BDes (Hons) Interaction Design

Interaction Design Fundamentals


Placing a heavy emphasis on a design-focussed approach towards interaction design, this module introduces the fundamentals of the craft of communication design, both off- and on-screen. Through a combination of core analogue (drawing, making) and digital (HTML, CSS) skills, students are equipped with the tools required to practice in today’s interaction design industry.

A twin-stranded module, Design Practice Fundamentals is delivered both off-screen and on-screen, to introduce students embarking on the course to the idea that interaction design can, and should, be developed off-screen as well as on-screen. Paper-based exercises introduce students to fundamental design principles developed at the Bauhaus, Ulm School of Design, and beyond. Complimenting these studio sessions, lab sessions ground students with a solid understanding of HTML5 and CSS3, the building blocks of web-based content.

This module runs concurrently with the Introduction to Communication Design history and theory module, which provides students with a contextual framework that is designed to complement the practical nature of this module.


The essential aims of this module are:

  • To introduce the formal principles of interaction design, including: sketching, visualisation, paper-prototyping and digital-prototyping.
  • To equip students with a comprehensive understanding of communication design principles, including: composition, hierarchy, typography, and systems design.
  • To ensure students acquire a solid, foundational knowledge of, and competence in HTML5 and CSS3 upon which they can build.
  • To encourage a creative environment that supports an awareness and understanding of the core ideas of interaction design.
  • To ensure students understand the principle of ‘learning how to learn’ and begin to develop their own awareness and toolsets proactively.


This module contains a series of practical, hands-on workshops, which enable students to fully explore the foundational principles of interaction design, both off- and on-screen. Paper-based exercises introduce students to fundamental communication design principles, including those developed at the Bauhaus, Ulm School of Design and beyond. Computer-based exercises introduce students to the core languages (HTML5 and CSS3) required to understand web standards.

The module combines studio and lab content with online resources, providing additional support and opportunities to build upon knowledge acquired during workshops. Students are supported through a weekly lecture programme that is designed to broaden their knowledge and understanding.

Indicative lecture content includes:

  • Point, Line, Plane
  • Rhythm and Balance
  • Scale and Composition
  • Colour
  • Typography
  • Hierarchy
  • Modularity
  • Introduction to Web Standards
  • Structured Markup, Semantics and Information Architecture
  • Links
  • File Transfer Protocols (FTP, SFTP)
  • Cascading Style Sheets
  • Responsive Foundations

Reading List


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Module details

  • Code: IXD101
  • Year: 1
  • Semester: 1
  • Credits: 40
  • Delivery: Lectures, Seminars, Workshops and Self-Directed Study
  • Co-requisites: Introduction to Communication Design
  • GitHub Repo