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Future Students

Master of Science

The University of Washington's Master of Science in Human Centered Design & Engineering (HCDE) prepares its graduates for leadership roles in user experience research and design, interface design, interaction design, product design, and human-computer interaction.

HCDE Master's students solve real-world problems with our award-winning interdisciplinary faculty and students from diverse professional backgrounds. A flexible schedule allows students to attend part time or full time. Courses are offered in-person and cannot be completed online.


HCDE is an inclusive, interdisciplinary academic community. Graduates of HCDE receive engineering degrees and find jobs as user experience (UX) researchers and designers, systems analysts, design researchers, usability evaluators, web and information developers, and more. The University of Washington is located on a beautiful campus in the city of Seattle, and our students have access to the many prominent corporations that call the Pacific Northwest home. 

Our Students

The Master's program in HCDE attracts students who are interested in researching, designing, and engineering technological interactions from a human perspective. Our students have a variety of academic and professional backgrounds, with an approximate breakdown of one-third from technical and engineering backgrounds, one-third from social sciences backgrounds, and one-third from design backgrounds. About half of our students are working professionals, studying as part-time students; the other half of our students study full-time. 

Curriculum & Program Objectives

Students in the HCDE Master's program take a minimum of 50 credits, 24 of which are required core courses. The remaining 26 credits include elective courses, seminars and Directed Research Groups. Upon completion of the HCDE Master's degree, students assume leadership roles in human centered design and engineering in academia, industry, government, and non-profits. 


The online application is first made available no later than September each year through the UW Graduate School's application portal. The annual application deadline for the HCDE Master's program is on January 15 (except in years when that date coincides with a holiday or weekend, in which case it is slightly adjusted). Students begin the program in the following autumn quarter only. Unfortunately, we cannot accommodate deferment requests to any quarter/year beyond this time for accepted applicants.  View admission requirements »