Junior year is increased complexity of work and an emerging point of view on what good design means to the student and how to express it. Here are some of the classes offered:
Objects & Space
The physical world is increasingly enabled by interactive and connection technologies. In this studio, students apply their growing repertoire of skills to real-world, tangible objects and environments. The roles of sensing the environment and people’s actions within it, the use of actuators and system agency, physical affordances, and new indications of system state are explored while students develop a deeper understanding of how the virtual and physical worlds relate through interaction. Participants learn to prototype using LCD screens, buttons and haptic components, and other elements, limited only by imagination and resources. They work to develop an expanded personal perspective without losing sight of people and their needs. Group work enables the acquisition of a variety of craft skills through sharing and collaboration across disciplines, culminating in a final, large-scale project. The course prerequisites are programming and digital electronics. There are course prerequisites.
Time Studio 2 builds on the narrative skills introduced in Time Studio 1, exploring motion, behaviors, time shifting, place shifting, memory, programming, and other technology strategies as structures for creating the micro and macro narratives that form dialogues between individual participants and groups, and between participants and systems. This latter relational dialogue is a particular focus of the course, with special attention paid to the elements of interface narrative building that promote communication and interplay between system and participant, including character construction, plot, conditional flow, filtering, play, error and recovery, expectation, suspense, and delivery.
We examine the unique capabilities of interactive systems, including how they learn, evolve, and transform. This is a technical course using time-based tools such as HTML5, Motion, Flash, and After Effects, introduced through individual and group-oriented projects geared toward personal creativity and collaborative experimentation.
Interdisciplinary Studio (2)
Exploration in interaction design is often about bringing the techniques of time design and technological affordances such as memory, interactivity, and time/place shifting to the materials of other design disciplines and contexts. This cross-disciplinary studio explores materials, advanced topics, and domains with a focus on those that lie beyond the core of interaction design. Courses in this studio can be fulfilled by a variety of options, including courses cross-listed with other departments, ENGAGE courses on an emerging topic defined by a faculty member, a sponsored studio, or another elective submitted by the student and approved by the program chair..
Students explore topics in cognitive science—from vision and language to memory, perception, learning, and consciousness—through their application to real-world contexts. The course has a special focus on learning about important issues of the human mind and body as situated in our contemporary and technological world. Students learn some of the core underlying concepts of cognitive science, potential, and limitation, with a focus on situations where cognitive, social, physiological, perceptual, and psycho-physical phenomena play a role in design. In particular, they look at how concepts in cognitive science can be applied (and misapplied) to the realm of human-human and human-machine interactions. We work through popular design texts, primary science papers, and our own experiments, culminating in a report on the phenomena explored in the course..
Students use their knowledge from the preceding interaction studios and design research courses to explore how interaction design can better integrate the requirements of brands and the needs of users to create more holistic designed interactive experiences. This happens by identifying, defining, and crafting the multiple interactive touch-points with which users interact. This studio expands on the notion of user interface design by considering the entire product experience a person might have, from first use to routine and beyond. Services in particular will be explored, since they often consist of many interactive touch-points that warrant careful systemic design to create a unified experience. Students will further learn how to empathize with a user’s viewpoint through each stage of a service journey and characterize and specify designs for the different visual, haptic, aural, and other touch-points. Through team-based projects, they learn how to create excellent experiences via interaction design.
Exploration in interaction design is often about bringing the techniques of time design and technological affordances such as memory, interactivity, and time/place shifting to the materials of other design disciplines and contexts. This cross-disciplinary studio explores materials, advanced topics, and domains with a focus on those that lie beyond the core of interaction design. Courses in this studio can be fulfilled by a variety of options, including courses cross-listed with other departments, ENGAGE courses on an emerging topic defined by a faculty member, a sponsored studio, or another elective submitted by the student and approved by the program chair.