The M.S. in Consumer and Design Sciences offers both a Thesis and a Non-Thesis Option. The Thesis Option requires a minimum of 30 semester hours of graduate level coursework including a research or creative scholarship-based thesis and a final Oral Examination (presentation and defense of the thesis). The Non-Thesis Option requires a minimum of 36 semester hours, a graduate project, and an oral presentation of the project. This Graduate Project may include creative scholarship, case study, course development, or design development. The Plan of Study is highly individualized, based upon the student’s academic background, work experiences, and career goals.
Teaching and/or research assistantships are awarded on a competitive basis, based upon program needs, student qualifications, and funding availability.
The following list suggests topical areas for advanced study in Consumer and Design Sciences:
• Consumer Behavior
• Interior Design
• Functional and Creative Apparel/Product Design
• Design Management
• Retail Management
• Product Development
• Forecasting and Trend Analysis
• Emerging Technologies
• Multicultural and Global Markets
Beyond basic requirements, each student’s program is tailored to his or her own educational objectives and goals through the selection of courses and topic for the thesis or project. Although coursework is taken primarily within CADS, courses from other departments may be identified as appropriate.
New students are advised by the Graduate Program Officer for their first and perhaps second term. Coursework includes CADS requirements. Following identification of a Major Professor, elective selections are made in communication with and approved by the Major Professor and student’s Graduate Advisory Committee. CADS courses carrying graduate credit (numbered 6000-8000) include regularly scheduled courses and customizable courses that may be taken by a single or small group of students. A list of possible non-CADS supporting courses has been identified by CADS graduate faculty, but others may be suggested by a student.
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