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Display Design for Retail HND

(SCQF level 8)

Fine Arts & Photography, Creative Industries

Applications closed

Mode of Study


Start Date

26th Aug 2019, 2 years


City Campus

Applications from International Students Welcome


The role of the Display Designer is to create a three-dimensional environment that tells a story. This may be a collection, a brand or simply an idea. Display Designers use a range of media and technologies in order to effectively communicate messages in space.

Outside London, this is the UK’s only further education course in Retail Display Design at this level. This two-year course will provide you with a wide understanding of all aspects of design necessary for a career in retail display design.

This course will involve:

  • Interpretation of design briefs and the development of design ideas, both 2D and 3D.
  • Developing freehand and digital sketches including detailed scale technical drawings and 3D models.
  • Presenting ideas including, structures, storage, display, layouts, graphics, signage, colors, textures.
  • Realizing the concept and the requirements of construction, including installation and fit-out with an understanding of the properties of materials.

The course is very vocational and has direct links to the retail sector, which will prepare you for employment in the Industry, after successfully completing your qualification.

Focusing on three-dimensional design, you’ll develop your creative abilities and artistic skills. You’ll also learn the personal and professional effectiveness you’ll need for a career in the retail display sector through work experience placements.

View a selection of student creative work on Behance.

This course is placed on the Scottish Credit Qualifications Framework at Level 8. For more information on the framework visit:

Entry requirements

Minimum entry requirements

  • Higher Art & Design at Grade C or above AND National 5 English at Grade C or above; OR
  • NC in Art & Design or Illustration; OR 
  • Other equivalent qualifications or experience.

Additional selection requirements

  • You'll be invited for a group and/or individual interview, where you'll get the opportunity to find out more about the course and tell us why you're interested in this subject area.
  • You'll be asked to provide examples of your art and design work.

What you study

Year one:

  • Display Design.
  • Special Promotions Display Design: Seasonal.
  • Digital Imaging: Introduction to Sculpture.
  • Mixed Media.
  • Fashion Illustration.
  • Observational Drawing.
  • Drawing for 3D Design.
  • Sign Design and Colour Application.
  • Exhibition – Design.
  • Creative Concept.

Year two:

  • Display Design: 3D Design.
  • Digital Modelling: 3D Studio Max.
  • In-Store Display.
  • Display Design: Prestige.
  • Mixed Media Portfolio.
  • Observational Drawing Portfolio.
  • Contemporary Art.
  • Professional Practice: Employment Experience.
  • Commercial Work Placement.
  • Art and Design: Cultural Identity.
  • 3D Design Model Making.
  • Graphic Design 3 Dimensional Project.
  • Introduction to Lighting.

After the course


Demand for retail display designers is continuous within the retail sector. Previous students are employed by national and international companies such as Levi's, French Connection, Ikea, Frasers, BHS, Marks and Spencer and John Lewis.

Continuing Study

Past students have progressed to higher education courses at various art schools and universities, such as:

  • Glasgow School of Art.
  • Edinburgh College of Art.
  • University of Edinburgh.
  • Duncan of Jordonstone College of Art.
  • School of Textiles and Design at Heriot-Watt University.
  • Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.
  • Mode of Study:
  • Start Date:
    26th Aug 2019, 2 years
  • Location:
    City Campus
  • Applications from International Students Welcome