Our curriculum connects design thinking to design doing with hands-on making, entrepreneurial strategies, and social and environmental engagement.
- Year One
- Year Two
|Critical Studies: Modern Craft + Design History|
Through Critique Seminar, students engage in thorough, critical analysis of work-in- progress. Frequent discussions and critiques with visiting artists, designers and guest critics help students develop skills in rhetoric.
Creative Entrepreneurship courses provide a comprehensive introduction to establishing and sustaining a creative entrepreneurial endeavor, with an emphasis on professional arts practices and strategies for small businesses.
In Critical Studies, students develop in- depth knowledge of social and environmental movements in craft and design history, articulate positions concerning contemporary craft and design theory, and place current trends in making into a global context.
The Practicum is similar to a Thesis, but emphasizes a practical application of knowledge or skill in a new way. Students conduct in-depth, practice-based research in producing a capstone project that is understood in relationship to its cultural context as well as the student’s career path.
Electives allow students to hone techniques in making, participate in internships, global studios, or further pursue couses in history, theory, and criticism. Students are required to take two electives at level 200 to 600. Graduate level options at 500 and above include Applied Systems Thinking, Design Ecologies, Critical Pedagogy, Critical Inquiry, Integrated Practice, Contemporary Print Seminar
With student's individual spaces located in a workshop environment, Studio Practice embraces an approach to design rooted in the culture of making. Students work one on one with a different mentor each semester to address their specific interests and goals.
Each semester in the MFA Applied Craft + Design program we focus on vital themes that make a lifelong creative practice viable. These themes are explored within AC+D’s curriculum through making, collaboration and iteration.
PROCESS - HABIT - RHYTHM
Establishing a productive + rigorous creative, iterative practice.
Go wild. Look far and wide, produce in abundance. Emphasize disciplined continuous making, physical embodiment of ideas, thinking with the hands.
NARRATIVE - MATERIALS - IDENTITY
Identifying + elaborating upon what you bring to your material(s).
Focus on your relationship with materials and processes, and develop this dialogue. Articulate what it is about how you use materials and explore processes that bring specificity to your work.
PEOPLE - THINGS
Audience, viewer, user, communities, environment, non-human. Addressing who + what is served by your practice.
Analyze the system you/your work operates in and the dynamics at play. Understand, apply and draw connections between your work and its context.
DIRECTION - ACTUALIZATION - APPLICATION
Fulfilling the promise of your work.
Realize a major project (Thesis). Establish a decision-making process that is responsive to change, that you can communicate, and that can generalize to your practice after you graduate. Challenge yourself to develop rhetoric regarding that expresses the importance of your work in the world today.