Master of Design is a two-year programme (120 ECTS). Students who complete the programme are well equipped for a professional career in design. Some students might also choose to pursue an academic career.
AHO has an international profile and the teaching language at Master's level is English.
The design programme nurtures a designer's attitude of ‘Shaping Futures’ in creative, valuable and responsible ways. It has a broad, holistic approach to design that goes beyond its traditional role, emphasising its relevance and importance within contemporary society. The core of the programme is defined by a particular philosophy as regards design methods and processes, aesthetics and communication. Furthermore, we emphasise the importance of placing our practice within an ethical, sustainable and critical socio-cultural framework. AHO aims to be at the forefront of the design field and achieves this through a close link between research and education, as well as close collaboration with the industry, private and public sector.
The studies are geared to meet the challenges facing today’s society and addresses how design can contribute to positive change and understanding, solve complex problems and unveil new opportunities. In sum, we educate adaptive, innovative, and communicative design professionals, while developing a broadly integrated approach to design processes, including collaborative skills and tools with which to assimilate multiple stakeholders.
The design programme at AHO is an integrated five-year master’s degree programme in which the students work on challenges across the fields of industrial design, interaction design and service design. The students are taught in all of these subject areas at foundation level and learn the basic principles, skills and knowledge in the design field. The foundation level, which covers the first three years of the programme, provides all students with the basic interdisciplinary expertise needed by the designers of the future. This expertise also forms a basis for students to make sound choices in terms of specialisation in the fields of industrial design, interaction design and service design at the master’s degree level. Systems oriented design is introduced early, and focused on in the last semester of the foundation level part of the programme. This provides students with the mindset and methods required to understand and deal with the increasing degree of complexity that the design field embraces.
The two last years of the programme at master’s degree level and the two-year international master’s degree allow students to choose between specialisation in service design, interaction design or industrial design. The programme offers room for students to choose their own approach to the design field and develop their own unique identities as designers.
Designers educated at AHO
- are capable of establishing an independent professional area of work, contribute with original angles of perception and solutions, and practise the discipline at a high international level;
- can develop concepts and solutions through design-related investigation, ideation, collaboration and projects;
- know the unique history of the subject, its position in society and are able to reflect on the subject’s cultural and technological preconditions today and looking forward;
- master the subject’s methods, tools and forms of expression and are able to use these in a targeted, professional and experimental way in creative processes;
- have knowledge and experience of research and development work;
- can communicate values and concepts, facilitate dialogue and interdisciplinary processes by applying a broad spectrum of design methods and tools;
- have the ability to reflect on their own work and transgress their framework of understanding;
- take responsibility for their own professional development and can use their knowledge and skills in new fields;
- can reflect on and position their own professional contribution in relation to ethical issues that arise when practising design;
- are able to take on different professional roles in a reflected manner and demonstrate good cooperation skills when working with other professional groups.
Graduates should be able to adopt a holistic approach to both problem solving and identifying new windows of opportunity. With people in focus and an empathic approach, you will be able to work with a wide range of different users, stakeholders and systems. AHO’s unique courses in systems oriented design familiarise students with methodology and approaches used to meet the complexity and systematic challenges in society, industry and culture. Designers from AHO should be able to take responsibility for the consequences of their practical training and projects, and take different users and technologies, ecology, nature and long-term sustainability into consideration in their work.
AHO's perspective is that good design creates aesthetic and functional products, services and experiences that delight and improve the lives of people and contribute to a resilient and long-term sustainable future.