Content outcomes

Students are trained in concept design, co-design, strategic design and design research. They learn skills needed to capture and reframe design briefs and problems to justify their insights and make well-grounded design concepts. They learn to construct these concepts with models and prototypes of different kinds and to test their design ideas through research. They also learn strategic skills needed to become entrepreneurs or to manage innovation in business settings, as well as co-design skills to manage social innovation in organizations and the public sector. Studies are organized in three different competence areas that all include several modules ranging in topics and mode of working. Project-based learning is emphasized, the modules often include a project to take the design inquiry into real world contexts, and the competence areas also arrange advanced project modules each year.

Skill outcomes

The CoID programme perceives design as a human-centred and multidisciplinary collaborative activity. It provides its students creative skills in problem-setting, problem-solving, and teamwork. Over the duration of the programme, students develop an understanding of design in relation to contemporary culture and to the innovation system, be it local or global, private or public. The students achieve an ability to design, lead design work, and collaborate with non- designers, and thus gain the skills to shape change in contemporary communities and companies.

Academic skills

The CoID programme fosters students’ skills in presentation, writing and visualisation. Students gain an understanding of design research methods and learn to apply them in academic, societal and business contexts. The programme provides the students with skills needed to continue in doctoral studies. These include skills in academic research and analysis of information, in applying these in ill-structured and ambiguous design and research tasks, and in reporting their findings rigorously.

Education content

The CoID programme is based on design-based problem setting, elaboration, problem-solving and communication. An essential part of the education is project-based. The contents of the education cover: design thinking and communication; briefing; concept design and prototyping; research, implementation and evaluation; and new and emerging themes in design. These skills are applied all the way from product development for business and industry to problems originating from the public sector and non-governmental organisations.


The CoID programme’s learning community is international and multicultural. Furthermore, students are encouraged to apply for international exchange studies or internships and gain experience in international competitions, exhibitions, conferences, and trade fairs.

Who will you become?

Design researcher

You will focus on either constructive design research or artistic research, design driven exploration on emerging technologies and materials, as well as action research oriented development of new design methods and approaches.

Learn more


Build your own career

Create your own profile by taking a minor programme, going on international exchange or studying in another Aalto School or University in Finland.

Feel more like a textile designer? Check out our Fashion and Collection Design Master programme.