Human Centered Technology Focus Area

Graduates of this focus area will understand user needs, generate technology designs, bring them to life by creating prototypes, and understand their impact. We are training future information professionals to work at the intersection of cutting-edge technology. Graduates will learn how to design, create, and analyze technology though a human-centered process.

Through the courses in the Human Centered Technology focus area, students will acquire skills that are very attractive to employers, including assessing user needs, forming design insights, designing a solution, building prototypes that address user needs, evaluating the effectiveness of those solutions, and iterating to improve the solutions. Students will create a portfolio piece (including an interactive artifact, a report, and a presentation) that illustrates their capabilities as technology designers and communicates the design rationale, process, and effectiveness.

Technical Skills

  • Understanding User Needs and Requirements
  • User Experience (UX) / User Interface (UI) Design
  • Usability Evaluation
  • Creating Interactive Prototypes
  • Computer Programming
  • Data Analysis
  • Report Writing/Presenting
  • Communicating with Stakeholders and Clients

Careers

  • User Experience Researcher: Understanding user needs and identifying ways that technology can improve people’s lives and their work
  • UI/UX Designer: Focused on user experience, UI/UX designers are tasked with shaping the interaction the audience has with a game or interactive product.
  • Project Manager: Overseeing all aspects of a production, project managers are responsible for the vision of the game as well as the accurate execution of that vision.
  • Web Design & Development: Web developers use a combination of design and programming tools to develop websites for a variety of clients. Careers range from user experience focused designers who create clear layouts for content to programming heavy developers who create complex websites’ backends.
  • Mobile App Design & Development: One of the newest additions to the world of interactive media app development is a growing field. App developers create programs for mobile and other smart devices with a focus on functionality and usability.

Sample pathway through the courses

Fall: MI 220 and MI 250
Spring: MI 320 and MI 350 and MI 420
Next Fall: MI 450 and MI 484

Faculty

  • Josh Introne
  • Taiwoo Park
  • Emilee Rader
  • Stephanie Steinhardt
  • Rick Wash
  • Susan Wyche

Resources