The Design Master’s Degree

The definitive program for tomorrow’s designers, in partnership with Furman University.

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How does a Master's program boost your career in design?

Creative skills, a job-getting portfolio, and a Master’s degree. Ad agencies are more interested in your portfolio. Brands are interested in both your portfolio and your degree. Colleges and universities require a master’s degree to hire you as a professor, regardless of your professional experience. You’ll have it all: a portfolio from the School of Ideas, the most award-winning portfolio school in the world, and a Master’s degree from prestigious Furman University.
Dave WernerSenior Experience Design Lead at Adobe
AND a M.AD Design Grad.
"It is crazy to be considered part of web design history...it feels like just yesterday I was walking into Hank's office asking permission to make a design portfolio website."

The Design Master's Curriculum

Design courses at M.AD & Furman University.
Like learning a new language, the best way to learn your trade is through total immersion. The focus of the program is to drive your career forward by offering you world-class experience in social strategy and media communication. And it all happens with an innovative curriculum of courses like these:
  • Ideas First
  • Introduction to Design
  • Typography as Message (Furman University)
  • Symbols, Metaphors, and Content
  • Publications & Editorial Design
  • Strategic Innovation Project / Service Design
  • Design History, Modernism, Criticism & Theory
  • Experiential Design
  • Portfolio Development (Furman University)
  • Argument and Visual Narrative (Furman University)
Want to know what else you’ll be learning? Learn more about the courses you’ll take in the course brochure.

Our Partnership

How we work with Furman to run the program.

Students spend the first summer term (8 weeks, June – August) at Furman University in Greenville, South Carolina. Classes focus on type, design, and rhetoric. Additional evening programming enhances team building, inclusion, inspiration and confidence.Greenville housing: Students live on campus in an apartment setting with a total of four students per apartment.

Housing at Furman costs $1250 for the entire 8 weeks. Meals are not included.

The next 11 months, October – September, are spent taking classes at MAD in Atlanta. Students take four courses a week. Courses are taught by industry professionals. Assignments focus on the real-world skills needed to strategize, concept and execute traditional, digital and social advertising campaigns. Students also participate in weekly networking sessions with a leader in the advertising and design industry. You’ll graduate with a portfolio of projects that demonstrate your creative ability and a network of industry connections.

Students live in the Atlanta area during the terms they are in school at the School of Ideas. Housing in the Atlanta area is the student’s responsibility. The school has a list of suggested housing options located within a few blocks of the school and roommate list. Contact your admissions advisor for more information.

Students spend their final term October – December completing the coursework for their practicum and developing their portfolio. The location is determined by the student’s interests and career goals. This term can be completed in Atlanta or getting hands-on experience in a top advertising agency in the US or abroad. You will graduate with a portfolio and earn a masters degree granted by Furman University.

The NoM.AD Experience

Our students get real-world opportunities to work with leading agencies around the world.
This program gives students the opportunity to study and intern internationally. You can even opt to take classes inside an agency…or intern at a leading company in New York, Tokyo, Berlin, and other cities around the world. There are dozens of opportunities available to our Design Master’s students. You could work with:

Teachers Who Really Know What They’re Doing

Truly stand-out designers aren’t just masters of the technical…they understand the wider creative process. They know the context of their work, and excel at collaborating with other talented artisans and creatives. So how do you learn those intangible traits that will put you over the top—in addition to the hard skills that will allow you to create digital gold? It helps to have a mentor who’s been there themselves.
Adenike O. AkinbisehinSenior Creative at The Conscious Creative
AND M.AD Design Grad.
"You’re all in this together. You have your doubts and your fears and insecurities but you also have your talents and your creative ideas. Who better to support you than the people who are going through the same thing you’re going through?"

Study in Atlanta

Hidden at the end of Bennet Street lies Atlanta’s hidden gem: a revolutionary campus training the next generation of creative innovators. And just wait until you see the inside (it’s more like an agency than a school)…

There is a Maker’s Studio at the school for design students to build their 3D models. Students often have real projects from outside clients, ranging from retail product packaging to experiential space design. And naturally, the school is an important part of the design community. MODA (Museum of Design Atlanta} is partnered with our school. AIGA (American Institute of Graphic Arts) is also closely involved and holds many exhibits at the school. Students develop a huge network of industry contacts.

Schedule A Tour At Any M.AD Campus

Can’t find the right place for you? Check out our Worldwide Locations.

How To Apply

The application is as creative as the career.
Four Stages to Apply
Step 1

The application is as creative as the career.

Enter your information and register for your M.AD School of Ideas account.
Step 2

Choose a city, program, and start date

Select the school you are most interested in right now. Should you change your mind later on, you can easily change your application.
Step 3

Follow the process laid out in the application portal

Show us who you are as a creative thinker. Share examples of things you’ve created.. Or do one of our fun creative exercises. Finally, schedule an introductory meeting with your Admissions Advisor.
Step 4

Review and Submit

Make sure all your information is correct, and that you’ve paid your application fee. We’ll get back to you soon!

Our Next Cohort is Starting Soon

Program Starts: July 2 | Application Deadline: May 24

Important Program Information

Tuition
 
Tuition per term is $8250. $41,250 total for the five-term master’s degree program. Students enrolled in the program may be eligible for financial aid through graduate-level Federal aid programs.
Financial Aid & Scholarships
We work tirelessly to make MAD affordable for students of all backgrounds. For our American students, federal loans generally cover tuition costs. We also offer a variety of scholarships.
International Students
In the past decades, students have come to us from every corner of the world. If you’re worried about getting here, never fear: you’ll likely be able to attend the campus of your choice. Click for more about the visa process.

Have A Question? Reach Out.

Career advice with no strings attached.
Our admissions team love to chat with people like you—answering questions, proposing solutions, and making plans for a creative future. An advisor can help you figure out what’s next in your creative adventure. Maybe that means a Master’s at M.AD. Maybe it’s ice fishing in Kathmandu. Your advisor can help you work it all out.

Download The Course Brochure

Crucial information about the Art Direction program.
  • Exclusive video content
  • Design career facts
  • Average salaries
  • Information on co-ops and internships
  • Example projects for real brands
  • Detailed application process

The Creative Network

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Schedule a Call

Find out more about our admissions process and take the first step towards your dream career today

Book a Tour

 
 
 

Ready for a new career? Apply by May 24

Get the training you need to be a creative leader. Learn from the best. Develop your skills. Become who you’re meant to be.