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The Bay Area and Silicon Valley is a world-renowned center for innovation and creativity. Since the late 1970’s, San José State University has served as the region's primary public higher education institution and has sponsored strong academic programs in design education. Our faculty and alumni have been instrumental in the development of design in the region and have achieved national and international acclaim. They have founded and contributed to well-established design firms, corporations, and creative studios throughout world.

The need for design has become increasingly essential as new media and information technology leads the California economy. Designers work in industries that demand skills and understanding of visual communication, new computing technologies, complex critical thinking, creative problem-solving, and research, among many others. For these reasons, demand in our program has grown consistently over the years—1500 students currently study in the Department of Design—and we anticipate that our enrollment numbers will continue to rise.

The Department offers 5 areas of focusDesign StudiesAnimation/IllustrationGraphic DesignIndustrial DesignInterior Design. The Department strives to maintain and develop comprehensive curricula that provide current, innovative, undergraduate (and potentially graduate education) training in the practice and theory of design in a broad spectrum of fields and specializations. All disciplines are highly structured, and they provide students with an unambiguous career path. Our faculty prepare students both conceptually and practically for a variety of careers in these fields.

Our Department is one of a very few public schools in the State that offer complete education in Animation/Illustration, Graphic Design, Industrial Design, and Interior Design in a single entity. All the design programs at SJSU have an excellent reputation in their respective disciplines and the resulting dynamic adds up to the strongest center of design education in the CSU and one of the strongest in California. In addition, San José State University operates one of the largest and most racially diverse departments of design in the western United States. The diversity of our student body allows our programs to be truly representative of the State's population at large. 

For information about our mission statement and program learning outcomes, click here.