DESIGN IT TOGETHER ! – with interdisciplinary cooperation for innovation

Interdisciplinary and holistic thinking is the ability to overcome one’s own limitations. This enables new perspectives and forward-looking ways of developing new ideas, optimised products, services or new spaces.

When solving complex problems, design is the central factor for innovation. Design is the link between users and the expert knowledge of interdisciplinary development teams. In a sense, design has empathic interface competence.

Innovation arises at the intersection of the three factors people, technology and economy. The necessity of change and innovation therefore, unites different disciplines and thus helps to create new perspectives. In the Master Design you will learn innovation competence – very close to practice. Being innovative today more than ever requires the ability to master complex processes. With us you will learn design as a living development process in a stimulating environment of creativity and excellence.

The Master Design stands for a holistic understanding of design and for new forms of collaboration between design, architecture, computer science, engineering disciplines and economic and social sciences. You will learn ways of thinking, working and proceeding, taking in the perspectives of various disciplines and thus gaining impetus for new approaches. In this way you will acquire a clear profile in the future fields of design and cooperation with related disciplines.

The Master Design is modular and allows you to study individually. Here you will find detailed information on our innovative teaching concept and on all questions concerning application and admission to the course.

Target group

The Master Design programme is aimed at graduates from the areas:

  1. product & industrial design, service design, interaction/user experience design, media & communication design as well as related disciplines of the “culture and Creative Industries”
  2. architecture and interior design which are linked to planning and design processes in space, Work on draft and design tasks
  3. to applicants from “design-related disciplines” such as engineering, design, construction and sciences, UX-Engineering, computer science, economics, innovation sciences & product management and marketing

Through the practical and interdisciplinary transfer of ways of thinking, skills and working methods, graduates acquire a clear profile in the future fields of design.

Two study focuses

The Master Design enables you to deepen your intellectual and creative approach to design, interior design and architecture. It is supplemented by related topics from the “cultural and creative industries” and from “design-related” disciplines.

There is a choice of two main areas of study:

– integrated design processes (idp)

– interior architecture & architectural design (iaad)

Our teaching connects people with artistic and cultural ideas for the reinterpretation of design-oriented questions on the basis of creative and scientific creativity. The common denominator is the interdisciplinary design process. The ways of thinking and working methods enable you to gain a multifaceted qualification in the disciplines of design, interior design and architecture and the related professional fields.

We thus pave the way for you to develop a self-determined and creative personality. This is how our graduates lay the foundation for your successful professional future

Mentor-based model

In Master Design you will be closely supervised by a mentor. Because people learn most from other people – from experienced experts. Our mentors will supervise your work (Focus Project) from your first semester through to the completion of your Master’s thesis. Students can work on both practical and research-oriented topics.

Your BENEFIT: The novel teaching concept closely links the design process in collaboration with different disciplines in a project-oriented teaching – supported by interdisciplinary cross-sectional courses. The direct reference to Human Centered, Usability, Technology, Production, Market, Research and Science, among others, enables you to gain a diverse qualification for a broad job profile.

Free choice of Master’s project

You can choose your special subject for research to suit yourself, and will then concentrate on it intensively for three semesters. For this you will specify a ‘research or focus project’, which you will work on in your first semester through doing a work experience in industry or in a cultural institution.

In the further course of the Master’s in Design, this project will continue to be central and will finally issue in your Master’s thesis. Over the three semesters you will have individual support as you work on your topic, and in this way can go deeply into your special area of research. This will be supplemented by cross-departmental lectures, seminars and competence workshops, where a number of overarching themes will be touched on.

‘Research-based learning’ is the name of this approach, whereby students work independently on a project chosen by themselves. The advantage of this is that as you will be concentrating intensively for three semesters on a specific topic, you will acquire a clear profile. You will learn to take on responsibility for your own research, to carry a project through to its conclusion on your own initiative and so will be well equipped to tackle demanding professional challenges at a later stage.

Working as part of a cross-departmental team

The Coburg Design course is noted for its cross-departmental approach. When you develop new products or spaces on our course, you will also be researching intensively into the technical, economic, ecological, social and psychological factors which have an influence on your Master’s project.

The interdisciplinary process leads to completely new design solutions. The numerous prizes which Coburg graduates have received for their projects in recent years demonstrates the effectiveness of our approach.

The Faculty of Design at the Coburg University of Applied Sciences comprises the three disciplines of product design, architecture and interior architecture. A lively dialogue goes on between these subjects. Thus you can look forward to working in a stimulating environment that goes beyond the immediate confines of your chosen special subject.

Expert networking

Designers from Coburg enjoy an excellent reputation in industry and in their chosen field. We encourage lively exchanges with companies, design offices and cultural institutes all over the world. Numerous cooperative projects are open to you even while you are still studying, making it easier for you to gain entry to a career subsequently. Our MA graduates can look forward to taking on leading responsibilities in future in the fields of industry and culture.

Individual plan of study

The Master’s in Design stands for work that is precisely calculated and made to measure. Rather than mass-produced education off the peg, you can choose from your own completely personal programme of study, with a richly varied range of teaching courses and research projects to choose from.

A wide range of additional study options will complement your concentrated focus on your special area. These include lectures and seminars on subjects like ‘Innovation and Project Management’, ‘Marketing and Communication’ and ‘Social Spatial Solutions’.

Supplementary semester for students with completed BA at the end of 6 semesters

Requirements for admission to the course are completion of a university degree course consisting of at least seven semesters of study (210 ECTS credits) with an overall mark of at least ‘Good’ (2.5), plus the successful sitting of a suitability examination.

Course applicants who have completed six semesters of regular study (180 ECTS credits) can be admitted to the course on condition that they make up the missing semester with a ‘supplementary semester’ as part of their Master’s degree course.

Shaping the future

The way in which we shape our environment makes a direct impact on the quality of life. Complicated ticket dispensing machines, for example, marginalise the elderly, while soulless skyscraper ghettos give rise to social problems.

Are there better ways of doing things? Our Master’s course trains designers to enjoy making a contribution to the future.

Social, humane and environmentally conscious design, which not only bases itself on state-of-the-art technology but can also hold its own on the market – this is the objective we have in mind in the ongoing development of our disciplines. Not in a naively utopian spirit, but with tools of well-grounded analysis and mature consideration – as they are taught on the basis of the integrative approach of our Design Faculty.

Coburg Design Pilot – a design laboratory

Designers and architects should be creative – there is no doubt about that. But where does creativity come from? Creativity is still often regarded as something mysterious – based on the idea that either you have it or you don’t. And yet the American inventor Thomas Alva Edison was convinced long ago that ‘Creativity means 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration.’ Perspiration, that is, in the sense of ‘intensive work’.

Design is intensive work applied to a problem. Experts on the Master’s Design course have developed an innovative instrument for the purpose, one that represents a unique phenomenon in the field of design education in Germany: the Coburg Design Pilot.

The Design Pilot is a digital tool which improves creativity, structures design processes and encourages interdisciplinary exchanges. In an extended sense, it offers a complete ‘laboratory of design’ which has been proven to lead to innovative ideas.

Our Master’s degree students learn design with the help of this instrument. What is involved is the combination of inspiration and intellectual experiment with discipline and a structured approach. (