Program Design

Overview

The MDes program at UC Berkeley is a studio-based, on campus program. Over three semesters (fall, spring, and a second fall), you will complete a total of nine required core courses and three electives to meet a minimum of 38 units before graduating in December.

In the summer between the first and second years of the program, you are expected to engage in an experience, such as an internship, international design study or community service, outside of the classroom and apply what you have learned in the studio in a broader context. This professional development requirement is called Design@Large.

Jump to: Required Courses, Elective Course, Approved Technical electives, Approved Entrepreneurship electives, Approved Social Practice electives, Sample Student Program, Course Descriptions.

 

Required Courses

  • DES INV 200: Design Frameworks (3 units)
  • DES INV 201: Debates in Design (3 units)*
  • DES INV 202: Technology Design Foundations (4 units)
  • DES INV 211: Designing Emerging Technologies I (5 units)
  • DES INV 212: Designing Emerging Technologies II (3 units)
  • DES INV 213: Design Studio (5 units)
  • DES INV 219: Capstone Portfolio (2 units)
  • IND ENG 295: Newton Lecture Series (1 unit)

*students are required to take this course twice; once during the fall semester in year one, and again during the fall semester of year two.

Elective Courses

The MDes requires three electives: one technical elective, and at least one entrepreneurship or social practice elective from the approved lists of courses, shown below. The third elective may be either an additional elective from the approved list (technical, social practice, or entrepreneurship) or any 3 or 4 unit upper division or graduate level course offered at UC Berkeley, subject to enrollment availability.

Approved Technical Electives

  • ARCH 249 003: Special Topics in the Physical Environment in Buildings: The Performance of Form (3 units)
  • ARCH 252 001: Form and Structure (3 units)
  • ARCH 259 001: Special Topics in Building Structures: Robotic Fabrication (3 units)
  • ARCH 269 001: Special Topics in Construction and Materials (3 units)
  • ARCH 269 002: Special Topics in Construction and Materials: Indoor Microbiome, Detoxification, and Artificial Intelligence and Matter (3 units)
  • ARCH 269 002: Special Topics in Construction and Materials: Plant Fibers and Design: Origins and Future (3 units)
  • ARCH 269 004: Special Topics in Construction and Materials: Drawing on Construction: Timber Frame and Mass Timber Construction (3 units)
  • ART 172 001 – STD 001:  Advanced Digital Media: Computer Graphics Studio CGI Animation Studies (4 credits)
  • CEE 190-1/DES INV 190-11 Special Topics in Civil and Environmental Engineering: Electric Mobility Engineering (3 units)
  • COMPSCI 161: Computer Security (4 units)
  • COMPSCI W169A: Software Engineering (3 units)
  • COMPSCI 194 035: Special Topics: Data Engineering (4 units)
  • COMPSCI 188: Introduction to Artificial Intelligence (4 units)
  • COMPSCI C200A: Principles & Techniques of Data Science (4 units)
  • COMPSCI C249A: Introduction to Embedded Systems (4 units)
  • COMPSCI 260A: User Interface Design and Development (4 units)
  • COMPSCI 260B: Human-Computer Interaction Research (3 units)
  • COMPSCI 284A: Foundations of Computer Graphics (4 units)
  • COMPSCI 287H 001: Algorithmic Human-Robot Interaction (4 units)
  • COMPSCI 289A: Introduction to Machine Learning (4 units)
  • COMPSCI 294 026: Intro to Computer Vision and Computational Photography (4 units)
  • COMPSCI 294-137:  Immersive Computing and Virtual Reality (3 units)
  • CYPLAN 257  Data Science for Human Mobility and Socio-technical Systems (4 units)
  • DATASCI W207 001: Applied Machine Learning (3 units)
  • ENGIN 150: Basic Modeling and Simulation Tools for Industrial Research Applications (3 units)
  • INDENG 290 005 : Special Topics in Industrial Engineering and Operation Research: Entrepreneurship & Innovation: Data-X (Applied Data Science with Venture Application) (3 units)
  • INFO 253A: Front-End Web Architecture (3 units)
  • INTEGBI C 217/BIO ENG C217/MEC ENG C217: Biomimetic Engineering (3 units)
  • MAT SCI 200A: Survey of Materials Science (4 units)
  • MECENG 122: Processing of Materials in Manufacturing (3 units)
  • MECENG C201: Modeling and Simulation of Advanced Manufacturing Processes (3 units)
  • MECENG 236U: Introduction to Control of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (3 units)
  • MECENG 270: Advanced Augmentation of Human Dexterity (4 units)
  • MECENG 280A: Introduction to the Finite Element Method (3 units)
  • MUSIC 158A 002: Sound and Music Computing with CNMAT Technologies (4 credits)
  • MUSIC 159 001: Computer Programming for Music Applications (4 credits)
  • NWMEDIA 190-2 Advanced Digital Animation (4 units)
  • NWMEDIA C203: Critical Making (4 units)
  • NWMEDIA C262/INFO C262: Theory and Practice of Tangible User Interfaces (4 units)

Approved Entrepreneurship Electives

  • INDENG 185: 002 SEM 002 Challenge Lab: Emerging Technologies and Social Impact (4 units)
  • INDENG 185: 003 SEM 003: Challenge Lab: Product Design & Customer Needfinding: Alternative Meat (4 units)
  • INDENG 186 001 SEM 001: Product Management (3 units)
  • INDENG 190E 004 – SEM 004: Advanced Topics in Industrial Engineering and Operations Research: Entrepreneurship & Innovation Build a Startup: Real Applications of Artificial Intelligence (3 units)
  • INDENG 290 001: Special Topics in Industrial Engineering and Operation Research: Entrepreneurship & Innovation: Deplastifying the Planet (2 units)
  • INDENG 290 002: Special Topics in Industrial Engineering and Operation Research: Entrepreneurship & Innovation: Mobile-Collider for a Sheltered but Connected World (3 units)
  • INDENG 290 003: Special Topics in Industrial Engineering and Operation Research: Building with Blockchain for Web 3.0 (3 units)
  • INDENG 290 004 LEC 004: Management of Technology Innovation (3 units)

Approved Social Practice Electives

  • ARCH 209 001: Virtual Reality: Theory and Representation (3 units)
  • ARCH 209 001: Special Topics in Architectural Design: Housing as Design Generator (3 to 4 units)
  • ARCH 209 003: Contradictions in Disaster and Resilience (3 units)
  • ARCH 239 001: Special Topics in Architecture Design Theory and Criticism: DESIGN, DISPOSSESSION AND DISSENT: SPATIAL POLITICS AND THE GLOBAL CITY (3 units)
  • ARCH 279 001: Special Topics in the History of Architecture: DESIGN RADICALS: SPACES OF BAY AREA COUNTERCULTURE (4 units)
  • ART 160 001: Special Topics in Visual Studies: Social Practices: Special Projects at Platform Artspace (4 units)
  • ART 160 001: Special Topics in Visual Studies: Making and Exhibiting Art in Pandemic Times (4 units)
  • CYPLAN 190 002: Ghosts and Visions: Using augmented reality and physical installations to tell history and envision futures (4 units)
  • CYPLAN 205: Introduction to Planning and Environmental Law (3 units)
  • CYPLAN 207: Land and Housing Market Economics (3 units)
  • CYPLAN 213 : Transportation and Land Use Planning (3 units)
  • CYPLAN 216: Active Transportation (3 units)
  • CYPLAN 217: Transportation Policy and Planning (3 units)
  • CYPLAN 251: Environmental Planning and Regulation (3 units)
  • CYPLAN 255 : Urban Informatics and Visualization (3 units)
  • CYPLAN 257: Data Science for Human Mobility and Socio-technical Systems (4 units)
  • LAW 262.68 – Section 004: Human Rights Investigations (2 units)
  • LAW 298: New Technologies and War Crimes Investigations (2 units)
  • NWMEDIA 151AC: Transforming Tech: Issues and Interventions in STEM and Silicon Valley (4 units)
  • NWMEDIA 200: History and Theory of New Media (4 units)
  • NWMEDIA C265: Interface Aesthetics (3 units)
  • NWMEDIA 290: Special Topics in New Media: Locative Media (4 units)

Approved Design Electives (may be taken as free/open elective)

  • ARCH 229 003: Special Topics in Digital Design Theories and Methods (3 units)
  • ARCH 209 003: Special Topics in Architectural Design: ARCHITECTURE AND LANDSCAPE (3 units)
  • ARCH 269 003: Special Topics in Architectural Design: Constructing Interior Objects (3 units)
  • CYPLAN C241 001: Research Methods in Environmental Design (4 units)

Sample Student Program

Fall Spring
Year One
  • DES INV 201: Debates in Design
  • 3 units, required
  • DES INV 202: Technology Design Foundations
  • 4 units, required
  • Technical elective
  • 3 units
  • Social practice or Entrepreneurship elective
  • 3 units
  • Total: 13 units
  • DES INV 200: Design Frameworks
  • 3 units, required
  • Free elective
  • 4 units
  • IND ENG 295: Newton Lecture Series
  • 1 unit, required
  • DES INV 211: Designing Emerging Technologies I
  • 5 units, required
  • Total: 13 units
Year Two
  • DES INV 201: Debates in Design
  • 3 units, required
  • DES INV 212: Designing Emerging Technologies II
  • 3 units, required
  • DES INV 213: Design Studio
  • 5 units, required
  • DES INV 219: Capstone Portfolio
  • 2 units, required
  • Total: 13 units

 

Course Descriptions