The purpose of this seminar is to guide doctoral students in the development and preparation of their research proposals. The course is organized into two major parts, reflecting the various specializations of the DDes students and offering a forum for common discussion. The first part of the course (Module 1: first six weeks), is the responsibility of the individual DDes advisors. The advisors meet with their students and convey to their advisees in individual meetings, assigned readings and appropriate courses, as well as the basic theories and research methods of the respective fields of study. The second part of the course (Module 2: the second six weeks of the fall semester) is a forum for common exchange, coordinated by the GSD 7330 instructor. Each student will make a presentation to a class comprising all the DDes students, the GSD 7330 instructor, plus the students\' two or three advisors. Advisors and students criticize the presentation and suggest directions for refinement. Out of these presentations and discussions, a detailed research plan for their thesis project should emerge.