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Interior Architecture

MA

Key facts

Start dates

September 2023

Location

Headington

Course length

Full time: 1 year September-November

Part time: 2 years September-May / September-November

Overview

Interior Architecture merges competences between architecture, interior design, and social science. Its fluid approach permits for a shift of focus from the design of ‘objects’ (buildings and furniture) to an evaluation of the 'subjective' experience of the users. As the ‘spatial art of environmental design’, Interior Architecture refers thus to the process by which the interiors of buildings and public spaces are designed to support human activities, in a range of crafted environments that maintain a sustainable relation with the communities they serve.

Although the ability to design is not necessarily required for admission in this programme, each successful applicant must demonstrate an awareness of design consequences as evaluated in ‘real’ environments through a portfolio of social research work.

A student's work

How to apply

Entry requirements

Specific entry requirements

Admission to the programme will normally be open to applicants who fulfil either of the following requirements:

  • hold a minimum of a second class honours degree (2:2), or an equivalent overseas qualification from a recognised institution, in either a design-related discipline (e.g. interior design, interior architecture, architecture or product design) or in a environmental-oriented discipline (e.g. applied sociology, environmental psychology or human geography).
  • submit a portfolio of research and design work which will be requested after a valid application has been submitted.

Selected candidates will be invited for an interview, either in person or via a digital platform.

Please also see the University's general entry requirements.

English language requirements

If your first language is not English you will require a minimum academic IELTS score of 6.5 overall with 6.0 in all components.

OR

An equivalent English language qualification acceptable to the University.

Please also see the University's standard English language requirements.

International qualifications and equivalences

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English requirements for visas

If you need a student visa to enter the UK you will need to meet the UK Visas and Immigration minimum language requirements as well as the University's requirements. Find out more about English language requirements.

Pathways courses for international and EU students

We offer a range of courses to help you meet the entry requirements for your postgraduate course and also familiarise you with university life in the UK.

Take a Pre-Master's course to develop your subject knowledge, study skills and academic language level in preparation for your master's course.

If you need to improve your English language, we offer pre-sessional English language courses to help you meet the English language requirements of your chosen master’s course.

Terms and Conditions of Enrolment

When you accept our offer, you agree to the Terms and Conditions of Enrolment. You should therefore read those conditions before accepting the offer.

Application process

Applications must meet the entry requirements, and demonstrate a protracted awareness of the social consequences of design decisions in the built environment through the submission of a portfolio of relevant design and/or research work.

Selected suitable applicants will be invited to a comprehensive interview, either in person or via a digital platform.

Apply Now

Tuition fees

Please see the fees note
Home (UK) full time
£8,350

Home (UK) part time
£4,175

International full time
£15,900

Home (UK) full time
£8,700

Home (UK) part time
£4,350

International full time
£16,500

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

Tuition fees

2022 / 23
Home (UK) full time
£8,350

Home (UK) part time
£4,175

International full time
£15,900

2023 / 24
Home (UK) full time
£8,700

Home (UK) part time
£4,350

International full time
£16,500

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

+44 (0)1865 483088

financefees@brookes.ac.uk

Fees quoted are for the first year only. If you are studying a course that lasts longer than one year your fees will increase each year.

Additional costs

Please be aware that some courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees. Specific additional costs for this course are detailed below.

Funding your studies

Financial support and scholarships

Featured funding opportunities available for this course.

All financial support and scholarships

View all funding opportunities for this course

The published course and module descriptions were accurate when first published and remain the basis of the course, but the University has had to modify some course and module content in response to government restrictions and social distancing requirements

Learning and assessment

The student cohort includes graduates and practitioners from a variety of design related courses (interior design, interior architecture, product design, and architecture) as well as from environmental disciplines (sociology, environmental psychology, human geography). The purpose of this integrative approach is a practical one: we seek to equip students to intervene effectively in the production of an improved public realm, through a practice that is relevant to the design and the process of actual inhabitation in the built environment. 

The concept of the reflective practitioner is therefore central to the MA Interior Architecture philosophy, with a unique blend of taught competences and critical expertise provided to enable students upon graduation to gain a significant leverage in practice.

Student working in the interior architecture studio

Study modules

Taught modules

Compulsory modules

Spatial Qualities: History and Theory (20 credits)

Spatial Qualities introduces definitions, issues, aspirations, and experience of ‘space’ in modern times. Students will choose a specific interior space, and provide an historical and critical assessment of its design and experiential qualities, in relation to contextual and cultural conditions.

Affordance: Practices of Social Space (20 credits)

Affordance aims to broaden and enhance students’ awareness of spatial environments as effective social spaces, Lectures in related fields provide a multidisciplinary approach and focus on spatial conditions for the advancement of social and cultural cohesion. Students will have the opportunity to develop a critical and self-reflective practice by compiling a social strategy for design.

Design Variables: Technology & Experience (20 credits)

Design Variables give students the opportunity to develop appropriate strategies and methodologies for exploring materiality, fabrication, construction, and environmental performance – in order to determine meaningful design propositions based around the body inhabitation of space. The focus is on learning from precedents and applying knowledge to specific design propositions.

Furnitecture: Research and Design (20 credits)

Furnitecture [furni(tures) + (archi)tectures] focuses on a new design concept that describes multi-functional structures that operate at an intermediary scale between furniture and architecture. These flexible structures have the ability to augment and transform habitable and working spaces, and to influence and broaden conventional patterns of use by creating innovative environments. A series of research and design briefs will analyse furnitectures from a variety of contexts, to define the design requirements necessary for specific end-users and functional purpose.

Social Space: Research and Design (40 credits)

Social Space provides the opportunity to understand the primary functions and working dynamics of interior architecture in the wider field of practice, including developing design strategies, and addressing social and functional requirements in response to requirements emerging from the analysis of existing building conditions, and viable strategies for alternatives. Students will practice a range of methodologies for contextual design, to articulate an individual research and design report at professional level standard, in response to design briefs.

Research Methods and Design (10 credits)

Research Methods aims to advance student’s knowledge and understanding of methods available to undertake appropriate academic research for the dissertation. It presents a variety of qualitative and quantitative research methods and provides a forum for debate about research.

Dissertation / final project

Compulsory modules

Dissertation: MA Interior Architecture (50 credits)

The MA Interior Architecture Dissertation is the synthesis of critical approaches and writing techniques acquired in the master, applied to a sustained individual design research related to a specific social space within its cultural and physical context. Students are expected to produce the final dissertation by combining images and text to support their arguments to the highest possible standards of written and visual presentation.

Please note: As our courses are reviewed regularly as part of our quality assurance framework, the modules you can choose from may vary from that shown here. The structure of the course may also mean some modules are not available to you.

Learning and teaching

The course's teaching and learning methods are concerned with the practice of interior architecture as mediating between the disciplines of interior design and architecture, in relation to the social activities that occur in public and shared environments. This requires a combination of theoretical knowledge, professional competence, and direct experience acquired through research and design modules, project work, and analysis of specific sites.

Learning and teaching occurs within the dedicated Interior Architecture studio, where lectures, seminars, analysis and evaluation, students-led discussions, and formal presentations provide for a stimulating learning and teaching environment. Wherever possible, we will assign ‘live projects’, where the learning experience is enriched through debate with the stakeholders and end-users.

Assessment

Assessment methods used on this course

A holistic approach to design specifications articulates the professional curriculum in the MA Interior Architecture, with an emphasis on critical methodologies of social evaluation and performance. To ensure that students from different academic and professional backgrounds are equally able to perform in the course, upon agreement with staff students can tailor submissions to suit their personal abilities and graphic style.

Students’ submissions include site survey and analysis, written and photographic essays, seminar papers, project work and presentations, and workshops and design simulations. The assessment methods aim to test not only knowledge but also skills in research, analysis, and design awareness, in relation to five core attributes: Academic and Research Literacy, Professional Competence, Critical Self-Awareness, and Active Citizenship.

Research

The MA Interior Architecture broadens and consolidates the research on social design in the School of Architecture at Oxford Brookes, alongside the BA Honours Degree in Interior Architecture and the research group on Therapeutic Environments and Experiential Design.

Our team consists of architects, interior designers, historians and critics, with experience in dealing with social inclusivity, for example, live projects and client-led built propositions for education, flexible living, community infrastructure, and hospitality. In professional application, we have several design consultancies established with design practices and social services providers with the purpose of advising on the impact of design on people. This includes the (re)design of buildings from inside out as well as outside in, and the rehabilitation of existing structures to accommodate changed purposes, as well as contributions to new design propositions as part of a more sustainable architecture practice.

After you graduate

Career prospects

Design practices are increasingly required to produce socially inclusive design solutions, by aligning spatial qualities to individual multi-sensorial experience. Graduates from the MA Interior Architecture will be proficient in the shift from sustainability quantitative indicators to qualitative experiential parameters, with the ability to provide comprehensive people-focused design competences and tailored solutions to fulfil the changing demands from users.

Programme Changes:

On rare occasions we may need to make changes to our course programmes after they have been published on the website.

For more information, please visit our Changes to programmes page.