The Certificate in Product Innovation allows undergraduate students to develop competency in the area of product innovation.

Employing a cross-disciplinary perspective that embodies concepts from arts, design, business, engineering, and humanities and sciences, students receive a robust learning experience that leads to an understanding of the challenges associated with and means for managing product design, product development and new-product introduction endeavors.

The Certificate in Product Innovation program runs concurrently with a student’s major and is not a stand-alone program. In order to participate in the program, students must have a declared major in the schools of the Arts, Business, Engineering, the College of Humanities and Sciences, or another VCU unit that is an official partner of the da Vinci Center.

Students participating in this program will learn how to:​

  • Collaborate successfully: Students will demonstrate successful collaborative skills by learning how to work in teams, manage team conflict and organization and apply these learnings in real teaming situations.
  • Develop product concepts: Students will demonstrate the ability to develop and test effective product concepts and prototypes.
  • Think across disciplines: Students will demonstrate the ability to think across disciplines through taking courses outside their main area of study and working on teams with students from various backgrounds.
  • Use effective verbal and oral communication: Students will be prepared to effectively express product innovation ideas and views in both verbal and written forms. Students will also be able to effectively communicate using verbal presentations and written executive reports.

Students should apply to the program during or after taking the introductory course, INNO 200Interested students should submit their application to the VCU da Vinci Center which administers the certificate program. Upon acceptance to the certificate program, a Change of Major form will be signed by the student and submitted to Records and Registration by the VCU da Vinci Center.

The certificate requires a minimum of 16 credit hours of approved course work as follows:

INNO 200Introduction to Innovation and Venture Creation1
Select two courses from the following non-discipline electives: 16-9
Introduction to Arts and Design Principles
Introduction to Business Principles
The Economics of Product Development and Markets
Marketing Principles
Introduction to Engineering and Technology Principles
Select two discipline-specific electives (approved 300- or 400-level courses in the major) 26
INNO 460Product Innovation: da Vinci Project 23
Total Hours16-19

Choose the courses offered by the schools outside the major; students from outside the Schools of the Arts, Business, and Engineering must take all three non-discipline electives.


Students may take only one discipline-specific elective course while enrolled in INNO 460.

 The minimum total of credit hours required for this certificate is 16.

Core discipline electives
School of the Arts
Type and Image
Sequential Imaging
Digital Drawing
Game Design, Theory and Practice
Business of Communication Arts
Idea Accelerator
Piloting the Enterprise
Design Ops Internship
Furniture Design
Intermediate Glass Fabrication/Hot
Intermediate Textiles: Pattern Weaving
Merchandise Planning and Control
Fashion Forecasting
Design II Studio
and Design II Studio
Fashion Internship
Web Design
Systems in Design
Interaction I
Studio Management
Design Center
Design Internship
Interior Design Studio I
Advanced Interior Graphics II
Furniture Design
ID Business Practices
Topics in Interior Design
Web Technologies for Media Artists
Drawing, Advanced
Flexible Molds
School of Business
Legal Environment of Business
Public Finance
Systems Analysis and Design
Survey of Entrepreneurship
Marketing Research
Integrated Marketing Communications
Experiential Marketing
Product Development and Management
Introduction to Project Management
College of Engineering
Fundamentals of Software Engineering
Algorithm Analysis with Advanced Data Structures
Biomedical Engineering Design Practicum
Biomedical Instrumentation
Biomedical Engineering Senior Design Studio
Biomedical Engineering Senior Design Studio
Human Factors Engineering
Mechanical Systems Design
Material Science for Engineers
CAE Design
Senior Design Studio (Laboratory/Project Time)
and Senior Design Studio (Laboratory/Project Time)
College of Humanities and Sciences
Biology Preceptorship: ____
Medicinal Chemistry and Drug Design
Professional Writing
Professional, Scientific and Technical Writing
International Marketing
Introduction to Intercultural Communication
International Management
International Human Resource Management
Technical Prowess
Graphics for Journalism
Visual Communication and Design for Public Relations
Audio and Video Journalism
Advanced Video Journalism
Public Relations Research Methods
Web Site Design
The Physics of Sound and Music
Public Administration
Financial Management for Nonprofits
Stress and its Management
Industrial Psychology
Experimental Methods

The program director for product innovation will approve all course work intended to satisfy any elective requirements for the undergraduate Certificate in Product Innovation.

For more information, contact the student services coordinator for the VCU da Vinci Center at (804) 827-3764 or