Jun 13, 2024  
2023-2024 Undergraduate Catalog 
2023-2024 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Industrial Design Major, B.S.

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Department of Industrial Design  

College of Aerospace, Computing, Engineering, and Design   

  Available Program Format(s): In-Person  

About the Program

Industrial Designers create and develop product ideas and then communicate those ideas to clients and production entities through technical drawings, concept and final renderings, mock-ups, models, and prototypes.

The curriculum at MSU Denver prepares students for professional design practice by teaching graphic and verbal presentation skills, as well as hands on technical skills, to enhance their innate creativity. Collaborative projects with other disciplines and industry partners are a vital part of the curriculum and typically occur in the design studio classes. Students also complete a professional internship as their senior experience to further enhance the real world learning the department strives for. Students are required to pass through a portfolio review process at the end of the sophomore year to allow registration for upper-division studio courses, thus maintaining the quality of the program’s graduates. The details of this process are outlined on the department website (msudenver.edu/industrial-design) and available in hard copy at the department office, located in the Aerospace and Engineering Sciences building, suite 200. Graduates with an industrial design major earn a bachelor of science degree. A minor in industrial design is also available.

The program is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD) and works with the Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA) to enhance the profession. The department has an active student IDSA chapter and faculty involved in the national leadership of IDSA. Through this solid foundation of an accredited curriculum, as well as real world learning opportunities, the program’s graduates are well equipped to meet the challenges of the competitive, industrial design industry.

Student Outcomes

To the standard of an entry level professional designer, graduating students should be able to: 

  • Perform design research that contributes to the definition and solution of design problems. 
  • Formulate multiple creative design solutions for a given problem, assess those concepts and select the most appropriate final design. 
  • Demonstrate proficient skills in sketching and rendering with appropriate media, technical drawing, 3-D physical and computer modeling, and prototyping. 
  • Develop final design solutions to optimize appropriate use of materials, manufacturing processes, user safety and marketability. 
  • Prepare presentations that demonstrate quality visual organization, verbal skills, writing proficiency and professionalism. 
  • Produce designs that address human-centered design and demonstrate an understanding of diverse cultural and global contexts.

General Degree Requirements

To earn a degree, students must satisfy all requirements in each of the four areas below, in addition to their individual major requirements. 

Program Requirements

  • A total of 120 semester hours are required for graduation. 
  • A grade of “D-” or better is required for each course in this program to count toward the bachelor’s degree. Students should note that programs differ in the minimum grade required. 
  • A minor is not required for this program.

General Studies Requirements: 33 credits

Students should consult the General Studies Requirements  for a list of courses that fulfill the General Studies Requirements for degree completion.  


* Students will fulfill the global diversity requirement by taking an approved course within one of the following categories: arts and humanities; historical; natural and physical sciences; or social and behavioral sciences. 

Ethnic Studies & Social Justice Requirement: 0 or 3 credits

  • Students should consult the Ethnic Studies & Social Justice Graduation Requirement  for a list of courses that fulfill the ESSJ Requirement for degree completion.  
  • Many programs include courses that meet this requirement. Students should consult with their advisor to determine what program courses may fulfill this requirement.

Senior Experience: 3 credits

Summary of Requirements

General Studies Requirements 33 credits
ESSJ Requirement 0-3 credits
Major Requirements 83 credits
Senior Experience 3 credits
Unrestricted Electives 0-14 credits
Total for the Industrial Design Major, B.S. 120 credits

Required courses for the major may also count for General Studies and ESSJ requirements, so the total credits listed may be greater than the number required to complete the degree. Therefore, it is important that you work with your advisor to make sure you are meeting requirements for your degree.

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