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How to Become an Industrial Designer

Bachelor's degree

For entry-level industrial design jobs, a bachelor's degree in architecture, industrial design or engineering is commonly required. A detailed electronic portfolio showcasing examples of their best design projects is also vital.

Education & Training

The majority of design programs include the following courses: CADD or computer aided design and drafting, sketching, manufacturing methods, industrial materials and processes. Numerous schools require completion of some basic design and art classes prior to entry into a bachelor's degree program. Artistic ability must be proven by providing examples of sketches and or a portfolio.

Certain programs enable students to create a professional portfolio of their designs. They collect items from internships, class projects and a variety of experience. These samples may be used to demonstrate their skills when bidding on work contracts and applying for jobs.

Many designers earn their MBA or Master's of Business Administration to gain business skills. This helps designers understand how to construct their designs to be successful within the cost parameters a firm may have in place for particular production of a specific product.

Skills and Qualities that will Help

Analytical Skills: Reasoning skills and logic are frequently relied on to study consumers and develop new products.

Artistic Ability: Design ideas are initially sketched by industrial designers. From these sketches, prototypes can be created. Designers have to be able to communicate effectively with their drawings.

Computer Skills: CADD software is utilized by industrial designers to create prototypes and develop their designs.

Creativity: Innovative designs are necessary to integrate existing technology into their new product design.

Interpersonal Skills: Cooperative working relationships are developed between industrial designers, colleagues and clients who specialize in certain fields.

Mechanical Skills: Industrial designers need to comprehend how items are engineered within the realm of the products they design.

Problem-Solving Skills: These designers are inundated with intricate design issues including: product cost, size and the need for the item in order to forecast potential production problems, come up with alternatives, implement solutions and evaluate their options on an on-going basis.

How To Advance

With experience, designers may move up to supervisory positions in larger firms including: design department head and chief designer. Others may wish to teach in colleges, design schools or universities. Many people maintain a private design studio in addition to teaching. Experienced industrial designers may eventually open up their own design firms.