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Collaborative Design

A New Role for Creative Thinking

Kendall has always had a strong tradition of preparing students for careers in art and design. Today, the skills we teach are in higher demand even outside the creative fields. In collaborative environments all over the world, employers are looking for people who understand the design process, can apply it to real-life challenges and know how to communicate their ideas to the team. At Kendall, we’ve been helping students develop those same qualities for more than 80 years. Now our experience can become your edge with a BFA in Collaborative Design, the first of its kind in the nation.

Click here to learn more about the rising demand for design.

Who is this program for?

Collaborative design is open to anyone who’s a creative thinker – and that includes people who wouldn’t necessarily describe themselves as artists. While drawers, painters and sculptors are welcome to join the program, those who excel at math, science, music or other areas outside traditional design also bring value to the design process.

If you...
  • Like to solve problems
  • Are good at explaining things
  • Enjoy bringing people together
  • Have ideas to contribute
...Collaborative design could be your stepping-stone to an innovative career.

Design Discipline Minors

  • Industrial Design
  • Interior Design
  • Graphic Design
  • Furniture Design
  • Digital Media

What will you learn?

Though collaborative design may prepare you for a career in business, it’s not a business major. Our focus is on applying design thinking to systems and organizational structures and learning to collaborate, facilitate discussions and share ideas.

After completing the program, you will be able to:
  • Understand the range of design disciplines and their applications
  • Understand the role and appropriateness of research
  • Clarify a problem/need and develop a design brief
  • Understand systemic and design thinking/logic
  • Understand basic business components
  • Facilitate multidisciplinary teams
  • Be a good communication link between business and design activities
  • Ask good questions and exhibit listening skills
  • Interact with and communicate ideas to a range of audiences
  • Facilitate connection of design disciplines to business and nonprofit organizational needs
  • Be prepared for a master’s degree in a specialized area
  • Employ basic digital media interactive skills
  • Have a basic understanding of and skills in problem-solving


We strongly encourage internships to add breadth, depth and valuable experience to your education. Kendall maintains a broad regional network of design-focused organizations where internships may be arranged.

Make it
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