Launched in 2004 as the Integrated Digital Media (IDM) Institute, IDM is the 'STEAM' program offered by NYU’s Tandon School of Engineering. Focusing on the intersection of engineering and creative practice, it is located within Tandon’s Department of Technology, Culture, and Society (TCS) alongside two sibling programs: Science and Technology Studies (STS) and Sustainable Urban Environments (SUE).

IDM offers a four-year BS degree, a 30-credit MS degree, a cross-school minor available to all NYU students, and an accelerated 5-year BS/MS. The IDM curriculum integrates topics typically found in an arts context - creative expression and design within both fixed and interactive media - with engineering topics such as signal processing and human-computer interaction. As a program within TCS, this curriculum embraces the department’s core focus on the intersection of engineering and society, encouraging students to engage with technology in a creative, critical, sustainable, and ethical manner; IDM courses feature strong emphasis on human-centered, outward-facing work that integrates values of self-expression, equity, and social justice into engineering. The IDM program articulates these goals through a number of initiatives, many of which, such as the ABILITY Project, are already done in close collaboration with other departments in the University.

IDM is the only program in Tandon in which the majority of faculty and students are women. As with all Tandon programs, we strive to excel in diversity, inclusion, and equity, with a high proportion of first-in-family students, students of color, and students receiving significant federal aid for college.

As a research-active program within NYU Tandon School of Engineering, IDM faculty collaborate in research that integrates digital media and society. Our projects range from using motion capture technology to reimagine theatrical performance, to developing novel uses of virtual/augmented reality for health and wellness, to the integration of STEAM learning into special needs education, to the development of citizen science tools to empower NYC residents to monitor and report on noise pollution in their communities, to helping NASA JPL develop next-generation user interfaces for space exploration, to assisting with the search and visualization of the historical record of New York City.

In our academic programs, digital media is explored as a spectrum of practices that range from computer programming (for app development, software design, game development and interaction design) to 2D and 3D graphics (for human-computer interfaces, augmented reality, motion capture, and game design & development) to photography, film, and audio (for media installations, performing arts research, and integration with various mediums). Our students are artists, designers, and creative technologists working in highly fluid industries that reward the creative, the thoughtful, the technical, and the innovative.

The curriculum combines project-based learning with the study of historical, legal and philosophical aspects of digital media. We emphasize the development of skills applicable to a broad spectrum of media through individual and collaborative work. Guest lectures and conferences supplement our curriculum and maximize students’ personal contact with leaders in various sectors of the following fields: business, advocacy, service, entertainment, and education. The program culminates in a thesis that combines theory and practice to showcase students’ creative and technical abilities.

That blend of theory and practice defines our program. It's what we mean by "integrated" - the powerful combination of emerging media and technology, creative mastery, and critical thinking.