Materials and Processes for Product Design (H7119)

15 credits, Level 4

Autumn teaching

This module provides an introduction to the different materials used in the production of mass-manufactured goods and their corresponding processing methods and tools. You'll be introduced to the different material groups and the most common processes through which they are transformed – from enabling of raw materials to surface finishing. You also develop an understanding of how these materials and processes are applied in different industries. 

You'll learn how design decisions impact manufacturability by studying the complexities of materials specification, manufacturing limitations, assembly limitations, and end of life cycle management.

You also develop an understanding of the cost implications of material and manufacturing processes selection, cost of manufacture and materials, and related design considerations. You work on a design project where you'll apply this knowledge in practice and gain experience of:

  • material science (chemical, physical properties)
  • historical development of materials
  • environmental considerations
  • computer-based material selection tools
  • basic concepts of strength of materials (i.e., fatigue and corrosion).


29%: Lecture
47%: Practical (Laboratory, Practical, Workshop)
24%: Seminar


100%: Coursework (Portfolio)

Contact hours and workload

This module is approximately 150 hours of work. This breaks down into about 38 hours of contact time and about 112 hours of independent study. The University may make minor variations to the contact hours for operational reasons, including timetabling requirements.

We regularly review our modules to incorporate student feedback, staff expertise, as well as the latest research and teaching methodology. We’re planning to run these modules in the academic year 2023/24. However, there may be changes to these modules in response to feedback, staff availability, student demand or updates to our curriculum. We’ll make sure to let you know of any material changes to modules at the earliest opportunity.


This module is offered on the following courses: