Jennifer Webb
Graduate Coordinator
120 Vol Walker Hall
479-575-4945
FayGrad@uark.edu

Degree Offered:
M.Des. in Design Studies

The Fay Jones School of Architecture and Design offers a Master of Design Studies (M.Des.). The goal is to provide a nationally-recognized, interdisciplinary design program that meets the needs of Arkansas, the region, and nation. The Master of Design Studies degree is recognized as multidisciplinary degrees that explores emerging concerns that are universal to the human-environmental design disciplines.

The program offers two areas of concentration:

Resiliency Design: This post-professional graduate degree is focused on community and landscape resiliency determined by critical factors including water, mobility, food, housing, aging, and public health. The one-year, three-semester program provides advanced study of pressing public-interest civic issues by combining design, research, and expanded modes of professional engagement. The University of Arkansas Community Design Center is one of six programs leading the American Institutes of Architect’s National Resiliency Initiative, and houses one of the few university-based teaching offices in design programs nationally. This unique program will prepare graduates to engage interdisciplinary urban design challenges through service learning and public outreach in collaboration with a professional staff. Utilizing strengths across the University of Arkansas campus, this program combines course offerings with a professional residency to immerse students in these dynamic fields. 

Retail and Hospitality Design: This post-professional graduate degree provides advanced study of strategic thinking and design methods relative to the hospitality and retail environments. The one-year, three-semester program is grounded in design’s contribution to economic success. Business strategies are integrated with innovative problem solving to craft unique experiences within these specialized settings. Proximity to international business enterprises and strategic relationships with global design firms enables graduates to integrate environmental, cultural, and social discourse to deliver comprehensive approaches to complex design scenarios. Utilizing strengths across the University of Arkansas campus, this program combines course offerings with a professional residency to immerse students in these dynamic fields.

Requirements for M.Des. with Resiliency Design Concentration

Requirements for the Master of Design: The program can be completed in 1 year (3 semesters including 2 full-time, on-campus semesters combined with an off-campus, summer residency component).   The curriculum includes two advanced design studios addressing increasingly complex challenges resolved first through the synthesis of multiple knowledge domains and moving to scenarios for which there are unidentified constraints and unknown methods for solution.

The M.Des. program requires 36 credit hours. Core courses comprise 24 credit hours and each concentration requires an additional 12 credit hours of elective coursework.

Core Courses
FJAD 6723Methods of Design Inquiry3
FJAD 6803Design Leadership3
FJAD 6906Advanced Design Studio6
FJAD 6916Advanced Design Studio II6
FJAD 6926Graduate Residency6
Total Hours24
Additional requirements for the concentration in Resiliency Design:
Choose 12 hours from the following:12
Analysis and Design of Resilient Systems
Decision Making, Analysis and Synthesis in Sustainability
Cities and Public Good
Vocabularies of Context Production
Dependent upon previous coursework and experience, graduate level courses from Public Policy, Sociology, Public Administration, or Environmental Dynamics may be utilized with approval from the Graduate Adviser.
Total Hours12

Requirements for M.Des. with Retail and Hospitality Design Concentration

Requirements for the Master of Design: The program can be completed in 1 year (3 semesters including 2 full-time, on-campus semesters combined with an off-campus, summer residency component).   The curriculum includes two advanced design studios addressing increasingly complex challenges resolved first through the synthesis of multiple knowledge domains and moving to scenarios for which there are unidentified constraints and unknown methods for solution.

The M.Des. program requires 36 credit hours. Core courses comprise 24 credit hours and each concentration requires an additional 12 credit hours of elective coursework.

Core Courses
FJAD 6723Methods of Design Inquiry3
FJAD 6803Design Leadership3
FJAD 6906Advanced Design Studio6
FJAD 6916Advanced Design Studio II6
FJAD 6926Graduate Residency6
Total Hours24
Additional requirements for the concentration in Resiliency Design:
Choose 12 hours from the following:12
Hospitality Management Capstone
Hospitality Operations and Financial Analysis
Meetings and Convention Management
Global Travel and Tourism Management
Business Analytics
Introduction to Marketing
Retail Strategy
New Product Development and Strategy
Consumer and Market Research
Introduction to Supply Chain Management
Total Hours12

Courses

FJAD 6723. Methods of Design Inquiry. 3 Hours.

Investigation into the practical, theoretical, and methodological strategies necessary for embarking upon inquiry and discourse for design-related problems. Pre- or Corequisite: Admission into the Master of Design program.

FJAD 6803. Design Leadership. 3 Hours.

Explores leadership through conceptual and theoretical perspectives. Emphasis is on developing and managing effective design processes, methods, and organizations enabling innovative design practices. Students will explore contemporary issues and forces that affect the conditions of how design is embedded in thought leadership. Pre- or Corequisite: Admission into the Master of Design program.

FJAD 6813. Cities and Public Good. 3 Hours.

Studies infrastructure as socio-technical systems and potential transitions to lower-carbon futures. Concepts governing Large Technical Systems such as obduracy, path-dependency, energy transitions, value capture, and public good are explored through analytic frameworks like Multi-level Perspectives (MLP) and Socio-technical Systems Theory (STS) in the context of incumbent technologies. Pre- or Corequisite: Admission into the Master of Design program.

FJAD 6823. Vocabularies of Context Production. 3 Hours.

Explores connectivity through spatial and organizational formats from urbanism to supply chains, ecosystems, resource sheds, infrastructure, neighborhoods, eco-districts, and other public spaces. In addition to the traditional categories of geometry, proportion, and fit used to define place, vocabularies of flow, timing, interactivity, phasing, modulation, distribution, and emergence will be examined. Pre- or Corequisite: Admission into the Master of Design program.

FJAD 6906. Advanced Design Studio. 6 Hours.

A topical design studio investigating project development dependent upon the synthesis of knowledge and application of critical thinking to complex environmental design problems. The intimate relationship between architecture, place and culture is used to create connection and relevance in the built environment. Pre- or Corequisite: Admission into the Master of Design program.

FJAD 6916. Advanced Design Studio II. 6 Hours.

An advanced topical design studio utilizing methods from domains external to design disciplines. Project resolution requiring skill in generating design ideas developed through strategic planning and responding to sociopolitical, economic, and environmental drivers. Pre- or Corequisite: Admission into the Master of Design program. Prerequisite: Completion of FJAD 6906.

FJAD 6926. Graduate Residency. 6 Hours.

Experiential learning integrating knowledge and theory in professional environment. This guided experience will facilitate career development, professional relationships, and provide a critical opportunity to apply new skills and knowledge to real problems. Pre- or Corequisite: Admission into the Master of Design program. Prerequisite: Completion of FJAD 6906 and FJAD 6916.