Strategic Design

  • Master of Arts (M.A.)
  • 4 Semesters
  • on campus
  • 120 ECTS
  • €800/Month
  • Full time

For you, design is not just about aesthetics. It has the potential to change the world for the better. You have a BA degree in creative disciplines and want to help create the future. Welcome to our design strategy Master's programme.

  • English
  • winter semester
Request information Apply now

Your course content
What you will learn

You develop your strategic thinking skills at the interface between innovation management, brand strategy and the management of creative processes. You will not only learn to understand social and technological innovation, but also to think about it holistically and shape it for the future.   
To this end you will immerse yourself in methods and theories of corporate and brand management, design thinking, social design, transformation design, system thinking and critical thinking.

You learn user-centred research, focused synthesis and systematic idea development. You will deal with creativity techniques, business models, sustainability and intercultural communication.
Soft skills such as presentation skills and the development of your personal leadership style are specifically promoted through specially designed teaching units. The teaching of methods of scientific work creates the basis for writing a Master's thesis in the fourth semester of the programme.

Your career prospects
Our innovative approach that pays off

More than ever before, companies, institutions and startups alike are realising that brand management and shaping a strategic brand identity are key to gaining and maintaining a competitive advantage. The demand for specialists in design and brand management, as well as, creative direction is accordingly high. Service design and experience design are also popular occupations for strategic designers and alumni of our programme.

Another professional field constantly growing in popularity for strategic designers is innovation management. Driving innovation in enterprises, institutions and startups is increasingly being led and moderated by strategically-trained designers, as they can connect creative and strategic processes. Strategic designers can be found in many strategy departments of large companies.

With an internationally recognised Master of Arts (M.A.) degree and the diploma supplement, the programme meets the EU requirements of the Socrates/ECTS programme.

Behind the scences Strategic Design students talk about their studies


Get more information about the study programme!

Study programme brochure and more ...


Coca-Cola Social Innovation Project

How do you motivate Coca-Cola customers to recycle packaging?

To the project

Workshop and communication concepts for Migrantas

The M.A. Strategic Design students conduct a workshop for Migrantas e.V. to find concepts for the communication of the initiative's projects and pictograms.

To the project
Career "Get a job" - CV & COVER LETTER TRAINING

Event for students | Learn how to write a professional cover letter and curriculum vitae for the German job market!

information day SRH Berlin Virtual Info Session - SPECIAL Design & Communication programmes

Join us and learn everything you need to know about SRH Berlin, our Design & Communication programmes, the application process, financing your studies and more! Our Study Advisor will guide you and answer your questions | 3 - 4 pm CET.



Study Plan M.A. Strategic Design Your curriculum

4 Semester 120 ECTS
1. Semester
  • Strategic Design Introduction | Strategic Design Mindset, Methodology and Tools, Innovation Strategies, Design Thinking, Project Management and Agile/Lean Principles 5
  • Strategic Design Research | Human Centered/Qualitative Research, Participatory Design Strategies and Ethnography, Systems Thinking, Data Driven/Quantitative Research 5
  • Strategic Design Synthesis | Analysis and Synthesis Frameworks, Data Analytics, Strategic Information Design and Graphic Recording 5
  • Content Management | Documentation and Writing Skills, Methodology Toolbox, Individual Mentoring and Peer Evaluation 5
  • Theory I | Brand and Personality I, Sustainability I, Trends and Future Technologies, Media Ethics I 5
  • Strategic Design Profession and Best Practice I | Intercultural Communication, Alumni and Expert Talks, Guided Excursions to Strategic Design-Related Exhibition/Events 5
2. Semester
  • Strategic Design Creation | Creation Tools and Methods, Brand Identity, Critical and Speculative Design, Future Studies 5
  • Strategic Design Realisation | Analogue and Digital Design Development Tools, Digital Prototyping, Design Prototyping, Design Testing 5
  • Strategic Design Implementation | Change Management, Transformation Design, Implementation Strategies, Storytelling and Presentation Skills 5
  • Publication | Publication Skills, Individual Mentoring and Peer Evaluation 5
  • Theory II | Sociology, Media Ethics II, Brand and Personality II 5
  • Strategic Design Profession and Best Practice II | Creative Industries and Innovation Organizations: Guided Visits/Exhibition/ Events/Excursions, Business Modelling, Entrepreneurship/Start-Up Thinking 5
3. Semester
  • Purpose Driven Innovation: Intro and Research | Service Design, Experience Design, Game Design Strategy, Qualitative and Quantitative Research II 5
  • Purpose Driven Innovation: Synthesis and Creation | Analysis and Synthesis Frameworks II, Data Analytics II, Systems Thinking II, Strategic Information Design II, Creation Tools and Methods II 5
  • Purpose Driven Innovation: Realisation | Design Prototyping and Testing II, Business Modelling II, Storytelling and Presentation Skills II 5
  • Strategic Design Manifesto and Portfolio | Strategic Design Manifesto, Portfolio, Exhibition Design, Individual Mentoring 5
  • Theory III | Scientific Writing and Context, Sustainability II, Subject Exploration for Master’s Thesis 5
  • Strategic Design Profession and Best Practice III | Creative Leadership and Conflict Management, Student Led Integrated Workshops and Moderation, Alumni and Expert Talks 5
4. Semester
  • Master's Thesis | Master’s Thesis, Master’s Colloquium and Individual Coaching 30
We support you

Full-Flex Offer | For international students only

Are you worried that Covid-19 might affect your academic future? Are you facing visa delays and travel restrictions? Take advantage of our offer to start your studies in October 2021 in a virtual format and receive a reward!

Campaign against Hate Speech
Campaign against Hate Speech

Don't Be Silent

How does it feel to be a victim of online hate speech? What can you do to fight it? The "Don't Be Silent" project takes a firm stand against online hate and helps the student team from the M.A. Strategic Design and M.A. Marketingkommunikation programmes to win first prize in the "Peer To Peer: Facebook Global Digital Challenge" with their Don't Be Silent campaign.

Learn more about "Don't Be Silent"
Find your unibuddy.

Chat with our students.

Do you want firsthand information? Our students are happy to share their experiences with you, tell you about their courses, their projects and student life in Berlin, Hamburg and Dresden.

Admission requirements
Our requirements

The Master's in Strategic Design is aimed at interested parties with a bachelor's degree from design disciplines such as design, architecture, art, photography or film. They go through a two-stage selection process.

Checklist for your online application:

  • officially certified copy of your university degree, e.g. bachelor's degree
  • transcript of records
  • proof of English language proficiency
  • letter of motivation
  • curriculum vitae
  • portfolio with 15 to 20 own creative works

We will review your application documents and artistic submissions. In case you meet our requirements, we will invite you to our entrance interview via video chat or in presence in Berlin.

Here are the English requirements you should bring along:

  • Duolingo 95 Pts
  • TOEFL 87 ibt (direct entry)
  • TOEFL 79 - 86 ibt (with additional agreement)
  • TOEIC 785 (Listening/Reading 785, Speaking 160, Writing 150)
  • IELTS (academic) 6.5 average - please see Language Centre guidelines if results differ
  • CAE (grade A, B, or C)
  • CPE (grade A, B or C)
  • FCE (grade A, B or C)
  • Pearson English Test Academic (PTE-A) 59 points
  • Linguaskill: 176 - 184 (CES) - all four skills required

You don't feel prepared yet? More information about the Academic English Preparation Course

Fees and Funding
Your tuition fees

As a state-recognised, private university, the SRH Berlin University of Applied Sciences is financed by tuition fees. This revenue goes towards equipping our campus, providing services for our students, and quality assurance. In this way we ensure that you receive the best possible education under optimal study conditions.

Tuition fees

  • citizenship | EU/EEA (incl. Switzerland, Western Balkans): EUR 800 / month
  • citizenship | Non-EU/EEA: EUR 5400 / semester

The monthly/semester tuition fees remain the same for the entire duration of the study programme. 

An additional enrolment fee of EUR 500 (EU/EEA) / EUR 900 (non-EU/EEA) is to be paid once at the start of the programme.

You can finance your studies through BAföG, student loans, education funds and scholarships. The possibilities vary according to nationality. You can find more information under "Financing Your Studies".

Our Student Advisory Service will be happy to answer any questions you may have.

Apply now
Application process and deadlines

Submit a portfolio with various (max. 20) works and convince us of your creative talent showing your design approach, process and results. You can upload the portfolio with your application, send it to us or bring it with you when we invite you for a personal interview.
In your letter of motivation you should also formulate what goals you want to achieve with the Master Strategic Design and how you would describe Strategic Design for yourself.

Next steps after submitting your application:
First of all we check your application documents. If the examination is successfull, we will invite you to a personal admission interview. Here we want to find out what goals you are pursuing with the MA degree in Strategic Design. In addition, we will ask you questions specific to your course of study to get an idea of your theoretical knowledge and practical skills. If you are unable to visit us in Berlin, we will be happy to make an appointment via an online platform, such as Skype or Zoom.

The portfolio and your CV should provide an insight into your individual design and technical development. We deliberately avoid providing a specific theme. Please attach a written description explaining your work and methodology.

Any questions about what to put in the portfolio? Please arrange an individual portfolio consultation.

Get started now Your path into the future
  • You will take part in a step-by-step learning experience
  • You will study in small teams through practice-oriented tasks
  • You can concentrate on what is important in 5-week blocks
  • You will receive individual support from your lecturers
Apply now!
Your contact If you have any questions, our team is happy to help you