MEDes – Master of European Design

Extent of the minor in ECTS credits: 60 ECTS in BA and 60 ECTS in MA, total 120 ECTS

Teacher in charge of the minor: Professor Peter McGrory

Language of instruction: English, Swedish, German, French, Italian and Portugese

Target group (for whom the minor is meant): BA students at the Department of Design

Limitations for participation: Application based, 2 - 6  Bachelor’s student from the Department of Design (pls. see the chapter Applying to a minor)

Description

The Master of European Design (MEDes) is a study programme offered by a network of seven leading European design schools. MEDes in Finland is a minor studies programme for the students of the Department of Design that spans over the whole study time.

During the five years of studies (three years of Bachelor’s studies and two years of Master’s studies), MEDes student lives and studies in three different schools and countries. In the first and second year, students study at their home institution. The third year of Bachelor’s studies is the first exchange year abroad, which results in a Bachelor’s thesis prepared at the partner institution, and in close contact with the examiners for the Bachelor’s degree at the home institution. The second year abroad is the first year of the Master’s degree. After the two years abroad, the students return to their home institution in the fifth year to reflect upon and to synthesise the diverse experiences and to work on their final Master’s project and/or thesis. One of the MEDes program’s rules is that the studies must end in the same university they started.

MEDes offers to its students means to gain insight into different design approaches, ability to adapt to various systems whilst remaining critical and testing own thoughts and methods in these multifaceted working environments. Spending altogether two years abroad during the Bachelor’s studies and Master’s studies and studying in three different educational systems helps to build confidence, language competencies are extended and professional and social skills are improved.

Important part of the MEDes activities is the network itself. MEDes students, professors, coordinators and alumni gather together once a year for an annual workshop in one of the participating schools. MEDes gives students both professional and social network which carries over the study years.

Structure of the minor

In Aalto University MEDes programme is available as an extended minor. This means that the extent of the minor is 60 ECTS in both Bachelor’s and Master’s degree, 120 ECTS in total. In Bachelor’s degree the MEDes studies are placed as minor studies and elective studies (total max. 40 ECTS) and also in student’s major studies  (20 ECTS) according to student’s PSP (Personal study plan). In Master’s degree MEDes studies are placed as elective studies (30 ECTS) and in advanced major studies (the rest 30 ECTS) according to student’s PSP. 

During their stay abroad, the students follow the curriculum of the particular partner universities. Students will follow a learning agreement which is based on the personal study planning discussions, and approved by both of the institutions.

MEDes - Master of European Design; 60 ECTS in Bachelor Studies and &= ECTS in Master's Studies at one of the Following Partner Universities

  • GSA The Glasgow School of Art, Department of Product Design, Glasgow, UK
  • LES ATELIERS École nationale supérieure de creation industrielle, Paris, France
  • POLIMI Politecnico di Milano, Milano, Italy
  • KISD Köln International School of Design, Cologne, Germany
  • KONSTFACK Univeristy College of Arts, Crafts and Design, Stockholm, Sweden
  • AVEIRO University of Aveiro, Aveiro, Portugal

Applying to a minor

Number of available places

Annually 2-6 Bachelor’s student from the Department of Design are selected to the programme.

Application process and selection criteria

The applicants must be first year bachelor students (in very specific cases also second year students can be considered). Application deadline is by the end of January and the application material should include a study transcript and a letter of motivation and a mini-portfolio if possible (it is understood that students after only 4 months of studies are not able to present a wide portfolio). Applicants should have a good command of some of the languages of the programme. Application process includes an interview. The head of the program has responsibility of the selection procedure. The acceptance to the MEDes programme concerns both BA and MA studies. The students do not have to apply again in the MA level. However, the student is not allowed to start the MA studies until the BA degree is completed.

Coordinator of the minor at Aalto ARTS: Aila Laakso

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