Industrial Design Bachelor's Degree

Industrial design education programs explore the design, drafting and development of products. Learn about schools, bachelor degree requirements, course topics, employment outlook and salary range info. Schools offering Graphic Design degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

How Can I Use an Industrial Design Bachelor's Degree?

A program leading to a bachelor's degree in industrial design teaches you all aspects of product development for businesses and the marketplace. You learn to deal with everything from the initial stages of market analysis and product conceptualization to product modeling and adjustment. You study methods and technologies that enable you to optimize the quality and performance of consumer goods, according to employer needs and specifications. You're able to make adjustments to existing products in the name of safety, style, functionality and other criteria.

The National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD) lists over 340 accredited postsecondary schools that offer programs in art and design. More than seventy of the schools offer bachelor's degrees in industrial design. The Industrial Designers Society of America lists schools that offer NASAD-accredited courses and programs online. In addition, the online searchable database of the National Center for Education Statistics lists more than 60 postsecondary institutions offering bachelor's degree in industrial and product design as of 2016.

Program Availability Traditional classroom, online, and distance learning options available
Common Courses Graphic design, vector imaging, technical drawing, product design, photography
Median Salary (2018)$66,590* (for commercial and industrial designer)
Job Outlook (2016-26)4%* (for all commercial and industrial designers)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Courses Are Involved in a Program?

Depending on the postsecondary institution, you can find programs offered through a school, college or department of art and design, design, industrial design, architecture, technology or engineering. A 4-year program, with an industrial design major, can consist of 123-196 credits and lead to a Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Industrial Design or Bachelor of Fine Arts. Courses commonly found in a program include 2-D and 3-D design, CAD, photography for industrial design, vector imaging, technical drawing, product design, graphic design and product costing.

You may have the opportunity to serve an internship with a school-partnered firm or participate in various workshops. These opportunities exist in online programs in addition to on-campus programs. The online programs are hybrid in structure; so though you can complete didactic courses online, in-person participation is required for internships and workshops.

What Is My Employment Outlook?

According to the 2018 edition of the Occupational Outlook Handbook of the U.S. Bureau of Statistics (BLS), job opportunities for commercial and industrial designers is expected to increase four percent from 2016-2026. The overall demand for new product styles and innovative design is expected to sustain the market for industrial designers. The BLS further reported that in May 2018, the median annual wages for commercial and industrial designers was $66,590, ranging from less than $38,630 to over $108,040 (

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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