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RIT Global

Study in a country that has a long, rich tradition of visual arts, is known for its festivals celebrating art, music, and film.

RIT graphic design, industrial design and new media design majors can apply to be part of the integrated design program at Hochschule Anhalt (University of Applied Sciences) in Dessau, Germany during the spring of their junior year. The Hochschule Anhalt design program is known for three major fields of study: communication design (2D), product design (3D), and media design (4D), and students utilize a variety of design tools in their coursework – graphic, typographical, form design, photographic, cinematic, audio, and interactive design.

RIT students apply in the spring of their sophomore year and take part in the program during the spring of their junior year. Acceptance into the program is made by an administrative committee in the College of Art and Design and each year five students are selected. The program runs from early April to mid-July (note that the German academic calendar is different than the U.S.).

About Dessau & The University

Dessau is world-famous for its Bauhaus architecture and attracts students of design and architecture from all over the world and is a small city (population of 90,000), located in the Saxony-Anhalt region of Germany. Dessau is home to many examples of Bauhaus architecture, and of the Bauhaus school of architecture and design which includes galleries, exhibition rooms and a museum. Much of what is considered today as “modern art” was influence by Bauhaus style which plays with the relationship between art and technology, form and function, and design and industry. Dessau is a walkable city that also has two public tramway lines and is also bicycle friendly. It is also an excellent jumping off point to explore other cities in Germany. It’s about 1 hour by train to Leipizg (known as the “Little Berlin”) and 1.5 hours by train to Berlin, known as one of the most prolific cities in terms of contemporary art, design, music, theater and fashion.

Hochschule Anhalt is home to approximately 8,000 students and has a vibrant social life, with living costs that are relatively low compared to other German university cities. Students enjoy the many unique festivals and green space in the area.

The school of design is unique in that students are encouraged to combine different design disciplines, allowing them to form their own individual styles utilizing their talents. Students can take advantage of various workshop/studio spaces: digital workshop, plastic workshop, SpaceLab, wood workshop, photography workshop, video workshop, graphic workshop, metal workshop, and TimeLab.


RIT students typically take 4 classes (12-16 credits) of studio-based coursework in graphic design, communication design, product design, and film and interaction design. Classes are based around personal project development and in addition to in-class time, you will meet once or twice a week one-on-one with your professors to discuss the progress of your projects.

German language is recommended but not required. Courses are taught in German but are studio based so instruction is through demonstration mainly, and professors are usually open to answering your questions in English. All faculty and most students speak English in addition to German.  One-on-one critiques are done in English with your instructor(s). You are encouraged to make friends who speak German (many native German students are in the classes) so they can help translate if needed. 

Housing & Activities

You will stay in dorms about a 15 minute walk to campus. Dorm rooms are single or doubles with a kitchen, bath and bedroom.

When not in class you can participate in Hogschool Anhalt’s sports and fitness programs, meet friends at local cafes or restaurants, join events hosted by student groups, tour cultural sites, or bicycle to nearby parks.

Interview with RIT student on Dessau exchange program:

To Apply

As part of application you will submit a letter of intent, letter of recommendation, interview. Students will be notified if accepted in late May (the program will start the following March).

1) Contact faculty director, Christine Shank ( in the College of Art & Design.

2) Start an application in the Compass.

Please Note: Study abroad programs and all international travel by students for the 2020-2021 academic year are suspended until further notice due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Applications for fall 2021 and beyond travel programs will remain open as we monitor the situation. For the most up to date information, please visit


12 to 15
Language of Instruction: 
English, German
Course Discipline: 
Art, Design
Open To: 

RIT students only