FdA Three-dimensional Design

Why choose this course?

This programme aims to develop your creativity and skills in carrying out projects to meet the needs of clients and audiences. In addition the programme will provide you with:

  • An emphasis on personal development and employability within the creative industries. 
  • Excellent employer engagement, live briefs, industry feedback, guest speakers, study trips and overseas visits. 
  • An opportunity to gain a nationally recognised qualification in two years of full-time study. 
  • Progression route to the final year of an appropriate honours degree programme at the University of Hertfordshire. 

What's the course about?

This course is available to UK/EU students only.

Our FdA Three-dimensional Design programme focuses on developing creative and technical skills which provide a strong foundation for a career in the creative industries. You will undertake a range of vocational projects, which involve the design and prototyping of consumer products, furniture design, jewellery making, the design of interior and exterior environments and the production of concept models. You will develop proficiency in a wide range of communication and technical skills from hand rendered drawings, CAD, physical model making and knowledge of structure, construction, materials and detailing. 

Ideas are at the heart of the course and there is a strong emphasis on practical experimental work. You will be challenged to respond to vocational based briefs in a creative and considered way, evaluating and analysing your work as you progress. This course will develop both your creative and technical skills and at all stages you will be taught how to use established and emerging media through workshops, industry guest speakers, tutorials and seminars delivered by experienced industry professionals. 

Through contextual studies and an ongoing seminar programme you will be introduced to the issues of analysis, aesthetic and theoretical frameworks as used in this industry. Through the course's emphasis on work-based learning you will be encouraged to find work placements and job shadowing with industry professionals. You will be working in teams to simulate industry practice across the two years and hone your presentation and communication skills. Through our excellent industry links, both local and national, you will be regularly visited and supported by leading members of the design community. 

Where can I progress to?

All progression routes outlined below are currently valid; however available progression will be updated on an annual basis in accordance with changes in University of Hertfordshire provision.

Entry to Level 6 is contingent on successful completion of the FdA. Additional routes may be available to students at the time of FdA completion. 

The FdA Three-dimensional Design offers articulated progression into the final year of the following courses:   

What will I study?

You will be taught through a combination of lectures, small group tutorials, course work and practical assignments. Throughout your course, you are encouraged to undertake independent study to consolidate your learning and to broaden your knowledge and understanding of the subject of interest.

Teaching comprises a combination of lectures, seminars, workshops, small group tutorials, course work and practical assignments. You are encouraged to undertake independent study to consolidate your learning and to broaden your knowledge and understanding of the subject. You will also experience working collaboratively on projects with other higher education courses. There is the opportunity to take part in industry live briefs with local community businesses, organisations, groups and head offices as well as prestigious national and international design competitions; these include D&AD New Blood and The RSA Student design Awards.  

You will have access to state-of-the-art facilities including wood working studios, heavy workshop, light workshop, a large scale laser cutter and 3D printers. As well as design studios, Mac suites and industry standard resources. We have a Creative Enterprise Shop that stocks products designed by you. The shop also pops-up at local community events, shops, empty shop units, external exhibitions both local and inner London. The teaching team combines full-time teaching staff with part-time industry professionals, who split their time between teaching and working in the creative industries. Throughout the programme there is an international study trip, as well as national study trips and visits to businesses, agencies, museums and galleries. 

You can visit our Instagram @creative_enterprise_hub and follow our current students creative exploits. 

Check out our student blogs

Student Blogs

Maxine Clark - From college to university

What foundation degree did I study and why?

I studied Three Dimensional Design. I wanted to study something with more of a focus on jewellery but those around me suggested that I take up a course that was broader but still focused on core design skills. My strength was my creativity and my making skills, atypical academic situations didn’t suit me but there are a lot of options out there to learn your way.

What was it like studying at the college?

I reflect on studying at Hertford Regional College as the best part of my education, the course was a great fit for me although it took the first year for me to really settle in. I learnt so many great skills that I still use now. All of the tutors and technicians are incredibly knowledgeable and love to talk about all aspects of design and creativity, get them talking and you’ll learn so much.

I was also a slightly older student, starting further education about two years later than everyone else. I was worried at first but I didn’t need to, as you can always relate to others through the course and not through age.

I moved up from the Isle of Wight and took up a room in a private landlord’s house, it was a real adventure and looking back I’m not sure how I picked up the courage to leave everything behind. I took a bus daily from Broxbourne to Ware and found lots of nice walks in the area plus it’s really easy to travel into London and felt very safe.

What was it like progressing on to a degree at Herts?

I fainted on my taster day at Herts, a great way to make a first impression but I’d already decided I’d like to go there. I’d always wanted to go straight to university and was a little sad that I had missed out on the first year of living in halls and freshers week (you can still go and get free pizza, I didn’t realise this at the time).

The transition for me was really cool as I wanted that student living environment and I viewed my new shared house for all of about 20 minutes. Yet it was also quite difficult as I went straight into the third year of my BA. I felt like I had the support I needed in my creative tutor, with loads of back and forth and constructive criticism but the most relatable support was from the others on the course.

My tips would be to go and examine the facilities, attend the graduate shows and talk to students on all different courses and the students in further education that have already completed the BA.

What was it like studying at Herts?

Studying my final year of my BA at Herts was fun, although I was trying to cram three years’ worth of university experience into 12 months - I wanted to socialise, play with different machines and materials, get into different events, try out different societies and focus on my studies. I really found my flow about four to six months in and made the most of the final six months, I was proud of my final collection.

I used the counselling service at the University, and they were incredibly sensitive to my needs and very helpful.

In the end, although I’m quite introverted, I still really enjoyed being dragged out by much more extroverted friends to the different bars around campus. Whether it was an event or music, or really long study sessions in the LRC, it was all great fun. I ended up meeting my boyfriend at an event and six years later we have our own house together.

After my degree

After my degree, I did feel a little bit lost. I wanted to push my practice further and I wanted to stay in Herts. I decided to investigate an MA and at the time you could get full support with a scholarship. I spent the next two years at Herts and worked at T K Maxx in the Galleria.

My transferable skills came mostly from my experience of work. University gave me organisation, resilience and logic skills and college gave me a lot of design thinking skills. I also made sure to seek help when I needed it, so please do look after yourself.

I kept an eye out for graduate schemes and jobs that merged my degree and retail experience as my MA came to an end. I found a position on Arts Jobs for a paid year at Cockpit Arts supported by the Weston Jerwood Creative Bursaries programme. I’m still at Cockpit now and loving my role.

Due to the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic, examinations may be replaced by an alternative form of assessment during the academic year 2020/2021. Please refer to the Programme Specification on these pages for further details.

Please note that some of the images and videos on our course pages may have been taken before social distancing rules in the UK came into force.

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