The Industrial and Interaction Design Program (IID) prepares students to embrace the complex challenges of creating innovative products, systems, and services in the 21st-century. Students develop skills and learn to address contemporary problems through creative and critical thinking guided by leading scholars and design practitioners.

Admission + Portfolio Requirements

Studio courses introduce students to diverse areas of practice within industrial and interaction design today. Through project-based learning (PBL), students experience industry-standard tools, processes, and methods. They explore emerging technologies and apply best practices to create design solutions that respond to the needs of people and planet.

[IID student Gokul Beedav ‘21is focused on inclusive industrial design – creating medical devices that work for every ability]

Students enhance their IID studies with a range of elective studio and academic courses, and minors from across the university. In Spring of their 4th year, IID students may apply to live and study in London or Florence with SU Abroad. Through Syracuse University’s LaunchPad, IID students gain entrepreneurial skills and partner with students in other disciplines to develop, pitch, and launch their own seed-funded startup companies.

The program culminates in a year-long independent thesis project and exhibition. Students emerge from the program ready to address contemporary global concerns and assume product design, user experience design, design research, and product development roles at world-leading enterprises and consultancies.

Examples of jobs recent graduates have moved into include

  • product design for accessories, sporting goods, home appliances, and manufacturing tools
  • user experience design for mobile applications, online retail services, semi-autonomous vehicles, unmanned aircraft, and medical equipment
  • user research for financial services, healthcare, and education

IID alumni are currently making an impact on design teams at companies like Ford, Amazon, Reebok, Google, IBM Design, Fjord/Accenture, IDEO, Frog Design, and Continuum Innovation.

Student Work

IND 476 Industrial Design: Environmental Practicum
Real-world projects spring 2020

Students in IND 476 Industrial Design: Environmental Practicum had an interdisciplinary, international and multilingual collaborative project in Spring 2020. 4th year SU IID students collaborated with 1st-year game design students from the Video Game Creation program at UQAT in Montreal. The group worked on a gaming experience, with video game components in an immersive physical environment. UQAT students developed game concepts and SU students designed interactive and immersive spaces for the games to take place.

Some concept drawings and models for the game proposals are included above. SU student Noah Hollander designed a fantastical environment for Tri Cells, a game about battles between single-cell organisms. Also included is an early sketch by SU student Jingren Zhang for the battle game Crazy Door, designed by Charles-Étienne Roy at UQAT.

SU students drew on lectures on topics including immersion, entertainment, environmental storytelling, and flow, and visited the Breakout Escape Room for inspiration. Ultimately several games/environments were chosen for further development, with plans to build one winning design at the SU Warehouse. These included Unstable Company, a game about a dysfunctional office environment, and Power UP!, a game where players control a robot in a battle against mutant creatures. Images of the digital games and the planned environments are included above. The Unstable Company design team included Ricardo Sanchez, Noah Hollander and Jingren Zhang (SU) and Lucas Homont, Joey Bruneau, Charles Caron, Léonard Remartini, Frédérik Roberge-Locat and Alexander Tanasie (UQAT). The Power UP! design team included Timothy Tin Yiu Li, Deanna Lazo and Qian Liao (SU) and Pier-Olivier Bellemare, Maxime Beachamp, Kevin Falardeau, Samantha Lauzon and Samuel Payeur (UQAT).

Unfortunately, the project was cut short due to the COVID-19 pandemic and a planned class trip to Montreal was cancelled. Rather than continuing the project while in isolation, SU students opted to devote their attention to the COVID-19 response. In March 2020, the SU class began a new project on Design for Emergency. Each student developed a practical design response to the pandemic, with exciting results. For example, students have initiated design collaborations with a disinfectant company and a manufacturing facility in China. The hope is to restart a new collaborative project between SU and UQAT students in Spring 2021.


Below are the general program requirements for the B.I.D. degree in industrial and interaction design.

View official major requirements.

Major requirements: 78 credits
Art history requirements: 12 credits
Academic requirements: 6 credits
Academic electives: 21 credits
Studio electives: 24 credits
Free electives: 9 credits
Total Credits: 150