It usually helps if you ask a specific question rather than an open ended one…
…but I’ll take the opportunity to sound off on Pratt anyway.
As most most know Pratt MID is mostly for career changers. Most candidates have undergrad degrees in areas that are ostensibly helpful in the study of ID: Art, Architecture, Engineering, Social Sciences etc. People tend to miss that point in the whole Masters versus undergrad debate. That being said, grads often struggle to get their skills up (drawing, 3d, model making). Lately everyone seems to be more aware of this and most of work to plug up any holes in our skill set.
What is MID for? What sort of employment will we seek when we graduate? Pratt is very vague on these issues. Some people (coughbrucecough) actively resist the idea that Pratt prepares anyone for anything and certain individuals (coughbrucecough) will mock peoples concerns about careers. The view seems to be that conventional ID (like say, designing products) is, well, trite and far to “of this world” to merit discussion. A masters in ID is a grand experiment and general betterment for student – kind of like a liberal arts education only with more sanding.
This is a minority view, but a powerful one --keep in mind that the main purveyor of this view is also one of the most compelling professors and really does care about his teaching. Also, there is a point in favor of this view: Masters should be more conceptual – not just a condensed form of undergrad (although, frankly, the latter is what many students want).
But still, where do Pratt MIDs end up? By my guess, a minority become product designers, some become researchers, design strategists/managers, others are entrepreneurs… oh and of course some become Pratt professors. But how much does the job market really need this type of candidate? How many will end up fetching coffee for someone who had the good sense and greed to study something awful like marketing or finance? I’m not really sure… Any recent grads out there that want to tell us what you are doing?
Research: This is supposed to be the key difference between grad and undergrad, but this part of the program is lacking rigor. More attention should be given to this area with a better understanding of appropriate methods – quantitative versus qualitative, biases, methodologies. differences between marketing research and design research, etc.
The program is not very systematic – you are not directly taught much methodology. For some, this is fine – they produce a lot of work, get feedback and develop their own methods and are probably better for having done so. Still, certain areas of design demand methodology more than others.
Now that I’m done ranting, I still have to say that the program is strong in many ways and there are good instructors. If you do not have an ID undergrad it is one of your only choices… but a good choice. There has been increased competition to get into the program and the students have diverse views/approaches.