B.F.A. Industrial & Product Design

Use your creativity to design products that solve problems.
Degree Type Bachelor of Fine Arts
Careers & Salaries Annual Employment Report
Delivery On Campus

UW-Stout's Bachelor of Fine Arts in Industrial & Product Design is a unique major if you like to draw, build things, tinker, and solve problems. In true polytechnic fashion, it is a combination of art and engineering and leads to careers as product and device designers.

As an industrial design major, you’ll learn what it takes to design, manufacture, and package the products we use every day, from sports cars to cellphones. / UW-Stout

Industrial designers work to optimize the function, value, and appearance of products and systems for both users and manufacturers. In our courses, you will study:

  • Design research and problem-solving
  • Concept development
  • Aesthetics and form
  • How to foster a creative mindset and present your ideas
  • Design methodology
  • 2D and 3D visualization
  • Ergonomics
  • Interface and interaction
  • Design for manufacture

Program Accreditation

UW-Stout's B.F.A Industrial & Product Design program provides a specialized education and is accredited by the National Association for Schools of Art and Design.

B.F.A Industrial & Product Design is NASAD accredited.

Program Overview

View program plans, credit requirements and course descriptions.



The Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Industrial & Product Design program prepares students for careers in the field of contemporary industrial & product design. UW-Stout industrial & product design graduates hold successful careers designing a wide array of products including medical devices, shoes, consumer electronics, prosthetics and bicycles, as well as household and industrial products, tools and devices. The success of our students is derived from a program that highlights the intersections of fine art, design, history, sustainability and a strong liberal arts education.  

Student Gallery

Our students gain experience working on real-world projects with a unique combination of art and technology.

The BFA in Industrial & Product Design program provides a comprehensive applied learning environment that prepares graduates for a successful career in the field of contemporary product design. Industrial designers create and develop concepts and designs that optimize the function, value and appearance of products and systems for the mutual benefit of both user and manufacturer. The program develops a variety of intellectual, technical, and behavioral skills to ensure student success.  

"Stout has been a great school to grow as a designer and creative. Being here has challenged me to always strive for larger goals and gave me the skills necessary to succeed."

-- Alexander Mayhew
B.F.A Industrial and Product Design

Use the Request Information form to receive a program summary and learn more about the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Industrial Design.

Request Information

Objectives & Outcomes
  1. Understand the collaborative, multidisciplinary nature of design through exposure to faculty and students from multiple design disciplines. 
  2. Define, understand, and identify the elements and principles of art and design and apply them to a variety of design solutions. 
  3. Understand, analyze, and integrate the history of art and design within a cultural and aesthetic context. 
  4. Communicate successfully using various means including speaking, writing, and visual communication, including the disciplinespecific communication of technical information. 
  5. Apply methods and theory and research to design solutions in relationship to various social, behavioral, psychological, and cultural factors. 
  6. Apply concepts and issues related to safe, ethical, socially responsible design and sustainable design practice to include an understanding of safety and accessibility. 
  7. Understand, identify, and apply universal design theory and practice, ergonomics, and user interface systems. 
  8. Apply standards of practice for the industrial design profession including ethics, collaboration, professional development, and various business models. 
Industrial Design Careers


  • Industrial Design
  • Product Designer
  • Bicycle Designer
  • Medical Device Designer
  • Footwear Designer
  • Technical Designer
  • Toy Designer
  • Design Drafter
  • Color, Material, and Finish Designer


  • 3M
  • Andersen Windows
  • Ashley Furniture
  • Colony Brands
  • Croc
  • Fisher-Price
  • Garmin
  • Harley Davidson
  • Hasbro
  • KitchenAid
  • Kohler
  • Masterlock
  • Michael’s Crafts
  • Milwaukee Tool
  • Nike
  • Polaris 
  • Presto Industries
  • RedWing Shoes
  • Room & Board
  • Spectrum Brands
  • Target
  • Trek Bicycles
B.F.A. Admissions Requirements

New First-Year Students

Students admitted as Pre-Bachelor of Fine Arts (Pre-BFA) students will join an exciting community of first-year art and design students with classes and events geared towards preparing you for a successful application to the intended BFA program. 

As a student accepted into one of the six BFA programs, please be aware of the following:

  • You will be required to submit a portfolio in the spring semester of your freshman year to apply for acceptance into the intended BFA program. Portfolios will be evaluated by School of Art and Design faculty. Through your first-year experience, you will be given the tools and skills required to prepare and submit the portfolio, and the necessary support to navigate the application process.

Transfer Students

  • All transfer students will be admitted as a Pre-Bachelor of Fine Arts (Pre-BFA) student.  Upon acceptance information will be provided on how to submit a portfolio and essay to be reviewed by a committee of School of Art & Design faculty, who will determine direct admissions into the BFA major of your choice. 
  • Priority Deadlines: 
    • Spring Admission: October 1 at 9 a.m. CST  
    • Fall Admission: March 1 at 9 a.m. CST
  • Submissions may be made after the priority date; however, there is no guarantee when it will be reviewed for a decision nor what art-specific coursework you may be able to get into after the review is completed and whether or not registration for the next semester has begun.  There is a $10 application fee assessed at the time you electronically submit your portfolio.

Transfer students are considered for both fall and spring. This includes portfolio and essay submission by the priority deadline. Students applying for one of the BFA programs will remain admitted as a "Pre-BFA" student if you: 

  • do not submit a portfolio/essay 
  • apply after the BFA program has closed 
  • are not approved for the BFA program after submission of a portfolio/essay. 

You may then apply for a change of major in subsequent semesters, depending upon available openings in the program. If needed, BFA Foundations courses will be available to "Pre-BFA" students pending seat availability. 

Program Advisory Committee

Advisory Committee Members

Erik EvensenAssistant Professor, Department of Design; Interim Program Director, Industrial DesignUW-Stout
JenniferAstwoodProgram Director & Associate Professor, Department of DesignUW-Stout
BenPrattMID, Professor, Department of DesignUW-Stout
NoahNortonAssociate Professor, Department of DesignUW-Stout
DaveRichter-O'ConnellVisiting Assistant Professor, Department of DesignUW-Stout
DevinBergAssociate Professor; Program Director, Department of Engineering and Technology; Mechanical EngineeringUW-Stout
MichaelHammond   *00Design ManagerTrek
AmeliaKennedyDesign Manager3D Design Studio - Target
MichaelLeighton   *02Senior Design Manager3M
KatieThompson   *07Design ManagerQBP
SheriMarnellProgram Director & Lecturer, CSTEMM, , Apparel Design & Development and Business ProgramsUW-Stout
Logan Ernster    *15DesignerP-Soup
CalebToftPresident IDSA Student Chapter
MattBentleyVice-President IDSA Student Chapter
Industrial and Product Design senior Natalie Huertas talks about her experience at UW-Stout as a first generation student. / Hannah Sweet, Miranda Morrell and Lindsey Zakrzewski

Industrial & Product Design

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