the Student Perspective

Explore. Learn. Have fun!

Service Design Thinking at KIT, aka the SDT module, is a 9-months project-based learning program. It is about international top students working in small teams to develop disruptive innovations in collaboration with selected industry partners. Thereby, we have a focus on new digital services or digital business models.


Our Focus

Learn Design Thinking

You get a rare chance to learn the design thinking methodology by applying it yourself

Have fun

Have lots of fun while working with your team, the company and SUGAR participants on an innovative solution

Solve Real-World Problems

You get the opportunity to work on a real-world project solving an actual business problem - there really is no better way to learn

The SDT Module

Your Benefits


Check out the 

what we work on

Reference Challenges

Course Structure

Meeting types


We conduct weekly coaching sessions of approx. 60 min length with each student team, so-called Small Group Meetings (SGM). The appointment is selected together with the team. 

There is also a weekly course in which all teams participate together, the so-called Large Group Meeting (LGM). LGMs last about 90 minutes, have some lecture character with very strong interactive part or are forum to discuss intermediate results together. The LGM usually take place on Mondays from 18:00 to 19:30. (Note: The attendance dates take place during the entire 9 months, i.e. also during the semester holidays.)


Group Setup

Within the framework of the SDT module, international student teams work on real innovation challenges of renowned partner companies. Each team is composed of 3-4 KIT students and 3-4 students from a foreign partner university (e.g. St. Gallen, USTC, Linkoping University, Aalto Helsinki, Trinity College, …). The teams are working on the challenge of their respective partner company for over 9 months (e.g. September 2018 – June 2019). The teams receive a contact person on the company side, with which they regularly exchange information on the project stand. To cover travel expenses and some purchases, each team gets its own budget. The teams are encouraged to organize themselves.


The Teaching team

The teaching is done by the so-called teaching team (TT), which comprises Prof. Dr. Gerhard Satzger, Prof. Dr. Orestis Terzidis and Dr. Niels Feldmann.
The teaching team is supplemented by so-called teaching assistants. These are students of the previous years who will assist you with SGMs, preparation for presentations etc.


Teaching assistants

Throughout the program there will be weekly lecture-like teaching units, sporadic one-day workshops for the student teams in collaboration with the teaching team, as well as weekly coaching sessions of each team by a coach, called the Teaching Assistant (TA). Finally, as a teaching team, we occasionally engage in team coaching directly.


Important Dates



What We Expect

Selection Process

How To Apply

Be part of something great!



Questions & Answers

Everyone! We welcome applications from master students of all departments of the KIT. However, in terms of crediting the program for your study, we only have formal agreements for students studying Business Engineering (M.Sc.), Information Engineering and Management (M.Sc.) or Computer Science (M.Sc.) at KIT.

Nevertheless, we have had participants from other departments as well. In these cases, we worked our individual arrangements with the respective examination office.

You should plan with 2 days per week per student (including semester holidays) – depending on the project situation it can be more.

There are many criteria for the selection of participants. Of course, your grades play a role, but it is only one criteria among many. Your letter of motivation, your CV and, above all, your experiences and skills that are evident in these two documents are very important. We not want to include only brilliant students in the program, but also to put together teams that cover a wide range of skills. Finally, our impressions from the interviews are important too. The program includes intensive international teamwork. In this respect, teams need to fit together not only professionally but also personally.