About Human-Centered Design at Virginia Tech

HCD image

Design matters. The act of creating something new shows up in many human endeavors. It can be a solution to a mundane problem like holding sheets of paper together or something as complex as the formulation of new institutions. Human Centered Design (HCD) is an approach to design charged with understanding the needs, wants, and limitations of end-users. This is accomplished through methodologies and practices where these considerations are integrated at every stage of the design process.

HCD creates novel learning and discovery opportunities that are needed to train the future professoriate, workforce, professionals and civic leaders. HCD can only be taught in a true interdisciplinary educational environment in which coursework and research embrace diversity, inclusiveness, educational breadth, and interdependence, while promoting a person-oriented, rather than a product-oriented, attitude towards education.

HCD at VT is both a PhD program and a graduate certificate in a curriculum that combines technical expertise with critical inquiry to develop reflective practitioners equipped to meet vital human needs.  The HCD/IGEP degree is built around competencies in four core areas: (1) Interdisciplinary Research, (2) Design Studies, (3) Understanding People, and (4) Design Realization.

Faculty currently associated with the HCD program are from these Colleges and Departments:

College of Architecture & Urban Studies

  • Industrial Design
  • School of Visual Art

College of Engineering

  • Computer Science
  • Electrical and Computer Engineering
  • Engineering Education
  • Industrial Systems Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering

College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences

  • English
  • Human Development
  • Learning Sciences and Technology – School of Education
  • Science and Technology in Society
  • Music – School of Performing Arts
  • Theater and Cinema – School of Performing Arts

College of Natural Resources and Environment

  • Geography
  • Forest Resources

Institute: Institute for Creativity, Art, and Technology (ICAT)

For more information please contact Ico Bukvic at ico@vt.edu or Scott McCrikcard at mccricks@cs.vt.edu

image c/o:  https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Wikimania_Human_Centered_Design_Visualization.jpg