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Take your place at the leading edge

User-Centered Design

Part-time, 100% online


Prepare to solve the design problems of the future.

Master of Science in User-Centered Design

Do you love to work at the intersection of creativity, psychology and technology? Are you constantly curious about how design affects learning and behavior?

Declare your place at the leading edge of user experience with an MS in User-Centered Design. The 100% online curriculum is carefully designed to strike a balance of theory and practice in applying psychological principles and user research to create useful, delightful, and innovative user experiences. Explore the latest design and development processes as you build the management and collaboration skills essential for effective UX leadership.

With small classes with no more than 20 students, you will engage deeply with peers inanalyzing the intersection of human factorsbusiness strategy, and UX design. Brandeis University is consistently ranked as a top national university by U.S. News & World Report, so you can be confident that you have earned a degree from one of the best universities in the country.

This program will prepare you to plan and drive UX strategy for a wide range of products and organizations. You will:

  • Master interaction design and information architecture tools and techniques, including design ideation and prototyping.
  • Understand and apply the physical and psychological human factors that impact how users interact with digital products and technology.
  • Hone your skills in design thinking, qualitative and quantitative research and evaluation, and leadership.

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The 30-credit part time, online master's degree has seven required courses and three electives.


Full-time or part-time, fully online, financially accessible

The 30-credit part time, online master's degree has seven required courses and three electives. Required courses provide students with a focused education surrounding fundamental topics in the field, while electives build upon specific professional skillsets and allow students to enrich and round out their studies.

Sample Fall 2021 curriculum

Please note that available courses are subject to change.

Required courses

  • User Experience Design
  • Cognitive and Social Psychology of User-Centered Design
  • Information Architecture
  • Research Methods
  • Design Ideation and Prototyping
  • Design Operation and Leadership
  • Capstone in User-Centered Design

Sample electives

  • UX Design Processes
  • Design of Non-Screen User Experiences
  • Information Visualization Theory and Techniques
  • Demystifying Agile Project Management
  • User Interface Design
  • Web Development Technologies
  • Mobile Applications and Responsive Web Design

View a complete list of program requirements

View tuition and financing options

The user-centered design industry

Gain insights into the field

Professionals specializing in user-centered design are in high demand. In fact, Glassdoor has identified UX Designer as #27 on their current list of best jobs in America.

Leading organizations that are currently hiring user-centered designers span multiple industries and include:

  • Amazon.com
  • IBM
  • Deloitte
  • Microsoft Corporation
  • Apple Inc.
  • Estee Lauder
  • General Electric Co.
  • Disney
  • Emc
  • Hewlett-Packard

Students seeking a master's in this industry often hold job titles such as:

  • Interactive Designer
  • User Experience Designer
  • Senior User Experience Developer
  • Human Factors Engineer
  • User Experience Researcher
  • UX Architect
  • User Experience Strategist
  • UX Design Associate
  • User Experience Engineer
  • Web Developer



Our students

Student testimonials

“While a student at Brandeis, I discovered new opportunities and pathways for professional growth that I never realized existed.”
— Theresa, MS in User-Centered Design Graduate, 2015

User-Centered Design

Meet our featured faculty

Our User-Centered Design faculty understand the challenges of modern industry. Whether they’re developing technologies for higher education communities or advocating for design innovation, they structure their GPS curriculum to draw on real-world expertise and connections that ultimately help our students advance their career goals. Here is a sampling of our User-Centered Design faculty:

  • Candra Gill is a Senior User Experience Architect at the Home Depot working on mobile application experiences. She has worked in the UX field in corporate environments, marketing agencies, and on projects for non-profit organizations. 
  • Jennifer Sullivan McGinn is a Senior Director of UX at CA Technologies, and has spent more than 20 years working as a UX leader, designer, user researcher, technical trainer, and writer at companies including Oracle, Nokia and Sun Microsystems. She regularly presents at local, regional, and international UX conferences, and has published peer-reviewed papers on persona development, heuristic evaluation, Agile user research, and usability rating scales. Jen has a BS in Information Systems Management from UMBC, and an MS in Human Factors in Information Design from Bentley University.
  • Debra Michalides is a User Experience Design Consultant and adjunct professor with a decade of designing enterprise level products and services for diverse industries such as retail, legal services, medical and educational publishing for clients such as Lowes, Allstate, Cengage Learning and Wolters Kluwer. Her approach to design has been described as bringing clarity to chaos aligning different product ideas from many perspectives into one cohesive product version. Debra received her undergraduate B.F.A. in Graphic Design from The Art Institute of Boston and her M.F.A in Design and Technology from Parsons School of Design. 

Visit the Rabb School faculty directory for a full list of Brandeis GPS faculty.

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Brandeis GPS is committed to giving you the support you need to succeed. From the moment you begin the application process to the day you graduate and beyond, our advising team is here to support you. Talk to an enrollment advisor today.

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Online Learning

Learn more about our unique approach to online learning and what makes a Brandeis GPS education so engaging.