IDM launches new design classes for all MIT students|Learn More

IDM’s curriculum combines the most current thinking around design, engineering and management methodologies and is:

  • taught by MIT faculty who provide in-depth instruction on the product development/product design process;
  • supplemented with lectures by successful entrepreneurs, designers, engineers, and thought leaders, who will share their experience, insight, and expertise; and
  • enhanced by IDM students, as they work together with a diverse set of skills and backgrounds.

IDM Curriculum Overview



Team Time / Project Work


  • Opportunity Identification
  • User Needs Research
  • User Experience
  • Service Design
  • Creative Concept Gen
  • Industrial Design
  • Concept Selection
  • Prototyping Strategy
  • PDD Economics
  • Environmental Sustainability
  • Intellectual Property
  • Product Architecture
  • Manufacturing
  • Design Leadership
  • Risk Management


  • Hand Tools
  • Power tools
  • Machine Tools
  • 3D Printing
  • Perspective Drawing
  • Laminates and Forming
  • Sketch Modeling
  • Hard Modelling
  • CAD
  • UI / UX Design
  • Thermoforming
  • Mold Making & Casting
  • Electronics
  • Microcontrollers
  • Storyboarding


  • Practice human-centered design in an integrated approach to product and business development.
  • Apply and practice Lecture topics as part of their process.
  • Real-time feedback from faculty via Informal design reviews.
  • Team buliding, brainstorming, strategy.
  • Engage Users – Perform interviews, observation, needs list, personas, image boards.
  • Generate Concepts – Sketching, modeling, rendering, wireframes, storyboard.
  • Test – Functional, market, business model, selection techniques.
  • Small-batch manufacturing.
  • Formal Design Reviews.

IDM Projects

  • Student-generated or industry-sponsored project topics can be physical products, digital solutions, service designs, or social impact projects. Some projects lead to thesis topics, while others launch new businesses.
  • IDM sponsors have dedicated, ongoing partnerships with the program. They are welcome to spend time in the ID Lab, attend design reviews, mentor students, and present real-world perspectives. IDM sponsors are encouraged to partner, license, or invest in any projects in which they see potential.

Degree Requirements

  • IDM Core: 15 units per semester, Fall and Spring in 1st year
  • IDM Integrated Design Seminar: 3 units per semester, Fall and Spring in 2nd year
  • Management Restricted Electives: 12+ units
  • Management Electives (unrestricted): 15+ units
  • Engineering Restricted Electives: 12+ units
  • Engineering Electives (unrestricted): 15+ units
  • Thesis: 24 units

IDM Curriculum Outline

IDM Core

EM.441 Integrated Design Lab I

EM.442 Integrated Design Lab II

15 units

15 units

Provide an integrated view of design, engineering and managing the development of complex products, services, experiences, business models, social initiatives, and systems. No Substitutions

IDM Seminar

EM.443 Integrated Design Seminar

EM.444 Integrated Design Seminar

3 units

3 units

Seminars covering applicable topics important to MIT and IDM. Topics may include: leadership, thesis writing, professional communications, and entrepreneurship. Designers, engineers, practitioners, entrepreneurs, and thought leaders are among the invited guests.

Management Restricted Electives

12 units †

Courses that are considered to be a foundational management subject, that complement, expand, or broaden knowledge.

Management Electives (unrestricted)

15 units *

Courses that build upon your management restricted elective(s).

Engineering Restricted Electives

12 units †

Courses that provide additional depth in engineering concepts related to integrated design.

Engineering Electives (unrestricted)

15 units *

Courses that further explore engineering topics in a variety of application domains.

Masters Thesis

24 units

Thesis research and writing; normally spread over 2 semesters. Registration requires an approved thesis proposal.

Minimum of 90 subject units + 24 thesis units
† 12 or more units of restricted electives in both management and engineering
* 30 units minimum of elective subjects, balanced between engineering:management. Additional elective units may be taken in one category or the other, with a difference of no more than 12 units between engineering:management by the time the student completes the program. Restricted electives may be counted towards unrestricted elective units.

Course descriptions and details are available via the MIT Registrar.

Credits toward degree are earned in graded classes. Pass/D/Fail courses will not be counted towards degree requirements, but Pass/D/Fail units may be subject to the engineering:management balancing requirement mentioned above.

Credit will be allowed for courses in which a C or D grade is earned, but students must have a 4.0 cumulative grade point average or above to graduate. Students are expected to maintain a 4.0 cumulative grade point average or above throughout the program. Consecutive semesters with a cumulative grade point below 4.0 may result in a student’s being denied the opportunity to register for the subsequent term.

The information contained on this page is accurate as of its posting. Please contact with any questions.

ID Lab

IDM’s core curriculum is taught in the Integrated Design Lab, located in the MIT Studio (Building 4-013).​ Here, students experience an innovative learning environment that enables interdisciplinary collaboration, deep immersion in the human-centered design process, state of the art maker-space, and close interaction with faculty.

Lectures by our interdisciplinary world-class faculty provide a structured, balanced design process coupled with real-time design reviews and mentoring as faculty work side by side with students to produce technically innovative, financially sound, beautiful projects.