Thesis Project
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Level: Graduate
Division: Parsons The New School for Design
School: School of Design Strategies
Department: Transdisciplinary Design
Course Number: PGTD 5201
Course Format: Studio
Location: NYC campus
Permission Required: No
  • Transdisciplinary Design
  • Design Research
  • Design
This course is the culmination of each student’s experience in the Transdisciplinary Design program. Students conduct design research on an emerging aspect of the design field. Theses are expected to advance the theoretical, technical, material, or formal state of knowledge in design. They must demonstrate rigorous analytic thinking as well as coherent project development and design resolution; projects must be fully documented and compellingly presented using appropriate two- and three-dimensional representations or models. The thesis is conducted under the guidance of a thesis committee, which must include at least one New School faculty member (who functions as thesis director) and two external advisors. Studio time is organized into regular one-on-one critiques with the thesis director, along with at least three critiques with the thesis committee during the course of the semester. While the majority of the course is made up of independent work, students meet at regular intervals to share and review their progress. Because of the strong emphasis on collaboration in the Transdisciplinary Design program, students are encouraged to work on joint or team theses. Even working individually, a student must identify people outside the university who are integral to the success of their thesis. Students must situate their design work as research, critically reflect on its outcomes, and communicate the meaning and impact of their findings.
Course Open to: Majors Only
Course Pre/Co-requisites:
Open to: MFA in Transdisciplinary Design majors only. Pre-requisite(s): PGTD 5220 Thesis Preparation; PGTD 5200 Projects Studio 3; and PGTD 5130 Design-Led Research. Co-requisite(s): PGTD 5010 Transdisciplinary Design Seminar 2.


Open to Graduate students.