Transportation Masters: Umea, Coventry, RCA, Art Center

Hey guys I just wanted to compare the programs for a masters in transportation design in these schools:

Umea, Coventry, Elisava, Art Center, CCS and RCA. From their shows and job placements they seem like they have the strongest programs.

If they are all comparable, I would go to the cheapest, but if not, then I will reconsider. Thanks a lot for the input.

CCS don’t offer any MA program. I say move away from US.


There is something to be said for the “dependability” of the Trans degree/program there. Consistently good over a long period of time, good network, one of the few Master programs that is recognized/respected globally. Art Center also has some of the above traits, but, like CCS, more for undergrad. I’ve seen impressive people come out of other programs as well (Coventry specifically) - each program progresses and regresses, good showings and mediocre showings over time - but RCA is the “safe”, reliable choice.

If you can find out about the current and incoming students into the programs, that can tell you a lot. For example, if you see a disproportionate amount of young Asian students from wealthy families who have little or no professional experience, this may not be a good sign for the program. On the other hand, if you see a good global mix with a number of experienced pros and company sponsored talent in the program, that is positive. (And look around/ask around for yourself - admissions staff are usually glorified used car salesmen.) I understand schools can’t completely control some of these factors and will do their best to teach well regardless of the student body, but the culture and therefore the quality of your education will be effected by the student mix. (ps. I hesitate to single out Asians and do not mean any harm here - the same could be said for Americans or Europeans from wealthy families having limited pro experience…it is simply a fact of life that the Asian economies, the developmental stages they are in, the pop culture of the region, and their obsession with education/advanced degrees from foreign “name brand” schools combine to create a disproportionate influx of young students from this region to design schools. In small doses, this is a fine thing, and the schools are kept afloat by this tuition money. In large doses, it is not necessarily conducive to creating a top notch, global standard/diverse, creative, professional/career achievement focused program.)

thanx a lot. useful info. The only problem with RCA is the cost. I hear it is VERY expensive. I basically named it for comparison purposes since it is one of the top schools in the world for trans.

I am looking at UMEA since i can go to school there for free. they seem to have a pretty solid program, with solid student work. I recently saw images from the elisava student show and i was impressed.

any advice as for choice?>