Recommended Resources

The MBA in Design Strategy program, and the business world it serves, relies upon digital communications.

Accordingly, the program requires its students to have access to a laptop computer and recommends certain software programs that represent the standards of business work and communications.

In addition, we've compiled a list of recommended books, films, websites, etc., to help orient people to our perspective on how new business techniques, design-led innovation, and sustainability come together.


Students are required to use a laptop computer with a minimum 13-inch screen and WiFi access. Students can choose any Windows or Macintosh laptop (the latest models of Macintosh computers also run Windows).

The college recommends the 15-inch MacBook Pro. Students may opt for the 17-inch MacBook Pro if a larger screen is desired. Educational Technology Services (ETS) offers a MacBook Pro bundle.

Alternatively, students may use a tablet device in class, such as an iPad, as long as its operating system is capable of supporting either of the software packages below (the iPad now supports the iWork software).

Realistically, students with tablets should have access to a laptop or desktop computer at home or work, or both, in order to complete assignments.


The program requires students to use standard business software (word processor, spreadsheet, and presentation application):

  • Microsoft Office ($85, estimated CCA price); or
  • Apple iWork ($71, $30 for iPad, estimated CCA price)

Optionally, students may want to have access to design applications, such as photo manipulation, HTML production, illustration/drawing, and page layout.

However, it's not necessary to purchase and use professional-level tools such as the Adobe Creative Suite.

Student Discounts

The college has agreements with Apple, HP, and software distributors to offer discounts to CCA students:


* Note: Many of these titles are available to CCA students, staff, and faculty at the CCA Libraries. Take advantage of the online catalog that allows searching by category such as sustainability-related resources.

Also, although these resources are derived from faculty recommendations, none represents an official endorsement by the college.

Communication, Collaboration & Leadership

Strategy & Business Design

Economics & Metrics

Organizational Culture

Sustainability & Social Innovation

Design & Customer Experience





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