International Programmes 2023/2024

Strategic Design (MA) Strategic Design (MA)

SRH Berlin University of Applied Sciences • Berlin

Master of Arts
Teaching language
  • English

The programme is taught in English.

Full-time / part-time
  • full-time
Programme duration
4 semesters
Winter and summer semester
Application deadline

Non-EU/EEA applicants: Please apply by 1 February (April intake) or 15 August (October intake). We also recommend that you apply early (at least four months before the start of your programme).

EU/EEA applicants: Please apply by 1 April (April intake) or 1 October (October intake).

Tuition fees per semester in EUR
5,700 EUR
Additional information on tuition fees
  • Non-EU/EEA tuition fees: 5,700 EUR per semester
  • EU/EEA (including Switzerland, Western Balkans and Ukraine) tuition fees: 790 EUR per month

Please note: The monthly/semester tuition fees remain the same for the entire duration of the study programme.

Combined Master's degree / PhD programme
Joint degree / double degree programme

The Master’s programme in Strategic Design lies at the intersection of innovation management, brand strategy and creative processes management. During the course of the programme, strategic thinking skills are trained around issues relevant for branding, innovation and design processes.

Students are taught to approach design not as a merely decorative art or in order to beautify surfaces but also as a strategic resource for processes and companies. You will gain knowledge of methods and theories of corporate and brand management, design thinking, social design, transformation design, system thinking, critical thinking and strategic participation. You will learn user-centred research, focused synthesis and systematic development of ideas. You will acquire knowledge on creativity techniques, business models, and sustainability as well as intercultural communication. Soft skills such as presentation skills and the development of your personal leadership style are specifically addressed and promoted through specially designed teaching units. The imparting of methods of scientific work creates the prerequisite for the preparation of a thesis in the fourth semester of study.

The lecturers provide scientific and theoretical input, supplemented by practical project work and workshops. By sharing and collaborating with students from other disciplines and cultures, you will acquire the ability to move freely in interdisciplinary design and design teams.

Innovation is the common thread that runs throughout the course, influencing our thought processes, working methods and approaches to all subject matter. The course is not only about understanding technological and social innovations but also about thinking about them holistically and strategically with regard to the future.

The biggest strength of the programme is its practical relevance. All teachers are experts in their subject area and in addition to teaching, they are active in a wide variety of companies and agencies. They have a history of success in effectively applying what they have learned in project-oriented theoretical studies, to the development of new business fields in existing companies and institutions. Study visits to Berlin-based companies and institutions that implement branding, strategic design and social innovations in their business processes are also an integral part of the curriculum.

Thanks to our focus on practical relevance, you will graduate with valuable experience in the field, relevant contacts and a good network in the professional world of strategic design.

Course organisation

First semester

  • Strategic Design Introduction
  • Strategic Design Research
  • Strategic Design Synthesis
  • Content Management
  • Theory I
  • Strategic Design Profession and Best Practice I

Second semester

  • Strategic Design Creation
  • Strategic Design Realisation
  • Strategic Design Implementation
  • Publication
  • Theory II
  • Strategic Design Profession and Best Practice II

Third semester

  • Purpose Driven Innovation | Intro and Research
  • Purpose Driven Innovation | Synthesis and Creation
  • Purpose Driven Innovation | Realisation
  • Strategic Design Manifesto and Portfolio
  • Theory III
  • Strategic Design Profession and Best Practice III

Fourth semester

  • Master's thesis
A Diploma supplement will be issued
International elements
  • Projects with partners in Germany and abroad
Course-specific, integrated German language courses
Course-specific, integrated English language courses
Tuition fees per semester in EUR
5,700 EUR
Additional information on tuition fees
  • Non-EU/EEA tuition fees: 5,700 EUR per semester
  • EU/EEA (including Switzerland, Western Balkans and Ukraine) tuition fees: 790 EUR per month

Please note: The monthly/semester tuition fees remain the same for the entire duration of the study programme.

Semester contribution

199.80 EUR for a discounted semester ticket that students can use for public transport in and around Berlin for a duration of six months

Funding opportunities within the university
Description of the above-mentioned funding opportunities within the university
Academic admission requirements
  • Bachelor's degree in a design discipline, such as design, architecture, art, photography or film
  • proof of English-language proficiency
  • secondary school certificate
  • letter of motivation: What goals do you want to achieve with the Master's in Strategic Design, and what does Strategic Design mean to you?
  • curriculum vitae
  • portfolio with 15 to 20 of your own creative works
Language requirements

The following English proficiency tests are accepted:

  • TOEFL Internet-based: 87
  • TOEIC listening/reading: 785, speaking: 160, writing: 150
  • IELTS (academic): 6.5
  • CAE (grades A, B or C)
  • CPE (grades A, B or C)
  • FCE (grade A, B or C)
  • Pearson English Test Academic (PTE-A): 59 points
  • Linguaskill: 176–184 (CES) – all four skills required
  • B2 First: 173
  • Duolingo: 95 points
Application deadline

Non-EU/EEA applicants: Please apply by 1 February (April intake) or 15 August (October intake). We also recommend that you apply early (at least four months before the start of your programme).

EU/EEA applicants: Please apply by 1 April (April intake) or 1 October (October intake).

Submit application to

Please use our online application system to submit your application.

Possibility of finding part-time employment

Working as a non-EU citizen:
In possession of a valid German residence permit for study purposes, you are allowed to work for up to 120 full days (full day = eight hours per day) or 240 half days (half day = four hours) during the calendar year. However, freelance work is not permitted. Internships that are mandatory for the successful completion of your studies at SRH Berlin do not count towards the above-named 120 full days.

Employment that is considered “student part-time work” ("studentische Nebentätigkeit", e.g. employment as a student worker at a university or in a university-related organisation or "Werkstudent" activities at companies that are related to your studies) can be done without any time restrictions.


We do not own any student dormitories or hostels. However, we provide assistance in selecting accommodation prior to and after your arrival in Berlin.

Career advisory service

Our Career Service supports students and alumni in planning their careers and sharpening their professional profile. Our service portfolio includes:

  • Consultation services for students
  • Career trainings and workshops
  • Annual "Career Day" with job fair and workshops
  • Support in finding a job or an internship for graduates and students
Support for international students and doctoral candidates
  • Welcome event
  • Buddy programme
  • Specialist counselling
  • Support with registration procedures

SRH Berlin University of Applied Sciences

Content Bild
Our campuses in Berlin, Hamburg and Dresden © SRH Berlin University of Applied Sciences

SRH Berlin University of Applied Sciences is a state-accredited university that offers Bachelor's, Master's and MBA programmes in English and German.

Our six schools in Berlin, Dresden and Hamburg combine modern management and entrepreneurship, hospitality, media and creative industries, technology and IT, music and sound design in modern study programmes.

All schools focus on hands-on project work in small teams, an individual learning experience, and personal supervision by lecturers with real business experience.

With its more than 2,000 students from 100+ countries, SRH Berlin University of Applied Sciences is one of the most international universities. In addition to an international atmosphere, our students enjoy the opportunity to get in touch with industry partners and create a professional network through internships and company projects. We offer a wide range of services to support you in finding an internship, organising a semester abroad, and taking care of important tasks during your studies. With this support and environment, our students are prepared for careers in different industries around the globe.

The university belongs to the SRH Holding, a non-profit organisation with its headquarters in Heidelberg. As a leading provider of educational services, SRH operates universities, schools, and professional training centres. SRH Berlin is one of seven universities within the group with more than 14,000 students.

58 Percentage of international students
100+ Number of countries represented at our university

University location

With its population of 3.7 million residents, Berlin is the German capital, the largest city in Germany and the second most populous city in Europe. Apart from being a hub for higher education and research, the city is very multicultural: people from 190 nations live here, 20% of its residents come from abroad and every one in three Berliners is a first-generation or second-generation immigrant. Students in Berlin benefit from a high quality of life and a huge range of recreational activities: festivals, museums and sports events are seen everywhere. Additionally, a third of the city area is composed of parks, rivers and lakes. Berlin is a centre for politics, media and science, and it is renowned for its culture and arts scene as well as its buzzing nightlife. It is rich in history and historical monuments and has a well-connected public transport system that students can use with their discounted public transport tickets. Well-known for its innovation capacity, the German capital has a vibrant start-up scene and is known as a start-up hotspot in Europe. In addition, Berlin’s low living costs and moderate rental prices, compared to other capital or European cities, make the city very attractive for both international and domestic students.

Dresden is a perfect study location. Not only is the city of art and culture a popular tourist destination with its many famous sights, but it has also developed into one of Germany’s strongest and most dynamic economic locations over the past few years. As living costs and rental prices are still relatively low, Dresden is a favourable city for students from around the world. If you add the vast array of cultural events, the diverse nightlife and the city’s beautiful location in the Elbe valley, one might not be surprised that Dresden is a great place to live and study in.

Hamburg is a city that is green, lively and economically strong. Located close to rivers and the ocean, Hamburg has more bridges than Venice and is part of the second largest metropolitan region in Germany. Compared to other cities in Germany, Hamburg has moderate living costs, a high standard of living and a secure infrastructure for students. The city's continuous growth makes it one of the most important and largest trade, economic and logistics centres in north-western Europe. International companies and agencies from the aviation, life science, health care, renewable energy and creative industries are based in Hamburg. Young professionals and university graduates benefit from attractive career opportunities in a growing economy and within the IT, media, retail, logistics and renewable energies industries.

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