24 months
8918 USD/year
8918 USD/year
Tuition fee
Apply date
Start date


The Design MA program offered at San Francisco State University provides students with the opportunity to develop a specialized advanced study area in visual communication, industrial/product design, or related fields.


The Design MA program offered at San Francisco State University also prepares students for doctoral study in other institutions which emphasize research and professional development in relation to the various aspects of technology and transitions to careers in design, design research, design education, and related fields for students who do not have an undergraduate degree in design.

This program is designed for students who want to:

  • Study visual communication design/graphic communications and/or product design development from an interdisciplinary perspective.
  • Learn and apply contemporary methods used in design research and practice.
  • Develop further expertise in a specific area of design studies through an individual, interdisciplinary-based program of study that focuses on specific goals.

Program Learning Outcomes

  • Prepare to pursue professional work in design firms, teaching, project management, strategic planning for design firms, or management roles in technology.
  • Build problem-solving competencies, both conceptual and practical.
  • Study visual communication design and product design with an interdisciplinary perspective.
  • Work closely with graduate advisors to design an M.A. program that meets their career goals.
  • Engage in focused, critical research into a chosen design problem.
  • Develop a specialized area of study in graphic design/visual communication design, product design/manufacturing, industrial technology, project management, or digital media.
  • Develop a Culminating Experience Proposal and Project reflective of their professional interests.
  • Program may help students prepare for doctoral work at other institutions.

Career paths

Students pursuing this program come from a variety of occupational areas. Employment opportunities include preparation for career advancement/enhancement through advanced study in design and related disciplines, acquisition of additional technical skills, and continued research and development activity.

Programme Structure

Courses include:

  • Seminar in Design Research
  • Graduate Research Methods and Scholarly Writing for Creative Disciplines
  • Seminar in Design Management
  • Seminar in Design Topics
  • Seminar in Design Methodology
  • Directed Experience in Design

Key information


  • Full-time
    • 24 months

Start dates & application deadlines


30 alternative credits


On Campus

Academic requirements

GPA admission requirements GPA

Other requirements

General requirements

  • A statement of purpose
  • Résumé
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Portfolio that includes evidence of creative, technical, and/or written work
  • English language proficiency (international students)

Tuition Fee

To alway see correct tuition fees
  • International

    8918 USD/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 8918 USD per year during 24 months.
  • National

    8918 USD/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 8918 USD per year during 24 months.

Living costs for San Francisco

2206 - 4119 USD /month
Living costs

The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.


Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

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San Francisco State University


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