lack a traditional portfolio, it is more important that you are able to talk with enthusiasm about what you do. If you've not been involved in structured creative project work, we want to hear what you have been doing: events, exhibitions or on-line forums you've engaged in. We really want to know why you want to study on the programme to make sure you have applied for the right course.

We look forward to meeting you soon and hearing what People, Place, Design and Technology mean to you.

  • From a People perspective, we all have different needs and we want to hear how you think your designs will make people’s lives better. Who would you like to design for? What problems did you notice that inspired you to redesign an existing product or devise a new one? What did you learn from prototyping and model-making? How did others respond to your designs? How did you resolve issues around form, aesthetics and ergonomics?
  • From a Place perspective, what types of environments interest you in terms of places of work, home or play?  Which artists, designers, architects and mavericks do you admire?  How do you generate ideas?  Which creative processes and skills do you like to use to express your ideas (digital, hand-made etc.)?  How do you relate to people and places when you develop interior ideas?
  • From a Design perspective, what designers or companies do you admire? Is there a period in design history that inspires you? What tools and techniques do you use in the design process that shows your skills? What aspects of the thinking and making process do you enjoy?
  • From a Technology perspective, you need to think and plan how you tell your story: tell us how you perhaps use open source code or deconstruct your computer. Are there tech trends that interest you, screen designs, human interfaces or social networking platforms? Have you worked with materials, structures or electronics to develop designs? Explain why you love working with technology and what got you started.

Practitioner’s perspectives:

Gillian Crampton Smith defines interaction design as “the design of the interaction between people and devices, systems or services. This interaction usually involves the ‘new technologies’ of computing and communications. But interaction design remains a creative activity - like architectural, graphic or product design. And it concerns the social value and cultural meaning of what is designed, as well as its functional efficiency and aesthetic appeal.”

Digital Portfolios - If you are unable to present your creative work portfolio in person, we offer submission of a digital portfolio and an interview via Skype as an alternative; however we strongly encourage all those invited to attend interview.  Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design have a digital portfolio submission format, which we will forward to you when necessary.

Application Decision

Based on your application/interview, a decision will be made and notified to you via UCAS Track.

If you require further information on any aspect of the application consideration process or the undergraduate programme in general, please do not hesitate to contact us.

djcadundergraduate@dundee.ac.uk

 



  Degree UCAS Code KIS Data
Apply NowDigital Interaction Design BSc (Hons)WG24