Furniture Design and Make (FdA)
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This foundation degree in Furniture Design and Make has been developed by Oxford Brookes University and City of Oxford College, where the course is delivered. It is linked closely with the furniture industry and aims to inspire creativity in design and excellence in craftsmanship through work related study.
Situated in the Rycotewood Furniture Centre, our students develop skills as creative thinkers and makers who innovate furniture craft through the exploration of materials and skills. This programme balances design, craft and theory to nurture furniture designers and makers of excellent ability. Students can progress to employment or further study with a broad understanding of the processes involved in the design and craft of furniture.
To find out more about what it is like to study at an Oxford Brookes partner college, visit our partnership course pages.
Year one introduces you to a wide range of practical skills, crafts, theories and issues within furniture design and make including graphic communications and visual language through the use of CAD programmes and case studies, craft skills including hand and machine processes progressing to the manufacturing processes used in batch production and theoretical issues relating to manufacturing and material culture.
Year two focuses on the development of skills and issues introduced in year one. You will be encouraged to explore a wide range of materials and processes in the design and development of your own furniture projects responding to aesthetic, functional and technological issues. In addition, you will engage with materials technology, the history of furniture, sustainability and the social implications of design through an extended essay on a topic of your choice.
Learning and teaching
Strong links to the furniture industry, professional-level workshops and the technical expertise of our staff will provide you with a professionally relevant programme. Learning is based on practical scenarios and real-life situations with half of all projects in year two being work-related through live project briefs and competitions set by the industry. Our design and make projects are industry linked so you will gain professional guidance and feedback from industry professionals.
You will be taught through lectures and individual and small group tutorials in our Design Studio. Practical workshop sessions will take place at your own dedicated workbench and in our wood machine and veneering workshops. You will develop your learning through three-dimensional exploration, testing and evaluation of design proposals, and high-quality outcomes supported by specialist lecturers and workshop supervisors.
You will be assessed on your practical and written coursework including practical projects, sketchbooks and technical notebooks, case studies, reports and essays. You will receive regular verbal feedback on your learning during tutorials and written feedback once you have submitted your practical or written work for assessment. Our feedback is designed to be supportive and to help you identify where you could develop your knowledge or skills further.
Please note, tuition fees for Home students may increase in subsequent years both for new and continuing students in line with an inflationary amount determined by government. Oxford Brookes University intends to maintain its fees for new and returning Home students at the maximum permitted level.
Tuition fees for International students may increase in subsequent years both for new and continuing students.
The following factors will be taken into account by the University when it is setting the annual fees: inflationary measures such as the retail price indices, projected increases in University costs, changes in the level of funding received from Government sources, admissions statistics and access considerations including the availability of student support.
How and when to pay
Tuition fee instalments for the semester are due by the Monday of week 1 of each semester. Students are not liable for full fees for that semester if they leave before week 4. If the leaving date is after week 4, full fees for the semester are payable.
Financial support and scholarships
How to apply
You will be equipped with the theoretical understanding and the practical expertise needed to undertake work in a variety of roles within the furniture design and make industry. You will widen your knowledge and experience and gain insight into the many organisations that provide employment opportunities.
Our graduates have been successful in gaining employment as furniture makers, furniture designers and furniture CAD technicians with local, national and international companies. Others have set up their own design studios and some well-known alumni have gone on to make essential contributions to the industry.
You can also apply to continue your study with us on our BA (Hons) Furniture Design and Make when you have successfully completed the Foundation Degree.