Image: Erik Abel

Master's Programme in Advanced Product Design

  • Number of credits 120 credits
  • Study time 2 years (full time)
  • Level Master’s Degree
  • StartingAutumn Term 2024

The Master's programme in Advanced Product Design develops you into a skilled industrial designer with the toolkit and mindset needed to create, develop and design new relevant product solutions. Students explore design through the lens of environmental and societal challenges. The education is hands-on and practice-based, and a majority of the projects are carried out in collaboration with external partners.

Why study the MFA Programme in Advanced Product Design?

Hear students talk about their MFA APD experience

While studying

The Master's programme in Advanced Product Design develops your design competence by providing professional tools, hands-on work methods, creative challenges and an inspiring study environment. The programme combines the analysis of complex contexts with the identification of relevant design opportunities and a holistic ideation scope, using visualisation techniques and the tools required in the professional oriented practice of industrial design. The methods and techniques are integrated in relevant course and project challenges. During the education, the field of advanced product design is explored through a mix of individual studies and group work.

Develop design in real projects

Applied design projects form the backbone of the APD programme. Projects usually include lectures, field trips and user studies, workshops and group work as well as studio work. Most projects target original problems identified by students, not problems that have been solved countless times by other designers. The projects can address anything from conceptualizing new technology solutions for specialists, to the design for upcoming consumer needs, to the design of professional tools within heavy industries.

The programme is international in its scope and all education is conducted in English. About 80 per cent of students come from abroad. For instance, Germany, the Netherlands, Austria, France, England, Turkey, Spain, China and New Zeeland.

Define your exam project

The fourth and final term is devoted entirely to the examination project. You will carry out your exam project in cooperation with a corporate sponsor or other external partner. It is important that the project is seen as a collaboration and not a commission. You are expected to define a problem area, establish contact with an external partner and write a project brief that includes aims, method description and anticipated deliverables.

Degree show with invited companies

All degree projects are presented at a big end-of-semester event - the UID Design Talks & Degree Show. Here, students from all programmes participate. In addition to students, relatives and friends, the audience includes representatives from NGO's and multinational companies from across the globe.

LIV – A Degree Project

Jovan Vulic created a training solution for midwives in refugee camps

Internships

Internships allow you to develop your professional skills as well as your own professional networks in preparation for a future career in industrial design. The majority of the programme's students take advantage of the school's support and broad network of industry connections and do a full year of internships between the first and the second year of the programme.

Career opportunities

Graduates of the Master’s Programme in Advanced Product Design are well-equipped to embark on a diverse range of career paths.

  • Industrial Designer: As skilled industrial designers, you can create, develop, and design innovative product solutions. The toolkit and mindset aquired at UID allows you to address real-world challenges through thoughtful design.
  • User Experience Designer: Graduates may specialise in user experience, usability, and interface design. They can work in industries such as technology, media, and ICT, ensuring that products align with user needs and enhance usability.
  • Concept Developer: Some alumni engage in conceptualizing future products and services. They explore novel ideas and contribute to shaping the next generation of innovative solutions.
  • Strategic Role: Graduates can take on strategic positions where the play a crucial role in market and business development. Considering design from a holistic perspective, they contribute to organizational growth and success.
  • Change Envisioner: Applying design principles, graduates envision transformative change in various domains, including politics, public organizations, heritage preservation, and NGOs.

The programme is highly regarded by industry professionals, making graduates sought after for their comprehensive understanding of both holistic concepts and intricate product design details. 

Further studies?

Following your degree you can continue with PhD studies in the Umeå Institute of Design PhD Programme.

Prospective Student FAQ

How well should I be able to communicate in English?

Proficiency in English equivalent to Swedish upper secondary course English B/6. 

Are there any grants or scholarships for design students?

Accepted students that come from non-EU countries are offered the possibility to apply for a reduction of the tuition fees.

What should my portfolio contain?

The Master's programme in Advanced Product Design has special requirements for the portfolio. You can find more information on the admissions page.

Do I need a degree in industrial design to be eligible?

Holding a degree in industrial design is considered a positive but is not a requirement. 

The basic entry qualifications are a Bachelor's degree or equivalent first-cycle qualification comprising of at least 180 ECTS or a corresponding qualification from an internationally recognized university. Specific entry requirements are: 60 ECTS in the field of design + Portfolio. Proficiency in English equivalent to Swedish upper secondary course English B/6.

Am I eligible without 60 ECTS credits in the subject of design?

You are unfortunately not eligible if your degree does not include at least 60 ECTS credits in the subject of design. To be eligible you need to do additional studies where you can get the required credits in the subject of design.

Can you look at my diploma/transcripts to see if I am eligible?

It is the Umeå University Admissions that looks at and approves academic documents. Umeå Institute of Design only looks at the portfolio. Umeå University Admissions only assess academic documents if/when you have completed an application and uploaded the requested documents.

Can you look at my portfolio before I apply?

We are not allowed to give any pre-assessments. We start to look at portfolios after the application deadline.

Can I apply to the programme if I´m in my last year of bachelor studies?

Yes you can. You need to submit an official document from your current university stating that you are likely to be awarded your bachelor's degree by the start of the programme. Please see the information provided by Umeå University Admissions for specific information on how to do this: final year of bachelor's studies.

Do I have to be able to speak Swedish to study at UID?

No, our MFA programmes are taught completely in English. The only educations in Swedish are the three-year BFA programme and most of the short single-subject courses. The daily language of communication and information at UID is English.

Can I start the programme, or be a guest student, during the spring term?

Due to the nature of the programme and its sequence of activities, a number of obligatory basic skills are taught in the fall semester. If the student has not passed these courses they cannot participate in several of the courses that follow. Thus, in principle we do not accept applications for the spring term.

 

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Please be aware that the University is a public authority and that what you write here can be included in an official document. Therefore, be careful if you are writing about sensitive or personal matters in this contact form. If you have such an enquiry, please call us instead. All data will be treated in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulation.

Programme is given by:
Faculty of Science and Technology
Contact persons for the programme are:
Thomas Degn, programme director

Application and eligibility

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