Recent Updates: Visit our COVID-19 Community Guide for information about in-person teaching and learning this fall. 

  • Anthropology and Design (Graduate Minor)

  • Overview

    The Anthropology and Design graduate minor is offered through The New School for Social Research.

    The Anthropology and Design minor allows graduate students to explore the designed world through the conceptual frameworks and grounded methods of anthropology. Anthropologists and designers, working in tandem, can improve their own techniques of aesthetic and ethnographic analysis, expand their repertoire of multimodal methods, and think more critically and creatively about the mediated and designed forums in which they perform and share their research. 

    The minor offers students the opportunity to study design and technology through an established discipline that prioritizes reflective methodology (including critique of ethnographic method itself), ethical frameworks of analysis, and awareness of the political stakes of both research and creative practice. 

    Students in the minor are encouraged to participate in the student-led ADX exhibition, symposium, and future publications, as well as applied fieldwork. 

    Curriculum

    This graduate minor requires successful completion of 9 credits. Students generally select one course from each of the subject areas in the chart below.   

    Course availability may vary from semester to semester. Some courses may be in development and offered at a later time. Students seeking to pursue alternative coursework in other subject areas to fulfill the minor should consult with the Anthropology and Design faculty advisor. Please consult this spreadsheet for an archive of past courses and list of current electives. Fall 2021 courses are hyperlinked below.

    Subject Area

    Course options

    Credits

    Required Course: Anthropology + DesignGANT 6405: Anthropology + Design: Objects, Sites + Systems3 credits
    Anthropology electiveOffered in fall 2021:
    GANT 5490: Design Ethnography Workshop

    GANT 5615: Unsettled Objects: Troubling Colonialism

    GANT 6232: Documentalities: Evidence Beyond Proof

    Offered other semesters:
    GANT 6218: Mapping the Field 
    GANT 6337: Data Artifacts, Infrastructures + Landscapes
    GANT Synaesthetics (coming 2020-2022)
    3 credits
    Design Research + Practice
    Design History + Theory elective
    Options vary from semester to semester; current and past options are listed here3 credits

    Learning Outcomes

    A student who has completed this graduate minor should be able to:

    • Center anthropological concepts and ethnographic methods in critical design practice, incorporate design methods and critical sensibilities into anthropological research and publication, and build their work on a foundation of feminist, anti-racist, and decolonial values
    • Develop critical frameworks to assess the opportunities and responsibilities that come with interdisciplinary research and practice, and work to create supportive contexts for conceptual and methodological experimentation and inclusive collaboration
    • Assess their educational experience itself as a designed field site, and work collaboratively to refine the social, institutional, spatial, and technological apparatus designed to foster our interaction and education

    Faculty

    Shannon Mattern, Professor of Anthropology

    Eligibility

    The Anthropology and Design graduate minor is available to graduate degree students across The New School.

    Students can retroactively apply successfully completed courses toward a minor upon declaring or applying. After a student successfully completes a minor's requirements, the minor will appear on the student's academic transcript at graduation.

    For questions about this minor, please contact Shannon Mattern at matterns@newschool.edu

  • Take the Next Step

    Contact your Student Success advisor to discuss how a minor will fit with your degree requirements.

    Declare or change a minor on my.newschool.edu in the Academics tab. Note that some minors require an application.

  • Take The Next Step

Submit your application

Undergraduates

To apply to any of our undergraduate programs (except the Bachelor's Program for Adults and Transfer Students and Parsons Associate of Applied Science programs) complete and submit the Common App online.

Undergraduate Adult Learners

To apply to any of our Bachelor's Program for Adults and Transfer Students and Parsons Associate of Applied Science programs, complete and submit the New School Online Application.

Graduates

To apply to any of our Master's, Doctoral, Professional Studies Diploma, and Graduate Certificate programs, complete and submit the New School Online Application.

Close