Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences


Master Digital Design

Our one-year full-time programme is based in bustling Amsterdam - home to several of the world's leading design agencies. During your study, you'll work on exciting real-life design briefs in a studio setting. You'll be equally in close contact with top professionals from some of these agencies and studios.

The programme is centred around four main areas of expertise: Literacy, Research, Creation and Strategy. It also involves three projects, as well as a closing exhibition. In addition, the programme often invites established names of the design world for lectures and workshops and organises after-school events such as meetups.

Courses, projects and events partially overlap during the academic year, enabling you to establish your own connections between topics and to apply your competences in a studio setting.

Each area of expertise is linked to a track, attendance to all of which is compulsory.

The Literacy track focuses on methodologies for understanding, communicating, and critiquing a variety of design solutions, their uses and their socio-economical contexts. Its foundational course is Design Thinking. Intensive workshops will touch on topics such as Interaction Design, Experience Design and Interactive Storytelling, and other workshops may be organized to follow on from students’ needs and requests.

The Research track focuses on users and their needs, experiences, habits, and desires. It synthesizes models, best practices, and general ‘Design Knowledge’. Its foundational course is Design Research. Intensive workshops will touch on topics such as User Research and Field Research, and other workshops may be organized to follow on from students’ needs and requests.

The Creation track deals with prototyping, making and crafting digital artefacts, as well as programming how they interact with users, society and other objects. Its foundational course is Interaction Engineering. Intensive workshops will touch on specific techniques.

The Strategy track examines the ‘social life’ of design artefacts, their relation to the market and consumers, as well as their impact on future scenarios. Its foundational course is Design Ethics. Intensive workshops will touch on topics such as Business Modelling, Digital Disruption, and Future Service Design, and other workshops may be organized to follow on from students’ needs and requests.

The Project track deals with practical real-world assignments co-created with a network of industry partners. This track constitutes the backbone of the programme, and connects all the previous ones. The three projects are fast-paced, interactive design challenges of 6, 12 and 20 weeks respectively. They differ in duration, complexity and coaching intensity, as well as in the number of stakeholders involved. Project briefs reflect societal challenges, which you will work on under the supervision of the ‘client’ (project partner). You also benefit from regular feedback and coaching by our Knowledge Partners – professionals from leading Dutch design agencies who advise the students on their work and approach.

You are evaluated in two summative assessments (midterm and end), for 30 ECTs each. The two summative assessments consider all the tracks of the programme, with deliverables and indicators specified in the course catalogue. Other formative assessments are provided by each lecturer through feedback given throughout the tracks.

For detailed information about the courses for this programme, please refer to the course catalogue .


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Published by  Faculty of Digital Media and Creative Industries 5 January 2021