About This Program
In the modern world, humans are constantly interacting with technology. A major in Human Computer Interaction gives students the knowledge that they need to pursue successful careers in information architecture and design. Students will learn how to create digital programs that are easy to use and can use that knowledge for information architecture careers in corporations, nonprofits, and governments.
The goal of the HCI major is to introduce students to the basics of human-computer interaction. Four major topical areas are covered in this IA program -design, implementation, human behavior, and evaluation. By completing all of the core classes, students will have a base of knowledge in each of these areas.
All students in the Human-Computer Interaction program are required to take eight core courses. These are cognitive psychology, interaction design studio I, interaction design studio ii, statistics, introduction to programming, interface programming, user-centered research and evaluation, and a project course. These courses must be taken in a specific order, so students need to take care to plan their class schedule in a way that allows them to graduate on time. In addition, students must take four HCI related elective classes. These courses help students develop both their breadth and depth of knowledge.
For this information architecture degree, students need to maintain a 3.0 average in all of their HCI courses. This major is completed as part of a standard undergraduate degree from Carnegie Mellon University. Students join the IA program typically as juniors and complete the coursework in HCI while also completing their additional major. Most students complete their entire IA degree in four years, although some take a bit longer.
Unlike other undergraduate IA programs, the Human-Computer Interaction program is only available as a second major or minor. Requiring students to obtain an additional major means that every graduate has a unique and broad range of knowledge. This diverse academic background will help them when they seek employment. Human-computer interaction is a skill that is in wide demand, and exceptionally so when combined with other specialties.
To enter this IA program, you will need to be accepted to Carnegie Mellon as an undergraduate student. You will also need to select a different major as your primary course of study. After accepted into the university and completing freshman level work, you can apply into the program. Most Carnegie Mellon students apply to the major during their sophomore year and begin during the fall of the junior year. However, students in any year may apply for the major. Few freshmen are admitted due to their limited academic experience, and freshmen who are rejected are encouraged to apply again as sophomores. Most accepted applicants have a GPA of at least 3.5.