Diploma HE Interior Design is a specialised vocational higher education qualification designed to make its students highly employable industry-ready Interior Designers in just one year.
This is a highly intensive course packed with extensive practical study time, a constant direction from tutors, and enhanced contact with careers staff and industry experts.
Favoured by career changers, this rigorous programme, covering residential, commercial and hospitality design, equips students with the array of creative, professional and in-depth technical skills to gain employment as an interior designer in leading design practices.
Join us at our next open day and speak with course advisors, course leaders and alumni. See current students work and have all your questions answered to find out which course and study mode is best suited to you.
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Great reasons to apply
- As a professionally recognised course in interior design, graduates of Diploma HE Interior Design are eligible to progress to the BA Hons Interior Design Level 6 with just one extra year of top-up study
- You'll explore residential, commercial and hospitality design through live projects with unprecedented access to design companies and professionals throughout the year, plus inspirational guest lectures, site visits, industry panel discussions and occasional supplier talks.
- You'll get involved with live projects, closely collaborating with charities, local communities and commercial organisations. Recent collaborations have included Andrew Martin, Tom Faulkner, George Smith, Chesneys and the Royal Hospital of Neuro-disability
- Life-time support from KLC's Careers team that includes: CV & portfolio advice, Multiple 1-2-1 Careers Sessions, Facilitating graduate job placements and exclusive access to the industry connected KLC online Jobs Board.
This course is designed for those who think "I could never do that!" when coming for an interview or an Open Day and looking at current KLC Diploma HE students work, but we know from long experience that you can and this course gives you the full package to facilitate starting your career as a professional interior designer after just one year of intensive study.
KLC’s unique career-focused approach on all its validated courses has also been picked up and commented on by the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA) who have said:
"Student employability is a major priority for the School. It seeks to meet local, national and international needs and make a major contribution to the development of qualified designers through the provision of highly vocational, skills-focused programmes. This approach manifests itself throughout all curricula and includes provision for case studies, industry placements and visits. Industry specialists, acting as module tutors, also use their current work as live briefs for studio activities. This approach to student employability is appreciated by both employers and students."
Recently, KLC also won two accolades (out of an available six) at the 2017 Independent Higher Education Awards for ‘Breakthrough in Course Design and Delivery’ and ‘Innovation in Digital Teaching and Learning’.
Study on KLC’s DipHE courses is as close to being in an actual design studio as we can make it within an academic setting. The course includes live industry projects: residential, commercial and hospitality, and gives you unprecedented access to design companies and professionals throughout the year, with inspirational guest lectures, site visits, industry panel discussions and occasional lunchtime talks from suppliers.
In one of the five design projects, students work in teams to undertake real design community projects which have included hospitals, youth and community centres.
In addition to the projects mentioned above, students often have the opportunity to enter other exclusive design competitions such as a brief from mental health charity Place2Be at the start of Children’s Mental Health Week. The culmination of the course is the graduate show attended by prospective employers, industry contacts, families and friends. For Graduation, many of the awards are judged and presented by leading designers and industry members giving students further opportunities to enhance their CV’s.
The full range of latest teaching methods are utilised from sketching and models to the latest CAD software and the course is underpinned by the KLC Virtual Learning Environment with a full range of learning materials accessible 24/7. As with all of our full time courses, unrivaled levels of tutor interaction are available; the tutors work with their groups every day and we keep the student/tutor ratio deliberately low to ensure full support throughout.
(two entry points)
16 September 2019 to 9 July 2020
6 January 2020 to 3 December 2020
Diploma Higher Education (DipHE) Interior Design - Level 5
Validated by the University of Brighton
BA (Hons) Interior Design
Monday, Tuesday & Friday onsite at KLC Studios.
Tutor-directed and supported offsite study on Wednesday & Thursday
Monday - Friday, 10.00–16.00
Additional 15+ hours of self-directed home study per week
"The highlights for me were most certainly the tutors and fabulous guest lecturers. Their enthusiasm, passion, insight and inspiration truly was infectious and made me more excited to be involved in this industry." Caroline Nicholls
Research Project 1* - Textiles, Research & Application
Research Project 2* - Evolution of Style
Foundation Forum - Core skills
Design Project 1 - Residential Design
You are introduced to life at KLC and your studio learning environment through a series of fun, interactive workshops and lectures on the design process, creativity and concepts and trends. There is detailed teaching of new visual communication skills, such as sketching, technical drawing and rendering, and your introduction to computer-aided design (CAD) software, including InDesign, EstiPC and AutoCAD. The groundwork is laid for the forthcoming year by familiarising you with core topics such as professional practice, critical thinking for design, the history of interior design and building construction and regulations. Industry guest lecturers are also interspersed throughout the term to inspire you and give you insight into specific fields of design, such as textiles, bathroom design and sustainability.
Design Project 2 - Conceptual Design
Design Project 3 - Detailed Design
Contextual Essay* - Evolution of Style
This term moves on to focus on more specialist subjects, including lighting design, with industry experts introducing you to joinery, ceramics and upholstery, as well as an exploration of the use of technology within design. Visual communication skills are also improved upon with workshops on one and two-point perspective sketching, and new computer-aided design programmes, such as SketchUp and Photoshop, being introduced. An opportunity for integrated work experience is also available during the Easter break*.
Design Project 4 - Group Project
Design Project 5 - Final Project (Residential / Commercial Hospitality)
You round off your course with two large projects – 1) A live, socially focused group project, in conjunction with the KLC Design Changes Lives Foundation, and 2) A final major project of their choice which will form the basis of your exhibition display. There is a strong focus on commercial and residential design, professional practice and industry regulations throughout these final projects, to ensure students are industry ready. This includes an introduction to a final CAD programme – Vectorworks. At the end of the Diploma course, the KLC Careers Service offers one-to-one sessions for portfolio and CV advice, internships and interviews. The year then culminates in a final Exhibition and Graduation ceremony, which is attended by designers and professionals from the interiors industry.
*Unfortunately due to visa regulations, we are unable to offer work experience to international students on a Tier 4 visa. However, our specially developed Virtual Work Experience alternative is available.
"The environment at KLC is very creative but also professional, which prepared me with the necessary interpersonal skills to communicate and apply my design ideas." Gus Goidanich
How to apply
Entry onto the course is by interview only, so please complete the Request an interview or call our Admissions team to book your appointment.
To prepare for your interview, you will be asked to complete the following:
- Interview forms, including education and career history
- A creative exercise
- A multiple choice spatial awareness test.
Computer-aided design is a key part of this course; therefore applicants must be computer literate and able to confidently use their personal laptop.
Please contact our Admissions Team on 020 7376 3377 or email@example.com if you need any further information or advice about the Entry Requirements for this course.
The standard entry requirements for this course are as follows:
- Previous degree (in any subject)
- No previous art and design experience is required.
We can also accept applications from mature students who do not hold the above qualifications but have achieved sufficient prior learning experience. In this instance, the School will review any short courses, internships or work experience undertaken.
English Language Requirements
IELTS score of 6.5 (www.ielts.org)
Fees and Funding
(Equivalent to £6,325 per term)
An Instalment Plan is available for this course
Course start date: 16 September 2019
Initial enrolment fee: £1,840.00 inc VAT non-refundable but deductible from the overall fees.
Followed by 4 quarterly payments of: £4,430.00 inc VAT
|01 July 2019||£4,430.00 inc VAT|
|01 September 2019||£4,430.00 inc VAT|
|01 December 2019||£4,430.00 inc VAT|
|01 March 2020||£4,430.00 inc VAT|
VAT will be charged at the rate in force at the date payments are made which may increase the total fees quoted if the VAT rate changes.
Please make a careful note of our refund policies, so that you are clear about what you might expect in the event of cancellation.
There are a number of funding options available and it can be complicated establishing the most appropriate route for you, so if you would like any advice then please do not hesitate to contact our Registrars by telephone (020 7376 3377) or email (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Student Finance England
This is a government loan to help pay for university or college tuition fees and to help with living costs. Non Degree holding applicants may be able to borrow £6,165 per year towards the cost of a course – you start repaying once you earn over a certain amount.
To check your eligibility and to start your application, please visit the Student Finance website. Our UK provider number is 10008325.
For students to be eligible for Student Finance, they must be studying a designated course. Courses at KLC are designated each year by the Department for Education. Please visit OfS for more information.
Personal Education Loan
There are many different companies offering personal loans, including some that specialise in private education loans which have a reduced repayment through the duration of your course.
Please note that we are unable to accept the 24+ Advanced Learner Loan for our courses.
Alumni and careers
Diploma HE Interior Design students leave KLC with a broad and industry-ready knowledge of interior design. The skills acquired equip graduates to become versatile and individual designers much in demand by the industry.
- Caroline Nicholls shares her experiences, highlights and challenges while studying at KLC.
- Santosh Barmola - Leaving behind a career in modelling and acting, Santosh graduated from the Full Time Diploma in July 2016.
- Anastasisa Schuler reflects on her experiences at KLC and how her career has evolved since graduating.
- KLC Alumni, Gus Goidanich, has shared some of his career highlights, KLC experiences, advice and his love for lighting and design.
- Julie Brownson & Anna Romanenko - We caught up with two of our Diploma Alumni who went into business together after the course.
- Olga Jarvis - After working internationally in Russia & Hong Kong, Olga joined KLC for the Diploma course and transformed her career.
- With a background in textile design, Full Time Diploma Alumni Michele Longoni used his skills to transition to interior design
- Josephine Grima - Studying alongside her full-time job was no easy feat, but Josephine used her impeccable time management skills to complete her qualification.
- Frederic Patoux graduated from the Full Time Diploma in July 2016 after a career change from financial services.
- Pernille Pahle - After a successful career with Burberry, Pernille graduated from the Full Time Diploma this July 2016.
- Caroline Newsome made a bold career change over seventeen years ago with KLC and hasn't looked back since!
- Vertity Roache - Diploma Alumni Verity has been busy launching her own company and fabric line since graduating from KLC in 2010.
Throughout the course, KLC's dedicated Careers service ensures Diploma HE students will receive guidance on CV preparation, portfolio presentation and professional practice with work experience offered part-way through the course. Students benefit from multiple 1-to-1 careers sessions helping to facilitate graduate career entry including access to the KLC Online Jobs Board. On graduation Careers and Alumni support is provided on an ongoing basis.
Out of the Diploma students who used the Careers Service in 2017, 97% are now working in the industry.