Master's In ID w/ No Previous Degree...

What schools offer this option? I am interested in what schools (other than NC State…where I’m currently finishing up) offer a Master’s w/o previous design scholarship and how they go about doing that. Has anyone out there taken a similar path and what are their thoughts about it as an option?



While I was at RISD many of the grad students did not have a degree in ID or any other design related field. Off the top of my head I remember one was a biology major, anothe had a bachelors in english, I think a third came from an accounting background.

This policy may have changed. The people that run the grad ID program changed over a couple of times since I was there.

Why do you ask?

I was afraid you would ask that. Given that my experience is a bit atypical in that I had to work 20-30+ hours a week throughout, try to raise two toddlers, and keep my wife happy while pursuing an MID at NC State, I’m not entirely pleased with my progress. Whether shortcomings are structural, personal, or otherwise, I’m interested in seeing how other school try to prepare students with no previous design degree in an accelerated fashion. I would love to give back to the program somehow, and putting together a steering committee of graduates is one way that I might be interested in doing so. Of course this is a truism, but my perception is that I have learned much more through freelance work than in school, and would like to somehow narrow this perceived gap. Or is design a lot like Liberal Arts in that you think you learned nothing, but you actually spent four years learning problem solving, which you theoretically use forever after?


Ps. After four years of no sleep, I hope I’m making sense…

Well, when I first graduated I thought I learned nothing, but the more time passes the more I draw on my freshman year foundation classes oddly enough. Art History, basic principals of 2d and 3d design, color and compositional theory, design history and philosophy. I think these broad general strokes are the things that acedemia does best.

University of Calgary
I got my Master of Environmental Desgin (Industrial Design) degree from there (from an undergrad in Social Science)

The programme is a you-get-out-of-it-what-you-put-into-it type of programme. You aren’t going to be successful just by going here; nothing is handed to you on a silver platter. Also, as a Master’s degree, the emphasis here is on concept development and design management rather than sketching and just aesthetics.

My assessment; good programme if you’re willing to take the ball and run with it.