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The MS in HCI is an interdisciplinary program offered collaboratively by three Schools: Interactive Computing; Literature, Media, and Communication (LMC); and Psychology. Students may apply to enter the program through any one of the three participating units, the choice of which usually reflects that student’s intended area of specialization and general background. Students with diverse and eclectic backgrounds are encouraged to apply.
The MS HCI is a four–semester, 36 credit-hour degree. All students take the same core courses, a set of courses related to their chosen specialization (Computing, Digital Media, or Psychology), a broader set of electives and complete a master’s project. Students complete an internship in the summer after their first year of study. Students interact with fellow students and faculty from these three (and other) specializations, providing the broad base of knowledge and experiences that are so important to successful HCI practitioners.
Elective courses can be in a wide variety of areas, such as Industrial Design, Architecture, Music Technology, Industrial and Systems Engineering, Computer Science, Human-Robot Interaction, Human Factors, Management of Technology and Cognitive Science. Students can earn the Management of Technology Certificate from the College of Management.
The program provides the practical skills and theoretical understandings needed to become leaders in the design, implementation and evaluation of the next generation of human-computer interfaces. Graduates work around the globe for national and international companies.
Some people think of GT as an Engineering School. Those in the know think of us as an HCI School. Why? Just as interactive and ubiquitous computing is more and more widespread around the world – at work, at play, at school, in the car, in the home, at the beach, at the gym – literally anywhere, anytime – so too more and more educational and research endeavors have an HCI component. Here at Georgia Tech we see this in the 13 directly-related degree programs, courses, research labs, centers and institutes that are HCI-relevant. In some cases HCI is the central focus; in other cases HCI is an essential ingredient in an application-oriented agenda. .
Scarcely a week goes by without several HCI activities: weekly lunch-time talks by faculty and graduate students, design course poster sessions, meetings of the HFES Student Chapter, Industrial Design showcases, distinguished lectures by visitors from Google, Microsoft, IBM and many others. The annual GVU Center and Digital Media “Demo Days” typically showcases over (100? 150? 200?) projects. Many MS-HCI projects are supervised by faculty and researchers from the schools, research labs, centers, and institutes that participate in these events. Each February is Interactivity, a job-fair for HCI graduate students, attended by over XX employers from around the country.
Beyond Georgia Tech, the greater Atlanta metropolitan area is a hotbed of user experience, user interface and human-computer interaction professionals and development. We don’t have an exact count, but there are well over a thousand professionals in the area. They work for large companies — Home Depot, Delta, NCR, CNN, Turner Broadcasting, AT&T, Verizon, IBM, Google, and UPS to name a few — that are headquartered or have regional offices here. They work at national and local advertising, web strategy, and design companies and consultancies. They work at a significant number of start-ups, including some started by MS-MCI graduates and nurtured in Georgia Tech’s incubator.
Several local professional groups meet regularly around Atlanta, sometimes on the GT campus. Many of our students take advantage of the networking and career development opportunities presented by these groups, that include CHI*Atlanta, IxDA Atlanta, Atlanta Web Design Group and HFES Atlanta.
All these campus and local activities create a wonderful HCI community, a melting pot of ideas that makes being here very exciting and energizing.