Design empowers societies with creative, innovative and people-centred solutions to known problems and emerging challenges. At MADA we advocate a higher purpose for design that adds value beyond the aesthetic; to make contributions that are significant culturally, economically, environmentally and socially. The Master of Design (by Research) positions designers as the leaders of change. This course is offered in the principal research areas of communication design and industrial design, with focus on human-centred product design, transport design, digital design, new media, interaction design, experience design and interior architecture. The course requires students to develop a research project that leads to the production of a new body of creative design work with accompanying written and visual commentary that outlines the development of the project and its findings, and provides a critical context within which the work may be understood and valuated. The written component will be between 10,000 and 20,000 words, along with a visual record of the design process and creative outcomes. Written work is not examined separately but critically assessed together with an exhibition of design works. To support the development of the research project, students also undertake two coursework units in research methods, which will assist them with forming appropriate research design for their particular project.
Through their research, identification and application of appropriate research and creative methodologies, master's graduates have demonstrated advanced skills and application of specialist knowledge to the attainment of practice-based design-focused outcomes. Master's graduates work as creative and cultural producers: industrial designers, graphic designers, interior architects, new media content producers and developers and as academics, researchers and service design consultants for specialist companies, leading corporations and manufacturers, advertising agencies, governments; and as independent creative practitioners.