Integrated, Interdisciplinary, International

In the last decade, the idea of design has made quite a name for itself. The scope of things to design has become broader and is no more just limited to everyday objects. Social structures, communication processes, and services are also characterized, determined, and shaped by design. …more

KISD offers its students the possibility to explore and create the diversity and complexity of design in a profound and systematic manner. During the studies, future designers acquire a practical and theoretical design knowledge, which qualifies them for present and future spheres of activity in design.For more than 30 years, KISD has been offering its students a unique project-oriented learning and research environment aiming at strenghtening the students’ individual interests. Therefore, all study courses at KISD can be described as integrative, interdisciplinary, and international.

Integrative Studies

Design of real life situations is a complex process that is subject to the integration of different design-specific perspectives and the integration of theory and practice. Since its foundation, KISD has relied on a structure that consistently overcomes traditional design boundaries and combines different design approaches, practices, and techniques.

Interdisciplinary Studies

Design is an integral part of our everyday lives and knowledge cultures and is thus incorporated into complex structures, which can only be regarded and developed by means of different scientific and design-related disciplines. Thus, design is in itself interdisciplinary.

In twelve areas of expertise in the Bachelor and four Thematic Clusters in the Master KISD students learn about the prospects of design-related subjects and disciplines throughout their studies. These include, among others, the following sciences: engineering, materials, economics, semiotics, sociology, psychology, culture, as well as information, media and communication. Interdisciplinary cooperation can be explicitly tested and becomes tangible by numerous project works with our cooperation partners in industry and science.

International Studies

Design processes and artefacts are locally and globally effective. Hence, KISD pursues a distinct internationalization strategy– cross-cultural phenomena and processes covering projects with international partners and guests. A total share of currently 40% of international students, an international cooperation with more than 45 schools of design, and a close network of strategic partners inside and outside Europe reflect our strong ambition of an internationally-shaped student life at KISD. We understand experiencing the unfamiliar as supporting awareness and sensitivity to cultural difference as an influential aspect of the studies.

KISD Degree Programs

In 2008, the internationally successful »Kölner Modell« was transformed from a diploma degree program into the consecutive Bachelor and Master Degree Program Integrated Design. Ever since, it has been constantly further developed. Today, we offer this degree program in two study courses, combining different design and scientific approaches and design-related disciplines in a flexible structure while systematically expanding interfaces with business, sciences, and research. More information on our Bachelor Degree Program »Integrated Design« can be found here. A depiction of the Master Degree Program »Integrated Design Research« can be found here.

The Master Degree Program »Product Design and Process Development«, which was developed by mechanical and industrial engineers from Gummersbach campus, is characterized by its project-oriented and interdisciplinary approach. In addition, this degree program is characterized by a project-oriented cooperation with industry as well as interdisciplinary research projects. More information can be found here.