Interaction Design as a worldwide-acceptedprofession

14 Sep 2006 - 7:44am
8 years ago
3 replies
276 reads
Mark Schraad
2006

You would probably be better off finding a good Industrial Design program. They tend to be more diverse and multidimensional. Many graphic design and industrial design programs are either divided between studio skills and design thinking... but the ID schools, in general, seem to be ahead of the curve. A lot of the undergraduate programs in the US are still focused on cranking our graphic artists... that have computer software skills. Make sure that you find a program that is deeply theory rooted and applied, yet not a simple vocation program (many major universities disguise their four year programs as such.

As for the IxD part... at the graduate (masters level) diversity and cross discipline are key. If you look at programs labeled Interaction, try and determine how much time you spend in the design department. If it is 70% or more... keep looking.

Mark

On Wednesday, September 13, 2006, at 03:22PM, Esteban Barahona <esteban.barahona at gmail.com> wrote:

>[Please voluntarily trim replies to include only relevant quoted material.]
>
>Yes, training is the keyword. For my situation (...and of many others who
>don't live near a Interaction Design University, School, etc) I think it's
>better to study first Graphic Design.
>

Comments

14 Sep 2006 - 8:44am
John Gr√łtting
2006

I agree with this. Although my own education is in graphic design, I
took some product design courses and have later hired product
designers for interaction design roles. Graphic Design centers around
a few core principles such as: visual composition in 2D space,
communication design (understanding how to develop ideas that
communicate effectively, such as in advertising) and in branding.
There are obviously other areas that some programs expand into, such
as motion graphics, packaging design, and multimedia design, but the
core focus in on shaping the aesthetics and communication within a 2D
space. While product design does spend a large amount of time
focusing on the 3D space, there is a core component of understanding
the human needs and developing a compelling product to solve those
needs. This means breaking down those needs (each school has its own
approach to this) and solving the meta and micro needs. That kind of
problem solving in a perfect fit for interaction design.

Each program is different and you can look at what their underlying
philosophies are to find the one that will suite your interests. Is
you interest more in the aesthetics and emotional dimensions of
interaction design or in the ability to make life easier for people?

John Grøtting

Grøtting + Sauter
Barnerstr. 14B
22765 Hamburg
Germany

Tel +49.40.398.34342
SkypeIn +1.818.574.8440
Fax +49.40.398.34340
Mobile +49.172.4246.976
www.g-s.de
g at g-s.de

Am 14.09.2006 um 15:44 schrieb mark Schraad:

14 Sep 2006 - 9:22am
Mark Schraad
2006

Exactly. The advantage of an industrial design program is that the design student will get more exposure to the concept of context (person, tool, environment, interaction and time) which is lacking from mostgraphics programs and extremely important in IxD work.

Mark

On Thursday, September 14, 2006, at 07:46AM, John Grøtting <g at g-s.de> wrote:

>
><<Original Attached>>

14 Sep 2006 - 12:18pm
Doris Lamontagne
2005

It all depends in what you want to achieve with your degree. The facts are that Interaction Designers have multiple backgrounds.

What is important is to get the different skills that will prepare you well for the job market. Some of these skills are: user centered design, cognitive sciences, design thinking and design process, multidisciplinary design, human factors, usability principles and accessibility principles and the ability to drawn and render ideas quickly and esthetically. A solid understanding of technology is, if not a necessity, a very strong asset.

Also, learning to listen and problem solve, feeling empathy towards your user, understanding work processes and be able to observe and map how users perform tasks in order to translate their needs into excellent design solutions. Be able to design within design constraints defined by user needs and human factors. Be able to support your design with the research on user needs and human factors. Be able to complement your own skills with the skills from other professions.
You cannot be everything!

Never believe that your solution is the only good solution. Always be careful not to fall in the trap of your own prejudices (i.e.: industrial designers are better than graphic designers)

The other fact is the degree you get at graduation is only the first step of your career. Once you have graduated, you have to keep learning and expanding your mind as well as acquiring new skills.

Doris L
User interaction designer

----- Original Message ----
From: mark Schraad <mschraad at mac.com>
To: John Grøtting <g at g-s.de>
Cc: discuss at lists.interactiondesigners.com; Dave (Heller) Malouf <dave at ixda.org>
Sent: Thursday, September 14, 2006 11:22:51 AM
Subject: Re: [IxDA Discuss] Interaction Design as a worldwide-acceptedprofession

[Please voluntarily trim replies to include only relevant quoted material.]
Exactly. The advantage of an industrial design program is that the design student will get more exposure to the concept of context (person, tool, environment, interaction and time) which is lacking from mostgraphics programs and extremely important in IxD work.

Mark

On Thursday, September 14, 2006, at 07:46AM, John Grøtting <g at g-s.de> wrote:

>
><<Original Attached>>
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