Interdisciplinary Design Minor

The Interdisciplinary Design Minor is an undergraduate minor that spotlights the design process and shows how design thinking can be used as a catalyst for exploration and research. Choosing from a selection of both lecture and studio courses, students are introduced to the history, theory, and practice of design across multiple design disciplines.

With the Interdisciplinary Design Minor students may compose their own individual program in which they will:

  • understand the interdisciplinary nature of the design process
  • appreciate the role design plays in everyday life
  • experience design thinking and action
  • explore and expand their own design interests
  • understand how to work with designers in their chosen field

This minor provides an integrated education in design where students enhance their learning by making connections between traditional design courses and non-traditional views of design.

Admission Requirements:

You must be in good academic standing with a minimum 2.00 cumulative University of Minnesota GPA.

Program Requirements:

  • This minor requires a minimum of 18 credits.
  • All coursework must be taken on the A/F grade base and completed with a C- or better.
  • A maximum of two courses taken for a major or another minor may be used toward the Interdisciplinary Design Minor.
  • Study abroad or transfer courses must be approved by the minor advisor.

Students are held to the course requirements in place at the time of their admission. As requirements may change in the future, students should refer to their minor APAS for the requirements applicable to them.

Course Requirements:

Design Thinking: "Big Picture" (select one course) Credits
Des 1000 D@MN: Design at Minnesota (Arts & Humanities) 3
Des 1101W/1101V Introduction to Design Thinking (Arts & Humanities; Writing Intensive)
LA 1001 Sustainability by Design Thinking (The Environment) (fall term only) 3
LA 1401 The Designed Environment
LA 1601/3601 Design and Equity
Design Thinking: "Hands On" (select one course)
Arch 1281 Design Fundamentals 1 (fall term only)
Des 1111/1111H Creative Problem Solving (only offered as S/N)
Des 2101 Design and Visual Presentation (spring term only)
GDes 1311 Foundations: Drawing and Design in Two and Three Dimensions
GDes 1312 Foundations: Color and Design in Two and Three Dimensions
GDes 1315 The Graphic Studio
GDes 3312 Color and Form in Surface Design
LA 1301 Introduction to Landscape Architecture Drawing (Arts & Humanities)
ME 2011 Introduction to Mechanical Engineering (fall term only)
PDes 2702 Concept Sketching and Rendering
PDes 3711 Product Innovation Lab

Elective Courses (to complete the 18-credit minimum)

Refer to Undergraduate Catalog for a list of approved courses (Fall 2020).


Application Process:

Apply online for the minor. The application should take just a couple of minutes.


If you ....

  • have questions about applying for this minor, please email our peer advisor at
  • are already admitted to the Interdisciplinary Design Minor and you are currently pursuing a major in the College of Design, please contact the academic advisor for your major.
  • are already admitted to the Interdisciplinary Design Minor and you are currently pursuing a major in a college other than the College of Design, please email our peer advisor at