Graduate Industrial Design

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In the last few years, the field of Industrial Design has gone through dramatic changes.

We have seen the revolution in digital technology, which allowed billions of people around the globe to connect, communicate, and share information.

We have witnessed a wave of mass creativity, which started to erase the old distinction between consumers, producers, and designers by allowing wider audiences to participate in the creative process.

We have observed the convergence of industrial design with scientific research—from biology and genetics to artificial intelligence and robotics—allowing things from the realm of science fiction to take shape in real life.

We have at last begun to address problems of the “other 90%” of the world, trying to solve problems of poverty, hunger, energy, health, and other troubling issues of the disadvantaged world population by design.

We have come to realize our responsibility for the planet’s climate and limited resources, and for our handling of the environment, industry, and agriculture.

In 2015, Pratt’s graduate program in Industrial Design was ranked in the top five international programs by both the U.S. News and World Report, and QS World University Ranking.  

The M.I.D program is set to prepare students to become industry leaders, capable of tackling the complexity of design problems in the 21st century. Whether working in corporations or acting as entrepreneurs, students will be able to create products, systems, and environments which help to innovate and improve everyday objects and situations.

The M.I.D program welcomes students without previous professional training in industrial design. Students come from the fields of art, architecture, or interior design, and often with degrees in business, engineering, law, and sociology. Industrial Design graduates also join the group if they are looking to deepen their knowledge and creative outlook. We select a diverse international pool of students and encourage them to exploit their previous professional pursuits in this new context. In the process, students gain a solid understanding of design fundamentals from aesthetic values of 3-dimensional form to critical design thinking.  In accordance with national accreditation standards, we structure our program to address design complexity, innovation, technology and sustainable future planning, all in an interconnected global context.

M.I.D faculty members are professional educators and designers; many of who are principals of their own successful businesses and recipients of prestigious industry awards. Throughout their years of study, students are exposed to the cultural richness and diversity of New York City, with its world-class museums, galleries, and art and design events. Brooklyn, in particular, has recently become a hot spot of young entrepreneurial craft and design culture, and students can learn a great deal from immersing themselves in activities of the bustling contemporary design scene.

M.I.D. students and faculty share one common goal: to encourage each student’s individual growth to reach its highest potential.


The Program’s Structure (Master of Industrial Design)

The M.I.D. degree is a 6-semester, 60-credit program for all students, regardless of previous background, to promote collegiality and cohesion in each incoming group of graduate students. This cohesion is essential to a program that creates a learning environment where “learning from each other” and teamwork happen, and where the richness of the program is enhanced by a strong sense of community.

While our M.I.D. is a generalist, humanist scheme designed to support the varying skills and interests of the students, we recognize that professors and students alike need to be able to share and articulate the structure and content of the program. Therefore, we have clearly designated three years of study as: 1st year “Core” (design thinking, ideation, process, skills), 2nd year “Research” (methodology, topics, sources, electives, pre-thesis), and 3rd year “Thesis” (major individual project). Students can take specialized studios that respond to their individual interests and pursuits. The entire curriculum is designed to offer all students the professional knowledge and skills in historical, societal and global contexts, necessary for becoming successful design professionals.

The Thesis provides the greatest possible freedom and opportunity for pursuit of a selected topic and is done under the direction of the faculty. Candidates are expected to demonstrate the full range of design skills and methodology in their thesis projects. Subjects range from consumer products and packaging to furniture and experiential design, to the impact of emerging philosophies, materials, and technologies. Students register for six credits of thesis over one year, which culminates in a formal presentation to invited jurors followed by the presentation of the work at the Design, a public event attended by industry leaders and potential employers.

GID: The Global Innovation Design Study Abroad Option

Pratt M.I.D. students can choose the exciting option to spend their entire second year abroad for full credit. The second year at Pratt graduate program is dedicated to research, and students opting for GID are committed to “research abroad.” The Global Innovation Design program starts in the fall semester at the Royal College of Art (RCA) and Imperial College in London and spends the spring semester at Keio University in Tokyo. Simultaneously, this groundbreaking international study partnership will allow students from London and Tokyo to spend a semester at Pratt.

In London, the curriculum will focus on engineering and invention. At Keio, studies will be devoted to media design and technology, utilizing the school’s advanced facilities, including prototyping and robotics. The Pratt component will emphasize the core principles of industrial design. Pratt GID students then return to New York to complete their final two semesters of thesis work and required courses. In addition to their local studies, students at each location will collaborate on a large-scale International Project. By capitalizing on the expertise of each school and the distinct cultures of the three locations, the GID program will give students a rich academic experience and a unique perspective on global design and entrepreneurship that no single institution could provide. Students are expected to indicate their interest in GID at the time of entering the M.I.D. program.

Industrial Design Electives - Fall 2017