Capstone Studio 1 provides a structure for students to develop their research and design work. Design experiments and research activities are structured through assigned briefs and deadlines that help each student to follow a line of inquiry and progressively build a body of work. Seminars and workshops led by one or more faculty expose students to contemporary work and provide depth and context to the students’ own research questions. By the end of the term, each student will have defined the research focus and design work that is the foundation for their capstone concept. The final work will be shown in multiple mediums, e.g., code, video, streaming, and mixed fidelity prototypes. To support student development of artefacts (prototypes, demos, media), Capstone Mdes students will work in tandem with the required GradLab course to build out a final project.

This studio is taught synchronously online. Asynchronous work will include group work, regular forums, 1-1 with advisors and virtual labs, as well as the development of individual projects.

Creative Prototyping 1


This course focuses on hands-on prototyping for impact: mastery of digital tools, computation and strategic prototyping. Technology-based projects will use a range of contemporary technologies, including code, computation such as AI and ML, screen and physical interaction and networks. Using mixed fidelity prototypes, students will leverage prototyping for management, engineering and investment opportunities to build credibility and impact as design leaders.

Creative Prototyping 2


This course offers design and technology projects that complement other courses in the program, and focuses on emerging technologies such as machine learning, AR/VR, and simulation. Students learn to apply new technologies in creative ways, and experiment with fast prototyping and experimentation to discover potential and unexpected affordances of technologies. Students will critically examine the role and application of Machine learning, cultural analytics, generative representations, AI behaviors, and neural networked systems. Using code as a design medium, we will explore the future of graphic and interaction design, through generative future scenarios.

Design Research, Strategy


Observations, Insights, and Opportunities. Exploring various quantitative and qualitative research models into ethics, human behaviors, trends, and societal shifts in defining viable strategies. How to use participatory design methodologies.



Culture and Context Lab that develops pathways for students with internal workflow from assignments, methods, and communication to external opportunities from conferences, competitions, and internships/career pathways. Weekly 1-on-1 or group meetings, workshops, and lecture series.

Investing in People, Process, and Leadership


Identify common leadership and innovation challenges throughout the organizational life cycle (pre-launch 
to maturity) in multiple settings: mature organizations, startups and independent practice. Review progress and evolving body of personal work. Guest speakers include Senior Interaction, Creative Officers and entrepreneurs.

IXD History and Futures


Interaction Design in various forms goes back more than a century to the industrial age. A gradual evolution marks that history from direct tactile and mechanical interfaces to metaphorical interactions, paralleled by evolution from machine-centric to human-centric design. In this course, we will examine these histories around thematic areas of tactile/mechanical interfaces, graphical/screen-based interfaces, and multi-modal interfaces such as voice, gesture, etc. Charting the specific history of entrepreneurial design in technology, students will see how their design process, focusing on people and prototypes, prepares them for emerging technologies, social change, and the future of human interactions. Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) sits at the confluence of computer science, psychology and cognitive science. Students explore commonly used HCI research methods as they apply to interaction design and emergent future casting models. Moving from past to present and then future Interaction models, students will examine scifi-predicted/designed future tech. Through readings, seminar discussions, and hands-on experiments, students will learn how to apply methods HCI and futurecasting into their design practice.

People, Environments and Society


Develop creative concepts to investigate a significant challenge in relationships between people, environments and society. Engage with stakeholders in the real world to inspire and evaluate ideas. Focus will be on designing for digital product and Inclusion and ethics.

Product, Services, Systems


This class serves as an introduction to the main frameworks of the MDEs program. In this practice-based class, students will move beyond traditional UX and IxD Methods (service blueprints, wireframes and personas) to frame their work in Inclusive product, AI (Agentive Tech) and Strategic Prototyping methodologies. People experience a product, tool or service in a complex architecture of interactions. Students will consider a specific ecosystem in which to experiment and innovate optimally and sustainably. Integrating core concepts from service and customer experience (CX) Design, students will craft service blueprints, strategic prototypes with an eye to inclusion, sustainability and innovation across a range of canvases for multiple users and stakeholders. Students will break services into sections and adapt fine-tuned solutions to suit all users’ needs in context—based on actors, location and other factors.

This class will include one group and one personal project. Students will also have the opportunity to participate in a series of additional workshops through GradLab on Interaction Foundations to hone existing skills in HCD, IxD and UX methodologies. Class is divided into two sessions, including group crit, panel review and a series of 1-1 design review sessions, to be scheduled during class times. All students will also receive an introduction to Human Subject Research and take online CITI certification.

Topic Studio


Inclusive Design for example, Industry Partner, DM, Social Innovation, and current trends. Students will learn to work in multidisciplinary teams with internal and external stakeholders to build and interrogate design briefs, craft relevant technology solutions and build persuasive communication strategies.

Writing for Interaction


From presentations to publishing, white papers to interaction scenarios, writing and critical readings lead students to effective facilitation and communication strategies.

Total Required Units


Take the next step toward a career in interaction design.