Master of Fine Arts in Design+Change


Program Description

The Master Program in Design + Change is an advanced-level two-year program within Design, the main field of study.

Design involves creativity, criticality, and transformation. The design calls into question the state of things and makes an impact. Design challenges preconceptions, prejudices, norms, and stereotypes and provokes emotions, thoughts, sensibilities, and actions. Design can enhance our lives and our relationships with the world. It can make us attentive and empathic to the ecological and socio-cultural systems in which we live. In a world of many challenges, design can be an agent for sustainable change.

In shaping our futures, designers will face unprecedented challenges compared to what conventional designers faced during the twentieth century. In fact, the role of the designer will and should change. Instead of only designing for mass production, which was important during the first phase of industrialization, designers of futures must handle multiple roles and increasingly complex issues. As agents for change, designers will play key roles in shaping futures of sustainability.

On the Design+Change Master’s Programme at Linnaeus University we challenge the traditional role of the designer, working across disciplinary and media boundaries to define new roles that meet contemporary and future needs. For design to confront the crises we are now facing, we need to work together with other academic disciplines and cultural practices and in partnerships with professional designers, community organizations, businesses, activists and governmental bodies.

Students on the Design+Change Master’s Programme can choose to extend their existing knowledge in a specific design field or explore new ones. The program focusses on artistic and experimental processes and creative research, and students will develop their capacity for critical reflection in making well rounded and futures oriented design proposals. Particular attention is paid to contemporary and emerging design disciplines such as critical and speculative design, social design, meta-design, and design activism. Furthermore, students are introduced to and practice relevant methods for questioning the current state of things, opening up to ways of thinking and shaping futures creatively and differently.

Entry Requirements

General entry requirements for studies at the second level and specific entry requirements:

  • 90 credits in the main field of study, Design (including an independent project of at least 15 credits) or the equivalent,
  • Approved portfolio and letter of intent.
  • English B/6 or the equivalent.


Selection is made on academic merit and approved portfolio.


Click here for the program syllabus.


Our aim is to develop artistic maturity and foster responsible designer roles with a focus on sustainability and design as a change agent. At LNU, you will develop your skills working exploratory, with concept development and implementation, in complex projects.


Master of Fine Arts (Main field of study: Design)

Application and portfolio

The application process consists of two steps. First, you need to apply to the program online at (in English), or (in Swedish). Then you need to submit your portfolio to Linnaeus University by our website

Final application date: 15 June 2018

  • Submit your application along with a portfolio + letter of intent.
  • You find instructions for the portfolio below.

Portfolio Guidelines, Master program in Design + Change

For your submitted portfolio to be deemed complete, it must consist of two components:

  1. Representative work
  2. Statement of purpose

1. Representative Work

Your portfolio should include a selection, 10 pieces, of your most creative work, and should represent a variety of design and art approaches and outcomes in relation to sustainability and design as an agent of change. We encourage you to choose work that demonstrates the range of your interests, also outside of your studies. Submit the 10 pieces on our website, in PDF, PNG or JPG-formats. You can upload a maximum 50 MB total.

In the upload form, enter a brief description of the work you upload.

2. Statement of purpose

Please write a statement of purpose that on one A4 page describes your interest in design focusing on:

  • What are you curious about?
  • What do you want to change through design?
  • How do you want to use your education to reach your goals?
  • What sustainability is to you?

The statement of purpose will be evaluated in terms of:

  • Your capacity to envision and plan your future as a designer
  • Your previous and intended engagement with sustainability and change
  • Your proficiency in expressing yourself in English

Submit your statement of purpose to our website, in PDF, PNG or JPG-format.

The application process consists of two steps:

Step 1

Apply to the program online at (in English), or (in Swedish). Submissions of documentation attesting your eligibility for a Master´s level study must be submitted here.

The following program codes and deadlines apply:

Please submit your application to program code LNU-F2500 by 15 January 2018

Step 2

Submit your portfolio to Linnaeus University (LNU).

The deadlines by which portfolios must be received by LNU are: 31 January 2018

Acceptance to the program

If you meet the eligibility criteria, your application will be accepted and evaluated on the basis of your portfolio. Evaluation of portfolios is conducted by a selection committee consisting of faculty members, external experts, and current students. The portfolio is regarded as a whole and the portfolio is evaluated in terms of the following criteria:

  • Artistic quality
  • Visualization skills
  • Creative approach
  • Ability to think critically
  • Ability to work with sustainability and change as an intent

After submitting your application and portfolio you'll be contacted if you have been selected for an interview. We offer a telephone/online interview.

The university will not disclose the reasons behind the decision to accept or reject any individual application. Approved students will be notified through or

Checklist for Application

  • I have submitted my application through or
  • I have prepared my portfolio according to the guidelines provided.
  • I have included a statement of purpose with my portfolio.
  • I have uploaded my portfolio on and made sure that all my files are included, and that I have submitted written descriptions of my uploaded files.


If you have any questions regarding the application or permission related issue don´t hesitate to inquire by e-mail to the Admissions Office:

If you have any questions regarding the portfolio or other questions about the program don´t hesitate to inquire by e-mail to the program coordinator:

Last updated Jan 2020

About the School

Linnaeus University is a modern, international university named after Carl Linnaeus – a world-renowned Swedish scientist who was born in the Småland region where the university is located.

Linnaeus University is a modern, international university named after Carl Linnaeus – a world-renowned Swedish scientist who was born in the Småland region where the university is located. Read less
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