Action-oriented behavior ensures that this is not “just” a design-thinking degree, but rather a program rooted in progress, creation, and making. Students will learn a set of skills for making things REAL. This could mean rapid product fabrication, the generation of robust financial models, or the ability to sketch and render. Most importantly, this value promotes movement through any fear of putting ideas into the world.


Emphasis on action over discussion

Complex and ingrained problems require a means through which to discover the way to a solution. Across several key courses (Human-Centered Design and Studios) students will learn a consistent design process. This process provides a way to move forward even when the solutions might not appear obvious.


Confidence in the design process to develop original ideas and overcome problems that lack obvious solutions



Reverence and recognition of the historical, cultural, political, emotional, ecological and contextual environment in which a problem is set

Design decisions fit into a larger context which includes history, politics, sustainability, ethics, relationships and aesthetics. Courses work to ground students in a world bigger than their own through an understanding of design impact.


Awareness of the broad challenges and the universal potential for design solutions to meet human needs

The processes and tools of this program serve to equip students with the ability to solve most complex issues. Our Studio courses, in particular, tackle issues of social and/or public impact—issues facing citizens of our city. Furthermore, the students’ freedom to choose two electives from various disciplines (business, engineering, anthropology, etc.) allow students the opportunity to make the degree meaningful to them.