Insight into design programs at IIT

10 Sep 2011 - 4:06pm
3 years ago
3 replies
673 reads
AnUnimaginaryKid
2011

Hi everyone,

I've been looking around the threads and although I've stumbled upon a few posts about NYU's ITP and CMU's design programs, I haven't really found anything in depth regarding the program at IIT.

I am planning to apply, since the program and courses seem to float my boat, but the price tag seems pretty hefty. Also, since I don't have a design background, I think I'd need an extra year there for foundation classes. Which means about $50,000+ x 3 = $$$$$.

If anyone has attended the program, or know of someone who has, and can give me some insight into your experience in the program, I'd love to hear about it!

Thanks!
Miranda

Comments

12 Sep 2011 - 11:38am
Tania Schlatter
2007

Hi

I have an MDes from ID/IIT and attended from 1997-1999. The program has a business focus and prepares students more for leadership roles than "maker" (hands on designer) roles. There is a lot of group work. The program is big on incorporating ethnographic research (as well as other kinds of research) and B-school thinking into the design process. There is some focus on interface/communication/3D design and aesthetics, but not as much as on observational research, human factors and systems thinking/design, which underlie the program.

The program was great for augmenting my graphic design background and helping me move into leadership/consulting and teaching roles in interactive communication design.

A look at the upcoming Design Research Conference might help you get an idea of the focus/sensibility: http://drc.id.iit.edu/

Tania

13 Sep 2011 - 10:11pm
AnUnimaginaryKid
2011

Hi Tania,
Thanks for your reply! I was also looking into the MDes program, as the description interests me. Coming from a non-design background, I think I might actually be "more suited" to learning more about leadership than actually being the "hands on" designer with the technical skills. Although I'm open to both. I guess I've just read so much about so many interaction designers coming from so many different programs, that it's hard to get a concrete grasp of it all in my head. I'm starting to think there aren't clear cut categories, but there are relevant skill sets, coupled with interests and how you use it.

I am interested in the research and human factors side of things, as I had majored in Psychology, so I don't really mind too much that an MDes at IIT is more business and research oriented.

How was your experience with the campus/faculty while you were there? I know things may have changed a bit, but I want to get a feel at how the faculty interacts with students.

I'll check out the link you gave me as well!

Miranda

16 Sep 2011 - 1:01pm
Tania Schlatter
2007

The design school is in the downtown (loop area) of Chicago, separate from the main campus. The faculty were great – I am teaching now and so am going through old syllabi and notes from classes. Faculty were diverse in terms of ages, practicing professionals and academics. The school had offical events that included faculty and students and there were many informal events attended by both as well.

Good luck,

Tania

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