grau-disseny-innovacio-01 Elisava x Open Arms

Undergraduate Degree in Design and Innovation

We train designers with a creative profile, able to apply critical thinking and an exploratory vision of the world, and capable of questioning and dialoguing across disciplines with other people from the social, production, scientific or cultural environments.

Visit the School

Presentation and objectives

At Elisava we understand design and innovation as key agents for creating or improving products, services, communication, environments or experiences.

The Undergraduate Degree in Design and Innovation, recognised and validated by the EHEA (European Space of Higher Education), is a degree within the Arts and Humanities branch of knowledge, and includes areas considered essential for design, such as anthropology, philosophy or history, among others, which lay the contextual foundations for projects.

This study programme has a largely practical base, enabling students to learn more about materials, processes or communication. You will undertake various projects, both personal ones, in which you will express your stance as a designer; and projects linked with the social and business context; as well as interdisciplinary projects alongside professionals from other spheres (artistic, philosophical, anthropological, technical, engineering, etc.), forming multidisciplinary teams to address the complex challenges of today and the future. These projects will be undertaken in collaboration with companies, communities, public bodies or social institutions.


Study design at Elisava

We see the design discipline from a cross-cutting perspective, a field in constant evolution. We design from, on behalf of and for people, always with a single purpose. Thus, on the Undergraduate Degree in Design and Innovation at Elisava you will obtain the knowledge and tools needed to take on any kind of design challenge with a contextual approach and with people at the centre, while taking into consideration social and environmental innovation.

Types of subjects on the Undergraduate Degree in Design and Innovation

  • Projects: Personal projects, in context and cross-cutting (70-80% of all subjects).
  • Context: Tools to interpret historical, social, cultural, economic and technological context.
  • Tools, Materials and Techniques: Instrumental competences from the area of expression, communication and materials.
Recommended profile for new students

Do you want to study design in Barcelona? If you want to access this degree, it is important you have a high level of curiosity and an interest in trying to understand the world’s complexity. We also take into account students’ personal attitudes related to their capacities for representation, analysis and communication, and believe it essential to have technical-artistic abilities, as well as a readiness and eagerness to work as part of a team. We value an interest in fine arts, humanities and social sciences, as well as creativity, imagination, innovation and an interest in lifelong learning.


You must choose your mention of the Undergraduate Degree in Design and Innovation before starting the second year. During this second course you will delve into the chosen specialization, carrying out projects to learn the communication tools, materials and specific technology of each specialization.

Why study the Undergraduate Degree in Design and Innovation?

1 Collaborations with companies, institutions and NGOs

A careful network of partners (companies, institutions, start-ups, art centers, design studios, NGOs), who share Elisava’s identity, point of view, ethical, environmental, social and technological commitment.

2 Internships and job placement

We personalize the search for your curricular internships based on your interests and the existing offer. In our job bank, every year we receive more than 300 internships and job offers.

3 Project based learning

Our methodology is based on “learning by projecting”, applying from the outset all the theoretical and practical concepts learned to design and develop the best solutions. Of the total number of subjects, 80% correspond to project subjects to learn by doing and implementing the theoretical concepts learned.

4 Open workshops

The Undergraduate Degree in Design and Innovation is a career where experimentation is key. For this reason, a large part of the classes are held in our workshops. These spaces are open all day so you can experiment and develop your projects. In addition to the facilities in the La Rambla building, we have agreements with various centers such as the TMDC industrial workshop, Ateneu de Fabricació, photography sets and research centers to develop openly and without limits everything that the degree proposes to you.

5 Design from, by, for and with people

You will learn to always design with a purpose, with a social commitment to create a fairer society with people, the territory and the planet. You will work on projects at a local scale with Third Sector institutions and you will understand the social impact of design.

6 Collaborative projects in multidisciplinary teams

You will carry out work with the objective of facing global and complex challenges, where you will collaborate with people from other specialties and disciplines, just as it happens in the professional world.

7 Specialize from the second course

You can choose your mention at the end of the first course. Thus, during the second year you will put into practice the knowledge of the specialty that most interests you.

8 Accompaniment and personalization

In the Undergraduate Degree in Design and Innovation we are committed to a high number of teaching hours in groups of a maximum of 25 students, and we monitor your university experience and your well-being through the Tutorial Action Programme.

If you have any question or doubt, you can contact us through WhatsApp.

Contact with students

You can write to students of the Undergraduate Degree in Design and Innovation to find out more about their experience at Elisava (subjects, international mobility, internships, projects with companies, professional opportunities…). Click on their Instagram accounts below and write them a private message.

Study plan of the Undergraduate Degree in Design and Innovation

The Degree in Design and Innovation takes four years. The first course is made up of basic training subjects where the different disciplines of design are introduced and where you will discover the expression and communication tools that will make up your own language.

In the second year you will have to choose the mention in which you want to specialize. During this year, you will acquire the tools, you will know the materials and you will integrate the techniques of your specialty, as well as the design methodologies applied in disciplinary projects.

In the third year, you will be able to continue delving into the chosen mention or develop a more global profile taking subjects from other mentions. Also in this course, you will be able to participate in transversal projects or take a semester at a foreign university through the Erasmus program.

In the last year, you will carry out curricular internships and you will develop two global projects of a multidisciplinary nature in addition to the Final Degree Project (TFG) where you will demonstrate your personal positioning towards design through a project that integrates and demonstrates all the skills that you will have acquired throughout the Degree in Design and Innovation.

This programme is verified by the accrediting institution AQU Catalunya.
Course 1
Course 2
  • Graphic Design
  • Product Design
  • Space Design
  • Interactive Experiences Design
  • Common subjects
Course 3
Course 4
Semester 1

Introduction to the languages of representation and expression as a primary tool for analysis and communication in design. Tools and concepts of shape, volume, color, image and matter.

Fundamentals of Product Design
Introduction to product design through various projects, from an everyday object to a wooden piece of furniture. Application of the concepts of form and function, as well as materials and production processes, communication and representation of product design.

Fundamentals of Graphic Design
Introduction to the knowledge of visual communication. Basic elements of written language, typography and its terminology, word composition and its correct location in the paragraph. Design of a publication to understand the importance and versatility of the grid.

Design Processes
Introduction to the project process of design and its methods and processes as a tool to investigate, devise, develop and communicate a project.

Introduction to Design
Everything around us is designed. For example, this page you’re reading or the glasses you might be wearing. The objective of this course is the global comprehension of design to understand that all design is the result of a complex sequence of decisions and to critically assess the result.

Semester 2

Introduction to the concepts of shape, volume, color and matter: immersion in analytical and descriptive drawing in the representation of reality. Experimentation and manipulation of different materials. Generation of narratives applying appropriate codes and languages.

Fundamentals of Interactive Experiences Design
Design of tangible interfaces and sound and image programming. Production of an interactive project with physical interfaces and audiovisual materials. Realization of an interactive exhibition.

Fundamentals of Space Design
Design of a room for one person. Formalization of an idea, experimenting with the composition (axes, symmetries, proportions, hierarchy and rhythm), taking into account the spatial distribution and the materials used, without forgetting the aspects to express meanings and emotions.

Introduction to the Transversal Project
Development of a transversal project to all mentions, applying the methods and processes relevant to the different phases of the design. Incorporation of the transversal project methodology into the design process.

Design Stories
In a world in continuous transformation, rethinking the limits, responsibilities and competences of design is essential. For this, it is essential to know what has happened so far, to understand the designs and their contexts in order to formulate projects according to one’s own criteria.

Subjects in PDF
Semester 3

Workshop I. Typography and Technical Processes
Study and practice of the typographic technique, drawing of the letter, hierarchy of information, analysis of the reading experience and typographic sources. Principles and theoretical framework of graphic production.

Communication I. Formats
Communicative formats of graphic design to master visual languages and develop representational skills through a typographic project and an illustration project.

Project I. Graphic Design
Learning and development of graphic design project methodologies. Realization of different types of projects (book cover, album cover, magazine, label, poster or tote bag), proposing various scenarios where specific requirements for users, formats and printing techniques intervene.

Contemporary Art and Graphic Design
Investigation of the historical referents of graphic design. Analysis of the causes and effects produced by social, economic and political changes in mass communication. Study of the evolution of techniques developed by the graphic industry and its impact on messages.

Semester 4

Workshop II. Typesetting and Materials
Advanced text composition, kerning, tracking and P&J control, design and use of complex grids and font design. Study of materials, supports for graphic production and their relationship with production systems.

Communication II. Strategies
Exploration of the different communication formats of graphic design: photographic art direction and audiovisual art direction.

Project II. Graphic design
Learning the structure of the phases of a project: from the investigation and analysis of a specific assignment, to the study of graphic systems, the application in different supports, and, finally, the standardization and production phase.

Subjects in PDF
Semester 3

Workshop I. Materials and Craft Processes
Immersion in the original and artisanal processes and materials. First industries. Theoretical-practical exercises to learn about and experiment with processes and materials.

Communication I. Drawing and Representation of Products
Learning basic communication tools. Decoding an idea from mental projection to its three-dimensional vision, from drawing on paper to 3D representation with computer tools.

Project I. Product Design
From hand to human. Conceptualization, design and construction making use of knowledge of processes and materials. Development of two projects (a breakfast set made of clay and wood, and a furniture design for the home).

Art and Design of Contemporary Products
Investigation of the historical referents of product design. Analysis of the reference pieces in product design, to understand how and why they became references. Study of the economic, political and social context to understand the evolutionary trend in the design of contemporary products.

Semester 4

Workshop II. Industrial Processes and Digital Manufacturing
Learning through theoretical-practical exercises to learn about and experience new industrial processes, digital manufacturing technologies and new materials.

Communication II. Product Photography and Art Direction
Learning the communication tools to express an idea with an aesthetic position, and also the creative tools to communicate a project through photography and art direction.

Project II. Product Design
From human to machine. Approach to speculative and technological product design. Specific project methodologies to design prospective proposals in the project “New Realities: Rethinking the post-COVID 2025 and global warming 2030 scenarios”. Design of products through the monitoring of health data, to improve people’s lives (“Technology and well-being” project).

Subjects in PDF
Semester 3

Workshop I. Construction Materials and Components
Experimentation with the different families of materials through physical models and their construction components, from the theoretical study to its implementation in the project.

Communication I. Representation of Space
Space representation techniques through analog and digital drawing and the three-dimensional materialization of the physical model, from the sketch and the conceptual model to the plans and the scale model.

Project I. Design of Spaces
Analysis and synthesis process to create 3 space design projects (approach to the concept and space of the individual with a single material, space project for collective use and project of more complex shared living spaces).

Art and Design of Contemporary Spaces
Research and analysis of the referents of the culture of the space project. Carrying out practical exercises of interpretation and understanding of space design referents in a film workshop to learn to look at and narrate space, through photography, editing, sound and directing a short film.

Semester 4

Workshop II. Details and Construction Systems
Workshop to learn details and construction systems, and to carry out the control of the sustainability of a project (environmental impact and well-being in the context of space).

Communication II. Space Narratives
Analysis of the different ways of communicating a space project: values, formal aspects and strategic positioning. Production of the memory, synthetic images (3D layout and rendering) and video.

Project II. Space Design
Development of methodologies that allow the definition of the project of spaces for public use in its different phases, from the relations with the place at a physical, cultural and social level, to the distribution of spaces and construction details.

Subjects in PDF
Semester 3

Workshop I. Creative Code
Basic learning of creative programming from various programming languages such as Processing and Python, or the use of algorithms for writing code-based programs capable of producing generative visual results.

Communication I. Audiovisual Narratives
Basic techniques for creating audiovisual stories: from storytelling to storyboarding. Introduction to art direction (analog and digital still life).

Project I. Interactive Experiences Design
Critical reflection on digital behavior, technologies and the use of social networks with the aim of developing a project about their impact on the personal and social.

Contemporary Interactive Art and Design
Investigation of the referents of the design of interactive experiences. Analysis of the causes and effects produced by the gestures, behaviors, habits, emotions and affections that digital environments produce in our personal and collective lives. Distribution of spaces and construction details.

Semester 4

Workshop II. Tangible Interface Design
Conceptualization, design and construction of a prototype through creative programming of electronic circuits with Arduino. Creation of interactive objects to link the physical world with the digital world.

Communication II. Interactive Environments
Creation of audiovisual pieces to communicate a project of interactive experiences, taking into account the art direction, to reflect the aesthetic charge of the stories in relation to the concepts to be communicated.

Project II. Interactive Experience Design
Review of concepts, theoretical perspectives and tour of interactive projects in the field of design, digital arts and electronic arts. Ideation and construction of a physical interface that responds to possible future scenarios.

Subjects in PDF
Common subjects in all mentions

Semester 3
Context and User
Sociological approach to design. Analysis methodologies and ethnographic tools for observation in the urban and ethical-political spheres of design processes.

Semester 4
Design and technology
Critical reflection on technology from the reading of texts and case studies. Main lines of thought on technology, science and epistemology in relation to these axes: nature, culture, feminist perspectives, postcolonial location and environmental theories.

New Social and Economic Models
Basic concepts of the global economy: market economy, traditional-artisan system versus capitalist system, supply, demand, economic liberalism, Marxism, planned economies, ethical and social implications of models and systems, economy and sustainable development. Productive and economic models: analysis of geopolitical conditions. Consumption models from the specific study of global cases: from the tracking of raw materials, to their placing on the market, through the location of production centers.

Subjects in PDF
Semester 5

Material experimentation
Material experimentation to encourage creative design processes. Emerging methodologies for the exploration of materials, technologies and processes, from crafts, industry or digital manufacturing for the conceptualization of proposals (ENG, CAT, CAST).

Personal identity
Personal exploration of interests and concerns to formulate a project from the beginning, with the aim of carrying out personal research and developing an own identity applied to the portfolio (ENG, CAT, CAST).

Personal project
Development of own projects from their initial formulation to their final result. Introduction to techniques for defining a project proposal, contemplating personal identity and the area of impact of the proposal (ENG, CAT, CAST).

Critical theories
Theory is a project and every project is also a theory. Reflection on the need to understand technology in a different way to learn or recover those other technologies that, due to being distant in time or being alien to Western tradition, have been neglected for too long.

Semester 6

Visual experimentation
Space for visual experimentation through formats, techniques, materials and supports, both for the creation of a personal language in the design process, and for the communication of projects in an innovative way (ENG, CAT, CAST).

Crossover Project
Development of transversal projects: teamwork from various design specialties and interpretation of knowledge from different fields. Approach of communication strategies using different media (ENG).

Project Context
Design of projects with companies and institutions to delve into a professional field of design. Methods and tools for decision making and time management (ENG, CAT, CAST).

Subjects in PDF
Semester 7

Transversal project
Projects with multidisciplinary teams to address complex challenges, collaborating with context agents to design possible futures.

Research and Design
Start of the research for the Final Degree Project, to define your proposal exploring your own interests and current and future trends.

New Trends
Experimental methods to investigate the past, analyze the present and project the future: speculative design, sociological impact, dynamics and trends. Detection of indicators, weak signals, opportunities, scale, resources, scenarios (ENG).

Design Management
Introduction to the management of design studios and departments, and their typologies in business terms, their profiles and professional roles. Team organization models (organization chart or flexible models). Realization of a field work, interviewing studios or design departments (ENG).

Semester 8

External internships
Internships in companies and institutions carrying out design tasks through teamwork to gain experience in the work environment.

Final Degree Project
Development of the Final Degree Project that starts from an own proposal or collaboration with institutions, companies or research centers. The work must have a theoretical foundation, a research methodology and a final presentation.

Communication and Academic Writing
Tools and strategies for visual, oral and written communication of a project, aimed at the scientific community and society in general (ENG).

Subjects in PDF
Collaboration with companies, institutions and NGOs

During the 4 years of the degree you will have the opportunity to participate in academic projects, workshops and other activities in collaboration with more than 450 companies and institutions in our network.

At Elisava, we provide you with a network of national and international contacts to do internships and participate in real projects.

More information

On completion of the Degree, you will have the knowledge and competencies needed to develop your professional activity in a wide range of sectors and participate in all phases of the design process:

  • Define your personal positioning of design from a social, environmental, political, ethical and aesthetic vision.
  • Dialogue with professionals from other fields (technical, artistic, scientific…), managing knowledge from other disciplines in a resolute manner.
  • Communicate effectively in each of the phases of the design project.
  • Design scenarios to anticipate future needs.
  • Experiment with materials, processes and techniques to add value to the design project.
  • Develop design projects in different work areas, on your own or in any business or institutional model.
  • Apply knowledge of the different areas of design adapted to the evolution and needs of the professional context.
International mobility

If you want to travel for a few months to study in another city, we have agreements with the most prestigious international universities in the world of design. We participate in exchange, cooperation and research programmes with more than 80 academic institutions.

See list of universities
Career opportunities

When you complete the Degree in Design and Innovation, you will have the knowledge and capacities needed to carry out your professional activity in a wide range of sectors and areas, able to participate in all phases of the design process.

  • Criticism and investigation.
  • Design consultancy.
  • Graphic communication, art direction and creative direction.
  • Curator of exhibitions and events.
  • Project management of design projects.
  • Theoretical and pedagogical development of the design: Teaching.

In addition to these transversal professional opportunities, depending on the mention chosen, you will be able to specialize in:

Graphic design:
Art direction, creative direction, design for advertising, corporate image, editorial design, web, data, packaging, illustration, typography, signage.

Space Design:
Interior design (homes, bars, restaurants), commercial spaces (retail, visual merchandising, window dressing), ephemeral assemblies, exhibitions, stands, stage design for events and shows, interventions in public spaces, landscape interventions.

Product Design:
Product design, systems and/or service design, industrial design, objects and accessories, packaging, furniture, lighting, automotive.

Interactive Experience Design:
Product design and interactive environments, immersive experience design, web design, user experience (UX) design, digital interface (UI) design, audiovisual design, data visualization and data processing.

Experiences of recently graduated students

Elisava is the Faculty of Design and Engineering of the Universitat de Vic – Universitat Central de Catalunya (UVic-UCC). Although UVic-UCC is a privately owned university, access to its undergraduate degrees is governed through the Generalitat de Catalunya’s university pre-registration system (two calls: June and September).

Access and pre-registration Tuition


Students from non-EU countries can also access university degrees through the Foundation Year, which prepares international students who have completed secondary education in their home country.

Financing and scholarships

Here you can check all the information related to financing, payment methods and scholarships that we offer to access the Undergraduate Degree in Design and Innovation.

More information

The academic quality at Elisava is demanding, and excellently recognized internationally. We are the first design school in Spain, we have been innovating for 60 years through a reference educational model.

Internal Quality Assurance System