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Master's Programme in Interaction Design

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

The Master’s programme in Interaction Design focuses on exploring the structure and behaviour of interactive systems, from computers to mobile devices to appliances and beyond. Interaction design is about the ability to design both the cognitive and physical interface and integrate them into a successful whole. We aim to enable designers to create sustainable, comprehensible and pleasurable information based products, services and environments.

Why study the MFA Programme in Interaction Design?

Hear students talk about their MFA IxD experience

While studying

All courses are structured into 5-, 10- or 20-week blocks. Within each block, shorter course modules offer specific skills training, theoretic studies and practical exercises. Studio courses are usually part of a 5-week block and aimed at learning specific skills and applying them in practical exercises.

Projects with external partners

Applied design projects form the backbone of Master's Programme in Interaction Design. Projects usually include lectures, field trips, site visits, group method work, user studies and studio work. The projects are carried out in collaboration with external partners and tutoring is given both by our own teachers and visiting professional designers. The projects you will work on are human centred projects based on specific user groups rather than product categories.

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.

Carefree in 2060 – A Degree Project

Kimberley Beauprez explores whether pension savings could conjure hopes and dreams rather than anxiety

You are expected to define a problem area, establish contact with an external partner and write a project brief that includes aims, method description, anticipated deliverables and outline budget. The process of defining your project starts early in the third term in dialogue with faculty members and the programme coordinator. A professional designer is assigned as external tutor during your project.

Internships

Internships are not obligatory but our students often take the opportunity during the summer months. Internships can be with Swedish companies or organisations but it is increasingly common to work internationally.

 

Career opportunities

Graduates of the programme have transitioned into professional roles across the globe within the design, media, and information- and communications technology (ICT) industries. Additionally, some have ventured into academic research or startups.

Many alumni assume positions as interaction designers, user experience specialists, or usability experts in the realms of design, ICT, and media.

Some graduates opt for strategic roles, where interaction design plays a pivotal role in market and business development. Meanwhile, others apply interaction design principles to envision transformative change in areas such as politics, public organizations, and NGOs.

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 Interaction Design has special requirements for the portfolio. You can find more information on the admission website.

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:
Cindy Kohtala, programme director

Application and eligibility

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