Design@USC is an online master’s degree program designed for recent graduates and working professionals. Successful candidates will be creative thinkers who seek to enhance their knowledge and skills to thrive in collaborative, forward-thinking environments. The program challenges students to reach beyond their comfort zone and achieve fluency at the intersection of three industries: design, business and technology. The goal of the program is to produce problem solvers who can work across diverse areas and quickly adapt to change.
The Design@USC Applicant
Design@USC seeks applicants whose academic background, professional experience and motivation meet the demands of this program. To apply, you should have a minimum 3.0 GPA from an accredited university.
Our selection process is intentionally holistic. We are looking for students who:
- Aspire to lead innovation, challenge the norm and break into new industries
- Have a self-starter mindset and a passion for creative problem-solving
- Want to build the skills to harness differences and cross-pollinate ideas across teams
Many of our applicants work on interdisciplinary teams — and this program will change the way you think and function on those teams. Design@USC will equip you to move adeptly through the creative problem-solving process and introduce you to new business perspectives.
To apply to Design@USC, you must submit the following:
- Application: You must complete the online application and pay the non-refundable application fee of $90. Access the online application here.
- Resume: Your resume should highlight relevant work and volunteer experience.
- Transcripts: Sealed official transcripts from all postsecondary institutions you have attended, including any community college coursework, must be sent to:
Application Processing Services
7900 Harkins Road, Suite 501
Lanham, MD 20706
- When using an ordering system online for hard-copy delivery, be sure to select “The University of Southern California – Design@USC" in any drop-down menu. The program name “Design@USC” must be in the title for the transcript to be sent to the right office.
- If the option to send transcripts electronically is available, you should specify that they be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org, as this will expedite the delivery and the completion of the application.
- Statement of Purpose and Vision Statement: These must be uploaded to the online application.
Additional guidelines for the Statement of Purpose and Vision Statement are provided in the online application.
- Video Presentation: You are required to complete a one-minute video proposing an original product, service, system, business model, technology or experience that would solve a problem or address a need. In the video, you should identify the problem you want to address and your idea to solve it, how it works, and how it might be realized. You are encouraged to think differently about how to present and effectively communicate your ideas to the faculty.
Log in to the online application or contact an admissions counselor at 866-376-2505 or via email for more tips about the video presentation.
- Portfolio (recommended, but not required): You may upload up to three examples of products, projects, designs, technologies, creative work or other unique and innovative work that you have developed. The purpose of this submission is for you to show the faculty the way you think as a maker or generator of ideas.
- Letters of Recommendation: The online application requires two references. You should request recommendations from those who can speak to your professional or academic readiness to attend a rigorous graduate program. You should request these letters from your recommenders through the online application.
- GRE scores are not required. If your native language is not English, you are required to submit a Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) with a score of higher than 90 or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) with a score of higher than 6.5.
If you have questions about applying to Design@USC, contact an admissions counselor at 866-376-2505 or via email.