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Undergraduate study
Innovative Home Design and Construction (with Foundation Year)

Innovative Home Design and Construction (with Foundation Year)
BSc (Hons)


Course overview

This course develops and innovates new approaches to home design, fabrication and construction to inspire the next generation of home designers and innovators. It is ideal if you have an interest in design or STEM subjects.

MIMA School of Art & Design

See what it’s like to study at MIMA School of Art & Design, part of Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art.

Through a unique partnership with renowned and respected TV architect George Clarke, this course explores new models of home design, fabrication and construction. You are guided through a detailed exploration of methods of construction, such as using off-site manufacture and prefabrication, alternative building materials, and building project locations. You have an opportunity to develop concept models and construct scale models of your designs on campus.

This course includes a foundation year - ideal if you need additional preparation or if you don't have sufficient grades to join Year 1 of a degree.

George Clarke’s social enterprise, the Ministry of Building, Innovation and Education (MOBIE), is driving a fundamental change to the building industry and our courses have been designed to adhere closely to the modular building concept and advanced home construction principles of MOBIE. This pioneering course brings together design and engineering modules - you spend time drawing architectural plans, designing, model making, creating 3D prototypes and learning how this translates into large-scale manufacture. You emerge as a uniquely qualified graduate equipped to disrupt the housing market and rethink manufacturing design.


Course details

Course structure

Foundation year core modules

Contextual Studies

You are introduced to the contexts of creative and design history, investigating problem solving and themes to inform your current studio practice. You research and learn to analyse ideas about past British and international styles, design and theory. This develops your understanding of the role of the designer, the meanings and vocabulary of space and design, and the relationship between design, society and the environment. You develop skills in research, analysis, communication and critical thinking, and produce and present interpretations of historical material.

Portfolio Project

Building on your skills in the design process, you develop a project portfolio directed towards your favoured design discipline, demonstrating your creative ideas, development and final concepts. You are encouraged to take a questioning, creative and innovative approach to design project work. You focus on experimental exploration, as well as challenging your ability to motivate and organise yourself to manage a design project and work to a deadline. This project culminates with a short presentation of your completed design work.

Research and Analysis

You are introduced to the creative design process and methods of researching and recording inspirational ideas which you can then develop for your own project work. You gather inspiration, stimuli and precedent ideas from a multitude of sources and sketchbooks – these are key in developing and experimenting your design, helping you curate ideas and document your design activity.

Specialism Project

You take part in a range of specialist studio activities. You investigate, experiment and explore pathways in fashion, textiles, graphics, interiors and product design. You study creative processes and develop independent project skills to help identify the specialist subject which best suits your interests and abilities.

Thinking Through Drawing

You are introduced to a range of fundamental drawing approaches for a variety of purposes. Practical workshops include measured drawing, scale, composition and perspective as well as creatively using colour, materials and expressive mark making. These experiences increase your observational skills that help you visualise and realise ideas for potential design projects.

Thinking Through Making

You further develop and deepen your knowledge gained from the induction programmes, enhancing your skills in model construction, prototyping, printmaking, and production analysis. You gain greater insight into the complexities of model construction and printmaking by working in detail with various materials, developing techniques and creative skills. This module is project-based – you transfer your knowledge from lectures to hands-on demonstrations in a workshop environment. You primarily learn through producing models and prints from drawings.


Year 1 core modules

Construction Practice and Management

You gain a holistic understanding of construction practice and management processes. You investigate the modern construction industry, both from the practical skills embedded within the industry through to its linkage with onsite construction management, including roles within the industry. You explore Building Information Modelling (BIM) and how it fits into construction processes /sequences ranging from domestic to large-scale and design and build projects.

Design Project; Residential Space

You gain a basic understanding of the processes, methods of working and design communication involved within a practical interior design framework for a residential space. You experience the analysis of a given building space, understand the needs of a client and explore the translation of initial ideas into finished design proposals. The project takes you through a typical interior scheme from concept to completion.

Digital Technology in Construction

You manage the 3D co-ordination design process and explore the technologies and methodologies used in Building Information Modelling (BIM). You also look at the role of digital in construction management for the future and discuss the relationship between process and product, considering the changing role of the patron, user, client and designer during the industrial age.

Drawing Architecture

You gain the skills to visually communicate your design ideas using a variety of 2D and 3D architectural drawing techniques. Plans, elevations and sections are covered as well as calculating scale and introducing some rendering skills.

Making Architecture

You look at prototyping design ideas through 3D modelling and communicating with users and clients through making and constructed detailing. Technology is now available through laser and plasma cutting as well as Rapid Prototyping and Computer Numerical Controlled (CNC) machinery – you explore these tools and their applications in the making of scale models as well as full scale end production.

Materials and Sustainability

You look at engineering materials in lab-based practical sessions. Fundamental relationships between processing, structure, properties and performance are explored to highlight factors which influence the suitability of materials for various engineering applications.


Year 2 core modules

Design Project: Commercial Space

You look outside of the studio to observe, make links and understand situations – considering how design can be a progressive force that impacts and improves lives and environments. You are introduced to the design of commercial spaces, extending your knowledge and appreciation of the variety of scenarios that design professionals work within.

Integrated Digital Design

You will study technology, people, policy and process change required to adopt BIM as enabler of the future of construction. 3D visualisation, Virtual Reality, Augmented reality, offsite construction, 3D prototyping and component printing as opportunities for the Construction industry to adopt. You will consider different design processes in the construction industry in the advent of BIM and information as a technological and methodological breakthrough.

Interior Debates in Context

From post war to the current day, the built environment is an area of rapid change and contextual debate. This module develops your knowledge of both UK and international design within historical, political, economic, social, technological and legislative contexts.

Offsite Construction

You will study technology, people, policy and process change required to adopt BIM as enabler of the future of construction. 3D visualisation, Virtual Reality, Augmented reality, offsite construction, 3D prototyping and component printing as opportunities for the Construction industry to adopt. You will consider different design processes in the construction industry in the advent of BIM and information as a technological and methodological breakthrough.

Spatial Office Practice

You develop your project management and collaborative skills within a practical entrepreneurial context, to an external brief or competition. You develop skills in project management, teamwork, managing interdisciplinary practice, applied research methods and the design process. Projects evolve from the analysis of problems and situations, allowing you to engage in work-related experiences and develop professionalism and self-management.

Sustainable Construction

You are introduced to the philosophy, theory and key concepts of sustainable development in relation to the built environment and the construction industry. You analyse the potential impacts of engineering design and construction on both the environment and society, and examine the implications of climate change and the low-carbon agenda on engineering design, construction and operation.


Optional work placement year

Final-year core modules

CAD: Visualisation and BIM

Building performance and sustainability has become increasingly important in building design and refurbishment. You are introduced to the concepts and measurement of Building Information Modelling (BIM) and some of the design technologies that the process can utilise.

Major Project: Realisation

This module aims to enable you to bring your design project ideas to fruition, considering all aspects of research and development. You will be encouraged to demonstrate a high level of professional competence in the realisation of your projects and to have a deep understanding of the social and theoretical context in which you are practising.

On completion of your design development and your completed final project, as a group you will organise your work for presentation in either a physical or online digital exhibition involving technical work, interior visualisation, model making and the specification of materials, furniture and finishes.

Major Project: Research and Development

The selection, scope and focus of the final project is agreed through negotiation with tutors to ensure appropriate levels of complexity, rigour and acceptable ethical content. You explore and define the parameters of your own professional practice and research interests. You develop understanding and gain experience in research as both an academic discipline and as part of the creative process, leading to a final design project.

Supply Chain Management

This module investigates a range of applied Quality Management techniques and has been designed to enable students to develop the skills necessary to apply these techniques to their own work environment. This module also examines the appropriate statistical techniques in Quality Control, Auditing, Supply Chain Management and a range of Accreditation Schemes including BRC, EFSIS, ISO, UKAS and Industry Standards. In course assessment (ICA) is via a 5000 words written piece of work, with a weighting of 100%.

Writing Architecture

As spatial designers you work within the boundaries, contexts and histories of existing buildings and therefore need to develop skills in research, contextualisation, critical thinking and communication. You undertake extended independent research on a topic of personal interest within the broad field of spatial design.


Modules offered may vary.


How you learn

The practice-based elements of all our design courses are taught in a studio environment, supported by a full range of digital resources and workshop facilities. These provide real hands-on experience using up-to-date equipment and processes.

We also encourage independent and student-centred learning. Any theoretical work is primarily delivered through illustrated lectures and seminars where you have the opportunity for collective discussion. 

How you are assessed

The work produced is assessed. Design projects are a key feature. Assessment is undertaken against carefully defined criteria and often involves a critique of project-based assignments - this is a process widely used in the design field and allows for staff and peer group appraisal.

Our Disability Services team provide an inclusive and empowering learning environment and have specialist staff to support disabled students access any additional tailored resources needed. If you have a specific learning difficulty, mental health condition, autism, sensory impairment, chronic health condition or any other disability please contact a Disability Services as early as possible.
Find out more about our disability services

Find out more about financial support
Find out more about our course related costs


Entry requirements

Entry requirements

32-88 points from any combination of recognised Level 3 qualifications or equivalent. Consideration will also be given to students without formal qualifications but with evidence of relevant experience at an appropriate level. Students are invited to bring portfolios along on applicant days to show creative skills in art and design.

You are normally invited for interview. The interview is to determine your potential to succeed and helps set appropriate entry conditions matched to your personal circumstances and the demands of the course. The interview also enables you to see our excellent facilities, meet staff and students.

If you are unable to attend an interview at the university, we can organise a virtual interview over the telephone or internet. If you have a portfolio of work to submit in support of your application, this can be sent to us electronically.

English language and mathematics requirement
Normally, evidence of English language and mathematical skills equivalent to at least GCSE grade 4 (grade C) are required. We consider a wide range of English and maths qualifications alternative to GCSEs. Please contact our admissions staff for advice.

Non-EU international students who need a student visa to study in the UK should check our web pages on UKVI-compliant English language requirements. The University also provides pre-sessional English language courses if you do not meet the minimum English language requirement.

Alternative progression routes
If you are not eligible to join this course directly then we may be able to help you prepare for admission by studying appropriate pre-degree Summer University modules. Please contact us to discuss the alternative progression routes available to you.

For general information please see our overview of entry requirements

International applicants can find out what qualifications they need by visiting Your Country

You can gain considerable knowledge from work, volunteering and life. Under recognition of prior learning (RPL) you may be awarded credit for this which can be credited towards the course you want to study.
Find out more about RPL



Work placement

A work placement officer and the University's award-winning careers service assist you with applying for a placement. Advice is also available on job hunting and networking.

By taking a work placement year you gain experience favoured by graduate recruiters and develop your technical skillset. You also obtain the transferable skills required in any professional environment. Transferable skills include communication, negotiation, teamwork, leadership, organisation, confidence, self-reliance, problem-solving, being able to work under pressure, and commercial awareness.

Potential benefits from completing a work placement year include:

  • improved job prospects
  • enhanced employment skills and improved career progression opportunities
  • a higher starting salary than your full-time counterparts
  • a better degree classification
  • a richer CV
  • a year's salary before completing your degree
  • experience of workplace culture
  • the opportunity to design and base your final-year project within a working environment.

Career opportunities

The need for us to design well-built, affordable homes is massive and the construction industry is changing quickly. It was recently announced that Amazon and Google are starting to invest in the home building market. It isn’t just a national change, it’s international – and over the next few years an increasing number of job opportunities are expected to be available for graduates of these courses.

You have the opportunity to progress to our MSc Advanced Home Futures.


Information for international applicants


International applicants - find out what qualifications you need by selecting your country below.

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Useful information

Visit our international pages for useful information for non-UK students and applicants.

Talk to us

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Entry to 2021/22 academic year

Fee for UK applicants
£9,250 a year

More details about our fees

Fee for international applicants
£13,000 a year

More details about our fees for international applicants

What is included in your tuition fee?

  • Length: 4 years (or 5 with a work placement)
  • UCAS code: K204 BSc/IHDCFY
  • Start date: September
  • Semester dates
  • Typical offer: Offers are tailored to individual circumstances

Apply online (full-time) through UCAS



  • Not available part-time

Choose Teesside

  • On video

    Architect and television presenter George Clarke pictured (top centre) during the online tutorial. Link to View the pictures. Words of wisdom shared with students by renowned architect
    Architect and television presenter George Clarke surprised Teesside University students by dropping into an online lecture to offer a few words of encouragement.

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    Teesside University: Working in partnership with MOBIE

    Renowned TV architect George Clarke returned to Teesside University to inspire the next generation of home designers and meet the first cohort of students on the MOBIE MSc Advanced Home Futures.

  • News

    Link to View the pictures. Tees Valley to gain from STEAM development project as MIMA, Teesside University and partners secure funding
    A diverse team of scientists and artists from the Tees Valley will come together to research and develop a public art project which aims to address climate change and social justice.

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    Some of the work on display at the MSc Advanced Home Futures degree show.. Link to View the pictures. First MOBIE cohort showcase ground-breaking home designs
    Ground-breaking developments in architecture and design have been showcased at Teesside University’s first ever MOBIE degree show.

    Read the full story


Reporting on engineering at Teesside University

A tour of Teesside University engineering facilities and employer partnerships, enabling us to produce graduates ready for the world of work.


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