Zurich University of the Arts, Department of Design


Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK)

On 1 August 2007 the School of Art and Design Zurich (HGKZ) and the Zurich School of Music, Drama and Dance (HMT) merged to become one of Europe’s largest universities of the arts: the Zurich University of the Arts (Zürcher Hochschule der Künste, ZHdK). Comprising more than 2000 students, the University offers a unique range of programmes from further education opportunities to undergraduate, postgraduate and research degrees in design, film, art, media, music, dance, theatre and art education.

Our mission is to be at the forefront of learning, research and practice. While anchored in Greater Zurich, our influence extends well beyond Switzerland to the international stage. Closely aligning teaching and research, our programmes are designed to promote transdisciplinary work.  We provide a bridge between higher education, professional practice and the general public by showcasing the achievements of our staff and students in the University own exhibition spaces, theatre, dance and concert halls, including the renowned Zurich Museum of Design and the newly established Theatre of the Arts (formerly the Sihl Theatre). We thus make a significant contribution to cultural life in the city and region of Zurich.

ZHdK Department of Design

Within the system of the arts, design becomes a continuous process of redefinition and convergence, building in the main on three research areas. First comes the field of materiality or sensory perception, or how the visible becomes constituted through thematic interconnections, contextualisations, and their manifestations: production processes, products, and stagings. Secondly, the field of multimedia relations explores the process-nature that breaks open what the senses can perceive, to reveal in the broadest sense shifts, openings, and technologies in both design and transmission processes and interactions. Thirdly, the theme of identity and its manifold ways of establishment encompasses the generative paradigms of self and other, and explores ambiguity, cultural circumstances, communication, and user habits.

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This school also offers:


Master of Arts in Design

Campus Full time February 2018 Switzerland Zurich

The Master of Arts in Design programme aims to promote skills excellence and to meet the demands of a complex, design-oriented environment. Coursework prepares ... [+]


Master of Arts in Design


Situated at the heart of a thriving urban environment, Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK) is ideally suited to delivering a cutting edge Master of Arts in Design. Our programme aims to promote skills excellence and to meet the demands of a complex, design-oriented environment. Coursework prepares students for their future professional careers through nurturing individual interests based on innovative thinking and situational action. Our programme therefore focuses on elaborating research-driven and application-oriented design solutions.



Course contents and structure


Our MA Design consists of five fields of excellence. Students may major in any of these fields. The core component of each major is the individual MA project.... [-]