The Department of Design at UC Davis is the only comprehensive academic design unit in the University of California system. The major delivers a research-focused undergraduate (B.A.) curriculum that fully integrates design history, theory and criticism, with design thinking, making, writing, visual literacy, and creative practice. Design students benefit from a dedicated faculty with expertise in many areas of the visual arts. Our studio courses include design as practiced in exhibition, fashion, information, interior architecture and product (lighting and furniture), textiles, visual communications (digital, environmental, and print) and sustainable design. The Department of Design offers a creative, challenging, and flexible approach to the study of design with emphasis on socially responsible, human centered, and sustainable practice.
Students potentially eligible for high or highest honors at graduation (see College section), may petition for tentative acceptance into an honors program. Final admission will depend on the Committee’s approval of a senior thesis prospectus that has been agreed to by the student and faculty adviser. Graduation with high or highest honors will be conditional on both the maintenance of the required grade point average and the completion of the senior thesis project.
The Design faculty strongly encourages students to study abroad. Through this experience students can gain valuable knowledge about design in other cultures and can develop a much richer understanding of design. Interaction with design students and faculty world-wide provides a distinctive approach and diverse perspective to design problems and their creative solutions. Different geographical and cultural regions offer unique environmental and cultural elements that can greatly enrich the design process, for students and future design professionals.