We teach the practice and theory of interaction design—designing products, services, and interactions to change human behavior and improve the world.
Our emphasis is on addressing humanitarian problems. We focus on problems that matter, and students learn to recontextualize design in the space of large-scale "wicked problems."
Founder Jon Kolko is recognized as a thought-leader in developing and advancing the role of interaction design in product development and social entrepreneurship. Our faculty are all world-class working practitioners.
Our program is affordable. Our annual tuition is just $15,000 for our one-year course, which runs 440 course hours. Compare this with other similar graduate programs that cost $60,000, $70,000, or even $80,000.
Our classes sizes are small, providing extensive face-time with professors and the opportunity to form lasting relationships with a growing support network.
We've developed a supportive, collaborative community of alumni to help current students succeed and to help one-another drive impact.
In a word, students who complete our program gain autonomy. This is a sense of entrepreneurial freedom—that your choices are not set or constrained, and that you have concrete skills to shape the world around you. These skills include qualitative research, synthesis and interpretation, sketching, the creation of storyboards and wireframes, entrepreneurial business modeling, service design blueprinting, and complex system diagramming. These skills represent the foundation of a career in product management, design strategy, interaction design, and social entrepreneurship.
More importantly, you'll gain an empathetic process and a unique, empathetic way of thinking about culture and technology. This process is broad, and can be used in corporate and consulting contexts, in startups or small businesses, and even in politics and government.
Design is for everyone, and our students have a variety of backgrounds. Some of our students are already designers, but most aren't. Our typical applicants have experience in marketing, engineering, fine arts, finance, or the service industry. Our program teaches design fundamentals in addition to advanced topics, in a rigorous, intense environment. There is no expectation that our students enter the program as designers; we take care of teaching that.
AC4D is a 440 course-hour program that runs from late August through early May.
Application for 2018-2019 will open on Oct 1, 2017. They are due by Jan 15, 2018.Learn more.
Our one year program costs $15,000. The first payment of $7,500 is due in the summer, prior to classes beginning, and the second payment is in January (at the half-way point).
AC4D is extraordinarily intense, time consuming and difficult. We’ve structured the program to include as much content and rich experience as possible and it requires a strong, formal commitment from students.
I am a cartoonist-turned-designer. My passion for cartooning started young with crumpled Calvin and Hobbes books and grew into design when I realized that designing something great can make more people genuinely smile than the punchline at the end of a strip. And it’s not just about smiling, it’s about improving the quality of life for everyone. Design is powerful like that. I love karaoke, video games, cartooning, traveling, and risk-taking. Speaking of risks—I graduated from Carnegie Mel...
Academics frequently conduct research as an end in itself. Practicing designers (sometimes known as “design researchers”) attempt to “use” the research to provoke new ideas. These practitioners have formalized a process of design-led innovation, where this applied ethnography is followed by reframing (looking at a situation in new or unexpected ways) and iterative ideation (trying…
Since we last week’s post, team KeyUp has been developing an MVP based on our learnings from last week, continuing to build relationships, and revising our story for the final AC4D presentations next week. First, we have been working on creating a library of videos of people who are currently in our highlighted careers of…