BACHELOR OF FINE ARTS | BACHELOR OF ARTS + MINOR
Shape new technologies and design solutions for problems that matter and make the world better.
Our Bachelor of Fine Arts in Interaction Design (IxD) focuses on building compelling relationships between people and the systems around them. With two degree options for customized study, we focus on design in the context of technology, the designed world and the natural world. Moving beyond screen interfaces, Corcoran IxD is an incubator for design-based problem solving and the development of interactive spaces, products and services. Imagine, prototype and create concepts that ultimately shape people’s everyday interactions with the world.
Our students want to build compelling relationships between people and the systems around them and have demonstrated imagination and drive. The program is for designers who want to:
- Build new mobile experiences that reimagine the way people connect with the services they need
- Make the things we use and the ways we get around more sustainable
- Creatively rethink technology to better connect people and ideas
At the Corcoran, you’ll find yourself embedded in a creative community where designers, artists, photojournalists, musicians and performers connect in the classroom and beyond. You can take advantage of a world-class research institution at the George Washington University to engage in interdisciplinary practices that can expand your vision of what design can do and enhance your capacity to realize your ideas.
WHAT YOU'LL STUDY: THE DEGREES
Considerations of the social and environmental impact of interaction design are a fundamental component of our program and are critical to the future of the field. Students have the opportunity to develop their design practice in a real-world context by partnering with community organizations through our program’s innovative Engagement Lab. This curricular component enables students to embrace a human-centered collaborative approach to design.
The Corcoran offers two degree options in Interaction Design. Both degrees are built around the same strong core that engages students in critical thinking and problem-solving to reimagine how people interact with physical and digital environments. The curriculum focuses on key skills such as creative coding, prototyping, visualization, human-centered collaborative design and user research.
BFA IN INTERACTION DESIGN
The BFA in Interaction Design is a 78 credit, design-centered degree where students expand their art and design education with coursework in design and creative technologies. Students in this program also deepen their experience in human-centered design with time spent working in the program’s Engagement Lab. Creative and technical flexibility is a critical part of our design education. You’ll leave the program ready to embark on your career with experience and skill sets across a range of design and creative media.
BFA IN INTERACTION DESIGN + MINOR FIELD TRACK
Real-world design solutions rely on contextual understanding of sources like computer science for software development, ethnographic methods for user research and area studies for historical context of access and equity.
The BFA + Field Track includes the core studio curriculum (69 credits) plus 18 credits of study in a supportive field. This track is ideal if you know the field you want to work in (such as health care or international development) or want to build expertise in a related field (such as computer science or ethnographic research). This track is specifically structured to incorporate cross-disciplinary thinking into your design practice through the program.
Anticipated minor fields include but are not limited to:
- Computer Science
- Environmental Studies
- Clinical Management and Leadership
- Human Services and Social Justice
- Public Health
WHO YOU'LL STUDY WITH
Assistant Professor Jae Rhim Lee is an award-winning designer, entrepreneur and transdisciplinary artist whose living units and wearables reimagine basic life systems and propose alternative and occaisonally transgressive relationships between the body and the built and natural environment.
In her Infinity Mushroom Project, Lee combines scientific knowledge with artistic imagination, forming a new way of thinking about death and decompositon.
Our faculty are knowledgeable teachers who can provide expertise on the theory, background and practice of the interaction design field. Just as important, they are experienced designers themselves who provide real-world information to help students as they grow professionally and artistically.
WHERE YOU'LL GO
Once you complete the program you will be well positioned to pursue careers with the many companies looking for artists and designers with Interaction Design backgrounds, including:
- McKinsey & Company
- financial institutions
PROGRAM LEARNING OUTCOMES
Communication Design Skills: Students will be able to create and analyze visual and textual forms of communication to convey ideas and information with a sense of aesthetics, clarity and ethics. Students will be able to employ narrative skills to shape experiences for others.
Design Process: Students will be able to independently and collaboratively brainstorm and design interactive systems, objects, interfaces, services, user flows and multi-modal experiences.
Design Research Process: Students will demonstrate a knowledge of the history of design practices. Students will be able to independently and collaboratively undertake quantitative and qualitative user research as well as research into practical, historical and theoretical questions as a basis for design work.
Innovation: Students will be able to approach the creation of inventive and contextually appropriate solutions using a variety of methods: iteratively research, prototype, develop and analyze design solutions. Students will be able identify systemic challenges and produce original design responses that are reflective of their analytical, critical and creative capabilities and which reflect their creative perspective.
Professional Ethics and Skills: Students will demonstrate an understanding of their responsibility to their clients, audiences and users. They will be able to articulate and clarify needs, structure design challenges, solve problems creatively, and address conflict through the design process.
Evaluate impact of design solutions: Students will be able to approach design solutions with a focus on potential environmental and social impacts over their lifecycle as well as their capacity to contribute to equitable outcomes.
Collaborative problem-solving: Students will understand and practice design as a process that relies upon generating, developing and communicating ideas informed by and responsive to their context.
Understand relevant technologies and establish the capacity to continue to build technical skills as tools change.
IXD BFA + Minor Field Track:
Apply methodologies and knowledge developed within field track (outside area of emphasis) to design products and processes.
Corcoran Basement, Flagg Building
500 17th St, NW
Assistant Professor of Interaction Design
Undergraduate Advisor, Interaction Design