York College

Industry Insights

Product, clothing and related designers

Up to £39,000

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Design and development engineers

Up to £29,000

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IT business analysts, architects and systems designers

Up to £30,000

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Entry requirements

Please see our Entry Requirements page for general A Level guidance.  Students should also have a minimum of a grade 4 in English Language, Maths and a creative GCSE such as Product Design, Design Technology or Art & Design.


Two years.

What will I study?

The Product Design AS & A Level is a balance between creative design and design theory. The substantial creative project element allows you to steer the direction of your work down a more graphical route or a more 3D resistant materials route depending on your preference.

The course is challenging, thought-provoking, stimulating and fast-moving, as you balance developing an understanding of design theory alongside the demands of creative project work where elements of the theory are applied.

AS Level (content tailored to Product Design: Graphics or Resistant Materials)

Component 1: Principles of Design and Technology (exam)
You will learn about materials, processes and techniques to shape, form, join and manufacture relevant products and components. You will also learn CAD (Computer Aided Design), digital technologies, the effects of technological developments, and the factors which influence the development of a product and design history.

Component 2: Design and Make Project (externally moderated)
You will undertake a small scale ‘design, make and evaluate’ project to a given ‘external’ brief from the exam board. Example briefs have been around products which promote a healthy lifestyle, products which have promoted historical buildings etc.

A Level (content tailored to Product Design or Resistant Materials)

Component 1: Principles of Design and Technology (exam)
In addition to the AS topics, you will also study how we design for effective maintenance and to create a cleaner environment, as well as current legislation and standards in our industry.

Component 2: Design and Make Project (externally moderated)
You will undertake a substantial ‘design, make and evaluate’ project which requires you to produce a portfolio and a prototype outcome. This will involve working with a real client and you will have a real problem to solve.

In the first year you will also develop your CAD (Computer Aided Design) skills:

  • Adobe Photoshop
  • Solid Works 3D Computer Aided Design leading to CAM (Computer Aided Manufacture)

Good course combinations

Other A Levels such as English, Maths, Physics and Computer Science.

What could it lead to?

Higher education, in particular any design-related course including Product Design, Engineering disciplines, Architecture, Animation, Graphic Design and the Foundation Diploma in Art and Design.

Need some help?

If you have any further questions about this course, or would like us to help you with your application, please contact the Schools Liaison team on 01904 770239 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information contained in this webpage, the content is subject to change where necessary.

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