About This Program
Graduates who have received the Master in Interaction Design and Information Architecture education will be qualified to work in a wide range of relevant and in-demand professions. These careers include information architect, interaction designer, creative director, user-experience manager, multimedia developer, user researcher, and other fields that combine the human experience with the design of technology.
This information architecture program mixes two simpler fields (the humanities and arts plus technology and computer science) into one much more complex field: interaction design and information architecture. It is a 36-credit degree that could either end with a thesis or a project. This is completely up to the student.
There are four core courses for this IA program, as well as two other required courses (which can be selected from several options), and the final four courses are to be selected from one of three focus areas. These focus areas are Interaction Design, Information Architecture, and User Research.
The four required core courses are Interaction and Interface Design; an Information Architecture class; Humans, Computers, and Cognition; and Research Methods. In addition to these courses, students must then choose to take either Topics in Advanced Interaction Design, Topics in Advanced Information Architecture, or Topics in User Research. They can then select to complete a course on either Dynamic Web Sites or Interactive Multimedia, depending on their focus. Finally, a thesis or project must be completed before graduation.
Some technical knowledge is required for this program. If the incoming student has not yet taken and/or passed the Hypermedia Proficiency Examination, then he or she will be required to instead pass a course called "Introduction to Web Development" with a B or higher. This course does not count toward the credits needed for graduation. The thesis topic should be chosen the semester prior and may be finished over the course of one semester (6 credits) or two (3 credits each).
As part of the Master in Interaction Design and Information Architecture program, students will be able to utilize the UB User Research Lab. It is used to help students learn how to conduct human-focused research in a productive and ethical way. It offers a variety of contexts for research, allowing students to gain a wide breadth of experience. The lab has been newly renovated and allows researchers to carry out usability testing, eye-tracking studies, expert review, etc.
Students interested in this IA program should apply online (which includes a $50 application fee), They should include a Statement of Personal Interest, an official transcript from prior university work, letters of recommendation, GRE test scores, and their resume or CV. The application deadline for the fall semester is June 15th, while the deadline for the spring semester is November 15th.