Culture and Place

A Community Inside a School

The MFA in Design and Technology is part of the School of Art, Media, and Technology (AMT), which is also home to the Communication Design, Fine Arts, Photography, and Illustration programs in New York and the cross-disciplinary Art, Media, and Technology program in Paris. As communication technologies evolve and become increasingly sophisticated, the disciplines in AMT continue to mesh, enabling the school to flexibly address social problems and needs through art and design.

Students in AMT programs take part in Collaboration Studios, in which they often work with outside nonprofits and industry partners. They may also team up with students from other programs who have a range of skills and interests, including students from other areas of Parsons and The New School such as urban studies, media studies, and the social sciences. The studios encourage students to work collaboratively in a cross-disciplinary work and learning environment.

Digital Hubs in New York and Paris

The breadth of design and technology talent in New York and Paris make them ideal resources for those involved in emerging fields that unite communication with mobile, interactive digital platforms. A pioneer in new media, Parsons has developed a rich network among the industry’s vanguard, from which the school draws its faculty and external partners. Connections to industry leaders like R/GA Interactive, Eyebeam Art and Technology Center, and Curious Pictures bring students into contact with innovators who offers tools, training, and internships to help them shape the shifting media landscape.

Real-World Experience

Parsons’ relationships with corporate, governmental, educational, and nonprofit organizations help create a technically current and socially relevant working environment for students. Industry and institutional partners include AIGA, Apple, Atari, Cooper-Hewitt/Smithsonian, Creative Time, Curious Pictures, Estée Lauder, Eyebeam, Fossil, gameLab, Human Rights Watch, Microsoft, MTV, NASA, the New Museum, the Open Society Institute, R/GA, Samsung, Siemens, SensAble Technologies, UNESCO, UNICEF, Vespa, and the Whitney Museum of Art.

Institute-Based Research

Research institutes help Parsons maintain its leading position in the field and provide important learning opportunities. 

  • PETLab (Prototyping Evaluation, Teaching and Learning lab) develops games and interactive technologies for the public good.
  • SMALLab (Situated Multimedia Art Learning Lab) is a systems-based educational research lab by faculty member Katie Salen. Part of Quest to Learn (Q2L), SMALLab supports situated and embodied learning for young people by enabling them to use their bodies as an expressive interface.
  • SpyLab is a new media research collective developed by AMT dean Sven Travis that unites Parsons artists with peers in Beijing. SpyLab collects video, sound, and environmental data from around the globe to make art and explore issues of privacy, permission, and distance collaboration.


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