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The SASD MPS curriculum provides experience in design thinking, leadership, and collaborative problem solving. In developing solutions, we consider innovation and change, organization and human resources, and suppliers, distributors, and markets. The business courses develop management skills in six specific areas: leadership, strategy, marketing, operations, finance, and legal.

The program explores three essential questions:

  • What is design management?
  • How does design management fit into my career?
  • How do I apply this in the world?

Curriculum


First Semester
DSNMG 400 Collaborative Design Studio I – 2 credits
DSNMG 410 Design Management I – 3 credits
MKTG 600 Marketing Concepts (Marketing) – 3 credits
MGMT 600 Leadership & Management (Management) – 3 credits

Second Semester
DSNMG 401 Collaborative Design Studio II – 2 credits
DSNMG 411 Design Management II – 3 credits
BLAW 600 Legal Environment of Business and Ethics (Law) – 3 credits
DSNMG 599 Special Projects – 2 credits
DSNMG 598 Internship or Coop – 1 credit

Third Semester
DSNMG 500 Collaborative Design Studio III – 2 credits
DSNMG 510 Design Management III – 3 credits
ACCT 535 Financial Accounting (Finance) – 3 credits
ITKM 600 Information Systems & Technology – 3 credits

Fourth Semester
DSNMG 501 Collaborative Design Studio IV – 2 credits
DSNMG 511 Thesis/Design Management IV – 3 credits
DSNMG 598 Internship or Coop – 1 credit
MGMT 652 Small Business & Entrepreneurship (Strategy) – 3 credits
or
DSNMG 580X, New Product Commercialization – 3 credits

Course Descriptions

Collaborative Design Studio I DSNMG 400
Design Management is an inter-disciplinary field that combines various forms of design including graphic design and branding, interior design and architecture, industrial design, and fashion and textile design. Collaborative Design Studio I will begin to equip students with the skills they need to work with cross-functional teams. This is done through client-based design projects that originate from local Fortune 500 and other global organizations. Students will learn communication, team building, and leadership skills as they hone their design talents.

Design Management I DSNMG 410
Design Management is a multifaceted, organic discipline whose exact definition can differ between organizations and Design Managers. In Design Management I, students will explore various definitions of Design Management with the goal of defining their own course of study. By reading and writing about relevant case studies, students will examine a wide variety of applications of design management. Students will be required to present their description of design management by the end of the term.

Marketing MKTG 600
This course explores the process of planning and executing the conception, pricing, promotion, and distribution of ideas, goods, and services to create exchanges that satisfy individual, organizational, and societal objectives. The underpinnings of marketing discipline will be taught through text, case studies, articles, and class discussion. Mastery of these principles will come through individual and group assignments to create marketing solutions for real-world products.

Leadership & Management MGMT 600
This course will introduce students to the primary tenets of leadership and management. Successful organizations foster innovation and efficiency. Students will evaluate the dynamics related to realizing organizational progress through the effective and efficient use of talent, structure, culture, methods, and technology. In addition to the required textbooks, students will research industry journals as a way to evaluate the application of leadership and management techniques in real settings across various industries.

Collaborative Design Studio II DSNMG 401
Building on the foundation formed in Collaborative Design Studio I, students will again be grouped in inter-disciplinary teams to complete an innovative, client-based design project. The projects for this course will focus the students’ attention on the triple bottom line: profitability, sustainability, and responsibility.

Design Management II DSNMG 411
As the student’s concept of design management deepens, they will begin to explore the implications that design management has on an organization. Design Management II will describe the six core principles of the program: Marketing, Leadership, Finance, Legal, Operations, and Strategy, as well as the triple bottom line: Profitability, Responsibility, and Sustainability. Students will learn the ripple effect their design decisions have on an organization as they broaden their understanding of the filed of design management.

Legal Environment of Business & Ethics BLAW 600
This course focuses on how the legal environment of business impacts business decisions with broad ethical, international, and critical thinking examples throughout. Knowledge of the legal aspects of running a business will enable the student to conduct business within the legal framework and understand the ethical dimension of business decisions. Topics include: Introduction to Business Ethics and the Judicial and Legislative Process; Litigation, Alternative Dispute Resolution, and the Administrative Process; Business Crimes, Torts, and Contracts; The Constitution and Government Regulation of Business; Business Organizations; Employment and Labor Laws; Consumer Protection and Environmental Regulation; and International Law and Ethical Conflicts.

Internship/Co-op DSNMG 598
Fairfield County and the surrounding tri-state area are rich in organizations in need of qualified design management interns. Through strategic partnerships and student initiative, internships will be established to give students first-hand experience as a design manager. Students will report on their experience and that report, coupled with his or her manager’s evaluation, will form the basis for determining the student’s grade. Internships are taken by domestic students; Co-ops are taken by international students.

Special Projects DSNMG 599
Special projects and independent study give students the opportunity to explore specifics of design management as they relate to their own area of expertise. Students will be encouraged to seek out opportunities to gain practical experience in the design and design management fields. This course should include field, library, and institutional research on a specific aspect of design management. Student evaluation will be based on a report submitted by the student.

Collaborative Design Studio III DSNMG 500
Collaborative Design Studio III will continue to equip students with the skills they need to work with cross-functional teams on real world, client-based assignments. Students will learn communication, team building, and leadership skills as they hone their design talents.

Design Management III DSNMG 510
Students will continue to further their understanding of design management. Through relevant case studies, text readings, and lectures, students will develop a plan for the application of design management principles within their organization. The final project for this class includes an action plan for an organization where design management principles will make a meaningful impact on their triple bottom line.

Financial Accounting ACCT 600
This course will provide managers with the skills necessary to read, interpret, and apply information about an organization’s financial position. Managerial accounting and finance concepts will precede financial statement analysis. Topics covered include: how accounting data is generated in business operations, how financial statements are created, management of finance to maximize return on investment, and stakeholder equity. Students will participate in case work applying the principles presented in class.

Information Systems & Technology ITKM 600
Information technology has become a key component for accomplishing strategic and operational goals in organizations today. As such, organizations expect their new employees to have a basic understanding of information technologies. To accomplish organizational goals and advance one’s career path, one needs to understand and apply information technologies effectively, efficiently, and creatively. The purpose of this course is to provide an introduction to information systems and technology and to familiarize students with the fundamental concepts and principles of information systems. The course is targeted for graduate students who have little or no background in information systems. Therefore, it focuses on breadth of coverage rather than depth in any specific area.

Collaborative Design Studio IV DSNMG 501
Collaborative Design Studio IV will continue to equip students with the skills they need to work with cross-functional teams on real world, client-based assignments. Leadership skills will be given extra attention during the second year’s teamwork.

Design Management/Thesis IV DSNMG 511
Design Management/Thesis IV requires students to develop an idea that embraces and explores a particular aspect of design management. Students will work independently on a paper that broadens the design management field. This unique challenge demands that the students demonstrate an understanding of the six core principles of the program: Marketing, Leadership, Finance, Legal, Operations, and Strategy, while injecting their own interpretation of design management based on their experience, talent, and culture.

Internship/Co-op DSNMG 598
Fairfield County and the surrounding tri-state area are rich in organizations in need of qualified design management interns. Through strategic partnerships and student initiative, internships will be established to give students first-hand experience as a design manager. Students will report on their experience and that report, coupled with his or her manager’s evaluation, will form the basis for determining the student’s grade. Internships are taken by domestic students; Co-ops are taken by international students.

Small Business & Entrepreneurship MGMT 652
A comprehensive review of the marketing, operational, financial, product, service, and business strategy and plans that must be mastered and developed as foundation for start-up of a small business or entrepreneurial enterprise. In addition, growth of existing business through intrapreneurship is also covered. Students will develop a comprehensive business plan for a business of their choice which is acceptable to the professor.

New Product Commercialization DSNMG 580X
The objectives of this course are to understand and apply concepts and techniques of product commercialization. The course focuses on taking student-created product concepts and having student teams drive the concepts to become actual products. Product design, prototype creation, market analysis, and financial analysis all come together with the student team to create a viable product. If ideas are worthy, teams may work with the University’s CTech IncUBator to actually commercialize their products. Students are strongly encouraged to find a sponsor to actually commercialize their product ideas.