The Human Computer Interaction (HCI) specialization prepares students to address human needs with technology by determining useful system functionality and by designing usable interfaces, considering the context of the individual and/or organization.
The principles of HCI apply to people who design technologies for work, education, entertainment, and social interaction. SI coursework combines the theories of cognitive and social psychology, computer science, and design with practical experience.
MSI graduates with a HCI specialization are often recruited into marketing or engineering departments. Within marketing, the role is to ensure a positive customer experience or to improve the organization’s brand. Within engineering, the role is to ensure that the product works properly.
Career Industry Areas: Internet search and navigation services, government agency, information collection and delivery, consumer goods, computer hardware/software, entertainment/media, advertising/PR, social networking, gaming, University or public library
Career Titles: User interface designer, user-experience researcher, user experience designer, usability analyst, information architect, usability engineer, application developer, interaction designer, Web developer, human factors engineer, software developer, entrepreneur
Employment Outlook: According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook 2010, jobs in HCI are expected to grow much faster than the average. Due to new complex products and rapid advances in technology, there is a demand for the HCI skill set. Hot industries include social networking and gaming. As social networking and ubiquitous computing continue to grow, related HCI career opportunities will grow as well.
Students gain valuable experience in southeast Michigan and around the globe. Recent internship sites include:
Organizations employing MSI-HCI graduates have included:
In addition to the specialization requirements below, MSI students must meet all of the degree requirements of the 48-credit MSI program, including foundations, distributions, practical engagement, cognate, and electives.
HCI students must complete 15 credits from the list below, including SI 622, 682, and 688 which are required, plus meet the programming and statistics requirements:
HCI students must also fulfill programming and statistics requirements:
6 credits of programming, previously completed at U-M--or must show competence through an exam. SI offers:
Learn more about the programming requirement.
3 credits of statistics, previously completed (transcript required) or taken at U-M. SI offers:
Learn more about the statistics requirement.