Designmatters Concentration




The Designmatters Concentration is a customizable course of study for ArtCenter undergraduate students who are passionate about social innovation and want to master a toolkit of design skills and strategies to navigate the complex dynamics of working with communities and designing for social change.




Students in the Designmatters Concentration connect their educational studies to design explorations centered on critical issues that are happening now, affecting people all over the world. Through a combination of curated H&S and studio courses, students learn to work under multiple constraints with focus, empathy, and integrity to generate innovation solutions to social challenges.

Upon graduation, students earn a certificate in Art and Design for Social Impact in addition to their undergraduate degrees, and enter the working world armed with a toolkit that opens up many exciting career pathways.

In addition, Designmatters Students:

  • Become part of a cohort of like-minded students from across disciplines
  • Receive one on one advisement with the Designmatters Team
  • Get early notification about Designmatters courses and events
  • Connect to the vast Designmatters network of alumni and partners




Students can select the Designmatters Concentration beginning in their 3rd Term at ArtCenter.   

Designmatters Concentration Students are required to take 7 customized Designmatters courses:

3 Humanities & Sciences Courses
4 Discipline-Specific and Designmatters Partner Studios

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The Designmatters Concentration is intended to be completed concurrently with your discipline’s curriculum requirements, and should not require additional courses or terms at ArtCenter.  

How to Select the Designmatters Concentration



  1. Meet with the Designmatters Team to review the requirements and your status.
  2. Complete the short Designmatters Concentration Form.
  3. Obtain your Department Chair’s signature on the form and turn it into Designmatters for processing.
  4. You will receive a confirmation from the registrar that you are officially a Designmatters Concentration Student
  5. Meet with the Designmatters Team at least once per term to consult on your progress and learn about upcoming course offerings.

Designmatters Pedagogical Model

Methods & Tools for Collaboration in Social Practices
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