WHO WE ARE
HCDE is where
are integral to the construction of the
We connect complex methodologies, systems, and technologies to
needs in everyday life.
So, how did we get here?
1974 - 1983
James Souther and Myron L. White, Professors in the Department of Humanistic-Social Studies, build a series of courses focused on technical writing. Eventually, the College of Engineering dissolves the Humanistic-Social Studies Department, and develops an Interdisciplinary Program in Scientific and Technical Communication.
The Department of Technical Communication grows out of the interdisciplinary Engineering program, offering its own BS and MS degrees. In addition to the Certificate in Technical Writing & Editing, the Department now offers a Certificate in User-Centered Design.
The department changes its name to Human Centered Design & Engineering (HCDE) to adapt to the expanding field of computing. New HCDE degree titles are approved at the BS, MS, and PhD levels. Over the next decade, it becomes internationally known for its cutting-edge research in disinformation, accessible design, and social computing.
At the 10-year anniversary of the name change to Human Centered Design & Engineering, the department aligns around a new strategic plan and looks to the future. In maintaining HCDE’s human-centered ethos, an open discussion with students, faculty, and staff shapes the identity of the evolving community.
Respect for People
We respect all individuals, communities, and their agency. We assume positive intent on behalf of those we work with and strive to understand before acting.
HCDE researchers in the Center for Engineering Learning & Teaching are studying how the act of reflection — giving meaning to prior experiences and determining how that meaning will guide future actions — can enhance learning and better prepare students as adaptive, broad-thinking problem-solvers.LEARN MORE
We centralize the needs of those who are often marginalized. We work to create environments and practices that are open and safe for all participants and perspectives from all social identities.
In HCDE's Tactile and Tactical Design (TAT) Lab, researchers are exploring the invisible work that went into assembling core memory, an early form of computer information storage initially handwoven by women. This project aims to broaden our understanding of who counts as a designer and what counts as a design practice.LEARN MORE
We celebrate innovation, iteration, and reflection using interdisciplinary methods and perspectives. As we strive toward excellence, we take acceptable risks and learn from mistakes. We seek opportunities for collaborative exploration.
Researchers at the HCDE’s Center for Collaborative Systems for Security (CoSSaR) are creating a cloud-based virtual coordination center that will allow police, fire, and traffic managers to share real-time data about what is happening on the roadways. This will enable data-driven traffic management coordination and increase the effectiveness of interagency operations.LEARN MORE
We are action-oriented toward challenges while continually questioning and improving. We continue to follow and study the repercussions of our actions so that they maximize the possible benefits while anticipating and minimizing possible harms.
While digital and social media enable new forms of engagement, they also create space for misinformation and disinformation to spread. By focusing on specific events that bring people together on a large scale, HCDE researchers are studying how rumors, misinformation, and disinformation spread online during crisis events.LEARN MORE
Our faculty lead research groups every quarter, giving students opportunities to do hands-on work with ongoing research projects.Learn more
Our department has a robust agenda with notable breadth supported by 24 faculty working with their students in 15 labs and two centers.Learn more