A Historic, Top-Ranked Industrial Design Program
The Pratt Institute Industrial Design Department, founded in 1934 by designer Donald Dohner, is the second oldest program of its kind in the country; the graduate program in industrial design, established some years later in 1975, is the oldest, largest graduate program devoted to studying the application of design to industry.
Today, the master's program at the Pratt Institute Industrial Design Department ranks fourth nationally by the Design Futures Council's "Design Intelligence" report. Coursework focuses on building design skills within the context of contemporary culture, and preparing students for careers in a broad range of fields, including product, transportation, and furniture design.
Notable alumni of Pratt's Industrial Design Department include Charles Pollack, Bruce Hanna, and Ralph Appelbaum. The cutting-edge and iconic design of Cuisinart, the GM Corvette C5, the Kawasaki MK9 motorcycle, and the IKEA Kila lamp can all be attributed to contemporary and past Pratt Institute alumni.
Master of Industrial Design Degree with a Practical Emphasis
The 2-year Master of Industrial Design (M.I.D.) program includes coursework, hands-on design workshops, research, and internships that help students build industrial design skills that can be applied in many fields. Students are taught not just basic design skills, but also conceptualization and industrial production skills to aid in future careers.
In the program, students study and learn to integrate basic design techniques in functional everyday objects. Students then create their own designs in the industrial design shop facilities, working with woods, metals, plastics, paper, foams, paints, and finishes. Curriculum covers a wide spectrum of industrial design areas, including tabletop, automotive, furniture, and packaging design, to name a few.
Inclusive Industrial Design Program for Students of All Academic Backgrounds
Previous experience in industrial design isn't required for entrance into the program, though some prerequisite courses may be required for students who need to strengthen their art or design techniques. Current students come from a variety of academic and professional backgrounds.
Flexible and Customizable Industrial Design Curriculum
Students in the Master of Industrial Design program have 7 years to complete all 48 credits required for the degree. First-year students complete a structured course schedule, learning the basics of design, color, project development, and computer-aided design. Second-year students study in-depth design concepts and theory while tailoring their degrees through specialized electives focusing on furniture, product, transportation, tabletop, or exhibition design. Throughout coursework, students will study special topics in design, such as social responsibility and cultural heritage in design.
Candidates must complete and defend a thesis in an area of their choosing in order to receive a degree. The thesis allows students the greatest freedom in exploring a topic or field of their choice. Students must also demonstrate their mastery of design skills in the thesis, such as design methodology, drawing, rendering, and modeling, making the thesis the culmination of students' industrial design education at Pratt.
Portfolio-Based Admissions Process for Industrial Design Students
The Master of Industrial Design program admits students from all backgrounds, and no previous experience in industrial design is required. In order to be accepted to the program, all students must submit a print portfolio demonstrating examples of their own work using drawings and basic graphic design as a communication tool.
A review board judges portfolios based on students' creative potential. Additionally, students must submit an application, letters of recommendation, and transcripts to complete the admissions process at the Pratt Institute.
Cutting-edge Facilities and Studios Specifically for Industrial Design Students
The industrial design department's facilities are where students put coursework into practice by learning to apply various techniques to a wide variety of materials. Two wood shops and a metal shop are fully-equipped with saws, sanders, drills, lathes, benders, and drafting tables where students assemble and construct their projects. Several full-time lab technicians are available to help students with fabrication and material techniques.
The Rapid Prototyping Lab is where students build 2- and 3-D prototypes of their own designs from foams, plastics, vinyl, and paper. Professional-quality equipment includes laser cutters, digital paper cutters, and cutting-edge Dimension 3-D printers.
Additionally, students have access to a photography studio and 2 computer labs dedicated to industrial design.
Employment Opportunities for Industrial Design Students
The versatile, well-rounded industrial design curriculum means that Pratt graduates are prepared to enter a variety of design fields. Graduates work in varied fields such as electronic, toy, consumer product, parks and playground, mass transportation, and industrial product design. Alumni of Pratt Institute's Industrial Design Department currently work for Adidas, Bausch and Lomb, IBM, Tiffany and Co., General Motors, Nike, and the Museum of Natural History, to name a few.
Working Design Professionals and Academics
All faculty members in the Pratt Institute Industrial Design Department are practicing design professionals from a variety of backgrounds. Their expertise spans from lighting and architecture design, to video, packaging, medical equipment, and furniture design.Adjunct associate professor Karen Stone is director of design at Knoll, Inc. Harvey Bernstein, adjunct professor, has won multiple awards in lighting, exhibit, and furniture design, including a Gold product design award from "ID Magazine." Constantin Boym, chairperson of the Industrial Design Department, is the co-founder of Boym Partners. His firm has created products for many companies including Alessi, Swatch, Flos and Vitra.
New York City: A Stimulating Environment for Design Students
Industrial design classes take place at the Pratt Institute Brooklyn campus in Clinton Hill. Pratt, which currently enrolls about 1,400 graduate students, also has satellite campuses in Manhattan and Utica.
Pratt Institute's New York City locale is an inspirational cultural venue for design students, who take advantage of the city's diverse population, museums, libraries, and nightlife. The city also offers internship opportunities at major corporations and cultural facilities for industrial design students.
Degrees & Awards
|Master's Degree Requirements||Portfolio, letters of recommendation|
TOEFL Paper score: 575
TOEFL IBT score: 90
Tuition & Fees
|Financial award applicants must submit:||FAFSA|
|Application deadlines for financial awards||February 1|
|Types of financial support available||
Health Care Benefits
Scholarship and/or loans
|Black or African American||Not Reported|
|White or Caucasian||20%|
|American Indian or Alaska Native||Not Reported|
|Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander||Not Reported|
|Two or more races||1.59%|
|Focus of faculty research:||Universal design, design ethics, sustainability in design|
|Externally sponsored research expenditures last year:||0|