So now you know what to expect when studying a Bachelor of Design in Product Design at UTS, what’s next? How about taking a read into the great and not so great aspects of the course?
We’ve asked Kevin, a fourth-year Bachelor of Design in Product Design student, to tell us more about his experience.
Let’s dive in!
Why should you study a Product Design degree at UTS?
“Product Design at UTS is a great degree for those who are looking to get into a creative field,” Kevin says, “it’s great for people who are technically minded and want to have a wide range of skills at the end of their study.”
UTS is also ranked as the 2nd best university to study Art and Design in Australia! As a technology-based university, UTS offers many production resources to support a wide size of design projects.
Top 3 Pros of a Product Design degree
#1: Thorough design skillset
“You learn a lot of different skills in the degree,” Kevin says, “these range from sketching, coding, CAD, Adobe CC, and with a good choice of electives, you can really explore your specific strengths.”
Throughout the degree, students get to work with different design processes within the 3D and digital mediums — both of these mediums ensure that students can design functional and refined products.
“On top of learning the foundations, there’s a lot of room to experiment with your personal style in final projects,” Kevin adds.
#2: Very hands-on
In a Bachelor of Design in Product Design, most of the classes and assessments are practical applications of the unit content.
“It’s a hands-on degree where you learn by doing,” Kevin tells us. “Those who like to use their hands and make things will find the degree intriguing and easily absorbed into their projects.”
Although they are still very necessary, the required readings for the degree are not as long as opposed to humanities degrees. For Kevin, this gave him time to focus on making his creative ideas into functional prototypes and products — this was much more important for the skillset for his career!
#3: Teaching staff
In addition to class-time support, tutors will also often announce student showcases and design competitions — these are great for student designers to strengthen their portfolio!
Top 3 Cons of a Product Design degree
#1: Not very specialised
A Bachelor of Design in Product Design at UTS has no majors or specialisations. In this degree, there are students who want to become web designers and yet, there are also students who want to focus on exhibition design.
“As a three-year degree, [a Bachelor of Design in Product Design] covers a very wide range of topics,” Kevin says, “but it doesn’t really go into much depth about any one field.“
#2: Vague first-year units
“The first year of the degree might be a little bit of a drag for students,” Kevin says. “It can be quite jarring and different to the rest of the degree.”
First-year units incorporate history and theories on product design. Despite the importance of practical applications in product design, these units focus on written-based assessments and some first-year students struggle to see its benefit to their project portfolio.
#3: Focus on final projects
“From what I’ve seen of student’s work from other universities, this degree [at UTS] has fewer projects in number,” Kevin says.
In a Bachelor of Design in Product Design at UTS, there’s a large focus on final projects. So, there are less opportunities to experiment with different product designs and a higher pressure to “get the product right” — this can lower the students’ incentive to be innovative and further grow their skillset.
“Those thinking about their portfolio feel stressed on how to make the most of their coursework and produce high quality work,” he reiterates.
“I feel like I could have made more of this degree had I treated tasks and assessments like practice and developed my skills a bit more,” Kevin tells us.
Though many of our discipline and motivation for university can come and go in waves, it’s important to try and make the most of any university degree. Remember why you chose it in the first place, or set new goals for yourself!
“In terms of my career as a designer, I could’ve thought about my portfolio a bit more when completing assessments just so I wouldn’t have to go back and polish them up as much,” Kevin says.
What do you wish you had known before starting Product Design at UTS?
“I wish I could tell myself when I started this degree that I could always rely on my tutors and classmates if I ever needed any help,” Kevin says.
Though it may seem daunting sometimes, he adds that “they are always willing to lend an extra hand“.
Asking the tutor that one question or reaching out to your classmates might be the thing that earns you extra marks on the assessments — even if it does not, you’ll have made a new connection!
What makes this degree different from the ones offered at other universities?
“In addition to UTS’s Product Design degree being more hands-on and practical,” Kevin says, “my experience is that the culture here is open and accepting to new ideas and different personalities.”
UTS prides itself on building a safe and inclusive space for all students and specifically in the UTS Design Society, social events such as the UTS Makers Market are often held to get aspiring designers to boost support for their portfolios!
What inspired you to choose Product Design at UTS?
For Kevin, his inspiration for choosing Product Design was the hands-on nature of the degree and the mix between creativity and engineering that Product Design is all about.
And why UTS? “To be honest I went to UNSW for a bit and I really hated the bus situation,” he adds, “I liked UTS a lot better when I started it.“
What are the possible career paths?
Bachelor of Design in Product Design graduates mostly find a career as a product designer. However, depending on their interest, graduates can find themselves working in areas including:
- Commercial product designs
- Humanitarian work
- Service Design
Lynn Chen is a Content Writer at Art of Smart Education and is a Communication student at UTS with a major in Creative Writing. Lynn’s articles have been published in Vertigo, The Comma, and Shut Up and Go. In her spare time, she also writes poetry.