Programme-specific Admission Procedure and Evaluation Criteria
An applicant can apply to the IDBM programme through more than one School. Such an applicant, however, can be selected only through one of the Aalto University Schools. An accepted student completes the master’s degree of the School which he/she is accepted to.
The criteria mentioned here are for the IDBM programme in the Department of Design at Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture. Applicants with a bachelor’s degree in architecture can apply both through the science/technology field and through the design field, depending on the applicant’s background studies and career intentions or aspirations. Students graduating from the School of Arts, Design and Architecture will complete and be awarded a Master of Arts (MA) Degree in International Design Business Management (IDBM).
What we look for in an applicant
Applicants must have a suitable Bachelor’s degree related to one of the disciplines included in the programme.
In their application documents the applicants are expected to demonstrate (1) their personal motivation for joining the program, (2) their academic excellence as displayed in their past studies and portfolio and (3) their professional experience. The professional experience of the applicants is looked at broadly and is considered to include work experience relevant to the IDBM programme as well as experience in artistic and scientific work, including entrepreneurship and other relevant civic activities.
The criteria we use to evaluate the applications in the first stage are
- Motivation letter (max 2 points)
- Academic Excellence (max 2 points for transcript: the applicant’s grades from studies completed and of which the applicant has provided the appropriate documents by the end of the application period will be evaluated.)
- Portfolio (max 10 points)
- CV Professional Experience (max 2 points)
In addition to these, in the second stage the evaluation criteria also includes
- Interview, including applicant’s practical ability to communicate in English (max 10 points)
First stage and required application documents
In the first stage of the admission the selection committee evaluates the applications based on the application documents. Study Option’s specific requirements for the application documents are listed below. Please also note requirements for the application documents presented in the general application instructions.Attach each application document to the electronic application form in PDF form.
A portfolio consisting of the applicant’s own works is mandatory. Please upload a single PDF-file to the application system before submitting the application.
In the portfolio, applicants display work that illustrate their design skills and artistic expression. The portfolio must contain diverse samples of the applicant’s previous design, scientific, professional and/or artistic activity and interests. Artwork/project work can be provided as technical drawings, illustrations or photographs. If you present a work that has been undertaken as a team, please clarify your particular role in, and contribution to, the project. The work contained in the portfolio must be catalogued, listing at least the title and/or theme, materials utilized, size, purpose and year of completion of each piece. The catalogue must also detail where and when the work has been exhibited, displayed or otherwise published.
The applicant’s professional experience will be looked at broadly, and especially with regard to work experience relevant to the IDBM programme as well as experience in design, artistic, scientific and/or business/entrepreneurial practice, including any other relevant civic activities. Professional experience will be evaluated based primarily on the Curriculim Vitae CV.
The applicant must convey his/her motivation for studying in the IDBM Major Studies Programme by writing a motivation letter. The letter should address the following questions:
- Why am I applying for admission to the IDBM Master’s Programme?
- What am I expecting to learn or gain by participating in the IDBM Programme?
- What can I contribute to fellow students and to the continued success of the IDBM Programme?
The letter of motivation is written in the application form and the maximum length is 4000 characters.
Language of application documents
The application documents must be submitted in English.
Part of the applicants are invited to the second stage. The invitation to the second stage is sent to the applicants at latest 7 days in advance.
Based on the total score in the first stage (incl., ranking and rating), the most suitable applicants will be invited for a face-to-face interview. The number invited is typically double the number of study places offered. The maximum intake is 12 students per field (design, business, and technology/science). The applicant’s practical ability to communicate in English will also be evaluated. The applicants are asked a series of questions regarding their motivation, mindset, preferences, aptitudes and interests. The interviews can alternatively be conducted via SKYPE or phone, if or when necessary.