MDes (Interdisciplinary)

ReThink, ReNew and ReDesign your future with a Master of Design.

Examine and explore the dynamic and ever-changing nature of design.

Based in Vancouver, BC, Canada, Emily Carr’s MDes is a two-year, full-time, research-oriented, interdisciplinary degree for creative professionals at the forefront of design. As a graduate, you will be poised to take leadership roles across a diverse range of established and emerging professions.

ReThink by drawing upon your own knowledge, experience and expertise. Push the boundaries and purposes of design by integrating design research methods and approaches within theoretical and experimental frameworks.

ReNew your design practice by engaging in independent and collaborative advanced-level research, studio practice, prototyping, co-creation methods, and critical studies. Apply these to develop a rigorous critical framework synthesizing research, theory, and practice. 

ReDesign your own practice and approach within a range of established design fields including: Industrial Design, Communication Design, Sustainable Design, Design for Social innovation, Health Design, Wood Product Design, Textile Product Design, Exhibition Design, Service Systems Design.  Question assumptions and preconceptions within these domains and open up new alternatives.

Curriculum and Thesis

Throughout your Master degree, you will cultivate your thesis project. In the MDes, the thesis project is an integral creative product, comprised of a practical and written component. Your chosen area of work and thesis development will be fostered in studio, and seminar courses by skilled faculty with a diverse range of design expertise. Further guidance will be provided by your Thesis Supervisor who will be assigned to you in the Spring semester your first year.

Throughout the program courses are augmented by writing projects, group critiques, fieldtrips, and lectures and studio visits from renowned designers. Seminars in Design Dialogues, Research Methods, Thesis critique and more, that will enrich your practice and provide diverse learning opportunities.

In addition, flexible Directed Study options enable a range of expert mentorship provided through teaching and research opportunities connected to Emily Carr classroom settings, Research Centres, community hubs and external industry collaborations. This method of delivery enables candidates to gain experience in: Pedagogy, Research Practices or Leadership in Professional Practice with a concentration in:

Sustainability + Social Innovation mentorship provided by DESIS Lab

Aboriginal concerns, De-colonization Practices mentorship provided by Aboriginal Gathering Place, Richard Hill (CRC in Indigenous Practices)

Health Design mentorship provided by Health Design Lab

Material Practice and Production Concerns mentorship provided by Material Matters, Graphic Design Group

Data and Digital Interactions mentorship provided by Basically Good Media Lab (Bgml), The Studio for Critical Making (CRC in Art + Design Technology), Studio for Extensive Aesthetics (CRC in Design + Media Arts)

Entrepreneurial Approaches mentorship provided by Living Labs / Shumka Centre

Students interested in focusing on Interaction Design are recommended to explore this track of study within the MDes program.  

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