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Integrated Design Degree Requirements

  • These requirements apply to students entering this program in fall 2016¬†and thereafter. Students who enrolled earlier should consult the catalog in effect at the time they enrolled.
  • Read the course descriptions.
  • Transfer credits: You may transfer as many as 24 credits from the University of Baltimore's M.A. in Publications Design, with the approval of the program director or your adviser.

This 60-credit M.F.A. program requires the following:


Because certain courses require competency in page design and layout, image manipulation and video editing software, you may be required, based on an evaluation of your portfolio and academic background, to complete satisfactorily one or more of the following courses before beginning the regular sequence of courses:

  • Introduction to Web Development (PBDS 501)
  • Introduction to Graphic Design Principles (PBDS 502)
  • Workshop in Written Communication (PBDS 503)
  • Introduction to Digital Video (PBDS 602)

Note that only PBDS 602: Introduction to Digital Video can be counted as an elective toward the 60 credits required for the degree.

In addition, all IDIA courses (electives) require either a passing score on the Hypermedia Proficiency Exam (register online to take the exam) or a grade of B or better in PBDS 501: Introduction to Web Development.

Integrated Design (12 credits)

  • Integrated Design Studio I: Principles¬†(DESN 615)
  • Integrated Design Studio II: Typography (DESN 616)
  • Creative Concepts (DESN 617)
  • Theory of Visual Communication (DESN 723)

Advanced Writing Course (3 credits)

Choose one.

  • Editorial Style (PBDS 603)
  • Writing for the Marketplace (PBDS 604)
  • Public & Private Languages (PBDS 605)
  • Visual & Verbal Rhetoric (PBDS 610)
  • The Craft of Popularization (PBDS 611)
  • Screenwriting (CWPA 628)

Business Practices Course (3 credits)

Choose one.

  • Copyright & Publishing (PBDS 704)
  • Design-Business Link (PBDS 705)

Practicum (3 credits)

  • Practicum in Integrated Design (DESN 791)

Capstone (9 credits)

M.F.A. candidacy is a requirement for these courses.

  • Proseminar in Integrated Design (DESN 793)
    (This course is a prerequisite for the following course.)
  • Integrated Design Thesis, 6 credits (DESN 797)

Electives (30 credits)

Working with an adviser, choose courses that will strengthen your design skills. You can choose from among a variety of Publications Design (PBDS), Creative Writing & Publishing Arts (CWPA) and Interaction Design and Information Architecture (IDIA) courses. You can also choose management courses or illustration, photography, graphic design or production courses offered for graduate credit at the Maryland Institute College of Art.

M.F.A. Candidacy Requirements

  • competency in print, video and electronic design, as demonstrated by a portfolio evaluation and an oral examination of the portfolio
  • completion of all coursework except DESN 793: Proseminar in Integrated¬† Design and DESN 797: Integrated Design Thesis
  • successful completion of a written examination of the history, theory and concepts of design, as presented in several key books in the field
  • a minimum 3.0 GPA.
as of fall 2013