KCAD’s Bachelor of Fine Arts in Collaborative Design degree program transforms curious
individuals into “specialized generalists” capable of identifying, facilitating, and
communicating design solutions across a broad range of professional applications,
both independently and as part of a team.
Students will develop strong communication skills, an intimate awareness of how design
impacts sustainability and the economy, and an acute understanding of the range and
purpose of multiple design disciplines, making them invaluable change agents who can
leverage the power of design to meet the evolving needs of businesses and nonprofit
In the Collaborative Design degree program, you’ll engage in a design process that
blends focused listening and observation with integrative thinking and insight to
identify opportunities and solve problems. Using this process, you’ll uncover, facilitate,
and communicate design solutions to complex, systemic challenges across a broad range
of professional applications, working both independently and as part of a larger collaborative
team. You’ll also explore how design can positively impact sustainability and the
A blend of studio classes and a required minor in a specific design discipline that
piques your interest will help you understand, implement, and advocate for good design
wherever life leads you. You'll also round your education out with a wide range of general education courses
that will stimulate your curiosity, broaden your perspective, and inspire new creative
expressions. KCAD's flexible General Education Pathways model empowers you to direct your learning by exploring subjects you find most engaging
While earning a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Collaborative Design, you’ll develop strong
collaborative communication and research skills and gain hands-on experience applying
design thinking and systemic approaches to solve problems from a human-centered perspective
that will allow you to use design to meet the needs of businesses and nonprofit organizations.
You’ll also come away with the ability to leverage a variety of media, from print
to digital to interactive, to generate, communicate, and implement design solutions.
KCAD’s BFA in Collaborative Design continues the college’s rich legacy of preparing
students for successful careers in art and design. Today, the skills we teach are
in higher demand, and not just in creative fields, but outside of them as well. In
collaborative environments all over the world, employers are looking for people who
understand the design process, can apply it to real-life challenges, and know how
to communicate their ideas to a larger team or audience. At KCAD, we’ve been helping
students develop those same qualities for more than 80 years. Now, our experience
can become your edge.
As a Collaborative Design graduate, you’ll be primed for a variety of careers in traditional
design fields, businesses, and nonprofit organizations in addition to being able to
adapt to and thrive in a rapidly evolving and increasingly competitive job market.
You’ll also emerge well prepared to undertake graduate level study in a specialized
Possible careers include:
Design and Innovation Manager
User Experience Designer
Design Thinking Instructor
As a student in the Collaborative Design program, you’ll benefit from The Dow Center FlexLab, KCAD’s state-of-the-art digital fabrication facility featuring 3D printers and scanners,
laser cutting and vinyl cutting machines, wide format printers, and more; and the KCAD Library, which provides access to millions of books through the MeLCat shared library catalog
as well as access to specialized research databases and subscriptions to scholarly
In collaborative environments all over the world, employers are looking for people
who understand the design process, can apply it to real-life challenges and know how
to communicate their ideas to the team.
The Collaborative Design program will prepare you for a variety of careers in traditional
design fields, business, and nonprofit organizations.