Why study this course?

Our Product and Furniture Design (including foundation year) BA (Hons) has a built-in preparatory year that offers an alternative route into higher education if you don’t hold traditional qualifications or can’t meet the requirements to enter the traditional three-year undergraduate degree.

It will allow you to explore different creative practices in our School of Art, Architecture and Design, before you embark on more in-depth study of furniture and product design.

Moreover, this programme will prepare you for academic study at undergraduate level and equip you with the skills and techniques you’ll use in workshops and studios.

More about this course

Our four-year degree in Product & Furniture Design has a built-in preparatory year, which, through its exciting and imaginative approach to teaching, will help you discover your potential within different creative practices offered in our School of Art, Architecture and Design.

Your foundation year will be shared with others studying a degree with a foundation year in the School and you’ll develop a range of skills that will be related to a range of our undergraduate programmes.

In the first term you’ll take on a range of short studio projects in visual imagery and making, followed by short-term projects in the second semester where you will be able to begin to specialise in product design or further explore different creative practices. The individual project in your third term will be more closely aligned to your final BA award.

The foundation year will offer a balance of studio and workshop practice with lectures in critical and contextual studies, which will frame creative practice in historical, contemporary and cultural discourse. In those lectures and seminars you’ll find an emphasis on a thorough engagement with materials, forms and processes combine with intellectual skills, such as observation, analysis, discrimination, innovation and creativity. The programme will encourage personal research, exploration and development as a means to your bring individual interests and styles to creative practice.

The subsequent three years of your studies will be shared with students on the standard course. To find out more about the content you’ll study please visit our Product and Furniture BA (Hons) course page.

Assessment

During the foundation year you’ll be assessed via project work, essays and an individual portfolio. In the subsequent three years of your degree we’ll assess you via formative, summative, diagnostic, peer and self-assessment methods, as well as your studio work, digital projects and workshops.

Fees and key information

Course type
Undergraduate
UCAS code W265
Entry requirements View
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Entry requirements

In addition to the University's standard entry requirements, you should have:

  • at least one A level (or a minimum of 32 UCAS points from an equivalent Level 3 qualification, eg BTEC Subsidiary/National/BTEC Extended Diploma)
  • English Language GCSE at grade C/4 or above (or equivalent)

You will need to attend an interview with your portfolio of creative work. If you live outside the UK, you will be required to submit a small portfolio of work via email.

Accreditation of Prior Learning

Any university-level qualifications or relevant experience you gain prior to starting university could count towards your course at London Met. Find out more about applying for Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL).

English language requirements

To study a degree at London Met, you must be able to demonstrate proficiency in the English language. If you require a Student visa (previously Tier 4) you may need to provide the results of a Secure English Language Test (SELT) such as Academic IELTS. This course requires you to meet our standard requirements.

If you need (or wish) to improve your English before starting your degree, the University offers a Pre-sessional Academic English course to help you build your confidence and reach the level of English you require.

Modular structure

The modules listed below are for the academic year 2023/24 and represent the course modules at this time. Modules and module details (including, but not limited to, location and time) are subject to change over time.

Year 0 modules include:

This module currently runs:
  • all year (September start) - Wednesday morning

The Critical and Contextual Studies module introduces a range of cultural and contextual practices and is diagnostic in helping students to identify areas of reading, writing, information gathering and research in relation to their abilities, needs and aspirations. The intention is to prepare students for critical and theoretical work in Higher Education.

The focus of the Critical and Contextual Studies module is on the ability to ask questions and find answers; specifically, those bearing on Art, Architecture and Design and Media in the broad sense and to the conventional means to present these. The experience of the module is structured by a sequence of three submissions: an initial patchwork assignment that includes a Learning Reflection element, an analysis of the works of a particular creative practitioner and a final submission is a self-directed essay.

The contents include answers to questions that range from practical or theoretical ‘how to’ or ‘what is’ exercises; to simple ‘what do you think?’ form of analysis or reflection; to complex structured responses in the form of the essay.

The module is constructed around two core blocks of intensive study. Each block has a thematic structure to allow the exploration of different topics and approaches, for example: ‘Contexts’, ‘Connections’, ‘Themes in creative practice’. The first assessment includes the Learning Reflection element.

The module aims to motivate and aid the student to find out about and engage in the practice and culture of Art, Architecture and Design and Media. The module should help inform the student about their future direction of study as well as providing useful insights into their potential and abilities. Students learn how to ask and begin to answer questions about the discipline they are interested in and its broader context. They should acquire a portfolio of methodological and critical writing and communication skills that enable them and know how to apply themselves to the various forms of study and assessment ahead following progression to the next level in Higher Education.

This module currently runs:
  • all year (September start) - Wednesday afternoon

The module addresses what is fundamental to creative practices across all disciplines; colour, composition, the fabrication, discussion and development of ideas, visual narratives, collaborative practice, documentation, presentation, curation, critique and exhibition of creative work.

You will work in both digital and analogue formats to explore a range of materials, methods and presentation formats, e.g. sketchbooks, drawings, watercolour, photography, collage, AI and digital platforms.

The module aims to validate and build upon student’s existing creative practice. There is an emphasis on the process of learning from self-evaluation and critical reflection of intuitive making and testing. Throughout the module you will students work both individually and as part of a team to share, discuss and critique creative work in order to extend their capacity to confidently develop, articulate and presenting work. The module encourages peer-to-peer learning via teamwork and the required presentation of collaborative outcomes. The module aims to expand subject-area knowledge and introduce practical strategies for the formation and growth of student’s nascent creative practice.

This module currently runs:
  • all year (September start) - Monday morning
  • all year (September start) - Friday morning
  • all year (September start) - Thursday morning
  • all year (September start) - Tuesday morning

The Project module provides a broad, varied, stimulating experience of a range of creative practices that allows for self-assessment of individual interests and aptitudes towards developing a specialism. It enables the development of a productive, disciplined and critical approach to visual and practical enquiry; and to individual independent thinking, making and communicating. It develops the individual’s portfolio of work in a distinctive and ambitious way as evidence of a personal creative practice in the context of a specific subject area. Assignments and study trips will open up London as a source of limitless research potential and creativity.

A project develops ideas through conceptual and material processes towards outcomes that can be evaluated in relation to the initial idea; and other related contexts that may arise during the timeframe of the project. The Project module is an introduction to the project as a key feature of creative practice. The projects in the Project module vary considerably in aim, structure and duration to reflect their application in a wide range of creative practices. The definition, implementation, development and outcome of the projects is transferred from tutor to student as the course develops. The projects are inherently student-centred with course demands satisfied by nurturing the student’s independent inquiry, discovery & production.

Practical elements of project-work are built-up by a close relation with the Techniques module. Critical reflection and self-evaluation encourage the development of self-organisation and effective time-management.

This module currently runs:
  • all year (September start) - Tuesday afternoon
  • all year (September start) - Thursday afternoon
  • all year (September start) - Monday afternoon
  • all year (September start) - Friday afternoon

The Techniques module introduces a wide range of materials, methods, techniques and processes to produce work in a broad sense. It is closely aligned with the Project module to develop a working knowledge of the potential and limitations of selected media, materials and techniques in the development of project work. Responsible attitudes aligned to ethical and professional contexts are applied and considered in relation to imaginative experimentation and exploitation for innovation.

Techniques explores approaches to the skills-based, technical aspects of creative practice in relation having, developing and resolving ideas through processes towards media/material outcomes. It concerns the quality of making, considerations of care, appropriateness and endeavour. It encourages recognition of the intrinsic formal and structural qualities of different media as essential elements in visual/aural communication. The module involves a series of learning experiences that introduce and develop many of the key skills and techniques needed for a range of making practices across various subject areas; the outcomes are in the context of and further developed in close relation with the Project module.

The Techniques module links the analysis and evaluation of technical quantitative properties with qualitative aesthetic discernment and judgment and introduces a common vocabulary, technical/professional language, core skills and reference models.

It introduces safe and appropriate studio/workshop/site practice.

Year 1 modules include:

This module currently runs:
  • all year (September start) - Monday morning
  • all year (September start) - Thursday afternoon
  • all year (September start) - Thursday morning
  • all year (September start) - Monday afternoon

Successful 3D design outcomes are reliant on sound 3D design principles. These design principles inform the design process and create opportunities for you to apply your creativity to the conception, development and eventual realisation of effective 3D design solutions. It is these research and development strategies that ensure that your designs have the effects intended and are safe and beneficial to their users.

This module will introduce you to a range of contemporary and traditional discipline-related design approaches and processes, some of which will be tested in design exercises and some of which will be fully realised in studio work and projects. Processes experienced will involve research, analysis, experiment and discovery along with documentation of the process and your findings.

Design concepts will be tested through the application of workshop and studio methods: materials, processes and technologies will be discipline-specific, developing creative outcomes relevant to the possibilities and constraints of the context intended. Through the application of development processes that are both careful and experimental, you will be encouraged to develop a critically informed and personal approach to the process of design.

This module currently runs:
  • all year (September start) - Monday morning
  • all year (September start) - Thursday afternoon
  • all year (September start) - Thursday morning
  • all year (September start) - Monday afternoon

Good design and high-quality artefacts are informed by knowledge of both the potential and the limitations of relevant technologies and techniques, materials and processes. The focus of this module is on the development of understanding and ability in a range of key practical skills and an understanding of material and process through experience, experimentation and direct observation. The module will introduce you to some of the key methods and principles of achieving high-quality outcomes, whether crafted, manufactured or constructed. It will develop capacity for informed decision-making about material experimentation and process investigation through the exploration of why particular choices of material, technique, process and technology are made in relation to factors such as aesthetics, function, scale and ethical considerations. The module is taught within disciplinary specific studios, includes a range of relevant workshop inductions and will aid the realisation of designs and projects developed in other modules.

This module currently runs:
  • all year (September start) - Tuesday morning

The module aims to orient and critically engage you in the history and theory of your discipline, to examine its scope, conventions, and broader social and material context in culture and practice. The overarching purpose of this is to enable a greater ability to think through and develop your studio practice, enriching it with knowledge and ideas gained from study of the contexts in which it is framed. You will be encouraged to explore issues relevant to your own background and identity.

The module will help you to reflect on what you see and experience, and to find connections between different ideas that have shaped your discipline. In particular, the module investigates how ideas about practice in your field might be framed, for example in relation to history, the economy, cultures, society and the environment, through both theory and practice. You will be encouraged to question received ideas and to broaden your thinking and understanding of the global and previously marginalised contexts and histories of your discipline. The current and historic practice, impacts and implications of your discipline in relation to matters of sustainability, equity and accessibility will also be a focus of your studies.

The module will begin to introduce you to a range of academic skills needed to produce a graduate level study (a dissertation) in your final year. It will help you to develop and define your own interests, and to reflect on and take responsibility for the development of your own learning.

This module currently runs:
  • all year (September start) - Monday morning
  • all year (September start) - Thursday afternoon
  • all year (September start) - Thursday morning
  • all year (September start) - Monday afternoon

This module introduces and develops a range of knowledge, skills and approaches for the research and communication of information and ideas for 3D disciplines and artefacts in visual form. The ability to draw and communicate visually for research, as well as design development, is critical to the success of a designer in any 3D discipline. Subject specialist skills in drawing and communicating ideas are the central component of this module.

You will take part in a range of studio sessions, workshops and lectures that introduce a wide range of traditional and contemporary drawing, visual research and communication media, methods and practices to help you explore, record, select from, analyse and interpret your environment and the world of images, spaces and artefacts for a range of purposes. Discipline-specific professional approaches to the recording, visualisation and presentation of your designs will ensure that you begin to acquire vital employability skills.

Discipline-specific projects will explore the recording and expression of line, colour, form, structure, light, space and perspective, texture, detail and context appropriate to the requirements of the field in a range of media and formats. Through learning these skills, the module will support your development as a designer with an in-depth understanding of research and communication methods that underpin design process and outcome strategies and the communication of your creative practice and identity.

Year 2 modules include:

This module currently runs:
  • all year (September start) - Friday morning
  • all year (September start) - Tuesday afternoon
  • all year (September start) - Tuesday morning
  • all year (September start) - Friday afternoon

In this module you will realise the physical outcomes of designs developed in 3D Design and Development 2. You will be expected to work to increasingly professional and highly resolved standards of production, keeping records of progress through the projects.

You will be asked to consider carefully the materials and processes that you propose, justifying their selection on the basis of performance, safety, cost, ethical and environmental considerations and aesthetic judgement.

Through in-depth practice-led testing and process, you will consider the social, functional and environmental impacts of your choices, developing a creative and experimental, yet logical and evidence-based method to problem solve, appropriate to the needs of your clients and users.

This module currently runs:
  • all year (September start) - Friday morning
  • all year (September start) - Tuesday afternoon
  • all year (September start) - Tuesday morning
  • all year (September start) - Friday afternoon

This module aims to enable you to develop designs in the context of our complex relationship with the designed world and its inhabitants. Through developing your understanding of human physical, emotional and psychological needs, individual and collective, alongside individual, social and cultural contexts, you will become aware of the importance of designing with a sense of care and responsibility for the users of your designs.

You will be expected to demonstrate that design work and its outcomes are the result of detailed research. The evidence-based selection and application of materials and processes, and careful testing of design proposals, will enhance both the concept and the communication of your designs.

You will undertake a range of studio projects, sometimes in conjunction with external partners, mentored by professional practitioners as appropriate to the project. This exposure to professional ways of working will enable a personal and distinctive approach to design, preparing you for your future career.

This module currently runs:
  • all year (September start) - Thursday morning

Critical and Contextual Studies 2 continues to orient and critically engage you in the history and theory of your discipline, its extent and conventions, and its broader social and material context in culture and contemporary practice. It builds on studies undertaken in Level 4 and prepares you as independent thinkers to be capable of selecting an appropriate topic and producing a sustained piece of independent study in the form of a dissertation in Level 6.

The module continues the process of constructing and questioning knowledge about your discipline, its history, contexts, and professional and ethical dimensions. It introduces and rehearses the analytical and discursive skills you need to become critically aware of the authorities, objects and practices in your field and able to express and debate the issues attaching to them. You will consider the roles and responsibilities of professionals in your field and examine the ethical questions relevant to the discipline, becoming conversant with current debates in the subject. You will consider the priorities and points of view of the industry, the client, the designer, the consumer or user, the critic and wider society.

You are encouraged to think critically and creatively and to take responsibility for the development of your own learning. The module recognises that you are an active contributor to the process of learning: what you as a student bring to the construction and evaluation of knowledge matters – and how effectively you construct and evaluate that knowledge depends on how well you understand the field of your discipline as outlined above.

Critical and Contextual Studies for second year students is structured in order to foster confidence, through applying analytical skills to a growing body of knowledge and expressing this through debate, discussion and public presentation. Dialogue and exchange between students and tutors takes place in informal in-class settings and ensures that student experience and cultural and social capital is expressed and valued.

This module currently runs:
  • all year (September start) - Thursday afternoon
  • all year (September start) - Friday morning

In this module you will research and discover the professional ways of working in your field. Design is an extremely diverse field and commercial practice takes many forms, it is therefore vital to understand the various routes and opportunities for employment and self-employment that exist, and how to promote yourself effectively.

Key to this is understanding that you are preparing yourself to enter the field of design in the future. Changes to practice, markets, constraints and opportunities happen rapidly and sometimes in ways that are hard to foresee. Consequently it is necessary to have the broadest and most current awareness of the contexts for your future design practice possible. These contexts may be economic, legal, ethical, and regulatory, equally they may arise from social sentiment or simply fashion. Whatever the reason, you need to put yourself in the best position possible to be an adaptable practitioner, able to respond rapidly and effectively to changing circumstances.

You will be asked to survey and research in depth the current and potential future professional structures, career paths, and sector-specific ways for working for your discipline. You will also investigate how commercial practice is changing in response to technological developments, environmental imperatives and social, legal and cultural contexts.

You will start to consider how your interests, talents and ambitions can best be served in your preparation for entry to employment or self-employment and will begin to construct a distinctive professional identity in your portfolio, cv, website or other means of disseminating your creative identity to potential future clients and employers.

The presentation and communication of the outcomes of you research, information gathering, and findings will demonstrate your understanding of industry practice vital for professional success in designing and making. You will deliver presentations in appropriate disciplinary forms gaining confidence in presentation, collaboration and decision-making including team working.

Year 3 modules include:

This module currently runs:
  • all year (September start) - Friday morning
  • all year (September start) - Tuesday afternoon
  • all year (September start) - Tuesday morning
  • all year (September start) - Friday afternoon

Through synthesis of the knowledge of processes and design principles that you have gained in the previous years of study, using intellectual, creative and practical skills, you will design and develop self-directed projects, including your ‘major project’.

The projects will be individually set, but will require negotiated and approved project proposals before commencing. You will undertake and record in-depth research, a well-constructed design development process, the exercise of critical thinking skills and the selection of production skills resulting in a significant body of creative outcomes.

Your process will include market and competitor research, idea generation, concept development, material investigation, sampling, modelling or prototyping and visualisations that lead towards the realisation of the project proposed in the ‘Project Resolution’ module.
The module will require you to critique your own work and adopt the professional standards of your disciplines. The module emphasises the growth of a personal focus and creative identity whilst acknowledging commercial and professional ethics, expectations and constraints.

This module currently runs:
  • all year (September start) - Wednesday afternoon
  • all year (September start) - Wednesday morning

Critical and Contextual Studies (CCS) in Level 6 offers you an opportunity to understand and explore the historical, social, cultural and economic factors which influence, and provide a context for, the development of architecture, art and design practice. Building on critical and academic skills gained during two years of previous study, the module encourages you to develop an awareness of issues around which there is some debate, uncertainty or contest. Based on this awareness, you will develop a set of research questions which constitute the topic of your study. This topic can be theoretical, historical, or technical and you may, with guidance, decide to engage with an area of scholarly interest outside the territory of your degree course.

You will develop your topic and respond to your research questions in the form of an extended critical study or Dissertation (6,000–7,000 words). Through this study you demonstrate that you can thoroughly research a topic, use appropriate methods of investigation, and work in a methodical and organised way to develop a coherent argument or line of thought. Teaching and Learning on the module is designed to support you in this process through a combination of tutorials and one to one supervision; as well as a series of formative and summative assessments which prepare you for the final submission.

The final form and presentation of your Dissertation can reflect a broad range of approaches to research and writing. It may include visual materials or other non-written forms of presentation as long they support your enquiry and comprise an integral part of the whole. By prior approval at the start of the module, your research can be part practice-based, and include primary research and fieldwork.

The dissertation may, by prior approval at the start of the module from the Head of Subject, be part practice-based and can include fieldwork and primary research in its methods. Its form and approach can reflect a broad range of design-specific approaches based on discussion and agreement with your supervisor.

By virtue of the sustained, independent nature of the learning and substantial final output, the dissertation is also intended to prepare you for possible postgraduate study.

This module currently runs:
  • all year (September start) - Friday morning
  • all year (September start) - Tuesday afternoon
  • all year (September start) - Tuesday morning
  • all year (September start) - Friday afternoon

The Major Project module provides the opportunity for you to prepare yourself for employment or independent practice in product and/ or furniture design, or to progress to higher studies. Through the self-determined project, you will synthesise the specialist knowledge and skills that you have gained through the course and effectively communicate these through the professional-standard production of your designs.

You will exercise your abilities in selecting, analysing and applying knowledge, skills and understanding to a fully researched project. Through this process, you will be able properly to understand and communicate your strengths, interests and position in your field, as well as your opportunities for future professional development.

A negotiated and approved proposal will confirm your individual project. Through careful planning and recording of process, you will demonstrate your ability to negotiate the complex and changing nature of problems in professional product and furniture design, balancing the competing demands of creativity, practicality, commercial reality and ethical principles.

Your outcome will exhibit a professional standard of realisation, contextualisation and presentation, providing the elements for an interview-ready portfolio of practice.

This module currently runs:
  • all year (September start) - Wednesday afternoon
  • all year (September start) - Friday afternoon

By the end of this module you will have a detailed plan and materials ready for the launch of your career, whether that be in employment, self-employment or further study.

You will be set tasks to research in detail how designers and practitioners in your sector (your future competitors) build their professional and creative profiles and businesses and achieve success. There will also be a focus on how to identify opportunities such as competitions, exhibitions and notice of commissioned work being available. How to achieve effective and cost-effective promotion of your practice will be demonstrated, using the full range of traditional and newly-available communication channels and strategies as appropriate for your practice.

You will be asked to identify what is distinctive about your practice and approach, so that you can make an offer to the market that is attractive and unique. This will require fully professional and sophisticated visual presentation of your work in formats that are recognised by your professional peers and potential clients or employers.

You will continue to research the various roles and employment opportunities that are available to you, understanding how those roles interact and what the skillset requirements for them are, so that you can evaluate and select from the widest range of career openings.

Your final submission should represent a fully rounded, professional and appealing creative profile ready for presentation to potential employers and clients.

What our students say

"This uni is so encouraging and helpful for job opportunities. Even throughout a tough year."
Xappho Paterson, Product and Furniture Design BA graduate, 2021

"The time and knowledge my lecturers shared with me this year, inspired me greatly and got me excited for following projects!” Jan Sawicki, Product and Furniture Design (including foundation year) BA student

Where this course can take you

Completing our product and furniture design degree will be a valuable commodity in a world where boundaries between disciplines are blurred and design-thinking is a sought-after skill in both business and creative industries.

As a graduate of our School of Art, Architecture and Design, you’ll join a long list of successful alumni which includes fast-rising stars Yinka Ilori M.B.E. (with a London Design Museum mini-retrospective in 2022), Amechi Mandi (House & Gardens Magazine Rising Star 2022) and Ella Merriman (Merri Intimates underwear), in addition to more established names such as Lola Lely, Tom Price, Matthew Hilton and Michael Marriott.

Global design brands such as Tom Dixon, Made.com, Based Upon, Thomas Heatherwick, Established & Sons are based in London, as are many design studios, galleries, consultancies and a strong network of independent designers and makers.

Your time at London Met will help you find your own place within the industry and give you the skills needed to enter the workplace, self-employment, or undertake master’s level study.

Important information about this course

We're committed to continuously improving our degree courses to ensure our students receive the best possible learning experience. Many of the courses in our School of Art, Architecture and Design are currently under review for 2023-24 entry. We encourage you to apply as outlined in the how to apply section of this page and if there are any changes to your course we will contact you. All universities review their courses regularly and this year we are strengthening our art, architecture and design courses to better reflect the needs of employers and ensure you're well-equipped for your future career.

Important information about the teaching location of this course

We currently have three locations in Holloway, Aldgate and Shoreditch. As we evolve as a University, we'll be reviewing the use of these spaces to ensure all our students have access to the facilities and study areas they need to succeed. This means the campus where this course is taught may change over time.

The experience of our students will always be our top priority and we'll notify applicants and students of any changes to their teaching location at the earliest opportunity.

What is a degree with a foundation year at the School of Art, Architecture and Design?

This is a four-year degree course with a built-in foundation year (Year 0). A foundation year in our School of Art, Architecture and Design is the starting point for many of our art, architecture and design students and acts as an introduction to the wide range of creative practices explored within the University. You may join us with a clear idea of the subject you intend to study or you may use it as an opportunity to explore a number of different directions or experiment with your creativity. A foundation year degree is also a great choice if you don't meet the necessary entry requirements for the standard undergraduate degree. You'll graduate with a full undergraduate degree with the same title and award as those who studied the three-year course.

Additional costs

Please note, in addition to the tuition fee there may be additional costs for things like equipment, materials, printing, textbooks, trips or professional body fees.

Additionally, there may be other activities that are not formally part of your course and not required to complete your course, but which you may find helpful (for example, optional field trips). The costs of these are additional to your tuition fee and the fees set out above and will be notified when the activity is being arranged.

Stay up to date

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Discover Uni – key statistics about this course

Discover Uni is an official source of information about university and college courses across the UK. The widget below draws data from the corresponding course on the Discover Uni website, which is compiled from national surveys and data collected from universities and colleges. If a course is taught both full-time and part-time, information for each mode of study will be displayed here.

How to apply

If you're a UK applicant wanting to study full-time starting in September, you must apply via UCAS unless otherwise specified. If you're an international applicant wanting to study full-time, you can choose to apply via UCAS or directly to the University.

If you're applying for part-time study, you should apply directly to the University. If you require a Student visa, please be aware that you will not be able to study as a part-time student at undergraduate level.



When to apply

The University and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) accepts applications for full-time courses starting in September from one year before the start of the course. Our UCAS institution code is L68.

If you will be applying direct to the University you are advised to apply as early as possible as we will only be able to consider your application if there are places available on the course.

To find out when teaching for this degree will begin, as well as welcome week and any induction activities, view our academic term dates.