Master of Design/MBA Dual Degree

The first program of its kind in the world, IIT’s Master of Design/Master of Business Administration (MDes/MBA) marks an important milestone in the co-evolution of design, management, and innovation. Offered in conjunction with the IIT Stuart School of Business, the MDes/MBA dual-degree program combines graduate professional education in both design and business. As design becomes regarded as an essential business resource, professional education that links the two fields is becoming increasingly important.

“Today my title at the Mayo Clinic Center for Innovation is Service Designer, but it doesn’t begin to speak to what I actually do. I think change maker—or some might say meddler—is a little more appropriate, because our charge is not just to design the future of health care, but to make it.”

Matthew Gardner
Service Designer, Mayo Clinic Center for Innovation
MDes/MBA 2009

The dual-degree program integrates the Institute of Design’s user-centered, methods-based approach to innovation with core management education in marketing, project accounting, and organizational behavior from IIT’s Stuart School of Business. This course of study provides students with a unique and powerfully broad perspective on the innovation process. Upon graduation, MDes/MBA graduates are uniquely qualified to lead collaborative, interdisciplinary, innovation initiatives in global organizations.

Students with a design background can be awarded both the MDes and MBA after two years plus one quarter, rather than the three years of continuous study required if they are pursued separately. Students without a bachelor degree in design must complete an intensive two-semester foundation sequence before beginning the main MDes program.  MBA courses can be taken during this time.

Those interested in applying for this degree must also apply with the Stuart School of Business here.

* The Foundation program is a two-semester introductory course for students who need additional experience in design before beginning their graduate degree. Students without an undergraduate design degree are required to enroll. Click here for more information. Please note that the MDes degree is not offered in part-time or online formats.
* The Foundation program is a two-semester introductory course for students who need additional experience in design before beginning their graduate degree. Students without an undergraduate design degree are required to enroll. Click here for more information. Please note that the MDes degree is not offered in part-time or online formats.
Download International Student Financial Affidavit
Download International Student Financial Affidavit

Application requirements

Important next steps: Apply to IIT Institute of Design first and indicate your interest in this dual MBA/MDes program. Applicants admitted to the MDes program will then be advised to submit an application to the Master of Business Administration program. Please note the following:

  • Applicants must pay the application fee for both programs. IIT Institute of Design does not waive application fees, and IIT Stuart provides limited waivers for students who attend Open House events.
  • Applicants must provide a separate professional statement for each program.
  • Any requests for test score waivers must be made through each program.
  • Any available fellowships or scholarships are awarded separately by program.
  • Applicants can submit the same letters of recommendation used for the IIT Institute of Design application to accompany the IIT Stuart application.

 

  • Completed on-line application form (instructions for submitting remaining materials included)
  • Four-year bachelor’s degree from an accredited educational institution with a minimum cumulative GPA 3.0/4.0 or equivalent
  • Official transcript from institution where degree was earned
  • Completed statement of education and career goals
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Resume of work experience: 2-5 years typical
  • Portfolio (5-15 pages) for applicants with a design degree in industrial/product or communication design
  • Interview (in person, telephone or Skype) if deemed necessary by the Institute of Design
  • GRE (minimum 310/340, 3.0/6.0) or GMAT (minimum 600/800, 3.0/6.0) for applicants without a degree in industrial/product or communication design. GRE and GMAT scores are considered valid for five years from the testing date. If your scores are more than five years old at the time your application is reviewed, new scores will be required
  • TOEFL (minimum 100) or IETLS (minimum 7) for international applicants without a bachelor’s degree from an accredited English-speaking university. TOEFL and IELTS scores are considered valid for two years from the testing date. If your scores are more than two years old at the time your application is reviewed, new scores will be required.
  • Application fee of $100