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Ph.D. in Informatics with specialization in Human-Computer Interaction

Is the future your comfort zone?

Put your focus on tomorrow when you earn a Ph.D. in Human-Computer Interaction from the IU School of Informatics and Computing at IUPUI.

Understanding how to study and create optimal user experiences is crucial to developing and advancing tools for the digital age. By taking part in innovative research at the forefront of HCI you’ll shape how the world uses technology, from can openers to computers.

Learn more about our HCI graduate program

Contributors to the HCI body of knowledge

In our applied, research-based program, Ph.D. students identify new problems in HCI and generate new knowledge to solve them. You’ll collaborate in research labs and be mentored by faculty with real-world expertise in UX research, social computing, accessibility, interaction design for health, android science, and other emerging HCI areas.

Students conduct HCI and usability research that spans disciplines including computing, communication, robotics/android science, biomedical devices, and human and social sciences. Working on the IUPUI campus, with its strong health care focus, offers unique opportunities and facilities.

Call for qualified HCI Ph.D. applicants

Expect an interdisciplinary UX

Our Ph.D. in Informatics with a Human-Computer Interaction specialization is 90-credit-hour program that integrates computing, usability, interface design, the social sciences and other disciplines in the design and development of user-friendly technologies, software and information systems. The program includes core courses, research rotations, your choice of minor, qualifying examinations, and a dissertation.

Degree Requirements

Printable Plans of Study

Informatics Core (6 cr.)

HCI Core (18 cr.)

Methods Courses (18 cr.)

  • INFO I575 Informatics Research Design
  • Two Methods Electives
    • PSY 600 Statistical Inference
    • PSY 601 Experimental Design
    • PSY 608 Measurement Theory and Interpret Data
    • PSY 640 Survey of Social Psychology I
    • PSY 655 Cognitive Development
    • PSY-I 643 Field Methods & Exper
    • ANTH-E404 Field Meth in Ethnography
    • COM 501 Qualitative Research
    • COM 502 Applied Qualitative Research Methods
    • EDU 520 Strategies for Educational Inquiry
    • EDU 611 Qualitative Inquiry in Education
    • NURS-L 650 Data Ana Clinical & Admin Dec.-Making
    • NURS-R 612 Interpretive Data Analy (2 cr.)
    • SOC-R 551 Quantitative Methods – Sociology
    • SOC-R 551 Quantitative Methods Sociology
    • SOC-R 559 Intermediate Soc Statistics
    • STAT 511 Statistical Methods 1
    • STAT 512 Applied Regression Analysis
    • STAT 516 Basic Probability Appl.
    • STAT 519 Intro to Probability
    • STAT 521 Statistical Computing
    • STAT-522 Sampling and Survey Techniques
    • STAT 524 Applied Multivariate Analysis
    • STAT 525 Intermediate Stat Methodology
    • STAT 529 Applied Dec Theory and Bayesian Stat
    • STAT 619 Probability Theory
  • INFO I790 Informatics Research Rotation (Repeated three times)

Specialization (18 cr.)

  • Disciplinary Affinities (0-6 cr.)
  • Minor (12-18 cr.)

You must complete a minor within a domain appropriate to your choice of specialization and/or research area.  All courses must be graduate-level and outside the HCI program.

Qualifying Examinations

  1. Written Exam – You must successfully complete a written qualifying examination by the end of the program’s second year. The exam is established by faculty and covers subject matter taken in the program’s core courses. The exam may be retaken once.
  2. Oral Exam – An oral examination takes place within weeks after successful completion of the written exam. You must pass both the written and oral exam before passing on to Ph.D. candidacy. The oral exam is based on the student’s response to the written exam and core course material. The exam may be retaken once.

Guide to the Annual Review Process and HCI Ph.D. Qualifying Exams

Dissertation (30 cr.)

A dissertation is a written elaboration of original research that makes creative contributions to your chosen area of specialization. Students will enroll multiple times in INFO I890 Thesis Readings and Research (1-12 cr.) as you work to complete your dissertation. All requirements must be completed within seven years of passing the qualifying exams. The dissertation process includes the following components:

  1. Proposal: The research proposal for the dissertation must be approved by the student’s research committee. The student will defend the dissertation proposal at a public colloquium in the school. The review should be completed within one-year after passing the Qualifying Examinations.
  2. Defense: A written elaboration of significant original research must be successfully presented to the research committee in a public defense as described in the Graduate School Bulletin.

Please refer to the IUPUI Graduate School Bulletin for more details on the dissertation process.

Ready to get started?