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Doctor of Design Design

University of Calgary

University of Calgary
The Doctor of Design (DDes) in the Faculty of Environmental Design is a post-graduate, research-based, terminal degree for mid-career architects, landscape architects, planners, and other creative professionals and educators with significant practice-based experience (min. 5-7 years). The three-year degree provides an opportunity for these professionals to explore a focused area of applied creative design practice-based research that will have a positive impact on their discipline and improve the quality of the built and natural environments (for example in terms of environmental sustainability, economic resilience, social equity, technological sophistication, energy efficiency, and design ingenuity). Students pursue their research within the context of their on-going professional activities, consulting regularly with their supervisory committees, and participating in semi-annual symposia in which their work is critiqued in face-to-face reviews by world-leading researchers and practitioners. Graduates generate new knowledge that is germane to their ongoing professional work by integrating practice as a research methodology.

Admissions and Recruitment Office
2500 University Drive NW
Calgary, Alberta, T2N 1N4, Canada

  • Program Type Doctoral
  • Credential Type Degree
  • Length 3 Years
  • Part Time Only
  • Cooperative Education
  • Continuing Education
  • Distance Learning
Admission Requirements

In addition to Faculty of Graduate Studies requirements for Admission, the program requires:

a) Research Proposal
A research proposal that describes the applicant’s professional work to date and the nature of the research they expect to undertake. This will be used by the Admissions Committee as an indicator of the applicant’s ability to conduct doctoral-level, creative, design practice-based research and to determine if adequate supervisory resources are available. Only if such resources are available will the student be admitted. Please note that this research proposal (maximum of 2500 words) must include the following sections: Background of the researcher, context of the research proposal, research questions, and broader impacts of the proposed research. The research proposal should indicate potential supervisors and/or committee members, and whether they have been contacted by the applicant. Applicants are advised to contact the Graduate Program Director to obtain the names of potential supervisors.

b) Digital Portfolio
A portfolio that provides examples of, or illustrates, the applicant’s design work, professional work, consulting reports, policy reviews, research, creative thinking, community action, planning products, or graphics and visual communication.

c) Curriculum Vitae
A current copy of curriculum vitae (CV).

d) Reference Letters
Two reference letters. These can be academic or professional references.

e) Formal Interview
Applicants are required to participate in a formal interview (either in person or online) with the Graduate Program Director or their designate.

f) Proof of English Proficiency
For applicants who are required to prove proficiency in English, a minimum TOEFL score of 105 (Internet-based test); an IELTS score of 7.5; or a CAEL score of 70 with a minimum of 70 in each component. This requirement can also be met by completing the Academic Communication Certificate with a minimum grade of "A-" in each course.

g) Funding Plan
A funding plan that demonstrates that financial resources are available for the entire program of study.

h) Grade Point Average
An admission grade point average (GPA) above 3.50 on a four-point scale. In some circumstances, alternate means of demonstrating academic capacity will be accepted for mature applicants who have been away from academia for an extended period of time.

Student Aid

This program is eligible for full-time post-secondary assistance by Alberta Student Aid for the funding year 2023/08/01 to 2024/07/31*.

  • Tuition $15,606.00 Year One
  • Books/Supplies/Instruments $4,788.00 Year One
  • Mandatory Fees $2,112.00 Year One

* Tuition, books, supplies, instruments, and other/mandatory fees are provided to Alberta Student Aid and may be used when processing full-time post-secondary funding applications. The educational costs provided are based on a 100% full-course load and may not reflect current or all educational costs charged by the school. Contact the school to obtain accurate educational cost information.

Transfer(s) Eligibility

Search Transfer Alberta for course and program transfer information including transfer agreements between post-secondary schools in Alberta, British Columbia, Northwest Territories, Nunavut and Yukon.

Transfer(s) available outside of Transfer Alberta: Not available

Updated August 29, 2022. The information contained in this profile is current as of the date shown.

Educational program information is provided as an introduction and for general reference. For current information about programs and school requirements or policies, check the school calendar, visit their website or contact the school directly.
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