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Interiors (Architecture and Design) MA

Learn about the course below
January 2022
1 year full-time
2 years part-time
£9,000 (UK)
£14,500 (EU/INT)
Course leader
Jason Scoot

This course will now start in January 2021 as we've changed some of our teaching arrangements in response to the coronavirus outbreak. You'll get the same great learning experience with lots of support to do your best with this later start date.

This course is no longer accepting applications for 2020 entry. The next entry is January 2021

MA Interiors (Architecture & Design) encourages creative investigation, experimentation and innovation in order to extend your knowledge and skills in the creation of new environments. The potential of the ‘interior’ is explored across a range of contemporary contexts, through field research and interpretation, studio and online workshops, media practices, critical analysis and design. On the course you will develop your individual practice and approach to the design of interior spaces and places.

Why study MA Interiors (Architecture and Design) at Middlesex University?

As public, political and commercial concern grows with the future suitability and sustainability of our urban environments, the need for inspired and innovative leadership in the re-imagining, re-use and transformation of our existing buildings and interiors becomes ever more urgent. This course is structured to allow you to identify and explore your own particular interests within interiors, enabling you to investigate examples of conceptual and spatial manifestation and application.

You will generate propositions to test, demonstrate and explain your approach, and to develop in-depth strategies by which your ideas and proposals can be implemented. You will challenge and redefine what constitutes the 'interior' through experimental learning, prototyping, designing, critical analysis, and narrative techniques. You will gain the relevant contemporary knowledge, advanced design skills and subject insights to develop, consolidate, apply and promote a personal design practice that can meet the tests and challenges of tomorrow.

MA Interiors is part of a suite of postgraduate creative courses that follow a common structure and share a commitment to cross-disciplinary and collaborative learning and study. You will be guided and supported by expert practitioners and academics from a range of subject fields, committed to support your learning development.

Course highlights

  • If our campus is full open and accessible by the end of the 2021 academic year, a physical exhibition will be held on creating networking opportunities and building industry contacts in a professional environment
  • Virtual or real access to London's design world with valuable industry links to a range of industry specialists and businesses
  • Access to networking opportunities, world-leading research and expertise
  • As a student of this course you'll receive a free electronic textbook for every module.

Find out more

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What will you study on the MA Interiors (Architecture and Design)?

This course is divided into five modules taken over three terms (if studied full time). Each module is designed to be flexible, allowing you to bring your own interests to the assignments while extending the boundaries of your current creative practice through research, design development and creative exploration via a formal design proposal.

The majority of the course will be centred on the development of 3 books that when combined will read as a collection/3 volumes of study. Ideas will be shown via Faculty Creative Graduate website and digital magazine DRAFT. This will be supported by a series of outputs and reviewed through regular presentations to assist in the progress of each project. You will also address postgraduate research and critical debates in art and design working with students and staff from across the art and design postgraduate community.

In an ever evolving city such as London, we ask students to embark upon a journey of exploration that identifies in-between spaces, questions assumptions, discovers ‘thisness’, and challenges how they see the world. Each student is asked to detect, collect ideas, reflect and propose new interventions that question the interiors we inhabit. Students look at how the interior responds to the continual behavioural flux of the city and celebrate how it informs new, innovative thought by employing new methods of design communication through the variety of media tools appropriate to industry.

What you will gain?

Each student will have the opportunity to learn new research methods, design development mechanisms via CAD and physical 3D prototyping and design communication skills via the production of 3 books. You will gain the necessary knowledge and experience to work within the interior architecture and design industry at a professional level.


  • Modules

    • Developing Practice – Term 1 (30 credits)

      In this module you will explore a chosen area of design work in a contemporary context while enhancing your technical skills. By the end of this module you’ll be able to employ reflective methods to develop a creative research field book with the advanced communication skills to present, discuss and evaluate your work.

    • Critical Debates – Term 1 (30 credits)

      In this module you’ll explore the key concepts, ideas, issues and research methodologies relating to the practice and theory of interiors. With particular focus on the cultural and social contexts within your chosen discipline, you’ll produce a portfolio of critical responses to contemporary debates in research and professional practice.

    • Exploring Spaces – Term 2 (30 credits)

      In this module you will develop your approach to reflective and critical practice through the creation of a design development manual, identifying and utilising the research stage as an instrument for informing all forms of spatial design. You will interpret the cultural and social context within interiors, developing and testing advanced project proposals.

    • Advanced Research – Term 2 (30 credits)

      In this module you will examine a diverse range of advanced approaches to interiors research using both historical and contemporary sources. You will explore the work of practitioners and scholars in interiors, and the contemporary research problems they face. You will produce an illustrated Research Survey demonstrating your investigations and findings.

    • Major Project – Term 3 (60 credits)

      Using your own research methodologies, concepts and design development processes previously explored in the course you will evaluate relationships between theory and practice. You will produce a substantial body of practice work and a final design proposal for external public exhibition, supported by critical and reflective written work that demonstrates your resolution and expertise.

More information about this course

See the course specification for more information:

Optional modules are usually available at levels 5 and 6, although optional modules are not offered on every course. Where optional modules are available, you will be asked to make your choice during the previous academic year. If we have insufficient numbers of students interested in an optional module, or there are staffing changes which affect the teaching, it may not be offered. If an optional module will not run, we will advise you after the module selection period when numbers are confirmed, or at the earliest time that the programme team make the decision not to run the module, and help you choose an alternative module.

How is the MA Interiors (Architecture and Design) taught?

This course is designed to put you at the centre of your learning by using a range of teaching approaches that take into account your individual interests, abilities and ambitions in interior architecture and design. The course is primarily studio and tutorial based, delivered via online or studio sessions.

As part of your learning, you’ll be required to actively participate in activities and engage with your fellow students, both individually and collaboratively, working and learning as part of a small group at times. At the start of the year you will be asked to perform a pitch presentation outlining the area of research for your final project.

Lectures will facilitate discussion, support in key material or approaches, explore questions, concepts and theories, and introduce case study materials. In seminars, some of which are student-led, you will explore ideas through discussion and presentation. In group and individual tutorials you will receive feedback from tutors on work in progress and specific assignments.

Please note, all lectures, seminars PITCH presentations and tutorials will be performed via online or studio sessions.


Your skills, knowledge and understanding will be entirely assessed by coursework including practical projects, oral presentations and supporting written work. There are no exams.

Formative feedback is provided during each module assignment, together with summative feedback at the end of each module.

The criteria for the final project are:

  • Critical awareness of contemporary and current knowledge, practice and contexts within your chosen subject area
  • In-depth understanding of how research activity has informed and framed your design decision-making
  • Critical and reflective evaluation of the outcomes from your research and design activity
  • Expertise in a range of technical, communication and professional skills appropriate to your chosen subject
  • The development of a personal practice through the application of knowledge acquired through your research
  • Advanced level work that articulates critical analysis, creative problem solving and reflective practice.

Teaching and learning

Changes for students in 2021

If you’re a new student for January 2021, your teaching will start online due to national lockdown restrictions. We plan to start in person teaching on campus sometime after mid-February when the lockdown ends. When restrictions are lifted, we’ll be teaching you in different ways to make sure you get the best learning experience possible. You’ll learn through live sessions with teaching staff and have the chance to study independently too, with access to all the online resources you need through our globally available student portal.

We’re planning different scenarios for teaching so that we can be flexible. While we’re social distancing, we’re aiming to teach you through some small group sessions on campus, with other interactive teaching as well as larger lectures delivered online and recorded sessions available to you on-demand. If you’re unable to make it to campus at first, or we need to limit access to campus in the future, your course can be delivered fully online.

The table below shows current plans for your learning across a typical week, including scheduled live online teaching and an indication of what we hope to teach face to face, where you can make it to campus. While some weeks might look different to this, due to how we schedule classes and make arrangements for any face to face sessions (for example, in some cases these could take place every two weeks with an increased number of hours), the table gives you an idea of what to expect based on the overall number of teaching hours on your course.

You’ll receive final arrangements for your teaching and a full course timetable before you start.

Scenario 1: course delivered fully online

Live learning

Contact time per week, per level:

11 hours

Self-paced learning time

Average hours per week, per level:

21 hours

On demand resources

Average hours per week, per level:

2 hours

Scenario 2: course delivered with a mix of online and face to face learning with social distancing in place

Live learning

Contact time per week, per level:

10 hours

Self-paced learning time

Average hours per week, per level:

21 hours

On demand resources

Average hours per week, per level:

2 hours

Face-to-face sessions

Contact time per week, per level:

2 hours

Read more about our scenarios for returning to campus and what they might mean for your teaching and learning experience, and how you’ll be able to access student support.

Future plans for teaching

We’re developing our timetable for face to face teaching  with current government advice on social distancing to keep you safe. If social distancing requirements are lifted, we’ll start to safely move back towards our usual teaching arrangements with more opportunities for face to face learning. Some learning and support might stay online in this scenario. If more restrictions are put in place, or there is another lockdown, we’ll be prepared to deliver your learning and support fully online, with alternative arrangements made for any required placements. We’ll always give you notice of any changes that we make.

Definitions of terms

  • Live learning – Live learning will cover everything you’ll do with teaching staff like lectures, seminars, workshops and other classes, and we’ll schedule all of this for you. This might include some study outside your regular timetable, like taking part in discussion forums or online blogs where you’re supported by academic staff.
  • Independent learning – Independent learning is all the studying you’ll do outside your live learning sessions with teaching staff. This self-paced study will give you the chance to learn, prepare, revise and reflect in your own time as you need to, and you’ll have access to on-demand resources and materials to help you do your best.
    • Self-paced study – Self-paced study will give you the chance to learn wherever and whenever you want to and at your own pace, outside your live learning sessions. This independent learning could include reading and reflection, preparation for classes, revision or homework along with access to other online activities such as quizzes.
    • On-demand resources – You'll have access to on-demand resources like pre-recorded video lectures and workshops as part of your independent study. You’ll be able to review and revisit whenever you need to at your own pace.
  • Face to face sessions – Wherever it’s possible to do so, and we can make the necessary arrangements to ensure your safety, you’ll be able to attend scheduled sessions, workshops or appointments on campus as part of your live learning. The number of hours given in this scenario provides an indication of the number of hours of face to face learning you could expect, and a full timetable will be provided to you before the start of your course.


You’ll have a strong support network available to you to make sure you develop all the necessary academic skills you need to do well on your course.

Our support services will mainly be delivered online and you’ll have access to a range of different resources so you can get the help you need, whether you’re studying at home or have the opportunity to come to campus.

You’ll have access to one to one and group sessions for personal learning and academic support from our library and IT teams, and our network of learning experts. Our teams will also be here to offer financial advice, and personal wellbeing, mental health and disability support.

More on teaching for your subject in 2020/21

Read our guide to what’s been happening in your subject area recently and more about what to expect this autumn.

  1. Standard entry requirements
  2. International (inc. EU)
  3. How to apply
  1. UK
  2. EU/International
  3. Additional costs
  4. Scholarships and bursaries

How can the MA Interiors (Architecture and Design) support your career?

This course will prepare you for a diverse range of careers foremost within the interior design, architecture and wider design industry, but also within other creative and cultural industries. These may include product, furniture, exhibition design, spatial design and more. You may also decide to pursue careers in further research and teaching. We encourage students to work in the industry and support links with professional industry during and after graduating.

Our graduates are now working as:

  • Interior designers
  • Architects
  • Teachers
  • Product Designers
  • Researchers
  • Writers
  • Jessica Watts

    MA Interior Architecture

    I was working as an interior designer but always wanted to do a masters. At an undergraduate level you learn the basics you need which helped me start off my career, however I wanted to explore my own area of interest and learn a different way of thinking about design. The masters has expanded my vision, not just in practical terms, but also in terms of research.

    The course is very flexible and caters for whatever you want to do. Our tutors are there to help guide us, but in a very liberal way, allowing us the freedom to go in our own direction.

We’ll carefully manage any future changes to courses, or the support and other services available to you, if these are necessary because of things like changes to government health and safety advice, or any changes to the law.

Any decisions will be taken in line with both external advice and the University’s Regulations which include information on this.

Our priority will always be to maintain academic standards and quality so that your learning outcomes are not affected by any adjustments that we may have to make.

At all times we’ll aim to keep you well informed of how we may need to respond to changing circumstances, and about support that we’ll provide to you.

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