Toy Design Universities and Schools in the U.S.
Toy design is the conceptualization and creation of both toys and toy packaging. Postsecondary education may not be required for such positions, but according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employers may prefer to hire individuals holding either a bachelor's degree in toy design or industrial design (''www.bls.gov'').
How to Select a Toy Design School
Toy design programs may be rare, but students may prefer such programs for their specified coursework including topics such as:
- Child psychology
- Game theory
- Toy history
- Toy packaging
Industrial design focuses on both functionality and aesthetic quality. Many artistic courses within an industrial design program are similar to those of a toy design program. Students may prefer industrial design courses for their elective opportunities in computer modeling, graphic design, product development and varied manufacturing materials.
An up-to-date workshop setting with access to a variety of materials and design tools is recommended in any program for an aspiring toy designer. This includes model-making equipment, access to toy catalogues and facilities for creating stuffed toys. Programs with portfolio and resume building courses, as well as career planning opportunities, could also be advantageous.
Hands-on group experiences, including brainstorming, design and development may prove useful in preparing students for real-world work environments. Toy design internship opportunities with major toy companies could help students become familiar with the industry and provide valuable networking opportunities.
Toy Design Program Overviews
Bachelor's Degree in Toy Design
As of 2010, there were only a small number of programs specifically offered in toy design in the United States; however, students may find toy design concentration options and facilities through a number of artistic and illustration bachelor's degree programs. Common coursework includes:
- 2-D and 3-D design
- Toy production
Students may also take specialized courses in the toy industry, child development, hard toys, soft toys and games. A senior research project or internship may be required for successful completion of such programs.
Bachelor's Degree in Industrial Design
Bachelor's degree programs in industrial design are meant to teach students to conceptualize and construct many aspects of day-to-day 3-D environments, including furniture, appliances, technology and toys. Toy design may be offered as a concentration area in such programs. Coursework often includes 2- and 3-D modeling, drawing and coloring.
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