Xiaoyu Qi | ASI Presentation, Gestural Interface

The master of fine arts (M.F.A.) in collaborative design is a two-year graduate program that engages students in collaborative practice within a dynamic, multidisciplinary studio environment. This professional graduate program breaks down boundaries in the academic and corporate worlds, bringing together students, faculty, communities, and businesses to work collaboratively on the world's significant problems for the greater good.

Gain unique perspectives and design experiences Gain unique perspectives and design experiences

The program intersects design thinking with a specific area of focus, allowing for in-depth exploration of major issues with a variety of industry and research partners. The M.F.A. in collaborative design is closely aligned with the internationally recognized strengths of Syracuse University, allowing design to be integrated with various campus-wide initiatives. The curriculum is propelled by research work that takes place on an ongoing basis within the Design Laboratory, allowing students to gain unique perspectives and project-based design experiences that lead to a competitive advantage once they graduate.

A background in design is not required for admission to this program. Students with no design experience will learn basic technical skills and design methodology prior to beginning the program through a series of courses identified with your advisor. All students, even those with a design background, are required to take Intro to Design Communication along with Design Thinking and Strategies. All students will attend an orientation to better understand the specific focus area of the program and how it pertains to design.

Graduate students in collaborative design interact with the School of Design's inquisitive and intelligent community. Students and faculty throughout the school address first hand the issues of the world around them, with focus on sustainable design practices, social issues, and excellence in professional practice.

Specific Focus Area

The current research focus within the collaborative design program is designed lifespan interventions that build on our strategic alliance with the Syracuse University Aging Studies Institute (ASI). Aging populations within the United States and around the world are rapidly increasing in size, creating a unique set of challenges for policymakers and practitioners. ASI sees these challenges as opportunities and engages in multidisciplinary research and education to develop practical solutions. Graduate student in collaborative design will work closely with ASI to create innovative solutions to some of these challenges.


Application deadline: February 1 for summer admission. Collaborative design currently does not offer fall or spring admission.