Every other year, this unique, studio-centric MFA in experience design (XD) admits a cohort of eight to twelve talented students from varied backgrounds, including all areas of design, art, architecture and engineering. Students in the XD program form a studio collective to complete an array of XD projects under the direct guidance of CU faculty and professionals in the field, many who provide project content. As a result of this industry involvement, XD graduates are prepared to enter the field of experience design.
In addition to preparing students for employment, the MFA in XD exposes students to new ways of seeing the reality around them, new ways of creating, resolving problems, expressing ideas and telling stories. Essentially, the MFA in XD is a course of study in using a new language.
The program also features a "design center" where students and faculty accept real-time XD problems posed by outside entities (including contracted projects with commercial firms) and solve them via a collaborative, studio approach. The work of this center provides a service to various communities and is a practical extension of learning for students.
While the MFA in XD advances a collaborative studio environment where teamwork is held in high regard, we consider it a mission of the program to foster the individual talents, visions, and interests of each student in the program. The program will make every effort to provide a vessel where individual students may gestate their own concepts, allowing them room to explore, test and innovate with the support of studio spaces, technology, cohort students, faculty and industry professionals.
Connections to Industry
Some of the program's professional advisors, endorsers and participants include:
- Jim Doyle of WET Design, makers of the famed Bellagio Fountains in Las Vegas
- Dave Cooperstein and Al Cross of PGAV Destinations, designers of Sea World and the NASA Space Museum
- Electrosonic, makers of the live video projection technology for Disney's Magic Kingdom Castle
- Adam Bezark, Phil Hettema and Steve Ryan, commercial producers of live experiences with credits at Disney, Universal and Landmark Entertainment
- Drew Campbell, Creative Director at International Resorts in Singapore
- Baam Productions
- Super 78
- Bolder Interactive, Technology Designers for Themed Experiences
The professional MFA in experience design admits a new cohort of 8–12 students every other fall semester. Applications will be accepted on a rolling deadline for fall 2020 entry beginning in July 2019.
Required Courses and Credits
|Fall Semester||Credit Hours|
|TDXD 5005||Design Theory||3|
|TDXD 5105||Collaboratory in Experience Design 1||3|
|TDXD 5500||Experience Design Atelier 1: Design Evolution and Expression||3|
|THTR 5213||Improvisation I: Thinking On Your Feet||3|
|TDXD 5700||Experience Design Atelier 2: Introduction to Design Graphics||3|
|TDXD 6105||Collaboratory in Experience Design 2||3|
|TDXD 6210||Storytelling for XD||3|
|TDXD 6901||XD Implementation and Engineering||3|
|TDXD 5805||Professional Portfolio 1||6|
|TDXD 6910||The Experience Design Center||6|
|TDXD 6500||Experience Design Atelier 3: Packaging the Design Presentation||3|
|TDXD 6805||Professional Portfolio 2||6|
|TDXD 6555||Experience Design Technology||3|
|Total Credit Hours||54|